Dan Shafer
Milwaukee Film Festival

Opening with Milwaukee Pride

Local pride was out in full force at the Oriental Theatre and Discovery World for the Opening Night of the Milwaukee Film Festival, and social media was buzzing.

By - Sep 28th, 2012 12:32 pm
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Danceworks shadow dancers at “Beyond The Screen” at Discovery World for Opening Night of the Milwaukee Film Festival. Photos by Lacy Landre.

The 2012 Milwaukee Film Festival kicked off on Thursday night with a healthy dose of Milwaukee pride. A packed house at the Oriental Theatre came to see the opening night spotlight presentation, Starbuck, and the hundreds of enthused Milwaukeeans then made their way to Discovery World for the “Beyond the Screen” opening night party.

Before the screening of the acclaimed French-Canadian comedy at the Landmark East Side theatre, Milwaukee Film had a special introduction for the festival. Milwaukee Film Board Chair Bill Haberman, Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele, Producer Jack Turner, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Milwaukee Film Executive & Artistic Director Jonathan Jackson all spoke at the event, and a slickly-produced sponsor introduction and the first of the Jack Turner-produced DearMKE shorts, Ryan Hates Movies, was shown.

Abele and Barrett both spoke of their pride in the city of Milwaukee, efforts promoting and rebranding the city’s image through DearMKE, and the avenues for creative opportunities through film provided by Milwaukee Film. Both city politicians also mentioned the tremendous potential the city has in the development of new business like water technology and the growing number of young people who call the city home.

“Laverne and Shirley don’t work here anymore,” said Barrett, emphasizing another of his points that Milwaukee is one of the few American cities where the average age is trending younger.

Keeping with with the state and national conversation of the past week, Haberman joked about the replacement referees’ blown call that cost the Green Bay Packers a Monday Night victory, and both he and Jackson talked about the benefits of a Milwaukee Film membership.

The “Beyond The Screen” party at Discovery World featured a variety of different activities, from live music by Milwaukee soul legend Harvey Scales featuring the Kings Go Forth rhythm section to the “biggest iPad ever” to the Cinema Hooligante giant spider photo booth.

The events of the night got the social media world buzzing, and we’ve collected all of the live tweets and photos in our Storify recap below.

[View the story “Milwaukee Film Festival Opening Night” on Storify]

The Milwaukee Film Festival runs through Oct. 11 at the Oriental TheatreDowner Theatre and Fox-Bay Cinema. Check out TCD’s Flick by Flick guides for films opening this weekend and throughout October. For more information, visit the MFF website.

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