12/31/08: 2008? What the hell happened there...?

2008 ended up being as crazy, unpredictable, and important a year as LookSharp! has ever had, defined by personal breakthroughs, creative frustration, and sudden success. So what happened? First, what didn't happen. The Books of Clay were written and halfway cast but production is on hold. HANKSHAW has been post-poned indefinitely due to those pesky creative differences. This is the very first time the website has been updated in 2008. Yes, I know, I know... I am a bum.

What did go off as planned? My first documentary as director, PIECES, was produced by the HERE committee and given a warm reception by the Blacksburg community on April 13th, 2008. I directed a short, CLOWN FEAR, which is in post-production. The Goat DVD is finished and beautiful and will be released shortly. I've been test-screening my second cut of BURIED to positive feedback. The Dark Knight became the 2nd highest grossing film of all time and declared a mandatory reference in any and all internet postings. Also my car was destroyed by two trucks, but we all kinda' knew that one was coming.


12/31/07: The CHAINS Video is online! Goodbye 2007!
CHAINS (starring Brittany Stone)

Check out the CHAINS music video!

"Chains" is a song composed and performed by F.M. Turner, from his album The Igniter (you might remember Turner from his River of Dread and BEAST scores). The video will be showing up as a special feature on the BEAST DVD. Check out the CD (complete with Jack Bennett cover art) at the Flat Five Online Store (seach by artist, then select F.M. Turner).

We're going to miss 2007. It was exhausting, a topsy-turvy year physically and emotionally, but we saw it bring out the best in our friends and loved ones. Between the film festival and the new projects we've developed, it was the best year yet for LookSharp!

That said, 2008 is going to be immense. The return of Clay from FOOL! Production begins on HANKSHAW! New docs! New short films! A globe-trotting TV pilot! Plus a couple of projects that could potentially get me into a LOT of trouble... and I wouldn't have it any other way.

jack bennett 12/31/07

8/04/07: The BURIED Trailer is online now!!!
Curtis Grieves...

Check out the trailer for BURIED!

BURIED is the LookSharp! production shot between BEAST and The Goat, and reunites writer-director Jack Bennett with his FOOL cast-members Cullen MacKay and Seneca Haynes, alongside first-time LookSharp! actors Bryan Breau, Kate Celius, Heather Kelley, and Mason Walker. BURIED is currently in post-production and will premiere in the Fall of 2007.

Watch the trailer here or click the pic to the left!

7/18/07: I got The Goat Teaser-Trailer right here!!!
It has to do with a goat...

The teaser-trailer for The Goat is now online!

The Goat represents many firsts for LookSharp!... it's our first production shot in hi-definition (our current format of choice), it's the first collaboration with Porch Sitting Press Multimedia, and it's the first LookSharp! production adapted from pre-existing material, in this case Atlanta-based fiction writer Nick Tyler's short story. The Goat is about a group of discouraged grad students as they begin to suspect the unliklihood of their sacrifices yielding rewards... and it's also about lonliness and sexual tension. Hey, you write what you know!

The first cut of The Goat is done, and clocks in at 28 minutes. We'll start showing it in the Fall. Quicktime 7 is required to see the teaser-trailer. Click on Dawn to the left to get the trailer, or click here.

5/29/07: BEAST was unleashed! World premiere at the Tupelo Film Festival!

So we showed BEAST in Tupelo! Seneca and I made the trip, made some friends, and got a great audience for our world premiere. Many thanks to festival director Pat Rasberry, our executive producer Charlie Bennett, and a special thanks to the entire Keith family, who defined Southern hospitality (and cursed me with this mad craving for mimosas and crawfish grits ever since).

The flick got a tremendous response from the audience, and we found ourselves in fine company; among our new friends are director Kat Phillips, writer-producer (and Ron Tibbett award winner) Gena Ellis, and Mladen Krstevski, the Macedonian director whose film The Inn on the Road to Europe was easily our favorite of the festival (and won 2nd place in the feature competition). Mladen and his star let us take plenty of pictures with them, and graciously offered to sell us their film for 50,000 Euros. We were several thousand Euros short. So close!

Later Sen found his dream De Lorean and I foolishly compared myself to the only Camarovette ever made. All in all, it was huge fun and great to finally get the film seen. Looking forward to the next one! - Jack Bennett 5/29/07

Jack and Seneca pre-BEAST

The Road to TupeloThe BEAST guys...The Lyric! This one's in Tupelo...Jack considers the foodJack and 'Sara'

Sen alarmedMladen, Seneca and JackMladen and MeSen and DeloreanCamarovette!

4/19/07: BEAST world premiere at the Tupelo Film Festival!
Something is coming...

Mark your calendars! The BEAST world premiere will be Saturday, May 19th at the Tupelo Film Festival! We've got the Saturday matinee... the movie screens at 2:35pm in the historic Lyric Theater in Tupelo, Mississippi, with a Q&A following at 4pm.

Tickets are on-sale now! Writer-director-producer Jack Bennett will be in attendance with co-prodcer Seneca Haynes.

More info as we get it! Exciting stuff! Join us!

1/12/07: River of Dread for sale! FOOL reviewed! 2007 off with a bang!
Death! Death! Death!...Etc!

...at FilmRunner.net!Yes, the first Fried Squid Production (and first LookSharp! co-production) is now available at filmrunner.net for only $9.95! Film Runner is a new site dedicated to bring independent films to the public (and independent film-makers together), and RoD is one of the first ten films to be picked by Film Runner for distribution. Everybody at Fried Squid and LookSharp! (like writer/director Seneca Haynes, producer/star Jack Bennett and composer/star F.M. Turner) couldn't be happier... wait, of course we could! Buy the damn thing!

The version for sale over at Film Runner is the super-stacked special edition, with both cuts of the movie, video of the premiere night, commentary with cast and crew, A Day at the Lake with Dr. Frank Peter... and more. Much more!

...by Anvil and Sprocket!...as if River of Dread getting out there wasn't enough, Anvil and Sprocket just posted a glowing review of FOOL!

LookSharp! sent the FOOL 2-Disc Special Edition DVD to old school-friend (or old-school friend, take your pick) Sprocket before the holidays, and we were rewarded with rare praise from the site. Now before you assume Sprocket is lauding FOOL because of our connected past, consider that he had plenty of reasons to take the opportunity for revenge, and check out some of the scathing reviews the duo has written for some of their other friends. Not only does Sprock genuinely dig the flick, he's given us higher praise than we know what to do with... and that's a dilemma we're happy to be saddled with.

Check out Anvil and Sprocket and sister-site Art-Machine!

Love is a kung-fu hamster...

12/31/06: The last update of 2006!

2006 was a banner year for LookSharp! Much of the labor will be paid off in 2007, with three new movies to look forward to; BEAST, BURIED, and THE GOAT. Plus we already have three more productions in development, two features and a documentary, ranging in tone from the ridiculous to the somber to the sublime. Add to that a handful of shorts and we'll have plenty to keep us busy. 2006 was great, but 2007 looks like it's going to be one helluva year. As for our upcoming flicks, BEAST needs some sound work but screenings and the DVD release will be coming up soon, and BURIED and THE GOAT are both deep in post-production and will have trailers online next month. Check out the pages below and we'll see you in the New Year...

11/4/06: New pages for Altar...ed State, Hokie Nation and LookSharp! bios!

Shumate!Go Hokies!When do you sleep...?

Reminder to Virginians: Vote "No" on Ballot Question 1 this Tuesday. If you're undecided on the issue, read the entire amendment in question. If passed it will make civil unions unconstitutional in Virginia. It is a bill that does not help anyone directly, but will effectively hurt a whole lot of people. If you think that it is a foregone conclusion and plan not to vote on November 7th, remember that the margin by which the bill passes will be noticed in other states and even if the amendment is ratified, your vote can still make a difference in future decisions of state and national governments.
10/2/06: Altar...ed State at the Lyric Theatre this Tuesday evening!
When: Tuesday, October 3rd at 7pm
Where: The Lyric Theatre on College Avenue in Blacksburg, VA

Altar...ed State is a live show created by Amanda Shumate (aka one half of Goo-Art) and company. The show will specifically address the proposed marriage amendment hovering over the Virginia law books. Read the proposed state amendment for yourself here.

LookSharp! produced a short movie for the show, featuring Megan Carney (pictured to the left) and directed by Shumate. If you are in the area and have an opinion on this particular issue, definitely come out and see the show. It will give you some insight into a few of the people who would be directly affected by this legislation, and just what it would mean for them if passed. Whether you support the bill or not, the people on this side of it deserve your consideration. They also put on a damn good show. Tuesday! The Lyric! 7pm!

9/17/06: The trailer for BEAST is now online!
Also updated... pages up for Buried, Walking Shadows, and new stuff at the Ministry of Propoganda!


Leon (Travis Russell)
The Old Man (F.M. Turner)
Artemis (Teresa Leigh)
9/8/06: The new looksharpfilms.com goes live!
Life in the lab...

Yes, it has been a while. The last update was about how great the Halloween 2005 River of Dread premiere was. Now it is well into 2006. What has Look Sharp! been up to in the meantime?

Short answer: Makin' movies.

There are three new productions getting individual pages on the site, all three of which are near completion, including the first Look Sharp! flick to be shot in high-definition. Another feature is in pre-production, a crazy three-person ensemble piece. FOOL is out on DVD, a 2-disc Special Edition I couldn't be more proud of. Right now we are gearing up for a couple of experimental film collaborations in the Fall. A feature script is being developed that may end up, fingers crossed, as our first attempt at a big independent production. Our budgets are growing. Our schedules are getting better. Now is an exciting time for Look Sharp! and hopefully this site will be our medium to share that.

We'll start tomorrow. I need to get some sleep.

So have a look around the site... there is a new page for each movie, and check out the links to see some cool stuff our friends have been doing (such as Fried Squid). More features are on the way, including trailers and cast profiles for each flick. News and announcements will show up here whenever we have news to announce, and other than that, thanks for visiting and enjoy the new, fully comprehensive Look Sharp! website.

...Jack Bennett, 9/8/06