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The student news site of Little Rock Central High School

The Tiger Online

The student news site of Little Rock Central High School

The Tiger Online

Filmland Takes Place 7th Year in a Row

Filmland+Takes+Place+7th+Year+in+a+Row

In its seventh annual event, the Arkansas Cinema Society held a celebration of cinema with Filmland from October 14-17. From ACS’ inception in August of 2017, screenwriter and director Jeff Nichols founded the Arkansas Cinema Society alongside filmmaker Kathryn Tucker have wanted to cultivate a prominent film community in Arkansas. Nichols and Tucker, who met during their time at Little Rock Central High, began Filmland following the end of the Little Rock Film Festival after 9 years due to a lack of funding. 

“If there’s a young filmmaker out there in Arkansas he does not or she does not need the Cinema Society to exist to reach their goals but that doesn’t mean we can’t affect that path and how they do that, and possibly amplify that,” said Nichols. 

The inaugural Filmland event came shortly after this, featuring an appearance from actor Adam Driver, who worked with Nichols in the film “Midnight Special.” Over the years, there have been a number of appearances from prominent figures in Hollywood from actress Jessica Chastain to director Richard Linklater. With these appearances, Tucker, ACS executive director, wants to bring necessary attention to the Arkansas film scene while also giving young creatives among the landscape the opportunity to interact with those who have succeeded in the field. 

Kathryn Tucker answers questions from varied press associations at Filmland 2023.

“A lot of these celebrity appearances are a way for us to raise awareness for ACS, which then helps us fund a lot of our educational and year-round programming,” said Tucker. 

Accompanied with this event was the premiere of Nichols’ new film, The Bikeriders. Based on Danny Lyon’s 1967 photo book of the same name, the drama follows the rise of a Chicago motorcycle club and its descent into a gang, while following the lives of its members. The story is told through the retellings of Cathy, the wife of a member of the club, Benny. With this film, Nichols explores ideas of brotherhood, the tension of masculinity, and the development of violence with a star-studded cast including the likes of Jodie Comer, Austin Bulter, and Tom Hardy among a complete, talented ensemble. 

“This is a hyper-masculine subculture it would be interesting to have it interpreted through the eyes of a woman,” said Nichols. 

From his debut film, Shotgun Stories, set in Southeast Arkansas, lots of Nichols’ films have a Southern essence about them. He uses his experience as an Arkansas native and carries these throughout landscapes, times, and stories that are not definingly “southern”. Though not pertinent in his latest film, being from Arkansas, and letting that shape his work is an important part of Nichols’ journey as a storyteller. 

“I think some of the greatest storytellers in the world are from here, and that is what I try to take forward into all of the films.” said Nichols, “I’m not trying to work in obscurity, I’m not trying to make art films, I’m trying to make films that connect with people.”

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Elizabeth Rigsby, Reporter
I am a sophomore, and this is my first year on Tiger News. I play for central's women's soccer team. When I am not working on Tiger News or playing soccer I like watching old T.V. and look for interesting movies.

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