Filmmakers to gather Thursday for coalition meeting

Published 12:02 am Monday, April 27, 2015

NATCHEZ — Local and aspiring filmmakers will have the opportunity to meet like-minded individuals Thursday.

Independent filmmaker Mark LaFrancis has organized a film coalition meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Natchez Association for the Preservation of African-American Culture Museum.

The film coalition will be a monthly gathering of local filmmakers and will serve as a gateway for those who desire to grow the Miss-Lou one film at a time.

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The yearning to create a film coalition sparked almost two decades ago when LaFrancis created the film and broadcasting program at Copiah Lincoln Community College in Natchez.

“I saw the reactions young students had when they completed even a short film,” LaFrancis said.

Film isn’t just a good education tool, it’s a good career path as well, he said.

LaFrancis, who teaches a film and photography class at Adams County Christian School, said his idea to organize a film coalition was reinforced when he took his students to Celtic Media Centre, a film studio in Baton Rouge.

“Not only were they overwhelmed and excited, but they learned there are pretty good jobs available in film,” he said. “Not only in front of the camera but behind the camera.”

Those who attend the meeting Thursday will share or learn the creative aspects of filmmaking, screenwriting and what it takes to become a grand storyteller.

“This is a good time to bring filmmakers and aspiring filmmakers together as a unit so they can support and help each other and be a resource for filmmakers who come into town,” LaFrancis said.

He said the members of the coalition will be able to navigate toward the direction they see fit — from working together on a project to establishing a production studio in the area.

“I’m leaving all of that up to those who gather here Thursday,” LaFrancis said. “It’s very important that advanced and aspiring filmmakers collaborate with each other.”

LaFrancis also hopes to implement a local film festival in the near future through the coalition.

“If you got great talent you can do amazing things,” he said. “I’m hoping we sit and have a good and fruitful discussion.”

Light refreshments will be served.

Natchez Association for the Preservation of African-American Culture Museum is located at 301 Main St. in downtown Natchez.

For more information, call 601-442-0980 or email