2017: Year in Review
In February of 2017, Kino Club 313 held our first ever conference. In the past, we have organized a yearly graduate student symposium – a one-day event where grad students from the area meet to share their research on a particular topic. The 2015 symposium, titled "Gender & Horror," was a small, two-panel symposium that generated lots of great discussion. The 2016 symposium, "Queer Stuff," was much larger, featuring more panels, a host (the lovely and talented Deja D. Dellataro), and keynote speaker Dr. Larry La Fountain from University of Michigan. Under the direction of the dedicated former club president, Peter Marra, these symposiums were growing into something really unique and special – so I knew when I took over the president position that we would have to really step it up to continue expanding on Peter's vision for the group.
Our February conference, "Audiences, Fandoms, and Reception," was held February 16th and 17th, and included a film screening, five workshops, two roundtables, three panels, a keynote address, and a post-conference reception. We were excited to welcome Rings of Steel, a theater troupe based in Ann Arbor, MI, to host a lightsaber workshop on Thursday. Joyojeet Pal, an assistant professor at University of Michigan, joined us at our film screening to discuss For the Love of a Man, a documentary that he produced about the intense fandom surrounding Tamil film star Rajinikanth. Our keynote speaker, Dr. Kristina Busse (editor of Transformative Works and Cultures), gave a wonderful workshop on teaching with fan vids, and a keynote lecture titled "Framing Fan Fiction: Archival Infrastructures as Consent Negotiations." The organizing committee worked with local businesses including Green Brain Comics, Chase Bank, Wayne State University Press, and the WSU Dean of Students Office, to provide a fun swag bag for conference attendees. We were also able to provide both a free breakfast from Einstein Bros. Bagels and a post-conference reception (including appetizers and a special fandom-inspired drink menu!) at Cass Café. A huge thank you is owed to all of the businesses and departments that worked with us to make this conference happens, as well as to the organizing committee and our wonderful volunteers!
Plans are now underway for our 2018 Conference, "Pop Culture in/as Speculative Fiction," which promises to be our biggest and most exciting undertaking yet! This year, Kino Club 313 is working with two other Wayne State student organizations – the WSU Comics Collective and the Video Game Scholarly Interest Group – to plan the conference, which will be happening February 16-18. Although we are still finalizing the schedule, there are a few confirmed events that I can share with you. We will be hosting a screening of Get Out on Friday, February 16th; workshops on Feminist Maker Spaces and Resistance through Storytelling on Saturday, February 17th; and on Sunday, February 18th a roundtable discussion on diversity in comics featuring Saladin Ahmed (author of Marvel's Black Bolt), Dan Merritt (owner/operator of Green Brain Comics in Dearborn, MI), Andre Batts (independent comics creator of Dreadlocks, owner/operator of the Motor City Black Age of Comics Convention), and Matt Yockey (Associate Professor of Film at University of Toledo, editor of Make Ours Marvel: Media Convergence and a Comics Universe). We are also very excited to announce that our keynote speaker this year will be Dr. Sheena Howard, Associate Professor of Communication at Rider University, and Eisner Award winner for her edited volume Black Comics: Politics of Race and Representation (2013), as well as the author of Encyclopedia of Black Comics (2017).
In 2017, we've branched out from student curated screenings to include screenings hosted with student organizations, professors, and outside groups. Our April screening of Akira Kurosawa's Ran was co-hosted by a student group researching Shakespeare's King Lear, and the November double feature of Black Belt Jones and Black Dynamite was co-hosted by the Motor City Black Age of Comics Convention. We also held our first fundraiser in October; "Zombies on Third Street" was co-organized by Kino Club 313 and Cinema Detroit. We held a screening of White Zombie with an introductory lecture by Dr. Chera Kee, Associate Professor of Film at Wayne State University, and author of Not Your Average Zombie. Half of the proceeds from "Zombies on Third Street" went to Kino Club 313, and have helped offset the cost of running this blog.
2018 is shaping up to be an awesome year for screenings, too. We will kick off the year with a screening of Blade Runner, featuring an introductory lecture by Dr. Barrett Watten, Professor of English at Wayne State University. This screening will be held in the Wayne State Planetarium, and will be the first time since 2014 that we have co-hosted a screening at this location.
The Kino Club 313 Blog celebrated its one year anniversary in November! 2017 marks our first full year in operation, and the year we started posting reviews, watchlists, and interviews in addition to articles and listicles. We've been lucky to work with some truly wonderful new contributors this year, including Emma Greenleaf, Hannah Soebbing, Lacey Skorepa, Tristan Shaw, and the newest addition to our writing staff, Ian Waldie. For your reading pleasure, I've compiled a list of our "greatest hits" from 2017. Be sure to follow us on social media (Facebook and Twitter) for regular notifications of new blog posts and upcoming events!
Get Out – Lisa Jane
Ingrid Goes West – Ian Waldie
Justice League – Matt Linton
Beauty and the Beast – Lacey Skorepa
Baby Driver – Shelby Cadwell
Raw – Hannah Soebbing
The Disaster Artist – Tristan Shaw
The Big Sick – Emma Greenleaf
#WomanRising: The Women of GOT – Lacey Skorepa
8 Podcasts for Movie People – Hannah Soebbing
5 Underrated Director/Actor Partnerships – Emma Greenleaf
The 5 Best Bad Horror Movies – Shelby Cadwell
5 Essential Seijun Suzuki Movies – Tristan Shaw
The Hulu Weekend Watchlist - Matt Linton
The Shudder Weekend Watchlist - Tristan Shaw
Talking Zombie Lore: An Interview with Dr. Chera Kee – Tristan Shaw
2017 was a great year for Kino Club 313, and we hope it was a great year for our fans and followers, too! Be sure to stay tuned for even more awesomeness in 2018!
Happy New Years!
-Shelby and the Kino Club team