PROJECT:ICE at Soo Film Fest

2015-0903-project-ice-poster-432x640September 3, 2015

It’s rare to get authors and actors to accompany a showing of their award-winning film, but that will be happening at the Soo Film Festival.

On Saturday afternoon, September 12, the Festival will show PROJECT: ICE, a documentary on the history and the culture of ice, ships and people in the Northern Great Lakes. Following the film, which begins at 2 p.m. at the historic Soo Theatre in downtown Sault Ste. Marie, several local contributors to the film, including author and local historian Dr. Bernie Arbic, longtime commercial fisherman Ralph Wilcox, Sault Tribe historian Cecil Pavlat, and co-author of the film, Brian Jaeschke, will join the audience in a question and answer period.

The film has won acclaim for its description of the culture and commerce around winter conditions on the northern Great Lakes. The creation, the beauty, and the hardship of ice are all a part of the story.

To add to the understanding of both the subject of the film, and the actual making of the film, these film participants will be joining the showing and having a conversation with film-goers. It is a rare opportunity.

For more information and to purchase tickets and festival passes online, visit the festival website at You may also purchase tickets and passes in person at the Soo Theatre office located on 534 Ashmun Street or call the Soo Theatre office at (906) 632-1930.

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Special Events For A Difference of Rights Film


July 31, 2014

In conjunction with Soo Film Festival’s screening of the film, A Difference of Rights, several other events are planned on Friday, August 1.

First, at 5pm director and filmmaker, Bill Blanchard, will be displaying his paintings of people and scenes from the film.  The display will be in the Cultural Library in the Sault Tribe Administration Building, across the street from the Soo Theatre.

In all fourteen paintings will be shown. The display will include several paintings that now belong to the Bay Mills Ojibwe History Department who have graciously agreed to lend them for this presentation.  The Bay Mills paintings include four portraits of Bay Mills tribal members that appear in the film and one scene from the film of a view from Mission Hill.

At 7:00 p.m., there will be a reception, also in the Cultural Library, in which Sault Tribe Chairperson Aaron Payment will be sharing a taste of Wilcox’s Fish House Whitefish spread, with crackers and vegetables.

At 8:00 p.m. the screening of the film begins at the Soo Theatre, with a Q&A with the filmmaker immediately following.

It is planned that the Cultural Library will also be open on Saturday with the display.

For more information about the film, see the Soo Film Festival website at

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Film Festival Notes

2014-0731-festival-notes-210x288July 31, 2014

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. (July 31, 2014)—Some of the filmmakers will be in attendance to talk about their films. Friday night, Bill Blanchard will answer questions about A Difference of Rights. Traverse City’s Rich Brauer will be on hand to discuss all things Dogman Friday and Saturday night. There will also be a Q&A following the shorts presentation Saturday afternoon.

The Soo Film Festival coincides with Sault Ste. Marie’s Sidewalk Sales and Ashmun Street will be closed to traffic from 9am to 6pm. The closest option for parking will be behind the theatre in the lots along Oaka Street and in the parking garage. Use the walkway next to the Avery Center to get to Ashmun Street. Festival goers will also be able to park on Court Street and walk through the Sault Tribe Administration Building to get to Ashmun Street. (See a map showing the closest parking to the Soo Theatre.)

Soo Film Festival tickets and passes may be purchased online at or at the Soo Theatre. For tickets by phone call (906) 632-1930. The Film Festival Guide and the schedule will also be available at the Soo Theatre, or online in full color.

Festival President Taylor Brugman: “We want everyone to come experience all of downtown, not just the Film Festival. Sidewalk sales, the car show, Downtown Days, there is something for everyone. The Soo Film Festival is just one more reason to see what the city has to offer.”

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Soo Film Festival Announces Screenwriting Seminar Details


July 6, 2014
SAULT STE. MARIE (July 6)—The first ever Soo Film Festival announces that a seminar by LA-based screenwriter Michael J. Wilson will be held Saturday, July 26 at 1 p.m. at Bayliss Public Library.

In this seminar students will find out how screenwriting in the film industry really works today.

They will also have the opportunity to work with Mr. Wilson over the next following few months—after the seminar is completed, online and on the phone—to complete an original screenwriting assignment.

Mr. Wilson will discuss how writers work for the movie studios now, a brief history of writing for the movies, the evolution of screenwriting as an art form, a practical look at the form and structure of a screenplay, and Mr. Wilson’s personal experience in the industry as an agent with CAA, a television producer/writer, and a working screenwriter. The seminar will run approximately two hours. The take-home assignment and personal instruction will be included as part of the seminar fee.

Michael J. Wilson created the story and characters for the Fox Ice Age franchise and co-wrote the screenplay for Ice Age I. He recently completed the first draft of Ice Age V, which is now in production. Last year his original CGI screenplay, Gladiators of Rome, a family film, was released theatrically in Europe through Rainbow Films/director: Iginio Straffi.

His experience is not limited to family fare and comedies. He is currently working on Blood In, Blood Out for Warner Bros., an R-rated original screenplay about Mexican drug cartels. Other current projects include the action-adventure Triple Time for actor Vince Vaughn, and Inventory, an R-rated police thriller, written and sold to Bruce Willis. Wilson just sold his original screenplay Undone, an R-rated thriller, to Voltage Pictures (Hurt Locker, Dallas Buyers Club) this past month.

These are just a few of Michael J. Wilson’s projects. You can find more information about him on the festival website and IMDB.

Tuition for the screenwriting seminar is just $25. Through Mr. Wilson’s generous donation, all proceeds will go towards movie projection equipment.

To register for the seminar, call the Soo Theatre office at (906) 632-1930, visit the Soo Theatre office in person at 534 Ashmun St., or go to For more information, email .

The Soo Film Festival plans to announce its August 1-2 festival lineup and schedule on July 7. We can tell you that Northern Light, which was shot in the Soo, will be screened. We’ll be posting on Facebook ( and Twitter ( So stay tuned!