Arts & Entertainment

Press Releases

Black Maria Film Festival Brings "Bartleby" to South Orange

Poster Art - Bartleby Credits: Mark Menditto
Rick Zahn portrays Walter Turk Credits: Mark Menditto
Meredith Rush-Bell portrays Sally Rush Credits: Mark Menditto
Richard Stephen Bell portrays Bartleby Credits: Mark Menditto
John Pietrowski portrays attorney James Webb Credits: Mark Menditto

(SOUTH ORANGE, NJ) Through a sponsorship from the South Orange Public Library, the Black Maria Film and Video Festival will make a stop at the South Orange Library, 65 Scotland Road, South Orange, NJ, on Tuesday, April 16 at 7:00 pm.  The event is free to the public. 

The April 16th program will include the short film Bartleby, from South Orange filmmakers Gerard Amsellem, who directed the piece, and Richard Stephen Bell, who adapted the screenplay from Herman Melville’s Bartleby the Scrivener. Bell is also featured in the movie, along with Playwrights Theatre of New Jersey’s Artistic Director John Pietrowski. The film has received a 2013 Director’s Citation from the Black Maria Film Festival and recently completed a run at the Garden State Film Festival. Amsellem, Bell, and Pietrowski will be present for a post-viewing talkback session.

The evening will feature a number of short films and videos from 50 winning films selected from over 700 entries. Since 1981, the annual Black Maria Film and Video Festival, an international juried competition and award tour, has been fulfilling its mission to advocate, exhibit and reward cutting edge works from independent film and videomakers.  Named by MovieMaker Magazine as one of the “25 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee,“ the festival is known for its national public exhibition program, which features a variety of bold contemporary works drawn from the annual collection. Every program presentation in the tour is custom curated to specific audiences and virtually every program is presented by the Festival Director John Columbus. The festival is named after The Black Maria, Thomas Edison’s film studio, the first such film studio in history. The festival website can be found at

Sign Up for E-News

Set on the shores of the Atlantic and in the law offices of a hard-working Wall Street attorney, the short film Bartleby takes a fresh look at the lanky man who walked into a quiet law office and sent it into an uproar with four simple words. In addition to locals Amsellem and Bell, Maplewood resident Michael Cotler is the film’s editor, and the original music is by South Orange resident Steve Girardi.  Cinematography is provided by Dunellen resident Mark Menditto. Also acting in the film are West Orange actor, Rick Zahn, and South Orange actress, Meredith Rush-Bell.

More information about Bartleby can be found at and

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News


Mike Czech – One of Chatham’s Hidden Gems….

On a warm sunny day, back in 2008, at Southern Boulevard Elementary School stood a very tall man (6.5” to be exact!), soft-spoken, warm and friendly as he was surrounded by a whole group of children running around him (at his knees).

His name was Mike Czech and he was teaching the kids how to play a game on the open court.   I introduced myself to help assist him as a fellow ...

'Thank You' to the Chatham Borough Department of Public Works and Volunteers

May 7, 2018

To the Editor:

My sincere thanks to Chatham Borough Department of Public Works, and everyone who came out and planted at Shepard Kollock trail this past Saturday! It was amazing to have so many volunteers on hand to plant trees and shrubs. Whether you could only stay for a short time, or if you stayed with us until the very end – everyone’s hard work truly made a difference.

One ...

SURVIVING A STROKE: Quick Medical Response Gives Mom Her Life Back

Carotid artery dissection. It’s one of the most common causes of stroke in younger adults.

And while you might not associate the word “stroke” with younger patients, the condition – if not treated immediately – could lead to paralysis and even death.

Lindsey Singh can attest to the importance of immediacy. The 31-year-old mother of two from Flanders experienced ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 15

On this week’s AtlantiCast, learn some important tips for controlling and avoiding diabetes from an Atlantic Health System expert, see how Atlantic Health is advancing cutting-edge research, hear what’s being done to keep health care environmentally friendly and much more!


Residents of Chatham to Receive Second Fundraising Letter Asking for Their Support of the Chatham Emergency Squad

May 20, 2018

During the week of May 20, a follow-up letter seeking donations to the Chatham Emergency Squad (CES) will be sent to more than 6,000 Chatham residents, businesses, religious and community organizations. Letters will not be sent to individuals, businesses, and organizations who have lent their support with the first mailing, issued in January 2018.

The Chatham Emergency Squad is an ...