Sarasota, FL – April 24, 2017 — The Ringling College of Art and Design Studio Lab today announced the premier of the Dylan McDermott series, ‘Sugar’ at the Sunscreen Film Festival. This premiere highlights the Gulf coast-wide collaboration between Ringling College, Semkhor Productions and the Sunscreen Film Festival, which encompasses not just the ’Sugar’ premier but also screening the Sunscreen Documentary feature selection ‘Finding Babel’ at the newly-opened Ringling Studios in Sarasota; panel discussions featuring Tony Stopperan of the Ringling College Studio Lab; and a workshop on caused-based filmmaking strategies with acclaimed documentarian Steve Michelson as a precursor to the live session launch at Ringling Studios of his E-Course ‘Making Media That Matters’.
“Our collaboration with Sunscreen is a timely opportunity for filmmakers, cinema lovers and Ringling College Film students,” said Dr. Larry R. Thompson, President of Ringling College. “With the recent opening of our Ringling Studios Complex we are accelerating engagement with filmmakers and producers to explore prospects for working with our students. As evidenced though the upcoming premiere of ‘Sugar’, our students and facilities brought enormous value to the realization of Dylan’s creative vision while working on ‘Sugar’ provided exceptional educational and career value to our students.”
‘Sugar’ was shot in Sarasota by Dylan McDermott and Ringling students and graduates and was coproduced by the Ringling College Studio Lab and Semkhor Productions. ‘Sugar’ chronicles the life of a young woman as she navigates the perils of being on her own in a small city while struggling to realize her potential. Three episodes from the series will premiere at the Sunscreen Film Festival at 5:00 PM, April 27 at The Palladium Theater in St. Petersburg, FL. A private Sarasota screening will be held at the College’s new Ringling Studio’s Complex on April 28th for production principals, supporters and crew.
Renowned documentarian Steve Michelson is working with Ringling College’s Studio Lab to create compelling educational offerings. “When Ringling was recognized by US News & World Report as one of the top 20 media programs in the world, all of us in the documentary world took notice,” Michelson stated. “I’m proud to bring my program to students at Ringling and elsewhere through the on-line course. For those who want to travel this particular journey, of cause based docs, they will learn how a film can change the world….and also themselves.”
Documentary filmmakers will want to sign up for Steve’s intensive four-hour live class from 10 AM to 2 PM on Sunday, April 30th in Sarasota at Studio A in the Ringling Studios Complex at 1330 Martin Luther King Boulevard. Steve’s new E-Course, ‘Making Media That Matters’, coproduced by Ringling College and Semkhor Productions, is the foundation for this interactive live session with Steve and Ringling College Studio Lab producer Tony Stopperan facilitating. Registration and tickets are available at http://makingmediathatmatters.com/. The online course pricing is $90.00, with a special online advance purchase package priced for both the four hour live seminar class and online course of $190.00. The 4 hour live seminar class alone is $ 399.00.
“Both ‘SUGAR’ and ‘Making Media That Matters’ demonstrate the vibrant creativity and potential inherent in the Ringling College/Semkhor Studio Lab construct. They are designed to leverage the powerful potential of collaborative academic and commercial content production and online distribution paths,” said Semkhor Productions founder David Shapiro.
Two of Steve Michelson’s films are premiering at Sunscreen this year – ‘Nature’s Orchestra’ and ‘The Burden.’ Michelson will also be conducting an abbreviated ‘Making Media That Matters’ Workshop at Sunscreen, where he and Stopperan will focus on achieving successful distribution of cause-related documentary films. The workshop will run one hour, from 1:00pm-2:00pm on Saturday, April 29 at the American Stage Conference room. Tickets and more info is available at http://sunscreenfilmfestival.com/festival-2017/film-workshops/
As a unique satellite Sunscreen Festival venue, Ringling College will also host a screening of David Novacks’ ‘Finding Babel’ at 5:30 PM Sunday, April 30th in Studio A at Ringling Studios. Limited tickets are available for purchase via Sunscreen Tickets available at http://sched.co/ADOX, but admission is included with purchase of renowned documentarian Steve Michelson’s Live Session and ECourse at Ringling Studios: ‘Making Media That Matters.’ Ringling graduate Nick Morgulis worked as a camera operator on the film, which is based upon the FSU/Asolo Conservatory’s Andrei Malaev Babel’s quest through the Ukraine, Russia and France to investigate the truth behind Stalin’s murder of his grandfather, the famous Soviet poet Isaac Babel.
Ringling College Staff Videographer Joseph Granato IV will also be on hand at Sunscreen for the premiere of his film “The New 8-Bit Heroes’. Joe was inspired to write and direct his film after discovering childhood illustrations and embarking on a quest with fellow creatives to retrofit their skills to realize the abandoned ambition of developing a brand new, cartridge based game for the 30 year old Nintendo Entertainment System. What began as a novelty project about making a video game quickly shifts into an analysis of the relevance of the ambitions shed in our youth and an examination of what happens when we inject them into our adult lives. ‘The New 8-Bit Heroes’ Sunscreen premier is on Saturday, April 29th at 12:10 PM with tickets available at http://sched.co/ADhX.
Many Ringling College students and graduates participated in the production of the film and NES game cartridge that resulted, including Devin Lee Ostertag, James Heredia, Daniel Moreno, Dania Hammad, Sebastian Avery, Mo Shane, Natasha Thornton, Erin Johnson, Andres Paz, Matthew Holler, Rachel Jones, Noa Belfer, Caitlin Bernoskie, Elizabeth Smith, Jacob Miller, Justine Hamer, Leslie Glanville, Naomi Ushiyama, Patti Sigmon, Randy Gerson, Trent Sivek, Tyler Lariscy, Zach Schlanker, Patrick McQuade, Morgan Davidson, Kevin Moody, Guðjón Örn Lárusson, Allie Doersch and Daniel ‘Mark’ Neil. Neil was a Ringling graduate working on the project who was tragically killed in a motor vehicle accident and the effects of his passing are also felt in the film.
About Ringling College of Art and Design
For 85 years, Ringling College of Art and Design has cultivated the creative spirit in students from around the globe. The private, not-for-profit fully accredited college offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in ten disciplines and the Bachelor of Arts in two. The College’s rigorous curriculum employs the studio model of teaching and immediately engages students through a comprehensive, first-year program that is both specific to the major of study and focused on the liberal arts. The Ringling College teaching model ultimately shapes students into highly employable and globally aware artists and designers. For more information please visit the Ringling College website at www.ringling.edu, follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter or call 941.351.5100.
About Semkhor Productions
Semkhor Productions is a media and technology company focused on digital content production and distribution. It provides consulting services centered on integrating the entertainment industry into a wide range of projects. Semkhor is also building, with Ringling College, the new 40,000 square foot Ringling Studios commercial and academic sound stage and post production facility as well as executive producing a slate of original, celebrity based web series. www.semkhorproductions.com
About Sunscreen Film Festival
The Sunscreen Film Festival is organized and presented by the St. Petersburg-Clearwater Film Society Inc., a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) organization, screening top notch films, providing educational workshops, parties and events in St. Petersburg, Clearwater and Tampa, Florida. Led by current Executive Director Ryan Tarrant, Sunscreen Film Festival was one of 23 festivals sponsored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences (the Oscars) in 2013-2014. http://sunscreenfilmfestival.com/