August 21, 2014  

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Southern Miss Film Department to Present “Small, Beautifully Moving Parts”

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The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast Film Department will present a free screening of the film, “Small, Beautifully Moving Parts,” at 6:45 p.m. Friday, Sept. 28 in the Fleming Education Center auditorium on the University’s Gulf Park campus in Long Beach.

Annie Howell and Lisa Robinson, members of the South Arts Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, are both directors and producers of the film. Following the screening of their feature film, Howell and Robinson will engage the audience in a discussion about the film and their work as filmmakers. A reception will begin at 9 p.m. following the film screening.

“Small, Beautifully Moving Parts” premiered at South by Southwest, an annual music, film and interactive conference and festival held in Austin, Texas. The film received the Sloan Feature Film Prize and the RiverRun Film Festival Audience Award.

The film follows technophile Sarah Sparks. When she becomes pregnant, her uncertainties about motherhood trigger an impulsive road trip to the source of her anxiety: her long-estranged mother, living far away and off-the-grid. A comical coming-of-parenthood tale for the internet age, Roger Ebert called the film “effortlessly engaging … a small film [that] knows exactly how to be a small film.”

The Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, hosted by the Film Department at Southern Miss Gulf Coast, is a program of South Arts, a nonprofit regional arts organization which strives to build on the south's unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. Southern Circuit screenings are funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. “Small, Beautifully Moving Parts” is the first of a series of six film screenings at Southern Miss Gulf Coast with additional offerings throughout the academic year.

“Southern Miss Gulf Coast and the Film Department are proud to bring the Southern Circuit Film Series to the Mississippi Gulf Coast,” said Dixon McDowell, professor in the School of Mass Communication and Journalism. “The series will provide local residents with a unique opportunity to see six excellent independently produced films and engage the producers and directors that brought them to the screen.”

The Southern Miss Film Department is part of the Entertainment Industry degree program in the university’s School of Mass Communication and Journalism.  The program, offering the only bachelor’s degree in film production in Mississippi, teaches production skills through hands-on filmmaking while also completing coursework in film criticism, film theory, film history, animation and screenwriting.  Alumni of the program have developed their own production companies, entered the Hollywood industry and successfully pursued graduate degrees.

Admission is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Dixon McDowell at 601.818.0818 or scott.mcdowell@usm.edu.