WOW! What an awesome screening this morning at the Annenberg Theater! As we ran up the street at 9:30am dragging our suitcase full of Leading Ladies t-shirts, we were welcomed by the amazing site of a huge line was wrapped all the way around the museum! Erika did her usual super-enthusiastic crowd warm-up, running around like a crazy person passing out tattoos and chatting with the patrons.
By 10am there were nearly 400 people (capacity) packed into the theater.
If you can believe it, I think this crowd may have been even more receptive than Wednesday night! Lot’s of really great laughter… often in new and unexpected places. The Q&A was really, really great (nearly 40 minutes long!).
One of our favorite things was the lady who said Leading Ladies is the best dance film she’s ever seen… way better than Black Swan! That made Erika especially happy. [smile]
People seemed to be particularly impressed with Benji and Jordan’s duet, the music/soundtrack, the opening credits, the grocery store musical, and the relationships between Toni and Mona and Toni and Tasi. There were some funny/great questions about Sheri and even more about our casting. People were really interested in the specificity of the film’s colors. It’s great that people are picking up on the details and extras we’ve poured into this baby.
We definitely gave a big shout-out to Markas and spent some time talking about costumes.
People of course asked about the budget, and we talked about why we can’t divulge any actual numbers until we’ve garnered distribution. People REALLY want Leading Ladies to get distribution… always so great to hear.
We talked a lot about how fantastic the city of Champaign was while making the film, and how there were so many people in the community who contributed so much, who let love lead and made this picture possible.
After the screening we entered the lobby to find a throng of people surrounding the merch table. We sold more than half of our giant suitcase full of t-shirts and completely ran out of all the larger sizes! How great is that?!
One sweet, volunteer came up to us with a giant stack of ballots in her hand and said, “I just wanted you to see this; these are all ‘superb’ votes!” How incredibly humbling and fantastic! We love how people see the love and dedication in our film… how Leading Ladies open hearts and changes minds… that we have worked extremely hard to create a movie that is not only fun and exciting, but touching and a labor of love.
More praise from the audience via our Facebook page:
::: I’ve been going to movies at the PSIFF for three yrs now… This is the first time rating a film a 5 (FIVE) Most Excellent. Just a beautifully made movie. The co-Writer, Director, Chief bottle washer Personaly passed out a tatoo to everyone in line that says "Let Love Lead"…. tells the whole story.
::: Just saw the film, fantastic. Absolutely wonderful and the best film I have seen in a while.
After hurriedly packing our suitcases and checking out of our wonderful hotel, we rushed down the street to grab a bite to eat before heading back to the Colorado snow. How tickled were we when we passed a restaurant patio and a group of people started clapping and cheering for “Leading Ladies?!” [blush]
Needless to say, we had a fantastic time in Palm Springs, and really appreciate all the love from both the festival and the audiences.