Screening | Jenna Ricker discusses The American Side
Part of Ideas Prime
Thursday, November 6, 2014, 7–9 pm
In 1943, inventor Nikola Tesla died penniless in the New Yorker Hotel. Within 24 hours the U.S. government
seized everything in his room. But one design was missing. 70 years later in Buffalo, NY, a brilliant young
engineer has found it.
In the short history of film, genre and styles have emerged than are solely the domain of the cinematic
experience. Such are the Noir films from the 40s and 50s, and the Conspiracy Theories borne out of the 60s
and 70s which enlist a common theme- the outsider thrust into a world much larger than himself. These
films share stylistic attributes influenced as much by the social temperatures of their times as by the
technology employed to visually capture them (lights, camera angles and lenses). Along with rich archetypes,
the landscapes of these films boast the specificity of a region, making the location a character inextricably
connected to the plot.
Jenna Ricker and Greg Stuhr, the co-writers, director and star of The American Side, a feature film recently
shot in Buffalo and Niagara Falls, will share clips from their upcoming film that illustrate how films from these
eras, the history and the architecture of this city inspired their work.
Jenna Ricker wrote, directed and produced her first feature film, the coming-of-age drama, Ben's Plan.
Made on a micro-budget, it went on to screen in over ten steemed film festivals both domestic and
international. Ben's Plan was awarded Best Drama at the AOF Festival, Distinguished Debut at the London
Independent Film Festival, and Ricker was honored with the Mira Nair Awardfor Rising Female Filmmaker.
Originally from California, Ricker moved to New York in 1994 to study acting at the Tisch School of the Arts.
Preferring storytelling from behind-the-scenes, she began writing and directing theater. Her first screenplay,
The Garage was a quarterfinalist of the prestigious Nicholl Fellowship.
Security, a screenplay co-written with Greg Stuhr, was selected to successfully participate in the IFP's
Emerging Narrative Program. Her latest film, The American Side, shot on location in Buffalo and Niagara Falls, New York, and starring Greg Stuhr, Matthew Broderick, Alicja Bachleda, Robert Forster, Janeane Garofalo, Camilla Belle and Robert Vaughn.
Director: Jenna Ricker
Writers: Greg Stuhr, Jenna Ricker
Stars: Greg Stuhr, Alicja Bachleda, Camilla Belle
Fall at the Burchfield Penney sees the start of Ideas Prime, a series of screenings, lectures and conversations which create a forum for an exchange of ideas designed to understand how the local and global issues are interrelated. Programs are free with galley admission.