Friends of the Texas Room launches YouTube Channel

The Friends of the Texas Room launched a new YouTube channel this week. Kicking off the launch are clips from the PBS documentary "In Search of Houston's History". Watch it here: … [Read more...]

Asia Society Documentary Premieres March 21 on HoustonPBS

Asia Society Documentary Premieres March 21 on HoustonPBS HD ch. 8, 7:30p.m The third episode of Texas Foundation for the Arts’ Telly Award-winning series Houston Arts Television, produced in collaboration with HoustonPBS, explores how famed Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi’s landmark building came to fruition in Houston’s Museum District. The filmmakers take a look at the history of the organization, the design and construction of the building, the grand opening festivities, and the many exhibitions and programs that will be presented in the 300-seat theatre, art exhibition space, and conference facilities. … [Read more...]

Courthouse Documentary Receives Good Brick Award

Preservation Houston honors Texas Foundation for the Arts with a Good Brick award for the documentary "The 1910 Harris County Courthouse." Executive Producers: Kim Lykins and James Bailey Production: FastCutFilms Director of Photography & Editor: Mark Susman Preservation Houston promotes the preservation and appreciation of Houston's architectural and cultural historic resources through education, advocacy and committed action, thereby creating economic value and developing a stronger sense of community. For information: … [Read more...]

Golden Age of Texas Courthouses Available at Amazon

With clock towers, turrets, domes and stained glass, Texas county courthouses are some of the most spectacular displays of Victorian architecture found anywhere in the United States. With most of them being built between 1881 and 1990, many were the first permanent structures in some counties in the Lone Star state, and remain lasting symbols of the regional rivalries that helped shape Texas. Visit these beautiful buildings and hear the stories behind them in Texas Courthouses: The Golden Age, a three-part documentary that previously aired on public television. See the Goliad County Courthouse and its hanging tree, the courthouse in Shelby County modeled after Irish castles and the Parker County Courthouse underneath which a secret tunnel was discovered during restoration. Visit some of … [Read more...]

Art of Architecture: Houston wins 2012 Telly Award

Fast Cut Films is pleased to announce Art of Architecture won a 2012 bronze Telly Award in the documentary category. Congratulations to the production team and executive producers Kim Lykins and James Bailey. Congratulations to Texas Foundation for the Arts, HoustonPBS and underwriters W. S. Bellows Construction Corporation, ArchCenter Houston Foundation, Gensler, Hines, and Houston Arts Alliance. … [Read more...]

Art of Architecture rebroadcast Ch. 8 HoustonPBS June 18, 2012 at 10:00pm

Set your DVR for the rebroadcast of "Art of Architecture" on HoustonPBS, Ch. 8.  A program of Texas Foundation for the Arts. Executive Producers Kim Lykins and James Bailey. Production and post production at Fast Cut Films. Mark Susman, director of photography. For more information please contact … [Read more...]

“Galveston Island” wins 2012 Bronze Telly Award

The 33rd Annual Telly Awards named Texas Foundation for the Arts a bronze winner in the documentary film category for its program titled Galveston Island.  Executive Producers James Bailey and Kim Lykins. Post Production by Fast Cut Films. This is the second national award for the 60-minute documentary program, which has also been honored with a Gold AVA Award. Galveston Island premiered on HoustonPBS and has subsequently been broadcast on PBS stations throughout Texas. Production began just weeks before Hurricane Ike devastated the island. In the aftermath of the storm, the filmmakers captured the resiliency of the islanders during their struggle to rebuild, a scenario that mirrored the determination of the island residents after the devastating storm that struck the island in 1900. … [Read more...]

Air Liquide turns to Fast Cut to film new Steam Methane Reformer in La Porte, Texas

Air Liquide broke ground in the spring of 2010 for construction of its newest Hydrogen Steam Methane Reformer located in La Porte, Texas. The plant opened on April 26, 2012. The SMR will produce more than 100 million cubic feet of pure hydrogen per day for its customers along the Texas Gulf Coast.  Air Liquide looked to Fast Cut to film on location throughout the duration of the project.  Fast Cut reported on construction progress, plant design and innovation, supply chain logistics, global sourcing and remarkable safety record.  It’s worth noting there were over 1.2 million safe man hours during the project without a recordable or loss time incident.  The video was produced in high definition, HD and distributed in various formats for tradeshow displays, PowerPoint presentations and web … [Read more...]

Fast Cut Films Begins Production on Asia Society Texas Center Documentary

Fast Cut Films started production on the third episode of Houston Arts Television featuring the new Asia Society Texas Center building designed by renowned Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi.  The film will give the viewer a behind the scene view of the beauty,  planning and meticulous design of the building. A program of  Texas Foundation for the Arts, Executive producers James Bailey and Kim Lykins.  The film is slated to air later this year. Please check back for updates and announcements. … [Read more...]

Houston: Art of Architecture DVD available soon!

The Art of Architecture documentary program takes you on a journey through the extraordinary history, art and architecture of Houston's stunning skyline and surrounding neighborhoods. The second in Texas Foundation for the Arts' award-winning Houston Arts Television series, the program premiered on HoustonPBS on Monday, April 23, 2012. Executive producers James Bailey and Kim Lykins; Director of Photography, Mark Susman;  Editing by Mark Susman; Post Production at FastCutFilms. Please check with for rebroadcast dates and check back with Fast Cut Films or with Texas Foundation for the Arts, for DVD availability. … [Read more...]

Art of Architecture Premieres April 23, 2012 on Houston PBS

Tune in to HoustonPBS Ch. 8 this coming MONDAY, APRIL 23 at 9:00 p.m. for the premiere of our new program, The Art of Architecture: Houston. Thank you to W. S. Bellows Construction Corporation, ArchCenter Houston Foundation, Gensler, Hines, and Houston Arts Alliance for funding the program. … [Read more...]

Heartbreak Turtle Today airs on PBS affiliates across the U.S.

Good news for sea turtles! Fast Cut Films has learned our documentary "The Heartbreak Turtle Today" was shown on Denver, Colorado PBS Station KBDI on August 25; seen August 2 on KQED for Northern California; New Hampshire NHPTV two showings on August 24 and once on August 25; Idaho PTV on August 27; and scheduled for WQPT Quad Cities of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois; KPTS 8.1, Wichita, Kansas; MPTV, Milwaukee; and KCET, Los Angeles. Executive Producer: Carole Allen Produced by: Jim Bailey, Sunset Productions Production by: Fast Cut Films, Mark Susman Edited by: Mike Snow at Fast Cut Films   … [Read more...]

Restored 1910 Harris County Courthouse Rededication

On August 23, 2011, Fast Cut Films was in attendance with Harris County officials, historians, downtown office workers and local citizens for the dedication and ribbon cutting for the grand re-opening of the historic 1910 Harris County Courthouse in downtown Houston. This short clip highlights a few the unique features of the restored building. The clip also features scenes from footage we shot in 2004 prior to the demolition and remodel. Camera placement was carefully matched to help illustrate the profound changes.   Stay tuned for the rest of the story. Texas Foundation for the Arts, in association with Sunset Productions and Fast Cut Films, is producing a PBS television documentary about the history and the restoration of the 1910 Harris County Courthouse. For more information and … [Read more...]

The Art of Architecture

Fast Cut Films is currently in production on the second episode of Houston Arts Television series titled "The Art of Architecture."  In this installment of the TV series, the artistry and enduring legacy of Houston’s architectural treasures come to life as we shine a camera lens on both the aesthetics and the historical, geographical, political, religious, economic forces that shaped them. A project of Texas Foundation for the Arts. Underwriters include Architecture Center Houston, AIA Houston, Houston Arts Alliance. For more information please contact Kim Lykins, Executive Director, Texas Foundation for the Arts.           … [Read more...]

Galveston Island to air March 2, 2011 on HoustonPBS

"Galveston Island" will air March 2, 2011 on HoustonPBS, Channel 8 at 9:30 p.m.                 … [Read more...]

Galveston Island Documentary to air in Dallas and San Antonio

(From Texas Foundation for the Arts ) KERA-TV in Dallas will broadcast “Galveston Island” this Thursday, Feb. 24 at 7:00 p.m., and KLRN-TV in San Antonio will broadcast the program at 9:00 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 28.  We hope you will tune in to see our Ava award-winning program that has also been broadcast in Houston and Austin this month. Texas Foundation for the Arts’ “Galveston Island” provides a compelling glimpse into the rich history and culture of one of Texas’ oldest and most treasured cities. Known as the “City of Firsts,” Galveston was the first city in Texas to have electric lighting, the first telephone, and one of the state’s first newspapers.  Also known as “Sin City of the Gulf” the 1930s and 40s ushered in popular nightclubs, such as the renowned … [Read more...]

Lightnin’ Hopkins Historical Marker Dedication

Fast Cut Films producers, Mark Susman and Mike Snow, were present Saturday morning, November 13, 2010 in Houston’s historic Third Ward, to witness the dedication of a state historical marker honoring Sam "Lightnin'" Hopkins, the legendary bluesman who lived in the Third Ward from the late 1940s until his death in January 1982. Susman and Snow, co-producers of the in-production documentary film, “Where Lightnin' Strikes,” were on hand to film the dedication ceremony that was the culmination of fifteen months of work by fellow Houstonian and blues fan, R. Eric Davis. Davis began his quest to honor Hopkins after discovering that Houston's only public memorial to Hopkins is his meager gravestone in Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery. “We’re getting some nice footage, said Snow. “We’ve … [Read more...]


HOUSTON, October 11, 2010-Texas Foundation for the Arts’ newest documentary film, “Galveston Island” will premiere on HoustonPBS Ch. 8 on Monday, October 18, 2010 at 9:30 p.m. In production since mid-2008, the 55-minute program delves into the rich history and essence of the island, and the rebuilding and resiliency of the islanders post-Hurricane Ike. KPRC-TV’s Frank Billingsley narrated the program, which was edited at Fast Cut Films in Houston. “When we started the project, our working title was ‘What I Like About Galveston,’” said producer Kim Lykins. “We began filming two weeks prior to Hurricane Ike. After Ike hit, we shifted our focus so we could chronicle the herculean task of rebuilding the island. ‘Galveston Island’ captures the history of the island as well, back to its … [Read more...]

Gulf Oil spill threatens survival of Kemp’s ridley sea turtles

The Gulf of Mexico is home to the endangered Kemp's ridley sea turtles. Twenty-eight years of restorative efforts to protect the survival of the species is threaten by the BP oil spill. Shrimp trawlers are bad enough but oil in the water and on the beaches reverses three decades of progress.  Sunset Productions and Fast Cut Films is currently in production of a public awareness documentary about the plight of the Kemp's ridley sea turtles.  The film features interviews of notable scientists and turtle experts including Marine Fisheries Research Biologist, Charles Caillouet, Ph.D.  In this clip Dr. Caillouet discusses the negative effect of the oil spill on the struggling sea turtle population. The video filmed in 2008, shows Kemp's ridley turtle hatchlings heading off to the Gulf to begin … [Read more...]

Houston Arts TV receives 2010 WorldFest Remi Award

  Houston Arts Television took home a Remi at the 43rd annual Houston International Film Festival in the Arts/Cultural category. Many congrats to the team! A production of  Texas Foundation for the Arts Executive Producers: Kimberly Bjork Lykins & James Bailey Producer: Mark Susman Editor: Mike Snow Post Production: Fast Cut Films   … [Read more...]

Communicator and Videographer Awards

Notable Past Awards Communicator Awards: Award of Distinction for "Brushstrokes of South Texas: The Murals of Daniel Lechón" (2005) Communicator Awards: Award of Distinction for "The Golden Age of Texas Courthouses" (2004) Videographer Awards:   Award of Excellence for "The Prairie View A&M Story (2003) … [Read more...]

Houston Arts Television wins “Crystal Award”

Houston Arts Television has been awarded an American Marketing Association " Crystal Award" in the Video or Feature category.  Congratulations to the production team! A Texas Foundation for the Arts production Executive Producers: Kimberly Bjork Lykins & James Bailey Producer: Mark Susman Editor: Mike Snow … [Read more...]

Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins “Where Lightnin’ Strikes”

Houston-based Fast Cut Films, in association with Sunset Productions, is working on a documentary feature film, "Where Lightnin' Strikes," about the life and times of Houston blues legend Sam "Lightnin’" Hopkins (1912-1982).The enduring musical journey of Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins began on a cotton farm in Centerville,Texas in 1912. He was drawn to the music he heard played by an older brother. After meeting up with Dallas bluesman Blind Lemon Jefferson, Sam left the hardscrabble life of the Texas cotton fields, determined to play his way to better circumstances. Years of playing everywhere and anywhere he could, from the woods of East Texas to the barrelhouses of Galveston, and everywhere in between, led to Sam's first recordings  in 1946. From his first hit, "Katie Mae" in which he sings, … [Read more...]

“Houston Arts Television – Episode 1”

Houston Arts Television showcases Houston's arts scene in a magazine-style format. The first episode features The Menil Collection; Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, The City of Houston art collection administered by Houston Arts Alliance's Civic Art + Design; Houston Children's Chorus and student who attends Houston's High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. Executive Producers: Kim Bjork Lykins and Jim Bailey Producer: Mark Susman Editor: Mike Snow … [Read more...]

“Juneteenth A Celebration of Freedom”

On June 19, 1865, at Galveston, Texas, General Gordon Granger of the Union Army announced that the Civil War had ended and all slaves in the former Confederate states were now free. This was two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1979, Juneteenth was made and official state holiday in Texas. This inspiring documentary captures the spirit of the Juneteenth experience and explains the origin and evolution of this important date in Texas history. History experts relate personal recollections of Juneteenth and provide insightful perspective about the significance of a day that is often misunderstood and often overlooked. The film premiered on HoustonPBS in June 2009. Produced by Sunset Productions Director of Photography: Mark … [Read more...]

Montrose, Texas: The Transformation of a Neighborhood

Produced for the Montrose Counseling Center, this 28-minute documentary explores the history, culture and essence of Montrose, one of Texas’ most colorful and legendary neighborhoods. Developed in the early 1900s as a neighborhood for Houston's well-to-do, the area saw change in the 1960s as free-thinking, hippies and artists discovered the area. In the 1970s Montrose became the gay mecca of Texas. Having become rundown and seedy, the area entered a time of renewall as gay men and women saw the potential of the neighborhood and began to buy property and restore the rundown homes and buildings. The film provides an interesting, captivating look at the history of a unique niehgborhood, its transformation into an upscale community, and the societal issues it faces. The film premiered on … [Read more...]

“In Search of Houston’s History”

Produced in cooperation with the Houston Public Library, this 60 minute documentary takes the viewer on an exploration of the invaluable archival collections of the Houston Metropolitan Research Center found in the Julia Ideson Building. The history of Houston is revealed through the use of old photographs, vintage maps, historic documents and personal recollection. Viewers learn about Houston's African American and Latin American communities, the city's architecture, old movie palaces and historic landmarks, and much more. Excerpt from the documentary "In Search of Houston's History" The film premiered on HoustonPBS on Oct. 18, 2008 Produced by Jim Bailey, Sunset Productions Post Production Fast Cut Films Creative Director: Mark Susman Editor: Mike Snow … [Read more...]

“The Pledge” Brings Home Platinum Award

"The Pledge" was awarded the prestigious platinum Remi at the 41st annual WorldFest Houston International Film Festival.  "The Pledge" is a documentary about the tragedy of abusive hazing on college campuses. The film tells the story of the death of a University of Texas freshman victimized by his fraternity brothers. Produced and directed by Dan O'Rourke Principle photography: Mark Susman Editor: Mark Susman … [Read more...]

Leon Jaworski Biography – “Uncommon Law”

Leon Jaworski found himself at the forefront of the major social and political issues of 20th century America. Details of his extraordinary life, from his humble beginnings in Waco, Texas and his becoming the youngest lawyer ever admitted to the State Bar of Texas, to the Nuremberg trials of World War II, to his service as special prosecutor for the Watergate hearings in 1974 are explored in this documentary. The film premiered on HoustonPBS in 2007. Produced by Texas Foundation for the Arts with Sunset Productions Written by James Bailey and Kimberly Bjork Lykins Director of Photography: Mark Susman Post Production: Fast Cut Films Editor: Mike Snow … [Read more...]

“Sleeping with the Elephants”

This documentary follows the 22 month long pregnancy of one of the elephants at the Houston Zoo. Viewers are taken along for a behind-the-scenes look at the day-to-day care of the expectant mother; from dietary needs, exercise, and baths, to check-ups and final preparations for the birth of a baby. Tensions grow high as the pregnancy goes longer than expected. The film premiered on HoustonPBS in 2007. Produced by Sunset Productions Written by James Bailey Creative Director: Mark Susman Editor: Mike Snow … [Read more...]