Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival begins - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival begins

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BAY CITY (WJRT) -

(10/04/12) - Forget about going to Hollywood. This weekend, Hollywood is actually coming to Mid-Michigan.

The seventh annual 'Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival' runs through Sunday.

"It's a little taste of Sundance. It's a little taste of Tribeca, and all those festivals. They're all coming here to Bay City," said Alan LaFave, festival director.

Around 3,000 people, many straight from LA, are expected to attend the festival. Among them are several familiar faces, including Rider Strong, best known for his role as Shawn Hunter on the 1990's ABC sitcom "Boy Meets World."

"Even yesterday, I had women from the ages of 25 to 55 talking about, hey, 'is Rider Storm going to be here this year?' Yeah. He'll be here. It's his second year here, and we're thrilled to have him and his films," LaFave said.

Sixteen feature length films, along with several shorts and student productions, will all be screened at the State Theater, the Delta College Planetarium, and the Masonic Temple. One film that's creating plenty of buzz is an "Avengers" style flick, "Alter Egos."

"Danny Masterson from 'That 70's Show' has a part in this. You have to see what his powers are, because it's a fantastic comedy about superheroes," LaFave said.

Another that has earned national attention is a documentary spotlighting Flint's Sit Down Strike, narrated by Martin Sheen.

"Brothers on the Line, how topical. It's about the UAW and the rise of the middle class. It's Michigan history as well as our nation's history," LaFave said.

The 'Hell's Half Mile Film and Music Festival' isn't just about watching movies. It's about learning how to make them. Over the weekend, several seminars will be held where aspiring filmmakers can get up and close and personal with producers and directors.

"Absolutely. We would love to be the one's who brought the person together with the inspiration, and hopefully they'll remember us when they get big, and they'll bring their films back to us," LaFave said.

Until 8 p.m. Thursday, there's a big kickoff party happening at the Pere Marquette Depot. There's also plenty of live music performances taking place throughout the weekend as well.

For a schedule of events, click HERE.

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