of New Orleans has racked up 11 Emmy nominations via three of its locally produced miniseries: Elvis on CBS, Faith of My Fathers on A&E, and Miracle Run on Lifetime. Since its inception in 2002, L.I.F.T., the Louisiana Institute of Film Technology, has supported the film industry by financing productions, arranging local contract work and leasing equipment.
Maj. Jason E. Smith,
a United States Marine from Baton Rouge, has won the Silver Star for bravery in combat, the nation's third-highest medal for valor. Smith, 32, was recognized for leading a rescue mission while serving in Iraq in April 2004. Smith led a convoy to reach Marines surrounded by enemy forces, demonstrating "bold leadership, wise judgment and dedication to duty," the citation says.
Mitchell White and Jordan Estes,
students at St. Martin's Episcopal School, won first place in the national Reel Teens USA Festival for Best Music Video and placed in the top three in a people's choice vote. Their video, "I Look Good," was one of 400-plus entries from the United States and overseas. The 72 finalists in the film and video competition were recently screened in New York.
Local government officials
failed to communicate effectively regarding evacuation during Hurricane Dennis. After the storm, Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard and Gov. Kathleen Blanco squabbled about Broussard's decision to abandon the state's emergency plan when he called for contraflow for parish residents during conditions less severe than state guidelines warrant. Blanco said Broussard issued a rogue order; Broussard said Blanco had approved his plans.