Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain is headlining Arkansas Cinema Society’s Filmland in the Park on Sat. Oct. 2 with her new biopic “The Eyes of Tammy Faye,” which tells the story of the “rise, fall and redemption of televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker.”


In the 1970s and ’80s Tammy Faye and her husband Jim Bakker rose from humble beginnings to create the world’s largest religious broadcasting network and theme park, and were revered for their message of love, acceptance and prosperity. Tammy Faye was legendary for her indelible eyelashes, her idiosyncratic singing and her eagerness to embrace people of all walks of life.

Chastain serves a producer and starred in the new biopic, written by Abe Sylvia and directed by Michael Showalter. The film also stars Andrew Garfield, Cherry Jones and Vincent D’Onofrio. Chastain does her own singing in the film and, at times in the trailer, looks unrecognizable in her portrayal of Tammy Faye, especially in Faye’s later years. A Q+A with Arkansas native director Jeff Nichols (he directed Chastain in his 2011 feature “Take Shelter”) will follow the screening.



Thursday night’s headlining documentary “Becoming Cousteau” is about the life of adventurer, filmmaker and environmentalist Jacques-Yves Cousteau, who sounded the alarm about the warming seas and the Earth’s vulnerability 50 years ago.


In Becoming Cousteau, from National Geographic Documentary Films, two-time Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Liz Garbus takes an inside look at Cousteau and his life, his iconic films and inventions and the experiences that made him the 20th century’s most unique and renowned environmental voice and the man who inspired generations to protect the Earth.

Oscar-winning writer/director Asghar Farhadi will be Sunday night’s headliner. His latest film “A Hero,” won the Grand Prix award at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival.

“A Hero tells the story of Rahim, who is in prison because of a debt he was unable to repay. During a two-day leave, he tries to convince his creditor to withdraw his complaint against the payment of part of the sum. But things don’t go as planned.”

A native of Iran, Farhadi has directed nine feature films. Only a handful of directors have won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film multiple times and Farhadi is among them for his films “A Separation” (2012) and “The Salesman”(2017).

“A Hero” will be screening Sunday Oct. 3 and a virtual Q+A with Fahradi and Nichols will follow.

The Filmland screenings will take place on the MacArthur Park Lawn at 1200 McMath Ave., so bring a blanket and chairs. The gates open each night at 6 p.m., with shows starting at 7:15.

Filmland in the Park schedule:


Thu. Sept 20: “Becoming Cousteau” followed by virtual Q+A with producer Evan Hayes.
Fri. Oct. 1: Filmland: Arkansas Short Audience Award Winner Screening. More TBA.
Sat. Oct 2: Filmmaking Lab for Teen Girls Short Screening and “The Eyes of Tammy Faye” followed by live Q+A with Jeff Nichols and Jessica Chastain.
Sun. Oct 3: Filmland: Arkansas Short Audience Award Winner Screening and “A Hero” followed by virtual Q+A with Jeff Nichols and director Asghar Farhadi.

Filmland: Arkansas is available as part of the Filmland Digital Experience beginning Fri. Sept. 24 and will stream online through Sun. Oct 3.

Tickets go on sale for members and sponsors on Thu., Sept 23 at 9 a.m. Tickets go on sale for the general public on Fri. Sept. 24 at 9 a.m. ACS members will receive 50% off, and Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts members will receive 10% off. Ticket prices vary per screening. Tickets can be purchased here.

In order to gain entry to events at Filmland in the Park, you must be fully vaccinated and need to show proof in the form of an official vaccination card, digital card or photo of your vaccination card or you must present a negative PCR, LAMP or antigen COVID-19 test within the last 48 hours. Masks must be worn at all times when social distancing is not possible.

Filmmaking workshops and panels discussions:

Building a Scene (and Hopefully, Eventually, a Screenplay):  True Detective Season 3 co-writer Graham Gordy will break down the anatomy of a scene, helping you move from initial idea to the building blocks of a complete script by harnessing the power of detail. Followed by a Q+A.


Building a Scene (and Hopefully, Eventually, a Screenplay) Junior (Grades 6-8): During this engaging writing-for-film workshop for Middle School students, screenwriter Graham Gordy will walk them through how to develop a story idea and to write a scene.


Building a Scene (and Hopefully, Eventually, a Screenplay) Varsity (Grades 9-12):  High School students will be led by screenwriter Graham Gordy through this exciting basics of screenwriting workshop.


Landing the Role: Get inside secrets from Casting Director, Yancey Prosser of The Agency Inc., on how to improve your audition for screen. During this unique workshop you can receive direct feedback or watch a casting director in action.

TICKET PRICE: $40 to audition $20 for audience member

The Art of the PitchDuring this workshop, Emmy Award Winning Filmmaker Mario Troncoso will teach participants how to take their story idea and build a pitch deck to intrigue agents and production companies, followed by a Q+A.


The KEYS to the Film Industry:  Join us for an inside look into the film industry from professional filmmakers in our state. During this workshop, participants will have the opportunity to glean expert insight from professional filmmakers about their role on a film set. Experts include Dave Calhoun, Kristy Pruitt, Nate Disarro, Dwight Chalmers, Brian Johnson, Paula Blanco, Hannah Whitney, and many more.


The Craft of Cinematography:   The collaborative relationship between a director and cinematographer is an intimate one.  Join us for a conversation between Jeff Nichols and Adam Stone as they discuss the intricacies of their working relationship and the importance of team work when bringing a script to life.Followed by a Q+A.



Filmland: Arkansas Audience Award Winners Q+AWinners of the Filmland: Arkansas shorts block will join us for an exciting Q+A. These up and coming filmmakers will have an opportunity to discuss their process as filmmakers and what inspired them to create these short films.



Each year, the festival highlights the best short and feature filmmakers in the state and those connected to our state. 2021 will be no different as Filmland: Arkansas will feature films from 23 new and veteran Arkansas filmmakers. The Filmland Digital Experience is free with an ACS Membership. Individual tickets for the Filmland Digital Experience will also be available for purchase.

Filmland: Arkansas is non-competitive in nature but we want to allow our audience the opportunity to support their favorite local filmmakers! Filmland: Arkansas Audience Award winning short films will screen before the features on Friday and Sunday evening at Filmland in the Park! The winning feature of the Audience Award will screen in 2022 as part of our ongoing Homegrown Film Series.

Watch: September 24-October 3

Vote: September 24, 12 p.m  – September 29, 12 p.m.


Visit the Filmland website for more information.