Friday, November 22, 2013

John Beck - Vermilionville, Lafayette, and Alexandria

The latest update from John Beck, currently touring his film Harvest:

If you've never been, you gotta check out Vermilionville, the historical treasure in Lafayette that spotlights Acadian, Creole and Native American cultures in a hands on living historical museum (that's a photo of a hollowed out pirogue above).

On Monday night, only a few people came out for the screening of "Harvest" (Mondays are tough in any town and it turns out they'd just had a film festival over the weekend). But I was buoyed by a father who brought his two 4-year-old boys eager to see their first documentary.
I was so amazed they made it through the 70-min film that I started the Q&A by saying, "Everybody, I want you to give these little guys a hand. I didn't see a documentary until I was probably four times their age. You're looking at future filmmakers in the making."

Big thanks to Jesse Guidry and the staff at Vermilionville and Judith Meriwether at KRVS, who interviewed me before the screening. You can check out the KRVS interview here:

On Tuesday, I drove up to Alexandria for the final screening of "Harvest."

Instead of holing up in a chain hotel, I had the privilege of staying with local arts benefactors David and Nicole Holcombe who live in a beautiful house that has more art per square inch than any house I've ever entered. Check out a few of my favorite pieces, including an artist's portrait tying in Nicole's Belgian waffle heritage:

Big thanks to Matt Henry, Anna Brooks, Lod Hayes and the staff at the Coughlin Performing Arts Center who went all out for the event, even scoring a bottle of Foppiano petit syrah to raffle off after the film. Here are some great photos that Anna took:

Now that my Southern Circuit Tour has come to an end, I must confess that I have traveled with feature films all over this country (and one even played in France), but this is by far the most rewarding trip I've ever taken with a film. Hands down. No comparison.

To all the people I met in unique venues along the way - consider yourselves friends for life and thank you for coming out to see "Harvest." In the life of the low-budget documentary filmmaker, these journeys don't happen often and I will treasure every moment. Thank you!

And now I will leave you with my favorite photo from the tour (the photographer told us to make a "crazy face"):