Thursday, July 17, 2014

Update of the Past Few Months Part 2

 If you've visited my A.E. Keener Facebook page recently, you may have seen a post about this picture.

This award was the reason for my second visit in April to California. I was invited to the Beverly Hills Film Festival because my screenplay, Patchwork, was selected as a finalist for BHFF's screenplay contest. The Film Festival lasts five days and is filled with features, shorts, animations, and documentaries. The week ends with a black tie gala at the Beverly Hills Hotel where the awards are presented to the winners.

The films were shown at the TCL Chinese Theaters which is the more modern version of the Grauman's Chinese Theater located nearby. 

The Marquis display for the Beverly Hills Film Festival.

Like the old movie theaters, the TCL Chinese theaters have red curtains over their screens. They rise before the movie is shown.

With the curtains up.

It was fun to see different features, documentaries, shorts, and animations from all over the world. Plus, watching these films in the heart of Hollywood made it even more special.

I stayed at the Roosevelt Hotel which is on Hollywood Blvd and right across from the Chinese Theater.

The Ceiling in the Roosevelt Hotel

One of the main areas.

During breaks between movies, I would explore the boulevard which was busy and filled with exciting things to do.

The El Capitan Theatre: Hollywood's First Home of Spoken Drama and Walt Disney Studio's Premiere Theatre.
The Egyptian Theatre: Home of the first movie premiere.

I love the Egyptian design.

A car decorated in tiny cars.

The Dolby Theatre

Disney Ghirardelli

A view of the Hollywood Sign.

And of course, the infamous Chinese Theatre.

I didn't have as much time to explore other areas of the city; but I did have a couple of hours one day for an excursion to the California Science Center.

My main reason for going was to see the Endeavour. I wrote in a previous blog about watching the spaceship's last flight. It now resides at the California Science Museum. Naturally, I had to see the spaceship up close and personal. 

The Endeavour.

A slightly closer shot.

A view of the famous tiles. 

Some Fun Facts about the Endeavour:
       ~During reentry, the nose and leading edge of the wings are hotter than any other part of the    shuttle.
       ~A single tile could cost as much as $2,000 to make. 
      ~ The black coating seen on the tiles under the orbiter helped the tiles shed heat. The white tiles and blankets on the orbiter's topside helped to reflect solar radiation when the shuttle was in orbit, which helped the Endeavour to keep cool. 

I still can't believe that the Endeavour has been in space. Being this close to a piece of history, I was filled with awe.

The California Science Center also has several other exhibits. I was limited on time so I was only able to visit one other exhibit, The Kelp Forest Restoration in the Ecosystems area. 

Kelp Forests are important ecosystems located off California's coast. They are home to a diverse wildlife. 

At the California Science Center, they are growing kelp forests to help educate on their importance.

Swimming through the Underwater Forest

Another Shot of fish swimming

In the Jellyfish tank, the movements were so beautiful that I had to take pictures.

Who knew jellyfish were so graceful?

Another fun excursion provided by the Beverly Hills Film Festival was a party at one of L.A.'s night clubs: the OHM Nightclub. If you know me,  I'm kind of grumpy if it's past 10 and I'm not within a few feet of my bed. However, OHM had several key factors that helped influence me to go:

There were books...


And steampunk decor... Of course, I had to go.

Along with these excursions, I also was able to enjoy some wonderful food and drinks from several great restaurants. A couple of my favorites were:

Black Cod from The Public Kitchen and Bar

A cosmo inspired specialty drink made with market fresh ingredients from the Library Bar.

Halibut from Il Cielo.

And Il Cielo's Panna Cotta was just so pretty.

And of course, an old fashioned Coke Float from Disney Ghirardelli's. 

On my last night, I attended the Beverly Hill Film Festival's Award Ceremony at the Beverly Hills Hotel. In true Hollywood fashion, the ceremony was a black tie affair with red carpet and photo opportunities. 

After a full course dinner, the awards were presented; and I received 2nd Runner Up for Best Screenplay.  I still can't believe that it actually happened. 

Naturally, there was only one way to celebrate:

Cupcakes from the original Sprinkle's Cupcakes.

This California Adventure was an exciting and "rewarding" experience. Being able to receive an award  in Tinseltown itself, was a dream come true. 
~A.E. Keener

Interested in my adventure? Click the links below to learn more:

Beverly Hills Film Festival:

Thompson Roosevelt Hotel:

El Capitan:

Grauman's Egyptian Theatre:

Dolby Theatre:

California Science Center:

OHM Nightclub:

Public Kitchen and Bar:

The Library Bar:

Il Cielo Restaurant:

Disney Ghirardelli:

Sprinkles Cupcakes: