“THE VIOLENT KIND” AND “LOVERS OF HATE” PRODUCERS
UNVEIL “STRIPPED” TEASE
PARK CITY, UT (January 26, 2010)—Jeffrey Allard (THE VIOLENT KIND, THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE) and Adam Donaghey (LOVERS OF HATE, ST. NICK) announced plans to produce the horror feature STRIPPED with Tiffany Shepis (THE VIOLENT KIND, NIGHTMARE MAN) confirmed for the cast.
Written by Justina Walford and John Wildman, the film will mark Wildman’s feature directorial debut after recently departing AFI as the Head of Press and Public Relations.
Described as post-feminist horror, STRIPPED follows the events surrounding a birthday outing with two brothers and a friend which turns into a horrific fight for survival after they become trapped in a house with a “family” of malevolent women.
Along with Shepis, negotiations are also underway with Samrat Chakrabarti (FINDING GRACELAND, KISSING COUSINS) to join the cast. Financed independently, filming is set to begin in Dallas, Texas in late May following Wildman’s work as the PR Director for the DALLAS International Film Festival (April 8-18).
“Adam and I have been looking for the right project to team up on,” said Allard, “And this script immediately got my attention. It’s exciting that this has all come together at the same time we both have films at Sundance.”
Donaghey agreed, adding, “Justina and John have not only created some iconic female genre characters that jump off the page, but Jeffrey and I were also impressed with John’s directorial approach to the material.”
President and founder of Indie Entertainment LLC, a film finance and production company formed in 2002 and located in the SF Bay Area, Allard produced THE VIOLENT KIND with Producers Malek Akkad (HALLOWEEN II, HALLOWEEN), Andy Gould (HALLOWEEN II, HALLOWEEN, HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES) and Directors Mitchell Altieri and Phil Flores aka The Butcher Brothers (THE HAMILTONS, APRIL FOOLS DAY). The film made its world premiere Monday at the Sundance Film Festival. He executive produced (with Michael Bay) THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE and THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE: THE BEGINNING.
Upcoming projects from Allard include A DARKER REALITY, starring Daniel Baldwin with several projects in development including GROO THE WANDERER, an animated feature film with Marc Toberoff (PIRANHA, BOTTLE SHOCK, I SPY) and THE PRODIGAL, a SF based dramatic thriller with Paul Zaentz (THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY, GOYA’S GHOST) and Brad King (TECHNOLUST).
President and founder of Zero Trans Fat Productions, Donaghey produced Bryan Poyser’s LOVERS OF HATE and Clay Liford’s short, MY MOM SMOKES WEED, both of which screened at the Sundance Film Festival, with LOVERS OF HATE making its world premiere on Sunday. Previous projects include David Lowery’s ST. NICK, a Grand Jury Prize for Texas Filmmaking at AFI Dallas, and Francisco Diaz’ EL REGRESO WAY.
Donaghey’s upcoming releases include Frank V. Ross’ AUDREY THE TRAINWRECK and Liford’s EARTHLING. Donaghey is a film columnist for Houston Bay Area’s SCENE Magazine and produces the Houston, Dallas and Austin Film Races.
Wildman currently serves as the Director of PR for the DALLAS International Film Festival, the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles and the Feel Good Film Festival (Los Angeles). He is also part of the film festival consultation group FESTWORKS (along with former AFI FEST top liners Rose Kuo, Robert Koehler and David Rogers) that was recently announced at the Sundance Film Festival. In addition, he writes about film and film festivals for outlets such as Movie City News, Moving Pictures Magazine.com and Envy Magazine, as well as his popular blog at wildworx.wordpress.com.
ROSE KUO, ROBERT KOEHLER, DAVID ROGERS
AND JOHN WILDMAN
ANNOUNCE NEW FESTWORKS VENTURE
PARK CITY, UT (January 24, 2010)—Four former principals of the AFI FEST Los Angeles International Film Festival have joined forces to create a partnership that will offer a wide range of consultation services for film festivals.
Their new venture, FESTWORKS, will seek to provide consultation and services for film festivals of all sizes in the areas of festival operations, development, programming and communications.
Kuo (AFI FEST Artistic Director), Rogers (AFI FEST Festival Producer) and Wildman (AFI Head of Press & Public Relations) all announced their departure from AFI earlier this month. This announcement confirms Koehler’s departure as AFI FEST’s Director of Programming.
The fledgling company’s website states, ”As the film festival world grows more complex and mullti-dimensional, with greater demands placed on festivals to present exciting and relevant events to audiences while serving the interests of filmmakers and sponsors, there is a growing value for precise and informed services and solutions to the many needs that occur during the execution of a festival. FESTWORKS provides a one-stop service for festival operations, development, programming and communications.”
Kuo adds, “This collaboration allows each of us to have more creative freedom and is the best way for us to continue our commitment to artistic excellence and innovative film programming.”
Koehler added, “”We believe that the multi-faceted mission behind FESTWORKS reflects the current and ongoing changes in the film festival world, above all the need for exciting ways to devise, organize and execute festivals.”
“This partnership came together as a direct result of our experiences working together on this past edition of AFI FEST,” said Rogers, “And as the culmination of what each of us has identified as a need in the film festival community.”
Wildman concluded, “The four of us share a great passion for the art of film, for filmmakers and especially for the unique film viewing experience and interaction with those filmmakers that film festivals offer the public. It’s our hope that through FESTWORKS, we can help enhance the way things are done that will benefit both film maker and filmgoer and improve a way of seeing films that we truly love.”
Kuo, AFI FEST’s Artistic Director for the last three years, was recently named as Co-Executive Director of the Sante Fe Film Festival with Michael Hare and brings a wealth of experience in leading film festivals as well as film production. The architect of AFI’s successful “free festival” in 2009, Kuo is widely credited with the critical turnaround of AFI FEST. In December 2009, the International Film Festival Summit honored her with its prestigious IFFS Excellence Award. Kuo has worked for Mill Valley, San Francisco and Santa Barbara film festivals, as well as renowned directors such as Michael Mann, Paul Schrader and Martin Scorsese. She is an occasional contributor to Movie City News.
After a celebrated career as Daily Variety’s film critic, Koehler joined AFI FEST as Director of Programming in a move that inspired a new round of enthusiasm within the film festival community and began a trend with other notable film critics following suit over the course of the year. Having returned as a critic and contributor for Variety, Koehler continues writing film criticism for Cinema Scope, Cineaste, filmjourney.org and the Christian Science Monitor.
Following a career producing film, music videos and commercials, Rogers joined AFI FEST as the Festival Village Producer in 2006. He subsequently became Director of Production at AFI DALLAS in 2008 prior to becoming AFI FEST’s Festival Producer in 2009. Along with successfully navigating the festival production and logistics of new venues in Hollywood and the festival’s move to Santa Monica during AFM, under his stewardship, AFI FEST enjoyed record crowds with remarkably smooth production details despite extremely challenging economic circumstances.
After his prior work with AFI, AFI FEST and AFI DALLAS, Wildman currently serves as the Director of PR for the DALLAS International Film Festival, the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles and the Feel Good Film Festival (Los Angeles). He has also headed up the PR for past editions of the Lone Star Film Festival (Fort Worth) and the Los Angeles Greek Film Festival. Wildman has produced, written and served as the publicist for the Vision Awards (which benefits Retinitis Pigmentosa) for the past four years. In addition, he writes about film and film festivals for outlets such as Movie City News, Moving Pictures Magazine.com and Envy Magazine, as well as his popular blog at wildworx.wordpress.com.
I will put everything in its entirety on here after Sundance is all said and done, but in the meantime, here’s the goods on Movie City News:
THE SANTA FE FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES NEW LEADERSHIP
MICHAEL HARE AND ROSE KUO SELECTED
AS CO-EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS OF THE FESTIVAL
SANTA FE, NM, January 20, 2009 – The Santa Fe Film Festival has announced the selection of Michael Hare and Rose Kuo as Co-Executive Directors of the Festival succeeding Founder and Executive Director, Jon Bowman, whose retirement from the Festival was announced late last year.
Commenting on the selections of Hare and Kuo, Tom Maguire, Santa Fe Film Festival Chairman of the Board, said “The Santa Fe Film Festival has enjoyed much success over the course of its ten year history and we are proud of what we have built with this event. We feel strongly that this team is particularly suited to take the festival to an even higher level.”
Santa Fe resident, Hare is Managing Director of Mojo Raid Entertainment II, having created MARTIN LAWRENCE PRESENTS: THE 1ST AMENDMENT, a stand-up television series entering its fifth season on Starz and has been responsible for all facets of multi-million dollar production, distribution, and licensing relationships with Starz, Starz Media, and Anchor Bay Entertainment. He is also the founder of i2five entertainment, LLC, a Santa Fe, New Mexico-based production company with several film and television projects in various stages of development.
Hare said, “During his ten years of extraordinary dedication to the festival, Jon Bowman has created an invaluable asset for this community. I look forward to working with Rose, the board, and the community at large to build on this legacy and take the festival forward. I also want to thank Operations Director Karen RedHawk Dallet for her tremendous effort over the past year in establishing such a strong foundation for the future. I am thrilled to be teaming up with someone as accomplished and respected in the festival world as Rose.”
Rose Kuo, AFI FEST’s Artistic Director for the last three years, brings a wealth of experience in leading film festivals as well as film production. The architect of AFI’s successful “free festival” in 2009, Kuo is widely credited with the critical turnaround of AFI FEST. In December 2009, the International Film Festival Summit honored her with its prestigious IFFS Excellence Award. Kuo has worked for Mill Valley, San Francisco and Santa Barbara film festivals, as well as renowned directors such as Michael Mann, Paul Schrader and Martin Scorsese.
Kuo said, “Fred Roos and Val Kilmer —both big champions of the Santa Fe Film Festival—introduced me to the event and the town. The beauty of the architecture and the land, the warm and supportive residents and a festival infused with a regional heritage provide the perfect setting for a wonderful film viewing experience that audiences and filmmakers love. I am excited to work with someone as talented and enthusiastic as Michael and we are both eager to get started on a new chapter for the festival.”
The 11th edition of The Santa Fe Film Festival will take place in October of this year. Additional information can be found at http://www.santafefilmfestival.com.
DALLAS MAYOR TOM LEPPERT AND LAURA LEPPERT NAMED
AS HONORARY CHAIRS OF DALLAS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
THE DALLAS FILM SOCIETY ALSO ANNOUNCES
FIRST MEMBERSHIP INITIATIVE IN THE HISTORY OF THE ORGANIZATION
Dallas, TX – January 14, 2010 – With preparations well underway for the DALLAS International Film Festival (April 8-18). The Dallas Film Society (DFS) announced today that Mayor Tom Leppert and his wife Laura will serve as Honorary Chairs for the film festival. The Dallas Film Society also announced the creation of its first membership program, the Circle of Stars.
“Mayor Leppert and his wife, Laura have been stalwart supporters of the former Film Festival since its inception in 2007,” said Dallas Film Society Chairman Michael Cain. Leppert’s assistance and support of the inaugural edition of AFI DALLAS proved invaluable for what became a heralded first year for the film festival. They have both continued to back the subsequent editions, with Leppert joining Governor Rick Perry, Peter Bogdanovich, Ross Perot, Jr. and others at last year’s Texas Day celebration of film at Victory Park which served as a culmination of the 2009 event.
Mayor Leppert said, “Laura and I are both honored and thrilled to serve as the Honorary Chairs for the DALLAS International Film Festival. It’s wonderful to be part of an event that puts forward the best of this great city to a host of international filmmakers and literally brings a world of film and the top film artists to this community.”
The Dallas Film Society also took another major step toward energizing the Dallas film going community with the announcement of its Circle of Stars membership program.
Circle of Stars members will receive an array of benefits and privileges created to maximize the experience with The Dallas Film Society and its many year-round programs and events. Benefits include invitations to exclusive events, invitations to Premiere Screenings and other Dallas Film Society events, complimentary passes to the annual DALLAS International Film Festival, recognition in event programs and on the Society’s website. Individual Circle of Stars memberships begin at $2,500 and can be paid in installments throughout the year.
“Circle of Stars members will help leave a lasting impression on how the world views Dallas while also providing a solid foundation to ensure the legacy of filmmaking,” said Tanya Foster, President and CEO, Dallas Film Society.
The Dallas Film Society and its annual programs are sustained by the generosity of its patrons and corporate sponsors. The Dallas Film Society inspires artists to explore film’s power to reach all ages, societies and walks of life – educating, motivating and entertaining. Through this focus on the art of filmmaking, the Society is committed to enhancing the arts in Dallas. In just three years, this philosophy has inspired and driven the creation of one of the most prestigious film festivals in North America with a combined attendance of over 110,000 and notable attendees including Lauren Bacall, Sydney Pollack, David Lynch, Robert De Niro, Charlize Theron and Adrien Brody among others.
More information on the Circle of Stars membership program can be found on the DFS Web site at www.dallasfilm.org.
AFI AWARDS 2009 SALUTES FILM AND TELEVISION
Julianne Moore, Jon Hamm, Woody Harrelson and Gabourey Sidibe
Among Honored Guests at Tenth Annual Celebration of AFI Almanac
LOS ANGELES, January 15, 2010—Kathryn Bigelow, Julianne Moore, Lee Daniels, Tom Ford, Jon Hamm, Woody Harrelson, Jason Reitman, Henry Selick, Gabourey Sidibe and many other artists from in front of and behind the camera were among the attendees honored by the American Film Institute (AFI) in Los Angeles today, during its AFI AWARDS 2009 luncheon sponsored by Hewlett-Packard.
This tenth annual event remained an honoree-only affair, with no press and no public in attendance. For each of the honored films and television programs, HP creates a scholarship to the world-renowned AFI Conservatory in Los Angeles.
AFI refers to the event as its almanac, documenting excellence across the 21st century. Because 2009 marked the 50th anniversary of Alfred Hitchcock’s classic NORTH BY NORTHWEST, AFI acknowledged this landmark by offering the event’s final word to Eva Marie Saint, who shared stories about the making of the film and raised a glass to the work of artists today.
In his introduction, AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale said, “50 years ago, she was the 5th and most beautiful face on Mount Rushmore.” Saint jokingly offered a willingness to return for a sequel if George Clooney were available to play the Cary Grant role. She concluded her remarks to the honorees by reflecting on how the joy of watching the performances onscreen inspired her own legendary career, saying “You make a difference to people around the world. Maybe out there somewhere you’ve made a difference to another little blonde girl.”
Among the artists present were: Adam Arkin and Michael Stuhlbarg (A SERIOUS MAN); Kathryn Bigelow and Jeremy Renner (THE HURT LOCKER); Connie Britton and Kyle Chandler (FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS); Anna Kendrick and Jason Reitman (UP IN THE AIR); Lee Daniels and Gabourey Sidibe (PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL ‘PUSH’ BY SAPPHIRE); Pete Docter and Bob Peterson (UP); Michelle Forbes and Sam Trammell (TRUE BLOOD); Tom Ford and Julianne Moore (A SINGLE MAN); Ben Foster, Woody Harrelson, Jena Malone and Oren Moverman (THE MESSENGER); Heather Graham, Justin Bartha and Todd Phillips (THE HANGOVER); Jon Hamm, Christina Hendricks and Matthew Weiner (MAD MEN); Ryan Murphy (GLEE); Mark V. Olsen, Bill Paxton and Will Scheffer (BIG LOVE); Henry Selick (CORALINE).
Also among the guests present were members of the AFI Board of Trustees including: Chris Albrecht; Jon Avnet; Bob Daly; Jean Picker Firstenberg; Rich Frank; Brad Grey; Marshall Herskovitz; Alan Horn; Daniel Petrie, Jr.; Frank Pierson; Tom Pollock; Anne Sweeney; Ed Zwick.
Norman Jewison, the Chairman for the AFI Jury for Motion Pictures, and CCH Pounder, a member of the AFI Jury for Television, entered the jury rationales into the almanac by reading them as scenes from the films and TV programs were presented. Announced for the first time today, the complete rationales can be found at AFI.com.
The official selections are listed below in alphabetical order:
AFI MOVIES OF THE YEAR—OFFICIAL SELECTIONS
THE HURT LOCKER
PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL ‘PUSH’ BY SAPPHIRE
A SERIOUS MAN
A SINGLE MAN
UP IN THE AIR
AFI TV PROGRAMS OF THE YEAR—OFFICIAL SELECTIONS
THE BIG BANG THEORY
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS
THE NO. 1 LADIES’ DETECTIVE AGENCY