A weak foundation?
Frankly, I am a little disappointed in the lack of depth in "Five Questions for the Community Foundation," from your flood cover story, "One Year Later" (April 28). Everyone needs to review the Community Foundation's grantees list. You will find many grants to the so-called "nonprofits" that are on one hand laughable and on the other hand insulting to flood victims.
Where is the accountability? It seems that any "nonprofit" could write a grant proposal and get handed tens of thousands of dollars with no oversight as to where it went.I suspect most of these Community Foundations grants were nothing more than a money grab by the so-called "nonprofits."
I live in Bellevue, and most flood victims, including myself, see Ellen Lehman and the Community Foundation as being as hurtful as the flood itself. I can't wait for the self-congratulatory, self-righteous, demeaning, "it's a marathon not a sprint" rhetoric to return from Ms. Lehman.
Still a long way to go
Good to see these articles ("One Year Later," April 28), even though it only scratches the surface. There are soooo many people still displaced and hurting: I can name three streets in Madison where many homes are still abandoned. One whole neighborhood in Old Hickory was ruined, but rarely noted. Bordeaux was hit hard. The list goes on.
Thanks for reminding us that not everything is rosy in Music City.
Attn: Nashville film industry
I work in the film industry — not the glamorous part, but the 14-hour-day, covered-in-dust, busting-my-ass-so-someone-else-can-get-rich-or-famous part. Don't get me wrong — I love it. My worst day on set is still preferable to a good eight-hour day punching a clock.
I moved to your fair city a few years ago and worked nonstop for my living, and I've watched your industry as an outsider (and veteran of several other film markets — real ones). A restless, gypsy soul, I work until I feel like experiencing another area of the country. But I have to say my assessment of the Tennessee film industry is such: Grow the f@$% up and stop acting like dilettantes.
Your union (IATSE) can't do s#%$ for you because your state government won't do s#$% for your film industry. Sure, Tennessee will give half a billion dollars to Volkswagen (or any other automotive group) to come here and spout how it will make bank over 30 years — unless another state lures production away resulting in a 60 percent layoff (Saturn), a tsunami in Japan causes a slowdown at their facility (Nissan), or the automotive industry just tanks. Just ask Detroit how well it worked out for them putting most of their eggs in the automotive basket.
And your infrastructure — it's like going back to high school. Never have I seen so many special interest groups/cliques, with their low numbers and high egos. For example:
You've got Film Nashville with their Film-Com. In their own words, "A significant aspect of the intent is to enable locally generated projects to earn revenues via world-wide distribution so that those revenues can be refunneled into our own infrastructure, and be used to provide opportunities, workflow and income to personnel and businesses in our own market." Yet no deals came out of last year's Film-Com locally, and only 20 percent of accepted projects at this year's are local. And they charge your poor filmmakers for a chance at being "considered." More like Film-Con.
Then you have the Association for the Future of Film & Television in Tennessee (AFFT). A very busy group whose fearless leader teased an eager crowd at the Belcourt last December with their master plan, but wasn't ready to discuss it — even though they say they've been working on it for three years. And at the same meeting, so many other groups stood up to state their agendas (and names) that I had alphabet soup ringing in my ears from all the acronyms.
And what's with all the infighting between your different film commissions and their allies?
In a nutshell: I feel my time in Tennessee is coming to an end, and your film industry may be doing the same. I have enjoyed my time, here and thank you for your hospitality (and monies). But please, set aside your pettiness — join forces and speak as one, educate (or vote out) your legislature, support your crew-only training initiatives, and for God's sake, pick "industry" leaders who will put YOUR MARKET'S gains ahead of THEIRS. While you were holding countless meetings and infighting over the last three years, Georgia banded together and kicked your ass in half that time. You're either at the table, or you're on the menu.
In "Munchak's Choice" (April 21), we misidentified North Carolina defensive tackle Marvin Austin and Texas Christian University quarterback Andy Dalton.
And in our blurb about Chee-Yun's recent performance with the Nashville Symphony ("Critics' Picks," April 21), we misstated the piece the violinist would be performing. Her piece that evening was actually Saint-Saëns' Concerto for Violin No. 3 in B minor, Op. 61.
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