Film Fest Shorts


Local Filmmakers Screen Sawdust Documentary

“James Koch: Sculptor of the Found Object,” a film by Laguna residents Carole Zavala and Maryanne Kuzara has been accepted in the short documentary category at the 2011 Newport Beach Film Festival, and will be screened at the Triangle Theatre Complex in Costa Mesa at 8 p.m. on Monday, May 2.

Koch creates his work from scraps of rusted metal and old discarded chunks of man-made objects, and Zavala traveled to his hometown in northern Wisconsin to follow him to his favorite “junk” yards as he gathered

James Koch

material for his innovative sculptures. The film includes interviews with collectors of James’ work and well-known artists in Laguna. Scenes from the Sawdust Art Festival provide a colorful background for his work. A natural-born storyteller, Koch enlivens the film with his anecdotes and descriptions of how artists survive…and thrive…when staying true to their vision.

The film initially premiered at the 2009 Sawdust Festival and was subsequently shown by the Laguna Beach Film Society and the Laguna Art Museum’s OsCene 2010 show.

“Films have always been my greatest source of pleasure, inspiration and escape,” said Zavala. “James’ story and his work were natural allies with the sound, sight, technology and the magic that is the motion picture.”



Fest Eco Spotlight Puts the Bite on Sharks


The festival will host the world premiere of “This is Your Ocean: Sharks,” Friday, April 29, at 6:30 p.m. at the Regency Lido Theatre in Newport Beach.

The film mostly focuses on the Bahamas but was shot around the world by a team of seasoned cinematographers—including Shawn Heinrichs who takes us inside a shark harvest in Asia.

Three artists featured in the film, including Laguna Beach’s Wyland, are scheduled to be on hand for the opening and will be available to take questions following the festival’s “Eco Spotlight” event. A party follows at Newport Lexus, 3901 MacArthur Blvd.




Christian, Jewish and Muslim Growers Sow Peace

The documentary “Delicious Peace Grows In A Ugandan Coffee Bean” screens on Saturday, April 30 as part of  the Newport Beach Film Festival starting at 3:30 p.m.


The 40-minute documentary narrated by actor Ed O’Neill tells the story of interfaith Ugandan farmers overcoming decades of intolerance through selling Fair Trade coffee.


More about the documentary here.


Palm Beach Winner Screens

“Conception, named “Best of the Fest” for the Palm Beach International Film Festival, will be shown at the Newport Beach Film Festival, Friday, April 29, and Thursday, May 5, at 8 and 7:30 p.m., respectively, at Triangle Square in Costa Mesa.


Redefining Beauty

“Defining Beauty: Ms. Wheelchair America,” a documentary narrated by Golden Globe winner Katey Sagal, looks at the vibrant lives of five women with disabilities on their journey to the 2010 Ms. Wheelchair America pageant.


“The documentary not only breaks stigmas and raises awareness for the Ms. Wheelchair America Organization, but also is a great educational tool,” said Alexis Ostrander, documentary director.

The film is scheduled for screening at 3:45 p.m., Sunday, May 1, at Triangle Square Theater in Costa Mesa.


For tickets and information, visit

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