Cinema St. Louis’ 2014 St. Louis Filmmaker's Showcase kicks off Sunday, July 13, and runs through Thursday, July 17.
Each year, Cinema St. Louis gets about 120 submissions from both professional and amateur filmmakers. Chris Clark, artistic director of the organization, says the most important criteria is whether the filmmakers have told a good story and told it in a cohesive way.
This year marks two anniversaries from St. Louis’ film history: it is the 90th anniversary of the Tivoli Theater, and the 70th anniversary of Meet Me in St. Louis, which is perhaps the film that most often comes to mind when St. Louis is mentioned. Though Meet Me in St. Louis was shot entirely outside of the city, many pictures, both before and after the Judy Garland classic, were filmed here. Today on St. Louis on the Air we discussed a few of them, and the people who contributed to the films we love.
The Judy Garland classic Meet Me In St. Louis had its world premiere in St. Louis on Nov. 22, 1944, but it still draws a crowd. On May 2, the Missouri History Museum hosted a Meet Me in St. Louis film screening and sing-a-long in conjunction with the film’s 70th anniversary and their 250 in 250 exhibit.
Listen to what the film means to some of the fans attending the sing-a-long:
People who attend the Tivoli Theatre, the majestic edifice that has graced the University City Loop since 1924, expect certain things. They expect nostalgic surroundings. They expect to see movies with purpose. They expect to be greeted by John Thompson.
For the past 35 years, Mr. Thompson did not disappoint. He died Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014. He was 74.
“It will be very sad the first time we walk through the doors (of the Tivoli) and John’s not there,” said Cliff Froehlich, executive director of Cinema St. Louis. “His absence will be very seriously felt.”
Two of the film directors currently screening films at the St. Louis International Film Festival have closer ties than most to St. Louis. Peter Bolte and Brian Jun both grew up in the St. Louis region. Both are graduates of Webster University, and both shot their films on location in St. Louis and Southern Illinois.