That's a Wrap

Meet the new 800-pound gorilla of Dallas film festivals

"What's significant is if we can get Dallas to be known as the city of film festivals, it'll be great for the city," Temerlin says. "Dallas had been good to me and a hell of a lot of other people, and it will be good to be in the first tier of film festival cities."

A filmmaker himself, with the acclaimed Sundance-debuted documentary TV Junkie on his filmography, Cain has long been eager to transform the Deep Ellum Film Festival from a local event to something more regional or even national, à la the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin. He takes great pains to insist the newly engorged festival isn't trying to encroach upon the USA Film Festival or Dallas Video Festival's ground--even though AFI will take place in March, shortly before USA's April shindig.

"We want to work with all the festivals," Cain says. "It doesn't mean they have to want to work with us. But if one goes out of business because we started this event, we've failed. That's not what we're looking to do."

Michael Cain will lead the effort to create Dallas' latest film festival.
Mark Graham
Michael Cain will lead the effort to create Dallas' latest film festival.

But it wasn't hard to notice that the AFI Dallas' news conference was scheduled for the very same day the Spanish-language Vistas Film Festival kicks off at the Dallas Museum of Art. Yet Vistas founder J. Frank Hernandez says he has no problem with it--and not only because Cain and AFI circumvented any hard feelings by asking Vistas to take part in the news conference.

"I think what I thought from the beginning, when this first started making the rounds in the film community," Hernandez says. "Anything that will increase the size of film in Dallas is a good thing. A rising tide lifts all boats."

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