David Beatty may someday win an Oscar, headline the Sundance Film Festival or oversee his own TV show, but nothing may ever top the night he first had a movie screened in Huntington Beach.
The Surf City resident's feature-length debut, "Surviving New Year's," played several years ago at the SoCal Film Festival, an annual showcase of independent films at the Huntington Beach Central Library. Beatty had overseen the dark comedy from brainstorming sessions to post-production, and he knew every second of it by heart — but he still had no idea how it would play before an audience of strangers. When he sat in the dark and heard the crowd's reaction, he laid his fears to rest.
"They got it," said Beatty, whose short film "Lien On Me" is on the festival's program this year. "They responded. I had friends tell me they heard people talking about it in the bathroom."