The fiercely independent film festival Dances With Films (DWF) returns for its 21st edition from June 7 to 17 at TCL Chinese Theaters with a lineup of more than 100 world premieres and nearly 40 west coast premieres. Opening the festival on June 7 is the DWF alumni driven drama directed by William Dickerson, NO ALTERNATIVE, in its World Premiere starring Kathryn Erbe, Michaela Cavazos, Conor Proft, Chloe Levine and Harry Hamlin. THE BEST PEOPLE, a comedy written and produced by Selina Ringel and directed by Dan Levy Dagerman, closes the festival with its DWF premiere on June 17.
“We consider ourselves a true festival of discovery,” said festival co-founders Leslee Scallon and Michael Trent. “We have always been progressive and have always looked to the future for our inspiration. Turning 21 is a milestone to us. In every other culture there is a ‘rites of passage’, but in the U.S., it’s turning 21. We have thrived, transitioned and evolved along the way. DWF is unique in the fact that we are not a celebrity-driven festival. Everyone in the festival has to bring their A-game.”
The final lineup will feature more than 200 titles, chosen from a record 2,200 submissions from all over the globe. The juried narrative competition section includes 16 features and more than three-dozen shorts. DWF also has a category for groundbreaking short and feature documentaries, provocative genre fare in the Midnight section, and the most exciting music videos and dance-themed films from the indie scene in the Downbeats section. The Fusion section brings together a multitude of additional features and shorts.
Notable Dances With Films alumni who first gained notice at the festival include: Gina Rodriguez, Bryan Cranston, Will Scheffer, Mark V. Olsen, Jesse Eisenberg, Mike Flanagan, and John Hawkes, among many others.