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Everyday People film festival

Friday, November 15, 2013 - 11:32am

The momentum of the Spotlight on the Arts festival continues through the weekend (and beyond) with a film festival honoring former Athenian Jim McKay:

The Willson Center, in partnership with Whatever It Takes Athens, will present a four-day festival dedicated to the films, television work, and music videos of Jim McKay, a director, writer, and producer who lived and worked in Athens during the late 1980s and early 1990s. C-Hundred Film Corp., the production company that McKay formed with R.E.M.’s Michael Stipe during that time, remains an active partnership to this day.

McKay met R.E.M. when they opened for Gang of Four in New York City in June of 1981, then returned to his Boston College radio station, WZBC, in September with the 7″ “Radio Free Europe” single in-hand. He and the band stayed in touch and six years later, McKay moved to Athens at  Stipe’s urging, with the promise of “plenty of good restaurant jobs” to be had. Sure enough, soon he was washing dishes at the Bluebird Cafe.

McKay was already at work on his first film/video project, a documentary called Lighthearted Nation. He and Stipe, who himself was diving into numerous film projects related to or independent of R.E.M., formed C-Hundred, which was housed at Prince Avenue and North Newton Street. 

A great friend of the blog, McKay's film and television work has been stellar and we're looking forward to seeing these films in succession. The film frestival itself is a terrific example of town-gown collaboration - the Willson Center and Cine, teaming up to present a topflight program of screenings, related events and distinguished guests to honor one of the finest film directors working today. Great job, Willson Center, and welcome back to town to McKay. Director on the set!

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