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If you’re still sorting out your plans for the weekend, the LSPU Hall has a Friday night option for you.  The Nickel Independent Film Festival is hosting a fundraiser and celebration, continuing to acknowledge its tenth anniversary.  They’ve partnered up with Andy Jones who has curated the line up and will host the evening which will also include a performance from local comedian Dave Sullivan.

In the line up you will find Extraordinary Visitor (short), Nan vs. Nature, Punch up at a Wedding, Bullies, Codpieces, Dead Bird in the Garbage, Outport Lesbian, Sisters of the Silver Scalpel, Countdown and Ship Inn Man.

Tickets are going for $20.00 which includes not only those pesky taxes and surcharge – but, also a drink!  The seating will also be general admission for this event.  Bust a Gut (again!) happens on August 27.

While on the topic of great local film, it shouldn’t go without mention that the Women’s Film Festival is also presenting a series, theirs is called Films on the Go. That one will make use of the fantastic new screening space at the Johnson Geo Centre on September 23.  The admission for this event is free, and its part of a 12 stop tour across the province that has been rolling since the beginning of August.  St. John’s is the second last stop before it wraps up the following week through to October in Happy Valley-Goose Bay.

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By Gary Moore, with files from Joshua Jamieson

Oscar Winning filmmaker Brigitte Berman was in St. John’s for the special screening of her film Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel, Saturday, July 10, at the INCO Centre, MUN Campus. Following the special screening there was a Q & A and reception, with Berman.

Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel

Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel Poster

A documentary about the man that had a war between Church and State, both against him, as he was being crowned a champion of the sexual revolution, in the 1950s. Through humour and insight, the documentary covers the battles Hefner has faced including the government, the religious right and militant feminists.

Playboy-1963

Playboy issue, 1963

Hefner’s no stranger to a court room either, having been arrested in June of 1963 for “selling obscene literature” after the Jayne Mansfield issue of Playboy was released though the jury couldn’t conclusively come to a verdict in the matter.  Just over a decade later, in January of 1975, Hefner again found himself in the midst of another legal matter when Bobbie Arnstein (Hefner’s former secretary) was found dead in a Chicago hotel room.  The cause was a drug overdose, which Hefner said Arnstein was driven to by narcotics agents, federal officers and that the government was targeting him because of Playboy’s stance on more liberal drug laws in a press conference.

An extraordinary life that’s been surrounded by controversies is revealed through rare footage and interviews in Berman’s film. Hefner is portrayed as a lifetime Playboy – but most importantly, as a catalyst for civil rights, the First Amendment, and human rights.

hugh-hefner

Hugh Hefner

Some of his highlights on that front include the restoration of the iconic Hollywood sign, to which he funded 1/9th of the repairs for – ceremonially buying the letter “Y” at a Playboy Mansion hosted gala even back in 1978.  Just months ago, he again came to the sign’s rescue, this time dropping almost $1 million to conserve the land around it.  He’s also been an involved fundraiser for the Democratic Party in the United States, created a course about cinema censorship at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, is a supporter of animal related causes as well as Generation Rescue – a campaign for autism support with celeb, Jenny McCarthy.

Hefner is now 84, on his second marriage and has four children.

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