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Sayles School of Fine Arts

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Film Producer John Sayles To Meet With Schenectady High Students,  Talk About New Film

Fine Arts School Named After the Schenectady Native

Before independent film producer John Sayles heads to downtown Schenectady for the upstate premiere of his latest film, Honeydripper, he will be stopping by Schenectady High School’s Sayles School of Fine Arts, the school named in his honor,  to meet with students and talk about the new film.

John Sayles, a Schenectady native and his producing partner Maggie Renzi will be at the Sayles School of Fine Arts Black Box Theatre on Friday afternoon to talk with many students who are taking film-making, acting, advanced English and other fine arts courses offered at the school. 

Earlier in the week the high school students viewed  “Honeydripper” which is set in the Jim Crow South of the 1950’s and is about the transition of music from blues to rock ‘n’ roll.  The movie which won Best Screenplay at the San Sebastion Film Festival in Spain, stars Danny Glover, Charles Hutton, Stacey Keach and Mary Steenburgen.

Over the course of the week, the students and teachers analyzed the film and prepared for the upcoming discussion with Sayles and Renzi.

Sayles began his career as a writer of fiction, authoring novels Pride of the Bimbos, Union Dues which was nominated for National Book  Award and National Critics’ Circle Award, Los Gusanos and short story collections The Anarchists’ Convention  and Dillinger in Hollywood.

The  Honeydripper film originated from a story about music, Keeping Time.

Return of the Secausus 7 which was released in 1980 was Sayles’ first feature film.  Other Sayles’ films include Lianna, Baby, It’s You, The Brother from Another Planet, Matewan , Eight Men Out, City of Hope, Passion Fish, The Secret of Roan Inish, Lone Star, Men with Guns (Hombres Armados), Limbo, Sunshine State, Casa de los Babys and Silver City.  Sayles has worked with directors such as John Frankenheimer, Steven Spielberg, Jonathan Demme, Sidney Pollack, Billie August, Allison McClean, Ron Howard, Sam Raimi, Joe Dante, Rob Reiner, James Cameron among others.

Sayles and Renzi were in town this past October to visit downtown Schenectady  and meet with officials at Proctor’s Theatre.   

The premiere of Honeydripper will take place Friday,  8 pm at Proctor’s Theatre.  Sayles’ visit and the upstate movie premiere fall during Art Night Schenectady, a monthly event held throughout downtown Schenectady.

Helpful Link:  http://www.johnsayles.com

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Times Union   01/19/08

Daily Gazette   01/19/08
Sayles Gives Tips to Student 
Filmmaker back in the area to promote "Honeydripper