SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN
SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN

The Whistler Film Festival (WFF) taking place November 30 to December 4 unveiled its 2016 film lineup featuring fresh films from around the world. WFF will open with LA LA LAND, starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stoner. Damien Chazelle’s swoony romantic valentine to the golden era of Hollywood musicals went on to win the People’s Choice Award at TIFF and is the perfect Opening Night film for WFF. Closing the festival is the Canadian premiere of SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN, a documentary style action sports, global celebration of female athleticism filmed in crystal clear 4K, and directed by Sandra Lahnsteiner.

Two major films will be having their first Canadian exposure at this year’s festival. John Madden’s MISS SLOANE features an unforgettably riveting performance by Jessica Chastain as a tough lobbyist who takes on the pro-gun establishment in America. WFF is also pleased to premiere Mike Mills’ wonderful ode to three generations of bohemian women living their unconventional lives in late 1970’s Southern California, 20TH CENTURY WOMEN, which stars Annette Bening, Greta Gerwig, Elle Fanning and Billy Crudup, who are all being touted for Oscar noms.

Additional critically acclaimed films screening at WFF includes LION, starring Rooney Mara, Nicole Kidman and Dev Patel, in Garth Davis’ first true-story feature about an adopted Indian man’s twenty-five year quest to find his real family. LION was the runner-up for this year’s People’s Choice award at TIFF and is guaranteed to not leave a dry eye in the house. FREE FIRE, starring Oscar-winner Brie Larson, is also a highlight of this year’s festival and features a darkly humorous confrontation between IRA representatives and gun dealers, presented by British bad boy director Ben Wheatley. Another Special Presentation of note is TRESPASS AGAINST US, Adam Smith’s family crime caper featuring Michael Fassbender and Brendan Gleeson, a cast to kill for.

To best honor the wealth of Canadian filmmaking talent, WFF opened up the Borsos Competition for Best Canadian Feature last year to all Canadian dramatic features making their Western Canadian Premiere at this year’s festival. This year, 19 Canadian films will compete for Canada’s second largest festival prize.

Borsos titles include the World Premieres of Vancouver Film School’s David I. Strasser’s first feature RAW*, about a delinquent sent to his uncle’s organic farm; Justin McConnell’s exhilarating one-take thriller RED MILE; Katherine Schlemmer’s double doppelganger comedy THE DEATH (AND LIFE) OF CARL NAARDLINGER; the World Festival Premiere of LOVESICK, Tyson Caron’s hilarious romantic comedy featuring Jacob Tierney, Jessica Paré and Jay Baruchel; and veteran Leon Marr’s touching elderly romance THE SECOND TIME AROUND with Linda Thorson and Stuart Margolin will have its North American Premiere.

Canadian premiere entries for this year’s Borsos competition include POPULATION ZERO, Adam Levins’ mockumentary investigation into a triple murder in Yellowstone National Park; GRAND UNIFIED THEORY, David Ray’s hilarious story of an astrophysicist’s fractured family life; Chris Craddock’s IT’S NOT MY FAULT AND I DON’T CARE ANYWAY featuring Alan Thicke as a narcissistic self-help guru;Ken Finkleman’s wicked American political satire AN AMERICAN DREAM: THE EDUCATION OF WILLIAM BOWMAN; and LOST SOLACE, Chris Scheuerman’s thriller about a psychopath who develops empathy after ingesting a party drug.

Four films from Quebec will also vie for the coveted Borsos awards this year: BEFORE THE STREETS, the first film ever made in the Atikamekw language from first-time filmmaker Chloé Leriche; THE CYCLOTRON, an ambitious Casablanca style World War II thriller set on a train with sci-fi overtones, from director Olivier Asselin; THE SQUEALING GAME, Steve Kerr’s harrowing drama about a married man who runs an online dating site for cheating husbands; and the highest-grossing Canadian film of 2016 at the box office, Jean-François Pouliot’s THE THREE LITTLE PIGS 2.

A number of Canadian films will be showcased outside of the Borsos competition including internationally acclaimed director Deepa Mehta’s ANATOMY OF VIOLENCE, a blistering study of six rapists who attacked a woman and her companion on a bus in India in 2012 that revisits the event as a kind of cinematic docu-fiction ; April Mullen’s erotic and romantic study of lesbian longing, BELOW HER MOUTH made by an all-female creative team; Robert Cuffley’s romantic comedy CHOKESLAM about a deli clerk who has a crush on a female wrestler with a temper; and KISS AND CRY , the true story of 18 year old would-be Olympic figure skater Carley Allison who battles to overcome a rare form of melanoma and becomes a YouTube sensation.

WFF’s American Indie selections include MIDDLE MAN , Ned Crowley’s dark comedy about a bad stand-up comic who attains acclaim only after talking about serial killings that he thinks he has committed; William J. Stribling’s romantic comedy BEAR WITH US , about a plan to propose in a cabin that is waylaid by a bear attack; Sundance Special Jury Prize winner AS YOU ARE about three teenagers coming of age around the time of Kurt Cobain’s death, directed by 23 year old Miles Joris-Peyrafitte; and LAST DAYS OF SUMMER with William Fichtner playing a middle-aged married man who falls for his new neighbour from director Aaron Harvey.

World Now titles feature the North American premiere of the laugh-out-loud Czech Republic comedy WILSON CITY , about a small town in post-WWI Eastern Europe that wants to annex itself to Woodrow Wilson’s America; LAND OF MINE , Denmark’s Oscar entry for Best Foreign language film about teenage German POWs being forced to defuse land mines by hand; Nicole Garcia’s FROM THE LAND OF THE MOON, featuring a remarkable performance by Marion Cotillard; and A HUNDRED STREETS , a new British drama featuring Idris Elba and Gemma Arterton.

Reflecting its reputation as one of the great ski destinations in the world, Whistler will close the festival with the Canadian Premiere of SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN , a new film from Austrian filmmaker and skier Sandra Lahnsteiner that celebrates female surfers and skiers from around the world. Other “Mountain Culture” films include the Canadian Premiere of THE WILL TO FLY, an extraordinary sports biography of Australian Olympic freestyle skier gold medalist, Lydia Lassila, and a double-bill of local filmmakers Mike Douglas and Anthony Bonello’s two latest productions THE HIGHWAY and GUILT TRIP.

This year’s Documentary entries – World Premieres include MR. ZARITSKY ON TV, a loving profile of passionate documentarian John Zaritsky, the first Canadian to ever win an Oscar for a documentary feature who just happens to also be the director of WFF’s first ever film SKI BUMS; Leslie Ann Coles’ rock ‘n roll journey MELODY MAKERS, SHOULD’VE BEEN THERE takes us through the 1970s in England and history of the influential British magazine as revealed through the photographs of the magazine’s Chief Contributing Photographer Barrie Wentzell; SLED DOGS , Fern Levitt’s provoking exposé of the sled dog industry; and BROKEN , a documentary film that profiles Ballet BC prima ballerina Simone Orlando, directed by Lynne Spencer. Other exceptional documentaries include VICTOR WALK , ex-NHLer Theo Fleury’s walk from Toronto to Ottawa to draw attention to convicted pedophiles lax jail sentencing under Canadian law; MOSTLY SUNNY , Dilip Mehta’s profile of ex-porn star, now Bollywood actress Sunny Leone from Sarnia; Michael McNamara’s CELTIC SOUL about a trip to Ireland and Scotland by actor Jay Baruchel to connect to his celtic roots; and GOING FURTHUR, a psychedelic update as Ken Kesey’s son Zane takes the Merry Pranksters’ magic bus on a new counter-cultural 15,000 mile trek across America.

WFF 2016 Complete Feature Film Listing By Strand:

American Indies:
AS YOU ARE (United States) Dir. Miles Joris-Peyrafitte BEAR WITH US (United States) Dir. William Stribling
LAST DAYS OF SUMMER (United States) Dir. Aaron Harvey MIDDLE MAN (United States) Dir. Ned Crowley

Discoveries:
AN AMERICAN DREAM: THE EDUCATION OF WILLIAM BOWMAN (Canada) Dir. Ken Finkleman BELOW HER MOUTH (Canada) Dir. April Mullen
THE DEATH (AND LIFE) OF CARL NAARDLINGER (Canada) Dir. Katherine Schlemmer
GRAND UNIFIED THEORY (Canada) Dir. David Ray
LOST SOLACE (Canada) Dir, Chris Scheuerman
MENORCA (Canada) Dir. John Barnard
RAW* (Canada) Dir. David I. Strasser.
THE SECOND TIME AROUND (Canada) Dir. Leon Marr
THE SQUEALING GAME (Canada) Dir. Steve Kerr

From The Vault:
HOCKEY NIGHT (Canada) Dir. Paul Shapiro

Galas:
LA LA LAND (United States) Dir. Damien Chazelle
SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN (Austria) Dir. Sandra Lahnsteiner

Gen Next:
BEFORE THE STREETS (Canada) Dir. Chloé Leriche
CHOKESLAM (Canada) Dir. Robert Cuffley
THE CYCLOTRON (Canada) Dir. Olivier Asselin
HUNTING PIGNUT (Canada) Dir. Martine Blue
IT’S NOT MY FAULT AND I DON’T CARE ANYWAY ( Canada) Dir. Chris Craddock KISS AND CRY (Canada) Dir. Sean Cisterna
LOVESICK (Canada) Dir. Tyson Caron
RED MILE (Canada) Dir. Justin McConnell
THE SPACE BETWEEN (Canada) Dir. Amy Jo Johnson
THE SUN AT MIDNIGHT (Canada) Dir. Kirsten Carthew

Late Night:
FREE FIRE (UK) Dir. Ben Wheatley
POPULATION ZERO ( Canada) Dir. Adam Levins
THE VOID (Canada) Dir. Jeremy Gillespie , Steven Kostanski

Mountain Culture:
THE HIGHWAY (Canada) Dir. Mike Douglas and Anthony Bonello
GUILT TRIP (Canada) Dir. Mike Douglas and Anthony Bonello
SHADES OF WINTER: BETWEEN (Austria) Dir. Sandra Lahnsteiner
THE WILL TO FLY (Australia) Dir. Katie Bender, Leo Baker

Special Presentation:
ANATOMY OF VIOLENCE (Canada) Dir. Deepa Mehta
LION (Australia) Dir. Garth Davis
MISS SLOANE (United States) Dir. John Madden
THE THREE LITTLE PIGS 2 (Canada) Dir. Jean François Pouliot
TRESPASS AGAINST US (UK) Dir. Adam Smith
20TH CENTURY WOMEN (United States) Dir. Mike Mills

World Documentary:
BROKEN (Canada) Dir. Lynne Spencer
CELTIC SOUL (Canada) Dir. Michael McNamara
GOING FURTHUR (USA) Dir. Matt Pidutti, Lindsay Kent, Colby Rex O’neill
MELODY MAKERS, SHOULD’VE BEEN THERE (Canada) Dir. Leslie Ann Coles
MOSTLY SUNNY (Canada) Dir. Dilip Mehta
MR. ZARITSKY ON TV (Canada) Dir. Jennifer Di Cresce, Michael Savoie
SLED DOGS (Canada) Dir. Fern Levitt
VICTOR WALK (Canada) Dir. Michael David Lynch

World Now:
A HUNDRED STREETS (UK) Dir. Jim O’Hanlon
FROM THE LAND OF THE MOON (France) Dir. Nicole Garcia
LAND OF MINE (Denmark) Dir. Martin Zandvliet
WILSON CITY (Czech Republic) Dir. Tomás Masín

WFF 2016 Feature Films Eligible for the Borsos Competition for Best Canadian Feature:
AN AMERICAN DREAM: THE EDUCATION OF WILLIAM BOWMAN (Canada) Dir. Ken Finkleman
BEFORE THE STREETS (Canada) Dir. Chloé Leriche
THE DEATH (AND LIFE) OF CARL NAARDLINGER (Canada) Dir. Katherine Schlemmer
THE CYCLOTRON (Canada) Dir. Olivier Asselin
GRAND UNIFIED THEORY (Canada) Dir. David Ray
HUNTING PIGNUT (Canada) Dir. Martine Blue
IT’S NOT MY FAULT AND I DON’T CARE ANYWAY ( Canada) Dir. Chris Craddock
LOST SOLACE (Canada) Dir, Chris Scheuerman
LOVESICK (Canada) Dir. Tyson Caron
MENORCA (Canada) Dir. John Barnard
POPULATION ZERO (Canada) Dir. Adam Levins
RAW* (Canada) Dir. David I. Strasser.
RED MILE (Canada) Dir. Justin McConnell
THE SECOND TIME AROUND (Canada) Dir. Leon Marr
THE SPACE BETWEEN (Canada) Dir. Amy Jo Johnson
THE SQUEALING GAME (Canada) Dir. Steve Kerr
THE SUN AT MIDNIGHT (Canada) Dir. Kirsten Carthew
THE THREE LITTLE PIGS 2 (Canada) Dir. Jean François Pouliot
THE VOID (Canada) Dir. Jeremy Gillespie , Steven Kostanski

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