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Commercials Promoting Hot Springs Are Produced By Eight Emerging Filmmakers From Three States In Partnership Between Visit Hot Springs and Film Program | Hot Springs National Park Arkansas

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Commercials Promoting Hot Springs Are Produced By Eight Emerging Filmmakers From Three States In Partnership Between Visit Hot Springs and Film Program

HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, Arkansas — In the hilarious commercial, a dog uses the Internet to completely plan a visit to Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas, while its family is out of the house.

“Ultimutt Vacation” is one of eight video vignettes that were written, shot and edited by emerging filmmakers as part of Inception to Projection, a partnership between the local arts organization, Low Key Arts, and Visit Hot Springs to create commercials marketing Hot Springs.

The purpose of each video was to tell a story about Hot Springs, Arkansas, to help promote the city and surroundings as a tourist destination.

Eight emerging filmmakers from three states produced videos ranging in format from documentary, comedy, film noir, drama and commercial.

Their films are:

• "Ultimutt Vacation" — A dog orders up a vacation to Hot Springs, Arkansas, unbeknownst to its owners. Written and Directed by Ashley Missile of Arkansas.

• "Relax" — Gangsters Al Capone and Bugsy Moran come face to face in a bathhouse. Written and Directed by Jon Huggins of New Jersey.

• "New Beginnings" — A young boy finds a new home in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Written and Directed by Christopher Millham of Arkansas.

• "Oh, Romeo" — A young actress loses her voice on stage. Can Hot Springs water save the show? Written and Directed by John Sullivan of Arkansas.

• "Sights and Sounds" — A fast paced look at the sights and sounds of Hot Springs closes with a breathtaking view. Written and Directed by Lexie Mosby of Arkansas.

• "Fill Up in Hot Springs" — Stacy finds a cure-all for her ailing dog Molly in Hot Springs. Written and Directed by Stacy Pendergrast of Arkansas.

• "The Path of Totality" — A father explains the Path of Totality in the upcoming April 2024 total solar eclipse to his curious daughters. Written and Directed by Kris Ellis of Texas. (Hot Springs is one of two American national parks that will be in the path of total eclipse.)

• "Have You Seen Steve?" An officer of the law searches for a lost groundhog named Steve. Written and Directed by Ethan Ledesma of Arkansas.

The eight video vignettes will be screened at the annual Arkansas Shorts - A Weekend of Film on Friday, January 5, at 3 p.m. at the historic Malco Theater in downtown Hot Springs. The screening is free and open to the public.

“We’ll be using these eight videos as part of our 2024 advertising and promotion campaign for Hot Springs,” Visit Hot Springs Marketing Director Bill Solleder said. “All of them are really great vignettes of the attractions and activities that make Hot Springs a unique place to visit and live. We’ll share the videos on our social media platforms and on our Hot Springs website,”

“I was amazed at the professionalism and creativity these emerging filmmakers showed in creating these portraits of Hot Springs,” Visit Hot Springs CEO Steve Arrison said. “I am so proud of our marketing team for partnering us with Low Key Arts to produce these little films showcasing our city and its attractions.”

“We created a little mini-documentary that explains what the Inception to Projection project is all about,” Solleder said. “You can watch it at It also will be shown at the Arkansas Shorts festival in January.”

“The partnership between Low Key Arts and Visit Hot Springs to create commercials marketing Hot Springs was a once in a lifetime experience,” filmmaker Ashley Missile said. Hers was the “Ultimutt Vacation” film featuring the dog planning the Hot Springs vacation.

“Starting from pitching our ideas, to weeks spent airing out our scripts, to the long anticipated day of filming - getting to see Hot Springs through the eyes of eight different filmmakers is something our community should be excited about,” Missile said. “I'm truly thankful to have had the opportunity to bring my idea to life, and produce a commercial that represents our beautiful city.”

“This partnership between Low Key Arts and Visit Hot Springs is the most impactful career development program I've ever witnessed,” Low Key Arts Film Program Director Jen Gerber said. “Where else could a first-time or emerging filmmaker be handed an Arri Alexa [camera] along with creative freedom to tell a story only they could tell?

“With this partnership, Visit Hot Springs demonstrates its holistic commitment to investing in its own community while simultaneously promoting this place we all know and love. We are so proud of this partnership and can't wait to see where these filmmakers go next.”

“Tourism is a leading industry in Hot Springs, which is the No. 1 tourist destination in Arkansas,” Marketing Director Solleder said. “Nearly 9.3 million people travel to Hot Springs annually, and Visit Hot Springs will see the benefits of using these eight short films to show the rest of the world what we have to offer.”

“Visit Hot Springs has always collaborated with professionals to create video content for our marketing strategies,” Solleder said, “but the idea of emerging filmmakers developing stories to promote Hot Springs opens up the possibility of new and exciting perspectives of the Spa City.”

Judges for the project were Dan Waymack, founder of Waymack and Company, Wade McCune, creative director for CJRW, VHS’s ad agency, and Solleder.

For more information call Bill Solleder at 501-321-2027.