First Look at the Doc NYC Film Festival

First Look at the Doc NYC Film Festival

 

The Island President

The Doc NYC Film Festival is kicking off at the IFC Center on 6th Avenue on November 2nd through November 10th 2011. Vimooz’s Francesca McCaffery is covering the Festival, and here are some of the first highlights of what is proving to be a truly inspiring, not-to-be-missed line-up:

 

The Island President: If you only go see a few films at the Doc NYC Film Festival this year, Jon Shenk’s “The Island President” should be at the very top of your list. Focusing on the pint-sized President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives Islands (the country comprised of a thousand scattered islands, South of India) and his amazing quest to crush the threat of global warming- which is literally threatening the life of the Island’s inhabitants. (The Maldives are literally sinking at a stomach-lurching rate, due to the additional CO2 in the air, which is raising ocean water levels.) Learning about his twenty years as a political activist and political prisoner before he was elected- this movie is a tribute to a brilliant, illuminating spirit, and absolutely MUST be seen. (Radiohead does the soundtrack, another great reason to see it!)  {jathumbnail off}

AFI FEST 2011 Announces World Cinema, Breakthrough, Midnight and Shorts programs

AFI FEST 2011 Announces World Cinema, Breakthrough, Midnight and Shorts programs

AFI FEST announced the remaining programs and films that will screen in the festival’s World Cinema, Breakthrough, Midnight and Shorts programs at the 25th edition this November. 

The festival describes each programs as “World Cinema showcases the most anticipated and prize-winning international films of the year, Breakthrough highlights works discovered only through the submissions process and Midnight’s eclectic selection presents films with provocative and unexpected ideas.” {jathumbnail off}

Gotham Independent Film Awards Announce 2011 Nominees

Gotham Independent Film Awards Announce 2011 Nominees

Best Feature Nominee – Meek’s Cutoff

The IFP’s Gotham Independent Film Awards™ nominations were announced today; twenty four films will compete in six competitive categories for Best Feature, Best Documentary, Breakthrough Director, Breakthrough Actor, Best Ensemble Performance, and Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You.

The nominees for the 21st Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards are: {jathumbnail off}

Rooftop Films Announce their Filmmakers’ Fund Grantees

Rooftop Films Announce their Filmmakers’ Fund Grantees

  Rooftop Films is not only known for its Summer festival, they also support the filmmakers whose work they screen to help make new movies through the Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund. Rooftop Films announced the recent recipients of their Filmmakers’ Fund Grantees: Lucy Walker’s short documentary The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom (Filmmakers’ Fund Grantee ’11) has been named among eight shortlisted contenders for the 84th Academy Awards’ best Documentary Short Subject category, of which three […]

Entertainment Industry Expresses Concern for Imprisoned Iranian Filmmakers

Entertainment Industry Expresses Concern for Imprisoned Iranian Filmmakers

Imprisoned Iranian Filmmaker Jafar Panahi

Numerous entertainment industry organizations have issued statements in support of the six imprisoned Iranian filmmakers. According to the press release, “In September 2011, the Iranian government arrested six independent filmmakers for allegedly working with the BBC, on charges including espionage and treason. Along with the ongoing house arrest of director Jafar Panahi and the prior arrest of actress Marzieh Vafamehr, who was later sentenced to one year in prison and 90 lashes, the arrests sparked outrage from filmmaking communities within Iran and around the world. Prior to the release of two of the filmmakers, all six were denied access to their lawyers and families, who were forced to remain silent. ” {jathumbnail off}

Bingham Ray named new Exec Director of San Francisco Film Society

Bingham Ray named new Exec Director of San Francisco Film Society

  Bingham Ray has been appointed the new executive director of the San Francisco Film Society effective November 7, 2011.  Ray comes to the San Francisco Film Society from New York City, where he recently served as the first run programming consultant to the Film Society of Lincoln Center, executive consultant to the digital distribution company SnagFilms and adjunct professor at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. “This opportunity defines the phrase ‘too […]

Ashland Independent Film Festival has a new Executive Director

Ashland Independent Film Festival has a new Executive Director

The Ashland Independent Film Festival has a new Executive Director. She is Anne Ashbey Pierotti, and she will succeed Tom Olbrich on November 1.  Pierotti is already well known to the festival, having served on the Ashland Independent Film Festival’s board of directors from 2006 to June of 2011 and was the board’s President from 2008 to 2010. “I am deeply honored to have been selected for this position,” said Pierotti. “I look forward to […]

Review: Lost in Long Island, Audience Award, Best Film at Hamptons Film Fest

Review: Lost in Long Island, Audience Award, Best Film at Hamptons Film Fest

I feel lucky. Of all the films playing at the 2011 Hamptons International Film Fesival, I picked a winner. On Saturday afternoon, along with a packed audience, I saw the film, Hard Times, Lost in Long Island – the Audience Winner for Best Documentary at the festival. The film skillfully documents the lives of Long Islanders in the face of the economic downturn. It follows several Long Island residents who lost their jobs at various […]

Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival Unveils New Website

Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival Unveils New Website

The Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival has unveiled its new website design just in time for the 26th edition which runs October 21 – November 11, 2011 The festival kicks off with the film, About Fifty, previously titled Fifty Nothing, directed by Thomas Johnston. The film is described as “A “coming-of-age story about the coming of age,” Thomas Johnston’s comedy tackles a very timely subject in these times of aging baby-boomers: what happens when youth, […]

7 Screenwriters Win 2011 Nicholl Fellowships

7 Screenwriters Win 2011 Nicholl Fellowships

Seven screenwriters have been selected as winners of the 26th annual Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The 2011 Nicholl Fellows are (listed alphabetically by author): Chris Bessounian & Tianna Langham, Los Angeles, Calif., “Guns and Saris” Dion Cook, Altus, Okla., “Cutter” John MacInnes, Los Angeles, Calif., “Outside the Wire” Matthew Murphy, Culver City, Calif., “Unicorn” Abel Vang & Burlee Vang, Fresno, Calif., “The […]

REVIEW: To be Heard at the Hamptons Film Festival

REVIEW: To be Heard at the Hamptons Film Festival

‘To be Heard’ was heard loud and clear at the 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival. The documentary, directed by Roland Legiardi-Laura, Amy Sultan, Deborah Shaffer and Edwin Martinez, played to a very attentive audience.

Shot with casual immediacy over four years, this inspiring and poignant documentary follows three high school friends as they overcome the challenges of daily life in the Bronx through poetry, expressing their personal hopes and frustrations. Empowered by the message of a radical poetry workshop whose motto is, “If you don’t learn to write your own life story, someone else will write it for you,” Anthony, Pearl, and Karina emerge as a group of accomplished, self-aware artists. These teenage friends––the “Tripod,” as they call themselves––use their creativity to alter their circumstances and, ultimately, write their own life stories. {jathumbnail off}

Two Award Winning Documentaries Premiere on Cable TV This Month

Two Award Winning Documentaries Premiere on Cable TV This Month

Two award winning documentaries will premiere on tv/cable this week.  The Education Of Dee Dee Ricks debuts October 27, exclusively on HBO, in conjunction with national breast cancer awareness month; and Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s Miss Representation premieres on OWN on October 20th. A self-made millionaire living on New York City’s Upper East Side, 39-year-old Dee Dee Ricks seemed to have it all – until she was diagnosed with aggressive stage II breast cancer. Insured and […]

HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND, and THE ARTIST Take The Top Prizes at 2011 Hampton Film Fest

HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND, and THE ARTIST Take The Top Prizes at 2011 Hampton Film Fest

The hometown film, Marc Levin’s HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND, and THE ARTIST directed by Michel Hazanavicius took the audience awards tonight at the 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival.

HARD TIMES: LOST ON LONG ISLAND follows a group of Long Island residents as they courageously describe the effect that their long time unemployed status has had on their families, finances, and ultimately their American dream; and THE ARTIST is a  comedic tribute to silent film starring Jean Dujardin.  {jathumbnail off}

Reviews of OK, Enough Goodbye and Scenes of a Crime at 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival

Reviews of OK, Enough Goodbye and Scenes of a Crime at 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival

The 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival continues through Monday, October 17, 2011, but Saturday proved to be a very popular day for festival goers. With a packed day of screenings, it was frustrating because many of the great films and events (like TV channels) all seem to be happening at the same time, so it was really hard to pick and choose.

Mini Reviews {jathumbnail off}

Le Havre Takes The Top Film Prize at the 2011 Chicago International Film Festival

Le Havre Takes The Top Film Prize at the 2011 Chicago International Film Festival

Le Havre

Le Havre, Finland’s official submission for 2012 Academy Awards – Best Foreign Language Film, topped a lineup of more than 180 feature-length fiction films, documentaries and shorts to win the top prize, the Gold Hugo at the 47th Chicago International Film Festival Competitions. Directed by Aki Kaurismäki, “in this warmhearted portrait of the French harbor city that gives the film its name, fate throws young African refugee Idrissa (Blondin Miguel) into the path of Marcel Marx (André Wilms), a well-spoken bohemian who works as a shoeshiner. With innate optimism and the unwavering support of his community, Marcel stands up to officials doggedly pursuing the boy for deportation. A political fairy tale that exists somewhere between the reality of contemporary France and the classic cinema of Jean-Pierre Melville and Marcel Carné, Le Havre is a charming, deadpan delight.” Le Havre opens in LA and NYC on October 21.

The complete list of winners of the 2011 Chicago International Film Festival. {jathumbnail off}

AFI FEST 2011 Announces Young Americans, New Auteurs and Spotlight Lineup

AFI FEST 2011 Announces Young Americans, New Auteurs and Spotlight Lineup

(L-R) Ariane Labed and Evangelia Randou in ATTENBERG Courtesy of Strand Releasing

AFI FEST 2011 announced the films that will be featured in the festival’s Young Americans, New Auteurs and Spotlight sections at the 25th edition this November. Young Americans features work by emerging U.S. filmmakers, while New Auteurs highlights first and second-time feature film directors from around the world. This year’s Spotlight section focuses on acclaimed independent American filmmaker Joe Swanberg, featuring presentations of films from his Full Moon Trilogy – SILVER BULLETS, ART HISTORY and the world premiere of THE ZONE. {jathumbnail off}

Documentary about Gay Rights Activist , Vito Russo Premieres Tonight at NY Film Fest

Documentary about Gay Rights Activist , Vito Russo Premieres Tonight at NY Film Fest

VITO, an HBO documentary film about gay rights activist Vito Russo, premieres tonight at the New York Film Festival. The film premieres at 6:00 PM with an encore screening at 9:15 PM. VITO offers rare insight into one of the most important voices in the birth of contemporary gay culture and AIDS activism.  His book The Celluloid Closet published in 1981 (and updated in 1987), remains a landmark historical work and his co-founding of GLAAD, […]

Documentary EVERYDAY SUNSHINE: THE STORY OF FISHBONE Opens in LA on October 21

Documentary EVERYDAY SUNSHINE: THE STORY OF FISHBONE Opens in LA on October 21

The documentary EVERYDAY SUNSHINE: THE STORY OF FISHBONE, which had its World Premiere at the 2010 Los Angeles Film Festival, and went on to screen at Mill Valley and SXSW film festivals, among many others, will open on October 21 at the Laemmle Sunset 5 in Los Angeles, CA.  Many other cities (including Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, DC) will follow. Directed by Lev Anderson and Chris Metzler, EVERYDAY SUNSHINE is a documentary about the band […]

Complete List of 63 Countries Competing For 84th Academy Awards Foreign Film Oscar

Complete List of 63 Countries Competing For 84th Academy Awards Foreign Film Oscar

Sixty-three countries, including first-time entrant New Zealand, have submitted films for consideration in the Foreign Language Film category for the 84th Academy Awards®. The 2011 submissions are: Albania, “Amnesty,” Bujar Alimani, director;Argentina, “Aballay,” Fernando Spiner, director;Austria, “Breathing,” Karl Markovics, director;Belgium, “Bullhead,” Michael R. Roskam, director;Bosnia and Herzegovina,”Belvedere,” Ahmed Imamovic, director;Brazil, “Elite Squad: The Enemy Within,” José Padilha, director;Bulgaria, “Tilt,” Viktor Chouchkov, Jr., director;Canada, “Monsieur Lazhar,” Philippe Falardeau, director;Chile, “Violeta Went to Heaven,” Andrés Wood, director;China, […]

8 Documentary Short Films Make 2011 Oscars Shortlist

8 Documentary Short Films Make 2011 Oscars Shortlist

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that the field of Documentary Short Subject contenders for the 84th Academy Awards® has been narrowed to eight films, of which three to five will earn Oscar® nominations. The eight films are listed below in alphabetical order by title, with their production company. “The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement,” Purposeful Productions, Inc. “God Is the Bigger Elvis,” Documentress Films“In Tahrir Square: […]

Cucalorus Film Festival Announces Official Lineup Filled With Award Winning Films

Cucalorus Film Festival Announces Official Lineup Filled With Award Winning Films

Cucalorus Film Festival released its official schedule of films and events for this year’s festival, revealing a roster of over 150 films from 23 different countries. The festival opens on Thursday, November 10th with Dance-a-lorus, an exploration of film and dance at the historic Thalian Hall. Other films include Happy, Happy (Sykt Lykkelig), Norway’s official entry for Best Foreign Language Film for the 2011 Academy Awards. Our Day Will Come,  the first feature film by Romain Gavras, […]

Finland’s Oscar submission LE HAVRE – opens in LA and NYC on October 21

Finland’s Oscar submission LE HAVRE – opens in LA and NYC on October 21

Finland’s official submission for 2012 Academy Awards – Best Foreign Language Film, ‘Le Havre’ by director Aki Kaurismäki will be released in NYC and LA on Friday, October 21 with an expected national release to follow. The film premiered at 2011 Cannes Film Festival where it was awarded the FIPRESCI Critic’s prize, and was screened at the recent Telluride, Toronto and New York film festivals. In his wry and warm-hearted portrait of the French harbor […]

San Francisco International Animation Festival announces 2011 Lineup and Program

San Francisco International Animation Festival announces 2011 Lineup and Program

A scene from FOUR ANIMAL CARTOONS TO HELP KIDS DEAL WITH DIVORCE, part of the Anthropomorphlolz shorts program at the San Francisco International Animartion Festival, November 10 – 13 at San Francisco Film Society | New People Cinema.

The 6th annual San Francisco International Animation Festival, returns Thursday, November 10 through Sunday, November 13, 2011 at the Film Society’s new theatrical home, San Francisco Film Society | New People Cinema.

The San Francisco International Animation Festival includes an ‘enticing mix of the latest anime, family-friendly fare, documentaries, wonderfully unclassifiable shorts from around the world and a fabulous Opening Night party.’

This year’s festival includes Cannes entry and multiaward-winning Tatsumi by Eric Khoo, the Bay Area-produced Annecy competitor Glitch in the Grid, the long-awaited feature-length film by Keita Kurosaka, Midori-ko and several shorts programs, including the always popular Best of Annecy compilation.

Complete lineup and program information: {jathumbnail off}

My Week With Marilyn Added to 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival

My Week With Marilyn Added to 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival

The new drama film, My Week With Marilyn has just been added to the 2011 Hamptons International Film Festival lineup. The film screens Saturday, October 16th at Guild Hall. My Week With Marilyn is directed by Simon Curtis and written by Adrian Hodges; and stars Michelle Williams and Kenneth Branagh Early in the summer of 1956, American film star Marilyn Monroe set foot on British soil for the first time. On honeymoon with her husband, […]