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Independent filmmakers with ties to the Lower Columbia area showcase their work Oct. 15 and 16 at Stageworks Northwest Theatre on Commerce Avenue in Longview

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Filmmakers Exposition: Found

Michalyn Steiner-Killian of Longview co-produced the movie ‘Found,’ with Vincent Hoai Pham of Portland. The movie was filmed in Longview last year by Reena Dutt of Los Angeles. A sneak peek of the film airs at this weekend's film exposition at Stageworks Northwest Theatre on Commerce Avenue in Longview.

This weekend, Stageworks Northwest Theatre will showcase the talents of independent filmmakers with connections to the Lower Columbia region.

The program includes a sneak peek at the new movie “Found,” filmed in Longview last year by Reena Dutt of Los Angeles and co-produced by Vincent Hoai Pham of Portland and Michalyn Steiner-Killian of Longview. It tells the story of Tabitha (Steiner-Killian), a Korean adoptee raised by a white family. When the artistic director of her theater company tokenizes her for his “Equity, Diversity and Inclusion” initiative, Tabitha must face her reality of living in two skins — one biologically Korean, the other culturally white.

Pham is a Vietnamese-American media and film producer. Growing up in Portland, he realized even among friends, he felt “different” because his parents “didn’t come from the same place as everyone else’s. The idea of being in good company, but still feeling alone, is an Asian-American and BIPOC story I’m honored to help Reena tell.”

Steiner-Killian is a choreographer and dancer who has worked in Florida, California, Oregon, Washington, and on cruise ships and in the Bahamas. She said she is thrilled to bring the Longview community together through this partially autobiographical story that “needs to be told, now.”

The Local Filmmakers Exposition will be held Friday and Saturday, Oct. 15-16, at Stageworks, 1433 Commerce Ave., Longview. The event begins at 7 p.m. Admission is free. Donations will support future film showcases. Masks and proof of vaccination are required.

Here are the filmmakers and the short films that will be shown.

Drake Dalgleish, writer/director

A graduate of R.A. Long High School, where he was an actor and playwright with Mainstage Theatre, Drake Dalgleish graduated in 2020 from the New York Film Academy in Los Angeles.

YouTube site: https://www.youtube.com/c/DrakeDalgleishFilms

In “Another Found Footage Film” (2021), two high school journalists (Ethan Feider and Dalgleish) break into the basement of their school one night to investigate a rumor. What they find is something worse than could have ever imagined.

Heather de Michele, producer/director

Heather de Michele’s favorite film projects include “As Good As You” (feature film/First Run Features), “Sati,” “Lacuna” and “The Real Girl’s Guide to Everything Else.” She is the executive director of Live Wire Radio. She dedicates this (and all screenings of “Last Seen”) to the memory of its brilliant writer, Mariah Gretchen Robinson.

Website: https://www.lastseenseries.com/

“Last Seen” (2019) is a web series that follows podcaster Bonnie Chen as she investigates a 30-year-old cold case of three missing girls in rural Pennsylvania.

Reena Dutt, writer/director

Reena Dutt is the founder of Painted Tree Productions and co-founder of Off-Chance Productions. She is an independent producer and an alumna of the San Francisco Film Society/Kenneth Rainin Producing Fellowship, Trans Atlantic Partners, and Film Independent’s Project Involve.

Website: https://www.reenadutt.com/

“Found” (2021, see description above).

“Too Many Bodies” (2019) is a music video born from a passionate group of filmmakers, musicians and dancers joining together to illustrate the need for common-sense gun laws.

Brendan Reardon, writer/director/animator

Brendon Reardon, of Kalama, studied digital technology at Washington State University-Vancouver and has worked with Wide Angle Studios. He is an animator/video editor at Autodesk.

Website: https://brendan-reardon.com/

Reardon contributed a series of animated shorts: “And … Action!,” “Beach Bum” and “Space Adventures.”

Jacob Rohrbach, writer/director

Jacob Rohrbach is the owner/writer/director of Dark Fire Productions, an independent film company he founded in 2008. He has filmed numerous shorts in the Longview area, including the Creepypasta Episodes web series. While Rohrbach is known primarily for making short horror content on a low budget, “Liminally, Yours” is a departure from the usual and instead goes for a slow, emotionally driven piece that was conceived and filmed (safely) during the global pandemic.

Website: https://www.youtube.com/DarkFireProductions

In “Liminally, Yours” (2021), the last person on Earth revisits memories while wandering the lonely world.

Johnny Winningham, writer/director

Johnny Winningham is a senior producer at Wide Angle Studios, a film and media company in Vancouver. He formerly was a television producer in Los Angeles. He has been involved with Stageworks Northwest for many years as a stage director and actor. He also is the producer of the Local Filmmakers Expo.

David Alonzo, producer/film editor/cinematographer

David Alonzo is the owner and founder of Wide Angle Studios, and is an instructor in the creative media and digital culture program at Washington State University-Vancouver. His films have been shown in festivals around the world, from Hollywood to Rome.

Website: https://www.wideanglestudios.com/

In “Wired Monkeys” (2014), the music of Lincoln’s Beard (an alternative folk/rock band from Vancouver) comes to life in a quirky tale of a stressed-out monkey’s escape from a world of chaos to a place of peace.

“Our Urban Wilderness” (2013) is a comedic look at a national icon: the American shopping cart — if the cart were a living, wild creature.

“Has Been Hero” (2019), filmed primarily in Longview, chronicles a self-styled vigilante’s mission to pummel his arch-nemesis before he can be thwarted by his own decline. Fighting crime was easy, but growing old is hard. Featuring Bob Burgoyne, Joseph LeBard, Michael McElliott, Michael Cheney and K.C. Andrew.

Eric J. Wright, writer/director/producer

Eric Wright is a self-taught animator. Using a little modeling clay and a four-dollar App on his phone, Eric practiced stop-motion animation at his desk during his lunch breaks while working as analyst. After a family vacation scheduled months in advance was canceled last minute by his corporate job, Eric was inspired to create “Sisyphus” during the week his family was away. Eric and his wife, Julisa, moved to her hometown of Longview, where they own Storyboard Delights and spend infinitely more time together.

IMDb page: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm5708753/

“Sisyphus” (2017) explores the common challenges of maintaining a work-life balance, as shown through the eyes of Sisyphus.

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