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November 2, 2010 Follow updates of Five Door Films at this new blog.
June 1, 2010: Manitoba Arts Council script development grant for The Return of the Far Fur Country.
The Return of the Far Fur Country is a documentary about the fate of a silent feature film called The Romance of the Far Fur Country filmed by the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1920 and the efforts to bring the footage held in the British Film Institute archives back to Canada. The film is about the repatriation of these images to the Aboriginal communities across northern Canada; the original settings and subjects of this lost film.
May 17, 2010: Kevin is appointed a German-Canadian Studies Fellowship Research Grant for a new documentary called Shelterbelt. A documentary exploring how Mennonite farmers transformed the barren grassland Canadian prairie into the tree-lined shelterbelts we see today.
May 19, 2010: "Our Neon City" plays Cinematheque. Read the review:
From Uptown Magazine May 13, 2010:
Exploring Our Neon City
A new series of short docs looks at Winnipeg’s past by studying its iconic neon signs
A new series of short docs for MTS Winnipeg on Demand may elevate the Neon Factory to a Winnipeg Heritage museum.
Our Neon City, punctuated by a jazzy Moses Mayes score, takes a look at Winnipeg’s past through the prisms of several well-known neon signs, which have become part of the city’s identity. Included are such icons as Clifford’s and the Blue Note Café.
We all know what an epic city Winnipeg was in its boomtown days. The question these shorts inspire is, has it given up on its potential for greatness?
More to the point, do we as Winnipeggers not realize what we’ve got? With the Windsor Hotel just barely surviving demolition, it’s sobering to think no one picked up the mantle for the now-defunct Blue Note.
For that matter, others seem to understand the value of Winnipeg’s historic treasures: the interior of Dojack’s music store has been recreated in an Ottawa museum, while a B.C. museum has reproduced the Royal Alexandra Hotel’s vast dining hall.
The very quality of these shorts reflect how much cultural life still throbs in this city. These are excellent productions. It’s been said a million times, but it’s worth repeating: this city has an amazing arts community.
- Kenton Smith
May 5-9, 2010: Kevin is off to Hot Docs for meetings and to catch the latest docs.
May, 2010: Short film on the Toilers basketball team near completion. Coming to a screen near you soon.
April 21, 2010: A new short documentary "Making Geez #18" in the works. Behind the scenes of Winnipeg based Geez Magazine. Should be completed in early June.
April, 2010: Winnipeg Film Group's Production Fund grant obtained for "Creating the Surface" a new documentary to be shot in fall 2010. The film follows a team of Winnipeg based artists and innovators on their Quixotic journey to plant the surface of a 20-foot tall globe—what will become a miniature earth. The film provides a light-hearted window into the creative process, and a metaphor for the environmental crisis our world faces. .
April 10, 2010: Filming a promotional video for A Roca and Jen Kornelson with Rob Haacke.
March, 12, 2010: Production wraps on "Batter Up", the latest short animation in the "Chapters from Childhood" series.
Feb 12, 2010: "Fragments" screens with the latest collection of Winnipeg Film Group short film premieres at the Cinematheque.
Feb 5-7, 2010: Film program "In the Shadow of the Company" curated by Kevin Nikkel to play Wpg Cinematheque. The program is a series of films & events exploring the Hudson's Bay Company. Highlights include a screening of "Nanook of the North" with a live score lead by Moses Mayes, master class by filmmaker John Walker with a screening of his documentary "Passage", screening of Richard Stringer's documetary "The Bishop Who Ate His Boots" and short films by local filmmakers.
January 2010: Coming this month: a new web site called Playing In Traffic. Watch for a new short web documentary every month. Films on the horizon: "The No Regretzkys", Bevan Klassen in "Falling on the Shore", T'ai Pu in "Sweep Sweep"and "The Toilers" basketball team from the 1930s.
January 2010: Production begins on "Sticks, Stones, Bricks and Bones", a new documentary for MTS TV.
December: Five Door Films welcomes intern Peter Braul, journalism student at Concordia University.
December 4: "Monkey Tea" to screen as a part of the Winnipeg Film Group's 90 Second Quickie contest.
November 24: "365 Choices a Year" screens at Winnipeg's Cinesanity venue.
Oct 2009: Animation begins on "Monkey Tea", a short in the Chapters from Childhood series.
Oct 2009: Short doc "Falling by the Shore" in post-production, a behind the scenes look of Bevan Klassen's indie feature film "How the City Hurt my Brain", watch for this short on the upcoming web site www.playingintraffic.ca
Sept, 2009: "Our Neon City" available for viewing on MTS TV's Winnipeg on Demand service.
July 27-30, 2009: First block of shooting for "Yellowhead" completed. Shot in rural Manitoba and in Winnipeg using a lean crew, shooting old school on a Bolex camera. Steve Morrisson is DOP, Polly Washburn co-producing, Andrew Cecon and Caroline Monnet are leads.
July 2009: The animation "Spider Cookies" plays the Gimili Film Festival July 26.
June 2009: Five Episodes of "Our Neon City" are now in post-production.
June 2009: Andrew Cecon and Caroline Monnet are cast in the dramatic film "Yellowhead".
March 21, 2009: The documentary "365 Choices a Year" is now available on DVD.
March 18, 2009: "The No Regretskys", the 7 min documentary film that was started from the Documentary Challenge is still in production. Derek, Shira and Rob and I are following the hockey team to the end of the season. Will they obtain their first win? Stay Tuned.
March 5, 2009: International Documentary Challenge. I am joining a team of fellow Winnipeg filmmakers to create a short documentary for the 5 day contest. Derek Eidse, Shira Newman and Rob Haacke and I have dubbed ourselves team Jolene. We are shooting a documentary about the 'beer-league' hockey team called the "No Regretzkys". A co-ed and low-skilled team that challenges the competitive structure of the game with their unorthodox philosophy of fun and inclusion. Stay tuned for a trailer.
February, 2009: My independent feature film Yellowhead is officially in development with applications off to CC, WAC, MAC and WFG for the coming grant season. Production is slated tentatively for August. More details to follow.
February, 2009: The short film Fragments is now completed, with many thanks to Tony Wytinck and Andrew Shire at MidCan for their fantastic handling of the Red Camera on line workflow. The film will be sent to festivals in the coming months. A web site and EPK will follow in the coming months. Check back for details.
January, 2009: Thanks to a small grant award from the Winnipeg Film Group, I am shooting a new short Bolex experiment film called "Night Tuning" with actress Toni Reimer. Details to follow.
December, 2008: Our Neon City now in production for MTS TV's Winnipeg on Demand. Our Neon City is a documentary series of short docs looking at the history of iconic businesses from Winnipeg's past. Included in the series are: The Bell Hotel, Clifford's, Dojack's Winnipeg Music Supply, the Blue Note Cafe, and the Turkish Baths of the Royal Alexandra Hotel. Check out the web site.
November 29, 2008: Screening of "Searching Landscapes", a program of Manitoba Narrative Shorts I curated for Independent Film Week and the 25th Anniversary of the Winnipeg Film Group's Cinematheque.
November 1, 2008: Rehearsal Space, a new project I've started, will create short music/verite docs about local musicians. Local Winnipeg band LeBeato (Nathan Reimer, Mark Penner, and DJ RPG) are the first band up. More details to follow.
November 3, 2008: Winnipeg Film Group's Bolex Experiment winners were announced, I was one of the 5 selected to make a short film with the Bolex 16mm camera. Great news. A great reason to try out some ideas I've got for a new short dramatic film. Details to follow.
October 27, 2008: John Gurdebeke (Winnipeg editor) has started to edit the footage of "Fragments" from the summer shoot. Nathan Reimer and Moses Mayes to score the film.
October 15, 2008: "Our Neon City", TV series in development for MTS TV. Details to follow.
Sept 5-8, 2008: "Voyageur", directed by Rob Haacke and co-produced by Five Door Films goes to camera.
July 26-27, 2008: 'Tire Turns" and "O Canaduck" play the Gimili Film Festival.
July 26-29, 2008: Fragments short film is shot at Prairie Stained Glass and St. Margaret's Anglican Church. Thanks to Kristen Harris, Graham Ashmore and David Dick for their fantastic performances. Updates to follow.
June-August, 2008: "Intersections" TV series being shot for MTS TV's Video on Demand. Check out the web site, with design by Patrick Neufeld and original music by Nathan Reimer and Moses Mayes.
July 3, 2008: "Spider Cookies" to play Flickerings film festival in Illinois.
June 20, 2008: "An Ice Cream Lesson" to play Winnipeg Film Group Premieres at the Cinematheque
June 8-11, 2008: Kevin Nikkel and Five Door Films are going to the 2008 Banff World TV conference.
May 5, 2008: Doc update: Editing of "365 Choices a Year", documentary on addictions is nearing completion, with original music by the band Moses Mayes.
May 1, 2008: Casting Call for the short dramatic, live action film, "Fragments", going to camera in July, 2008.
April, 2008: Post Production completed on the documentary "A Trail of Dead Wood: Life After the Pine Beetle" on the Mountain Pine Beetle epidemic in BC. Thanks to Edgar Ozolins for the fantastic orginal score. Thanks also to Patrick Neufeld for designing the latest Five Door Film DVD covers.
April, 2008: "Spider Cookies" and "Kitchen Hockey" play the Imago Film Festival in Illinois.
March 15, 2008: World Premiere of "Spider Cookies" a Silverscope commisioned film to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Winnipeg Film Group's Cinematheque.
March 9, 2008: Production begins on "O Canaduck", the next animation in the Childhood Tales series. Thanks to Patrick Neufeld, Rob Haacke, and Patrick Lowe for helping again with the drawing.
January 2008: Production completed on "Tire Turns", the next animation in the Childhood Tales series. Thanks to Patrick Neufeld, Rob Haacke, Levi Kwade, Chantel Nikkel and Jiamin Liu for their animation help.
December 2007: Funding secured from Manitoba Arts Council and the Winnipeg Film Group for my new short dramatic film Fragments. Many thanks to Prairie Stained Glass for their contribution to the project. More details to follow.
October 17, 2007
Catacomb Microcinema is back. Winnipeg will again have a cinema-salon-style venue for cinephiles who aren't getting enough. I've been meeting again with long time collaborator Bevan Klassen, who came up with the orginal idea for Catacomb in 1998. The Catacomb collective now includes Frank Zappia, Blair Dagdick and Matthew Etches. Screenings of Manitoba made features will be the first Saturday of the month at The CYRK venue. Check out the Catacomb details.
October 1, 2007
"Dial 'M' for Monster" has been picked up for another round of the American Movie Classics (AMC) Monster Fest. It will be available by video on demand, and play during the Monsterfest cable programming.
September 28, 2007
Animation Update: I was excited to be included in the Winnipeg Film Group's Silverscope commission, to celebrate the Cinematheque's 25th-- one of 25 filmmakers selected to make a one minute film. Pencil sketch have begun for "Spider Cookies" with the team I've used on my past animations based on the voices of my kids Caden and Eliandra. The group is very patient and sympathetic to the cause. My wife Chantel Nikkel, Patrick Neufeld, Patrick Lowe, Charity Fadun, Levi Kwade, and Corrina Lowen are helping with the sketches and are quickly becoming a sort of 'animation group'. We'll likely finish the sketches tomorrow, then I'll continue with inking myself for continuity. I have three more animations ready to be sketched, which will be a part of the Five Door Films 'animation group'.
August 20, 2007
Doc Update: I am in the middle of editing the film "365 Choices a Year" on the expericences of residents of the Behavioural Health Foundation addictions treatment centre. This will continue with some focus for the next 4 months. Shooting for the doc "A Trail of Dead Wood: Life After the Pine Beetle" continued in Edmonton and Edison, Alberta. It was exciting to shoot an interview at the top of a firetower! Shooting will continue with a trip to Alberta this winter; details TBA.