Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Till Schauder - Till Talks Tennessee!

Hello everyone. I'm Till Schauder, director of THE IRAN JOB. Last night was the first screening of the film's tour at ETSU in Johnson City. I had looked forward to this tour for months now but last night far exceeded my expectations. My fabulous hosts - Anita, Shara, Heidi, Lise and all the volunteers - were fantastic representatives of Southern hospitality. And the audience was much more diverse than I expected. I never thought I would meet an Iranian blue grass musician in Tennessee -- or anywhere in fact! But there he was, the fabulous Erfan, who seems to have quickly grown into a local legend - for good reason.

Check out Erfan's video

The diversity continued today, when I was picked up for a guest lecture at Shara's ETSU film class by Martin, a student from Spain. It seems the world is coming together in Johnson City, and it's fabulous. As Martin walked me over to the class he told me about a short doc he recently completed about… an Iranian guy who came all the way from Tehran to Tennessee to study… bluegrass music. So Erfan is well on his way to becoming the next big thing and Martin's film proves there's some serious filmmaking talent in this school. I encouraged Martin to make this a feature length doc, or at least an hour long piece -- and I think FROM TEHRAN TO TENNESSEE would be a cool title (Full disclosure: I had a working title once FROM TEXAS TO TEHRAN, which ended up not working for that film (which later became THE IRAN JOB) -- but I still like the TT alliteration and think for this Erfan project it would be just perfect.

Martin's short doc on Erfan

After the class (pics attached) I drove from Johnson City to Cullowhee, NC today for a screening tonight at Western Carolina University -- a beautifully recreational drive compared to NYC traffic - and am now looking forward to the show tonight. Already sad that my stint here is over after tomorrow's screening at Clemson University, but I know the folks who'll come down to represent the film once I leave - our associate producer Julien Segui and my co-producer (of films and babies) Sara Nodjoumi - will have a magical time as well. I am so impressed by what Teresa and South Arts are doing here. I already want to come back next year -- with the kids! No better way to see the South!