ASBURY PARK — The Garden State Film Festival, in its 16th year, returns to its home city Thursday through Sunday, screening 245 films from 22 countries.

While it's not required that a film, nor the people involved, have any ties to the Garden State in order to be chosen, the four-day event has plenty of New Jersey flavor. Several dozen of the festival's films are the brainchildren of New Jersey residents and natives.

"We give special consideration to films that are produced in the state of New Jersey," festival founder Diane Raver said.

New Jersey 101.5 spoke with a few filmmakers whose projects will be featured March 22-25.

"Losing Color"

Neptune City resident Danielle Ring wrote, produced, edited and directed this nine-minute film that will screen on March 24 at 11:50 a.m. inside Asbury Park City Council Chambers.

"It's about a young woman not knowing how tell her daughter that her grandma is dying, so in order to search for answers, she goes back in time ... and remembers her own first experience with death," Ring said.

Ring created the movie over a year's time as a film major at Syracuse University. She calls the piece her "business card into the film industry."


Colts Neck High School graduate Anthony Bradford, 32, is writer, producer and star of this television pilot.

The dramedy follows an up-and-coming film producer traversing the superficial landscape of Los Angeles while looking for his next hit project.

The show was inspired by Bradford's real-life experiences living in Hollywood. His family still lives in Colts Neck and they'll be among the crowd at the Jersey Shore Arts Center, March 24 at 5:30 p.m.

"Just to be able to share this with friends and family and see it on the big screen is very special to me," Bradford said.

"Greenlit" won the award for 'Best TV Pilot' at the Monmouth Film Festival, and 'Best Actor' at the Atlanta Comedy Film Festival.


Reckoning poster

At the start of this five-minute film, the character played by Edison resident Tom Bentey gets an ultimatum from his girlfriend — marry me, or move on.

"An encounter with an older woman kind of puts him in his place and he realizes that he's not the person that he thought he was," said Bentey, who also wrote and directed the short film.

Film locations include the Metuchen train station and the War Room, a basement bar in Menlo Park Terrace.

"Reckoning" screens on March 24 at 5 p.m. at House of Independents.

Chris Neptune's Magic

This music video from director and Union Township resident Adam Chinoy will be included in a two-hour block of short films screening March 24 at noon at the Berkeley Oceanfront Hotel.

Shot in Verona, the animation-packed video stars Jersey-based musician Chris Neptune as a struggling magician. A pretty passerby sparks a wild trip on a magic carpet ride.

Including music videos at film festivals has become a more common practice in recent years, Chinoy said.

"There's more credibility than just putting up a music video or any other video on YouTube and calling it a day, and praying people see it," Chinoy said. "With this you get an audience."

Contact reporter Dino Flammia at

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