Studio plans Astrodome documentary

HOUSTON Astrodome Studios Productions, a division of Astrodome Studios, the proposed motion picture production facility for the re-use of the Houston Astrodome, has partnered with documentarians Chip Rives and David Karabinas to produce the company's first project, The Dome, a history of the legendary Eighth Wonder of the World itself. A trailer of the work, featuring President George H.W. Bush, Dan Pastorini, Bum Phillips, Nolan Ryan, Dene Hofheinz Anton and former mayor Fred Hofheinz, will debut Thursday evening, May 28, 6:30 PM, at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, 5216 Montrose. The filmmakers will be in attendance.

Astrodome Studios development partner J.L. Trahan was extremely supportive of the company's choice for their first film saying, "When astrodome studios founders Elise Hendrix and Cynthia Neely introduced me to The Dome movie creators, Chip Rives and David Karabinas, I couldn't have been more pleased. Like everyone that sees their trailer, I was moved emotionally and knew we would all work well together. It's a perfect match of like-minded teams working together to not only tell an important story, but also to bring about the best outcome for Harris County taxpayers and their beloved Astrodome."

Rives and Karabinas have won more than 20 Emmy Awards for their documentaries about many of sport's most amazing athletes. Both native Houstonians, currently residing in Austin, Rives and Karabinas have a profound admiration for the building that changed the worlds of both architecture and sports forever. In an age of monolithic retractable roofs, corporate luxury boxes, and multi-story high-definition "Godzilla-tron" screens, it's easy to forget where it all began. The producers and Astrodome Studios Productions will refresh those memories in grand style with "The Dome." To view the trailer on-line visit

The May 28 screening of the trailer at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston is part of an exhibition featuring two rarely seen documentaries about the Astrodome. Artist/curator Andrea Grover will present Geoff Winningham's 1975 film "The Pleasures of this Stately Dome" and the 1974 documentary "The Lord of the Universe," which chronicles the guru Maharaj Ji's appearance at the Dome and the much-hyped event, Millennium '73.

Astrodome Studios is a concept to transform the Houston Astrodome into a state-of-the-art film/video/sound production facility that would establish a center of commerce for the creation of moving image products in Texas. The project has been officially presented to Harris County officials and is under review.

Currently, Texas does not have a mega-sized soundstage facility. New legislation was recently passed that will be driving more production business to the state. If approved, the Dome's famous ball field would become the world's largest soundstage, an indoor "back lot," vast enough to build sets of whole towns unaffected by weather or time of day or night. Former concourse areas would be used for smaller soundstages, production offices, and offer tenant space to companies with industry-related services and equipment. Divisions of Astrodome Studios include Astrodome Studios Productions and museums for the histories of the Texas film industry and the Astrodome.

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