The Big Screen

The Big Screen looks in-depth at the most interesting new release in theaters each week. We also have a weekly conversation with a major movie star or mover-and-shaker in the North Texas film scene and we highlight movies and DVDs to watch this weekend. The Big Screen is hosted by Chris Vognar, movie critic for The Dallas Morning News ( and Stephen Becker, reporter for Art and Seek, from KERA (
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The Big Screen




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Apr 26, 2017

For 30 years, Nancy Cartwright has voiced Bart Simpsons on "The Simpsons." For her latest project, though, she puts down the mic and pics up the pen. This week, we talk with Cartwright about “In Search of Fellini” - a film she wrote that shows Friday at 7 p.m. during this week’s USA Film Festival. And she lets us listen in on a conversation between Bart, Nelson and Ralph.

Apr 19, 2017

A new festival dedicated to environmental films debuts this weekend in Dallas. This week, we talk with its founder about using film as a call to action

Apr 7, 2017

Denton’s Thin Line Festival has always centered on documentary films. For its 10th edition, though, the festival is branching out. We talk with its film programmer about adding narrative movies to the mix.

Apr 5, 2017

The Dallas International Film Festival wraps up this weekend. This week, we look at what’s on tap for the remainder of the festival with its artistic director, James Faust.

Mar 29, 2017

Robert Benton is the winner of three Academy Awards for writing and directing Kramer vs. Kramer and Places in the Heart. This week, our Big Screen team talks with the Waxahachie native, who’s in town to open the Dallas International Film Festival with the first movie he ever wrote – Bonnie and Clyde.

Mar 22, 2017

Former Dallas Cowboy Michael Irvin has maintained a public profile in retirement as an analyst for the NFL Network and even a contestant on "Dancing with the Stars." This week, we talk with him about "Slamma Jamma," a movie out Friday in which he plays a smarmy sports agent. And we ask him about some of his favorite sports movies.

Mar 17, 2017

At this week’s South by Southwest Conference, a number of movies with local ties made their debuts. Our recap includes conversations with some of the North Texas stars of those films, including Wyatt Cenac and Todrick Hall.

Mar 8, 2017

Some of the most iconic stories in movie history have been set in Texas. This week, we talk about an upcoming screening series that brings these films back to a pair of historic Dallas theaters.

Mar 1, 2017

South Asia is home to one of the biggest film industries in the world. And this weekend, some of those films will make their way to North Texas. This week, we preview the DFW South Asian Film Festival.

Feb 22, 2017

Of the five films nominated for best documentary this year, three of them focus on African Americans. This week, we conclude our Oscar preview series talking about "I Am Not Your Negro," a film that reminds us of writer James Baldwin’s significance – 30 years after his death.

Feb 15, 2017

“La La Land” leads the pack this year with 14 Academy Award nominations. We continue our Oscar preview series this week with a look at how “La La Land” pays tribute to the movie musicals that preceded it.

Feb 8, 2017

Our annual series looking at Oscar-nominated films continues this week. Up next is a conversation about "Hidden Figures" and high-level math with Kizuwanda Grant of Paul Quinn College .

Feb 1, 2017

Over the next few weeks, we'll be looking at some of this year’s Oscar-nominated films. First up is "Fences," an adaptation of the August Wilson play, and a conversation with a Dallas actor who’s twice played the role for which Denzel Washington is nominated.

Jan 25, 2017

Some of the movies that received Oscar nominations this week debuted a year ago at the Sundance Film Festival. This week, we talk about some of the films that played this year’s festival - which wrapped last week - including some with Texas ties.

Jan 18, 2017

Liener Temerlin, the Dallasite who was a titan of the American advertising industry, died late last week. He was 88. This week, our Big Screen team talks with James Faust of the Dallas Film Society about Temerlin’s vast contribution to the world of film.

Jan 11, 2017

Lawmakers in both the Texas House and Senate are introducing bills to abolish a program that offers incentives to lure movie and television productions to the state. This week, we talk with the head of the Dallas Film Commission about what ending the incentive program would do for the Texas film industry.

Jan 4, 2017

For people with synesthesia, stimulating one sense triggers an involuntary experience in another sense. For example, someone might associate certain sounds with specific colors. Through the years, experimental filmmakers have played with that idea. This week, we talk about a film series showing Sunday at the Nasher Sculpture Center that explores what music might look like.

Dec 21, 2016

Turn on the television this week and it won't be hard to find a Christmas movie. This week, we talk about some of the better modern holiday films and take a trip back in time to revisit the classics.

Dec 14, 2016

In “Jackie,” Natalie Portman plays First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy as she processes her husband’s assassination. This week, we talk about how the movie separates itself from other JFK stories by focusing on the small moments surrounding one of the biggest stories in American history.

Dec 8, 2016

LGBT audiences can regularly see characters they identify with in movies these days. That, of course, was not always the case. This week, we talk with a founder of a local series for LGBT moviegoers about a film that has resonated in that community for decades – "Auntie Mame" from 1958.

Nov 30, 2016

A film opening in North Texas this weekend took quite an unusual route to the screen. This week, we talk with the director of "Three Days in August" about turning to a screenwriting competition for his script.

Nov 16, 2016

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk” takes place mostly during halftime of a Dallas Cowboys Thanksgiving Day game. The movie is based on the book of the same title by Dallas author Ben Fountain, and this week, we talk about how the film captures one soldier’s experience coming back from war.

Nov 9, 2016

The Lone Star Film Festival opens its 10th edition Thursday night in Fort Worth. This week, we preview this year’s lineup with the festival’s executive director

Nov 2, 2016

If you’ve seen a classic movie poster re-imagined by a contemporary artist, there’s a good chance it was commissioned by an Austin company called Mondo. This week, we visit Mondo’s gallery in Austin to talk about movie posters with Mondo creative director Rob Jones.

Oct 28, 2016

Philip Roth is one of America’s greatest living writers. The words that’ve earned him a Pulitzer Prize and a pair of National Book Awards, though, are notoriously hard to translate into screenplays. This week, we talk about why "American Pastoral" is the latest on the list of duds with Derek Royal, a Roth expert from UT-Dallas.

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