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Raven films to host Houston filmmaker

Director to share experiences, involvement in film community

Arts & Entertainment Editor

Published: Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Updated: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 00:01

Raven films to host Houston filmmaker

Photo provided by Tom Garrett

LIFETIME SUCCESS: Michelle Mower’s debut feature film “The Preacher’s Daughter” premiered on the Lifetime Movie Network on August 31, 2012 and earned the highest ratings of any movie for the network in 2012.

The campus community at Sam Houston State University will have a chance to gain unique insight into the film industry when a Houston filmmaker heads to campus on Wednesday.

Hosted by Raven Films, Michelle Mower will be on campus to discuss her experiences throughout her career as a filmmaker from starting out to making a feature film and remaining involved in the film community.

Mower will also discuss her debut feature film, “The Preacher’s Daughter”, which tells the story of a young woman who is forced to confront her troubled past and relationship with her father after being arrested. The film debuted on the Lifetime Movie Network in August.

 According to SHSU film professor Tom Garret, Mower’s presence is an opportunity for students to network and gain real-world insight into starting out in the film industry, which is crucial for students to hear.

“Having media professionals come share their stories and career [trajectories] with students I find as one of the most inspiring forms of engaging aspiring student, so that they can hear we all started at the same place they are at,” Garrett said. “I also find that many opportunities come out of speakers and student engagements like professional networking, internships and the like. It’s all about engagement with career paths and community.”

Some of Mower’s more recent projects include a new feature film titled “Dreamer” that is currently in post-production. She also just signed on to produce her first animated project titled “A Pumpkin’s Halloween” and is producing a feature-length documentary about the rare muscular/heart disease Friedreich’s Ataxia. She also has two more feature films in development.

In addition to her career as a director, producer and writer, Mower will also discuss how to stay actively involved in the film community, an aspect of the industry of which she has firsthand experience.

Mower serves several roles in the Texas film community. She is on the board of the Texas Motion Pictures Alliance, and the Women in Film and Television. After graduating from the University of Houston in 2000 with a B.A. in Radio and Television, she worked as a producer for an NBC affiliate station. She also has worked for Southwest Alternate Media Project, a non-profit media arts organization in Houston, to organize workshops, youth programs, film screenings and special events.

Garret says getting and staying involved is also an important part of being a part of the film industry.

“I hope students hear there [are] ways to break in through passion, focus, discipline and hard work,” Garret said. “[I hope students see] the importance to get involved now in your respected majors student groups, and to reach out to the community.”

The event will be held at 6 p.m. in Dan Rather Building room 125 and is free for anyone to attend.

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