Aug. 25--HATTIESBURG -- Almost 1,000 audience members took to their feet Friday night and clapped, hollered and chanted as Vincent Chaney, Lauren Cioffi and James Gregory Gandy walked onstage at the Saenger Theatre in Hattiesburg.
The filmmakers premiered their feature-length documentary "subSIPPI" to a sold-out crowd. Doors opened at 6 p.m., and the theater's 997 chairs were sold out by 7:30.
"We were humbled by the outpouring and response by our community for this film," "subSIPPI" Executive Producer Jason Le Viere said.
The film, which explores subcultures throughout the state, was filmed over four months in 2012. Chaney, Cioffi and Gandy started filming in Carriere and made their way through the Delta, to Jackson, to the Gulf Coast and several places in between.
The film followed a number of people, including Biloxi artist Julia Reyes -- the driving force in creating art to replace empty windows in vacant Biloxi buildings with the Art Can Change Everything movement.
Devon Johnson, a seventh-grader from Jackson, let the filmmakers capture his passion for urban gardening. In the film, Devon said gardening helps him release his creativity and stay out of trouble.
Ardan Thornhill, a Picayune native and University of Southern Mississippi student, said her high school was right next door to the ISKCON New Talavan Hare Krsna farm community featured in the film.
Thornhill said she got emotional at many points during the film.
"There was never a heavy-handed message, just a quiet view of the lives of everyday Mississippians," she said. "Mississippi has been the pressure making many of us diamonds."
When Chaney, Cioffi and Gandy took the stage after the filming, Cioffi specifically thanked their editor for helping them create the final product that is 'subSIPPI.'
Gandy said the film was about representing the people of the state.
"This isn't about us, it's about y'all," he said.
(c)2013 The Sun Herald (Biloxi, Miss.)
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