LOS ANGELES—A young director, whose film has garnered the attention of Michael Moore, along with the actors of NBC’s new show “Southland” and the theatrical production, “Big Bad Armo Show” were in attendance to have their work showcased at a Los Angeles fundraiser, hosted by the Arpa Foundation for Film Music and Art.
Martin Yernazian’s presentation of his film “Art Officially Flavored” was the highlight of the AFFMA mixer on April 9, at the Desert Rose Bar & Lounge, in Los Angeles.
The documentary about a street musician, with a revolutionary approach to his instrument, has already caught the attention of award winning film maker Michael Moore along with Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and Def Leopard’s Joe Elliot.
Yernazian addressed the group saying, “I made this film because of my love for the arts, music and the opportunity to tell a great story. It was a challenge because I’m not a documentarian. A few months ago we got an e-mail from the director of the Traverse City Film Festival mentioning in her message that Michael Moore learned about the film and was interested in showing it at his festival this summer.”
The event gave the director a chance to showcase bits of his film to a venue that reached capacity. Scenes of the film showed off the subject of the documentary, Michael Masely, performing as a street musician and piecing together his instruments.
“What drove me to make a film about Michael was his sound, his music, his passion for the arts, and his life story. When you meet a character like him, it opens your mind, heart and soul,” said Yernazian.
During the presentation, founder of AFFMA, Sylvia Minassian, expressed her opinion as to how elated she was to be presenting special talents such as Martin Yernazian to our community. “We are hosting this event because Martin is so special to us,” said Sylvia Minassian, founder of AFFMA, during the presentation.
“AFFMA is one great organization, and Sylvia is a very generous soul that opens her heart to help the arts move forward. I can’t express enough gratitude about how much it meant to us that they organized an event like this,” said Yernazian.
Alex Kalognomos, vice-chairperson of AFFMA, expressed his thoughts saying without artists like Martin Yernazian, or the actors in “Southland,” “Big Bad Armo Show,” and all the independent film makers, writers, musicians -in one word the talent that we have- our organization would not exist. ” The event shined a spotlight on the debut of “Southland” on NBC. In attendance at the mixer were three cast members of the show: Anoush NeVart, Ludwig Manukian, and Raff Anoushian.
The poignant finale to the evening was watching the debut of “Southland on NBC with the cast members of the show present in the mixer.
The 20th AFFMA mixer was an opportunity for people to meet, network and help fundraise. “AFFMA is a non-profit art organization, so we know what it’s like to operate with little funding. Most of the artists who seek AFFMA’s support are in need of more than just money. AFFMA can offer a whole range of services to support the independent artist,” said Kalognomos.
Founded in 1995, the Arpa Foundation for Film, Music and Art was formed for the purpose of promoting the arts and enhancing the cultural environment of our community, especially providing support to filmmakers exploring subjects of social and cultural importance through their medium. AFFMA’s signature event is the Arpa International Film Festival.
2009 Arpa International Film Festival is presently seeking entries from Armenian filmmakers. Submissions can be made in the following categories: Feature Length, Short Film, Documentary, Animation, and Music Video.
AFFMA is proud to announce the AT&T/Arpa International Film Festival Award for Environmental Awareness & Conservation. Films addressing green initiatives and environmental awareness can be submitted for competition in this exclusive new Arpa International Film Festival category.
Entries for the 12th Annual Arpa International Film Festival which will take place on Oct.23-25 at the Egyptian THeater in Hollywood must be received no later than July 20,2009. Rules and entry forms are available online at www.AFFMA.org.
Inquiries could be directed to [email protected]