Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Autistic Gang of Five

Even though Chapel Hill, NC based filmmaker Todd Tinkham has only been making movies for a few years, he has felt the need to array his output across two separate official websites. Tinkhamtown.org warehouses his 2005 and 2006 efforts, which reportedly spanned 125 different film festivals, while Tinkhamtown.com is all about the 250-film-festival-reach of his 2007-2009 work, and beyond. As of press time, somewhat surprisingly, the domain Tinkhamtown.net is still up for grabs.

This year, one of the projects undertaken by Tinkham is a most noteworthy murder mystery short entitled A Sad Fact of Life. Currently shooting, it reunites him with a group of five autistic local kids who were extras in his first feature and who, under their own banner of Opiniated Films, have written this new cinematic vehicle.

Parents of some of the now-teenage aged autistic quintet recently told a local newspaper that the experience of making a movie under Tinkham's tutelage has been absolutely transforming, drawing the youngsters out of their respective shells. Although A Sad Fact of Life has yet to be completed, the young stars took part in an April 26th Q&A at the Chatham Arts Council to answer questions after an advance trailer was shown. It was, by all accounts, a highlight of their young lives.

A number of rough-cut clips from the short film shoot are available via Thinktown's Vimeo channel. Prior to becoming a filmmaker, Tinkham worked extensively with at-risk teens, mentally ill adults and prisoners. He is to be commended for finding time in his busy 2010 schedule to help guide Courtney Zoller, Julian Ballen and the rest of the autistic gang of five.

[TinkhamTown Productions]

No comments:

Post a Comment