The second annual Music in Film Festival in Asbury Park is bigger than the last and according to event organizer, Tom Bernard, it will get bigger and better every year.
The festival is April 8 through April 10.
Kicking off the festival on Fri., April 8 is a screening of the film “Miles Ahead” about the life of Miles Davis. The film stars Don Cheadle who will attend the showing and hold a Q & A session about his directorial debut with the film at the VIP party which begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Paramount Theater. The film will screen at 7 p.m.
Also Davis’ nephew will perform at the VIP party with an all-star band.
Joining two of the arts most popular genres, music and film and creating a festival celebrating both was a novel idea, but one that works.
It was the idea of former Shore area resident and co-founder of Sony Pictures Classics, Tom Bernard.
“Music and movies, no one has done that,” Bernard said.
Bernard has roots at the Shore. He attended St. Mary’s Grammar School in the West Allenhurst section of Ocean Township before moving to Texas for high school.
After graduation, however, he returned to Asbury Park where he worked several jobs including running the cigarette wheel on the boardwalk during the 70s, working at Posilipo’s restaurant on Second Avenue and as a was rink guard at the Casino when it had a skating rink.
He also worked at one of the city’s most iconic sites as a waiter at Mrs. Jay’s restaurant.
“I knew Mrs. Jay,” he said.
Bernard attended the University of Maryland, but spent his summers in Asbury Park.
“I lived at First and Main, when I was not in college,” he said.
Having the festival in Asbury Park was a high priority for Bernard.
“I wanted to do something for Asbury Park,” he said.
Bernard said the festival is a benefit for city youth who are interested in learning and making music.
“We want to market it as a music destination,” Bernard said.
This year’s festival also includes an exhibit of photos and artifacts of famous musicians including the Grateful Dead.
Bernard said the festival includes a diverse collection of film and documentaries including one about a local jazz band going to Cuba to play, one about Frank Zappa and a partial screening of a movie being made about Clarence Clemons.
“There are all kinds, we will be taking over the town with music,” he said.
Bernard said the Friday Screening of “Miles Ahead” will be a national event and he expects future festivals to be national events as well.
“It’s much bigger than last year and the third year will be even better…to celebrate what Asbury is about,” he said.
Bernard said proceeds will benefit the Asbury Park Music Foundation.
“That’s the whole point, to give back to Asbury,” he said.
Bernard recalled seeing the Beach Boys at Convention Hall and “The Guns of Navarone in the Paramount.
VIP passes are limited and cost $35 in advance and $45 at the door.
Visit www.apmff.com for information and tickets.