The Sounding Catherine Eaton
The Sounding

Over 80 locally made films, including 8 feature films, have been selected to screen in the Minnesota Made program at the upcoming 2017 Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival (MSPIFF).  

In addition to the Minnesota Made film lineup, the festival also announced Master Filmmaker Tribute, the Minnesota Cinematic Arts Award Honoree, and MSPIFF’s Virtual and Augmented Reality Exhibition.

MSPIFF will take place April 13 to 29, bringing 250 new films representing 70+ countries to audiences throughout the region.

This year, the festival expands to include select screenings at the Capri Theater in Minneapolis, in addition to screenings at its hub at the St. Anthony Main Theatre, the Uptown Theatre, Metropolitan State University’s Film Space in St. Paul and the Marcus Wehrenberg 14 Theater in Rochester.


World Premiere
Three documentaries that explore the cultural, political, artistic, theatrical phenomenon happening every May Day in Minneapolis for over 40 years. Directed by Will Hommeyer, Daniel Polsfuss, and Mike Rivard. USA. 2017. English. 97 min. Documentary.

World Premiere
A documentary about the history, and the reunion of, Minneapolis Indie rock legends 12 Rods, following the band from its roots in Oxford, Ohio to working with Todd Rundgren. Directed by James Francis Flynn. USA. 2017. English. 105 min. Documentary.

World Premiere
An intimate snapshot of the people involved in North Dakota’s historic oil boom, telling a story of rural industrialization and distress that unfolds over multiple story lines to form a mosaic of cultural, environmental, and economic turbulence. Directed by James Christenson, Lewis Wilcox, Jonah Sargent, Eliot Popko. USA. 2017. English. 85 min. Documentary. 

Minnesota Premiere
Winona LaDuke fights the Enbridge pipeline, galvanizing her community to save the sacred wild rice lakes and preserve their traditional indigenous way of life. Directed by Keri Pickett. USA. 2017. 105 min. English. Documentary.

in the wake of a second cook
Minnesota Premiere
Woven from wildly disparate elements, in the wake of a second cook seamlessly ties nature, documentary, and fiction into a new filmic experience. Directed by Rolf Belgum. USA. 2016. English. 70 min. Narrative.

Minnesota Premiere
After years of silence Liv begins to create a new language of her own by weaving together Shakespeare’s words. A neurologist commits her, and Liv begins to rebel. Directed by Catherine Eaton. USA. 2016. English. 89 min. Narrative.

World Premiere
A young woman wakes up alone in a motel room. Her boyfriend has ditched her, leaving her with a few dollars, a toothbrush, racing leathers, and a supermoto motorcycle. She’s just learned that she’s pregnant. Directed by Joe Maggio. USA. 2017. English. 85 min. Narrative.

World Premiere
In 1950s Tuscany, Verena, a young nurse (Game of Thrones’ Emilia Clarke), is helping a young boy who is suffering trauma over the death of his mother while also contending with a haunted castle. Directed by Eric D. Howell. USA, Italy. 2017. English. 94 min. Narrative.


This year, MSPIFF will honor director Frederick Wiseman with the Master Filmmaker Tribute, and Minnesota producer Sarah Pillsbury with the Minnesota Cinematic Arts Award, two annual awards that are being launched this year. The festival will feature focused retrospectives on the groundbreaking works from both Wiseman and Pillsbury.


Virtual Reality (VR) has claimed its place as a dynamic visual playground for artists and filmmakers who are reimagining and transforming our cinematic experiences. With VR — and its newer twin, Augmented Reality (AR) — now coming into its own as a means of artistic expression, this year’s Festival is the perfect moment to explore this burgeoning field and fascinating new chapter in cinematic storytelling. To celebrate VR’s coming out party, we have curated a special selection of 11 VR projects (see below) that we feel represent highlights of the best, most engaging, and mind-expanding work of the last two years. The VR and the Future of Storytelling Exhibition runs fromFriday, April 21 – Tuesday, April 25 at St. Anthony Main. Admission is free and open to the public.

Virtual Reality and the Future of Storytelling: 

TitleLead Artists
Across the Line (VR)Nonny de la Peña, Jeff Fitzsimmons, Brad Lichtenstein
Giant  (VR)Milica Zec, Winslow Turner Porter III
HEROES, A Duet in Mixed Reality (AR + VR)Melissa Painter, Eric Adrian Marshall, Tim Dillon, Thomas Wester, Jason Schugardt, Laura Gorenstein Miller
Minnesota in 360  (VR)Chuck Olsen
Notes to My Father  (VR)Jayisha Patel
Operation Aspen  (VR)Danfung Dennis
Out of Exile: Daniel’s Story (VR)Nonny de la Peña
Richie’s Plank Experience (VR)Richard Eastes, Toni Eastes
 Through You  (VR)Saschka Unseld, Lilly Baldwin
 Under the Canopy  (VR) Patrick Meegan
Use Your Imagination  (VR) Roberto Drilea

Panel: VR/AR & the Future of Storytelling

Arguably the most disruptive force in filmmaking since the birth of the art form, Virtual/Augmented Reality is radically transforming how we experience the medium of film. This panel of VR and AR filmmakers, whose work is featured in our VR/AR Exhibition, will describe their path-breaking creative processes, address the technical challenges they met, and discuss how VR and AR are stretching the parameters of cinematic storytelling in bold, unpredictable, and exciting ways.

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