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Mark your calendar: 'The Conspirator' is coming
James McAvoy and Tom Wilkinson co-star in "The Conspirator"

I keep running into people who say they’ve just seen the trailer for The Conspirator, the Robert Redford–directed historical drama that was filmed in Savannah over the last months of 2009.

Some of us who saw The Conspirator in November – it was the surprise “Director’s Choice” film at the Savannah Film Festival – might not be so excited about its big national opening.

Personally, I thought it was long and one–dimensional, playing out like an episode of Law and Order set inside a 19th century military prison.

Whatever. See for yourself when The Conspirator opens – in theaters everywhere, as they say – on April 15. File your tax return in the mailbox or online first.

The American Film Company, which produced the film, has launched a website, with info, images and snappy new graphics. See

Down in the swamp

They’ll be rockin’ in Waycross this weekend, at the annual Swamptown GetDown Musical Festival unspools on the Okefenokee Fairgrounds.

The event (March 11 and 12) includes performances by Levi Lowrey of the Zac Brown Band, and a bunch of rock, blues and country bands from southern Georgia and northern Florida. It’s a camping (both primitive and powered), RV, outdoor experience, with food, drink, jewelry and clothing vendors selling their stuff.

Weekend tickets are $20; see

Loose ends

• In my story last week on the Asbury Memorial Theatre production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado, I reported that librettist W.S. Gilbert had, unlike his writing partner Arthur Sullivan, not been knighted by the queen. Had I delved a little further into the history of the matter, I would have discovered that Queen Victoria did indeed bestow knighthood on Gilbert – in 1907, seven years after Sullivan’s death, and more than a dozen after their final collaboration. The Mikado continues this weekend at Asbury.

• Psychotronic Film poo-bah Jim Reed plans on paying an 80th birthday tribute to William Shatner March 20 at Muse Arts Warehouse. ShatnerFest will be an eight-hour marathon of "little-known dramas, thrillers, historical epics and fantasy-horror," and not a single frame of Star Trek. How can Reed do it without Kirk, you ask? Well, if you're looking for a celebration of ham (and cheese), you need look no further than Bill Shatner's body of work, Star Trek be damned. Admission to the light-hearted 2-10 p.m. event will be $7 per feature, or $20 for an all-show pass. See

• The good old Marshall Tucker Band is coming back to town – for a performance on April 28 as part of the Savannah Shrinefest. While we’re in this sort of territory, the Little River Band has an April 1 date at the Westin Resort on Hilton Head Island.

• The Student Government of Savannah State University is bringing in film director Spike Lee for a lecture Wednesday, March 23. Admission to the 7 p.m. event, Spike Lee: America Through My Lens, is free for SSU students. Other students (with valid ID) can get tickets for $5, and tickets for the general public are $10. They’re available on the SSU campus, in the King-Frazier Book Store.

Lee’s most recent film, If God is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise, is a further investigation into the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina’s devastation. It followed his acclaimed HBO documentary film When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts.