Thursday, September 21, 2006

Columbia SC I love you!

It's Thursday night at 8:35pm and I'm in the basement office of The Nickelodeon Theatre in Columbia SC. My film is playing upstairs right now. I can hear people laughing just above me. And then laughing again. And then again! This is amazing and incredible! "Learning to Swallow" is obviously a dark story in so many ways. But when we introduce the documentary I always encourage people to laugh if they feel the urge. And they are clearly feeling it.

Tonight's show is a sellout! The first in the last 5 years of The Southern Circuit's 30 year history. There are so many different types of people in the audience - 20 students who bussed in from 60 miles away, a bipolar man and his elderly mother, many regular Nickelodeon members, a representative from a statewide disabilities support organization, and some local hipsters. Its a racially and age diverse crowd. I can't wait for the Q&A afterwards.

Huge cyber kisses to Larry Hembree and Development Director Bruce, who are so damn charming. Larry spoke to each and every person at the reception before the film, putting them at ease immediately with his witty Southern charm. Turns out 50% of the audience has never been to The Nickelodeon before, and no doubt they'll be back. Larry and his team have just secured a future venue 6 blocks away; a historic art theatre that will be fully restored to open in 2 years with 2 screens.