AFI Announces Directing Workshop for Women (DWW) Red Carpet Showcase on May 11

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 30, 2009

AFI PRESENTS

DIRECTING WORKSHOP FOR WOMEN (DWW)
RED CARPET SHOWCASE AT DGA THEATER

MARTHA COOLIDGE WILL HOST EVENT ON MAY 11

Hollywood, CA, April 30, 2009 – AFI announces its annual Directing Workshop for Women (DWW) Red Carpet Showcase at the DGA Theater featuring up-and-coming directors Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Meredith Berg, Joy Gohring, Joanna Jurewicz, Mary Ann Kellogg, Alexa-Sascha Lewin, and Dominika Waclawiak.

Hosting the event will be Martha Coolidge, the first and only female president of the DGA and director of notable films including RAMBLING ROSE, INTRODUCING DOROTHY DANDRIDGE and VALLEY GIRL.

These seven women were picked from a pool of over 200 applicants for the prestigious DWW program. Selected women receive donations and grants not to exceed $25,000, equipment, materials and facilities of the AFI campus and five days to shoot their narrative short films. AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women (DWW) has been a major force in training women in narrative filmmaking since 1974. Over 200 women have been given the opportunity to participate in this innovative and unique training program for tomorrow’s directors. Some DWW alumnae include Lesli Linka Glatter (MAD MEN, THE WEST WING, GREY’S ANATOMY), Randa Haines (CHILDREN OF A LESSER GOD, DANCE WITH ME), Kellie Martin (ER, MYSTERY WOMAN) and Maya Angelou (DOWN IN THE DELTA).

“This is a great opportunity to discover new filmmaking talent. You will not only enjoy the films but have a chance to meet the participants and discuss how this incredible workshop has impacted their future projects and their careers,” said Joe Petricca, AFI’s Executive Vice Dean.

The one-night-only event will include guests from high level agencies such as CAA, Endeavor, and WMA as well as representatives from every studio. Celebrity guests and many other artists from in front of or behind the camera will also be in attendance. Prior to and at the culmination of the showcase, cocktails as well as hors d’oeuvres and desserts (courtesy of Contemporary Catering) will be served in the DGA Lobby.

MORE ABOUT THE AFI’S DWW RED CARPET SHOWCASE
This is a private event with seating limited to industry professionals. For more information, and to RSVP, please visit – http://www.femmafia.com

The 2009 DWW Red Carpet Showcase participants:

Meredith Berg
VOID

About the film:
VOID, a supernatural thriller, follows FBI agent ‘Liz Metera’ as she investigates a series of grisly murders in a small, desert town. She suspects the murders are the work of a serial killer but discovers that whatever is responsible is not human, and is, instead, something far more monstrous. While uncovering clues, she befriends a boy – terrified of his father – who is hiding a powerful and chilling secret. Uncovering his secret will ultimately cost the FBI agent everything she holds dear, changing her life, and the town, forever.

About the filmmaker:
While earning her directing and acting BFA from NYU Tisch, Meredith Berg garnered an Off-Broadway directing credit for her adaptation of Shakespeare’s JULIUS CAESAR. Since then she moved to Los Angeles and delved further into writing, directing, producing and her other great love: editing comic books. Single issues and graphic novels of hers can be found on the shelves of comic book stores, productions on the Web and on television, and she
continues to direct theatrical productions in and around LA.

Joy Gohring
18

About the film:
18 is a dramatic short about a teenage girl who has to decide whether or not to remove her mother from life support when she is given power of attorney on her eighteenth birthday.

About the filmmaker:
An internationally touring comedienne, Gohring has written, directed and performed stand-up and live comedy theatre all over the US, Canada and the UK. In 2000, she was chosen to perform at HBO’S prestigious Comedy Arts Festival as the female comedy team ‘Gohring & Stein.’ She subsequently starred in two TV series for Carsey-Werner-Mandabach Productions & Oxygen based on her own unique brand of comedy, including their first sitcom, GOOD GIRLS DON’T…  Gohring also performs periodically in Wayne Brady’s show at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. Experiencing an overdose of comedy, Joy shifted her focus to dramatic storytelling in 2007 and attended UCLA Extension where she wrote and directed her first short, GOOD GIRL, about a teenager who struggles to care for her bed-ridden mother. Her film, 18 explores death and letting go. Already being dubbed an actor’s director, Gohring has a natural ability to draw honest and subtle performances from her cast.

Marianne Jean-Baptiste
INK

About the film:
INK is the tale of a talented tattoo artist and single mother dying of AIDS and determined to do so with grace.

About the filmmaker:
Marianne Jean-Baptiste received Academy Award,Golden Globe and British Academy Award nominations for her feature-film debut role in Mike Leigh’s  SECRETS AND LIES. Other film credits include THE CELL, opposite Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Lopez, 28 DAYS opposite Sandra Bullock and SPY GAMES  opposite Robert Redford. TV credits include THE MURDER OF STEPHEN LAWRENCE, written and directed by Paul Greengrass. As a composer, Jean-Baptiste wrote the score for Mike Leigh’s feature film CAREER GIRLS. As a writer she has sold a script to Working Title. She is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and is currently starring in the CBS hit drama, WITHOUT A TRACE, portraying FBI agent ‘Vivian Johnson’.

Joanna Jurewicz
ROOMS

About the film:
An immigrant maid at an airport hotel goes through the routine of erasing traces that guests have left behind.

About the filmmaker:
Joanna Jurewicz is from Poland and resides in New York. She is a graduate of NYU- Tisch School of the Arts graduate film program. Her thesis film, GOYTA was screened at the Cinefondation competition at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival. The film went on to win a variety of awards and eventually was sold to and aired on ARTE TV. Jurewicz is currently writing her first feature film while working for a theatre company in NYC.

Mary Ann Kellogg
ABUELO

About the film:
ABUELO traces the special relationship between a grandfather and his granddaughter.

About the filmmaker:
Mary Ann Kellogg is making her directing debut with the short film ABUELO. Kellogg began her career as a professional dancer with Twyla Tharp Dance Company, performing with the company for eight years. She is an award-winning choreographer in film, television and video with substantial industry recognition, an Emmy nomination and a Choreography Media Honors Award for her work on Showtime’s REEFER MADNESS THE MOVIE MUSICAL and two American Choreography Award nominations for her work on SUPERSTAR and THE GURU. She received a fellowship from AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women for the film ABUELO.  is a member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, holds a BFA from Cal Arts and is an alum of both the AFI Conservatory and AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women.

Alexa-Sascha Lewin
THE HONEYSTING

About the film:
THE HONEYSTING is a riveting ride down the dark alleys of Chinatown’s underworld, where the slightest misstep can trigger the deadliest of consequences.

About the filmmaker:
Alexa-Sascha Lewin spent eight years working as a natural history ¬filmmaker. Her work found her trekking mountain gorillas through rebel-infested Rwandan jungles and hanging
out of a helicopter to capture stampeding white rhinos in the South African bush. Lewin began her career in narrative features, interning for Robert Redford’s South Fork Pictures and Propaganda Films. After working in television and documentaries for PBS, ABC/Kane, Discovery Channel, A&E, and the BBC, Lewin wanted to transition back to narrative features. She collaborated on the development of several independent films with the Mount Film Company, and worked in Lithuania on Ed Zwick’s latest film, DEFIANCE, as the assistant to the producer. Lewin was awarded the Panavision New Filmmaker grant and ACE grant for her first narrative film, THE HONEYSTING. Lewin holds a BA from Wheaton College, and studied at the University of Television and Film Munich, and Brown University.

Dominika Waclawiak
GOSIA’S WITCH

About the film:
A young polish immigrant, ‘Gosia’, delves deep into her imagination to overthrow the punishment she receives at the hands of a cruel headmistress at her Catholic school.

About the filmmaker:
Dominika Waclawiak, originally from Lodz, Poland, graduated from Cornell University with a degree in architecture, and worked as a production designer and art director on many shorts as well as in the art department of such features as FLAWLESS under the art direction of two-time Oscar nominee Jan Roelfs (GATTACA) and Emmy award winning Production Designer Sarah Knowles (THE NOTEBOOK). Waclawiak transitioned into CG visual effects due to her previous work in stop motion animation. She has worked as an visual effects artist on such films as LAND OF THE LOST, THE INCREDIBLE HULK, the Oscar-winning films THE GOLDEN COMPASS and HAPPY FEET, SUPERMAN RETURNS and THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, to name just a few. As a director, her stop-motion short PIEKNI played at many international festivals and is currently distributed by Ouat Media.

IFFLA Announces 2009 Award Winners

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 28, 2009

2009 INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL OF LOS ANGELES
ANNOUNCES AWARD WINNERS

“SITA SINGS THE BLUES” RECEIVES THE JURY PRIZE
FOR BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE

“CHILDREN OF THE PYRE” RECEIVES THE JURY PRIZE
FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY

“NARMEEN”
IS NAMED BEST SHORT FILM

AND

AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARDS GO TO “LITTLE ZIZOU” FOR NARRATIVE FEATURE, “SUPERMEN OF MALEGAON” FOR DOCUMENTARY AND “KAVI” FOR SHORT

HOLLYWOOD, CA, April 26, 2009 – The 7th Annual Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles announces its 2009 Award winners with Nina Paley’s SITA SINGS THE BLUES as the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Feature and Nandita Das’s FIRAAQ receiving an Honorable Mention in the category. Rajesh Jala’s CHILDREN OF THE PYRE was named as the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary. Dipti Gogna’s NARMEEN won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Short with Sushrut Jain’s ANDHERI receiving an Honorable Mention.

Audience Choice Awards went to Sooni Taraporevala’s LITTLE ZIZOU for Narrative, Faiza Ahmad Khan’s SUPERMEN OF MALEGAON for Documentary and Gregg Helvey’s KAVI for the Short Film category.

Christina Marouda, IFFLA Director, said, “This film festival has been a pivotal one in celebrating the impressive diversity of filmmaking styles and vision from both well known Indian filmmakers and new cinematic voices emerging in the Indian filmmaking community. And the award winners only highlighted that fact. IFFLA also took another important step in establishing itself as a key annual event for the Hollywood and Indian entertainment business community to come together and collaborate.”

JURY AWARDS:

BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE: SITA SINGS THE BLUES
DIR/PROD/SCR/ED: Nina Paley
Cast: Annette Hanshaw, Aseem Chhabra, Manish Acharya, Bhavana Nagulapally, Reena Shah

HONORABLE MENTION: FIRAAQ
DIR: Nandita Das
Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Tisca Chopra, Paresh Rawal, Deepti Naval, Raghuveer Yadav

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE: CHILDREN OF THE PYRE
DIR: Rajesh Jala

BEST SHORT FILM: NARMEEN
DIR: Dipti Gogna

HONORABLE MENTION: ANDHERI
DIR: Sushrut Jain

AUDIENCE AWARDS:

NARRATIVE: LITTLE ZIZOU
DIR: Sooni Taraporevala
Cast: Boman Irani, Sohrab Ardeshir, Zenobia Shroff, Shernaz Patel, Imaad Shah, John Abraham

DOCUMENTARY: SUPERMEN OF MALEGAON
DIR: Faiza Ahmad Khan

SHORT: KAVI
DIR: Gregg Helvey


2009 IFFLA JURY MEMBERS:

Features Jury

Paul Federbush
Paul Federbush is a thirteen-year independent film production, development and acquisition executive. While Paul has spent the majority of his career working within the studio system, most recently as a founding member and Senior Vice President of Production and Acquisitions at Warner Independent Pictures (WIP), he has also served as a conduit between the studios and the worlds of independent and international film.  Some films acquired during his tenure at WIP include SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, PARADISE NOW, and GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK.

Rana Joy Glickman
Rana Joy Glickman rode into the film industry on horseback starting out as an equestrian stunt woman. Raised in NYC, Rana Joy was immersed in theater, film, photography, ballet, and music. She ultimately started producing, writing and directing. Her films have premiered at many festivals including Sundance, SXSW, Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Toronto and New York. Some of her films include: GOD SAID, “HA!” KICKING AND SCREAMING, FULL TILT BOOGIE, FEMALE PERVERSIONS, and SLEEP WITH ME. Her production company Shakrah Films is in post and development with a slate of captivating independent films.

Matt Holzman
An award-winning public radio arts and culture reporter, Matt Holzman is now the producer of The Business, public radio’s show about the business of show business heard locally on KCRW 89.9FM. He also comments on the state of the business with The Business Brief during KCRW’s afternoon broadcast of NPR’s All Things Considered and is the curator and host of Matt’s Movies, the station’s highly-regarded screening series for members. His opinions can be strongly swayed by a generous serving of homemade Tikka Masala.

Richard Shepard
Richard Shepard is an Emmy-Winning director (for the pilot of UGLY BETTY) of such movies as THE MATADOR with Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear, and THE HUNTING PARTY with Terrence Howard and Richard Gere. Besides UGLY BETTY, Richard directed the pilot for CRIMINAL MINDS. His latest film, I KNEW IT WAS YOU, a documentary about John Cazale (Fredo in THE GODFATHER), premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and will air on HBO in the fall.

Gill Dennis
Gill Dennis is a Master Filmmaker-in-Residence at the American Film Institute Conservatory. In addition to the 2005 film WALK THE LINE, he wrote the mini-series “Home Fires” for Showtime, which was selected by Time Magazine as among television’s Top Ten in 1987 and has received the Los Angeles Critics Circle Award for Distinguished Direction in the theater. Recently, Gill wrote THE SMALL BOAT OF GREAT SORROWS for Kennedy/Marshall, THE TATTOOED SOLDIER for Davids/Canton, and FOREVER with Tatia Pilieva for Present Pictures.

Documentaries Jury

Mark Jonathan Harris
Mark Jonathan Harris is an Academy-Award® winning documentary filmmaker, journalist, novelist, and film professor. Among the many documentaries he has written, produced and/or directed are THE LONG WAY HOME and INTO THE ARMS OF STRANGERS: STORIES OF THE KINDERTRANSPORT, both winners of an Academy Award® for Best Feature Length Documentary in 1997 and 2000, respectively.  Since 1983 Harris has taught filmmaking at the School of Cinema-Television at the University of Southern California, where he is a Distinguished Professor.

Michael Lumpkin
In January 2009 Michael Lumpkin took over the leadership of the International Documentary Association as its new Executive Director. He had previously served as both Executive Director of Frameline and Festival Director for the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.  He also co-produced the highly acclaimed documentary THE CELLULOID CLOSET.  Michael has participated as a competition juror for the Sundance Film Festival, and served in an advisory capacity for numerous film festivals around the world.

David Tenzer
David Tenzer is an entertainment lawyer, business consultant and content producer, with extensive experience in many sectors of the media industry. For more than 20 years, David worked at Creative Artist Agency as an executive in Motion Picture Business Affairs before moving on to head Television Business Affairs. As a television packaging agent, David was responsible for selling more than 40 produced series, movies and specials, with budgets in excess of $800 million. David currently is on the board of directors of the International Documentary Association and the Banff World Television Festival.

Shorts Jury

Rupak Ginn
Rupak Ginn’s love for acting started at a young age and followed him into college at Harvard University, where during his senior year, director Mira Nair offered him a supporting role in THE NAMESAKE. Upon graduation, he ventured into the off Broadway world of New York City theater before he moved to Los Angeles. While in Los Angeles, he landed a breakout role in Disney’s “The Cheetah Girls: One World”, where he played romantic lead Rahim, a Bollywood star. Rupak sits on Variety’s Power of Youth Advisory Board and volunteers with Aid Still Required in their campaign against genocide in Darfur.

Linda “O.” Olszewski
Linda “O.” Olszewski joined SHORTS INTERNATIONAL in January 2006 as co-head of global acquisitions.  She acquires for and leads SHORTS on iTUNES USA, UK & Canada, and acquires films for SHORTS TV, television broadcast, new media and airline clients. Her credits include co-founder/director of the DreamWorks Short Film Festival; worldwide acquisitions director for EVEO; head of shorts for THE HATCHERY; and senior programmer for the Palm Springs Short Film Festival.

Hebe Tabachnik
Hebe Tabachnik is a short film programmer for Sundance and Los Angeles Film Festival (LAFF), as well as a feature film Latin American Consultant for the LAFF and Palms Springs International Film Festival. She also serves on the selection committee and the Board of Directors for Dance Camera West.  She is also the Co-Founder and Vice President of Lokro Productions, Inc., a film production company established in 1999 which produced the 3-D World Film Expos in 2003 and 2006, the largest retrospectives on 3-D films ever presented in the U.S.

The Indian Film festival of Los Angeles kicked off with the Opening Night Gala presentation of Anand Surapur’s THE FAKIR OF VENICE on Tuesday, April 21, 2009 at the ArcLight Hollywood Cinemas in Hollywood. The evening’s festivities also included an after party at Crimson & Opera featuring culinary delights by Chakra Cuisine and performances by DJ Sandeep Kumar and Indian/Bollywood Fusion dance and drama team Project Pulse. Opening Night also featured the official launch of CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s and Suneel Gupta’s Kahani Movement. The brothers are co-founders of the film project to capture and share stories from Indians that immigrated to the United States. Kahani accomplishes this by motivating second-generation Indian Americans to pick up a camera, interview their parents, and then post that footage to a central website.

Other highlights included a salute to Bollywood legend Anil Kapoor one of Indian cinema’s most significant and popular personalities which included screenings of Kapoor’s classic films LAMHE (1991) and VIRASAT (1997) as well as the world premiere of the English language version of Kapoor’s production of GANDHI, MY FATHER (2007).  IFFLA also continued its ongoing commitment to supporting and showcasing restored prints of Indian classic films, as it paid homage to BR Chopra by screening his classic, NAYA DAUR.

The presentation of the 2009 IFFLA Industry Leadership Award to Richard Fox and Amit Khanna took place on Thursday, April 23 at the House of Blues in West Hollywood. Fox is the Executive Vice President of Warner Bros. International and heads up all of Warner Bros.’ non-US initiatives in all phases of the entertainment industry. Khanna is the Chairman of Reliance BIG Entertainment, the media arm of the $75 billion Ambani Group that recently completed its purchase of Dreamworks and announced that it would spend $1 billion on the Indian film and entertainment business. Presenting the awards were Walt Disney International Chairman Andy Bird and Deborah Bothun, entertainment media and communications advisory leader, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. The event also included a musical performance by Gingger Shankar.

IFFLA’s popular Rhythm Village, presented by Rukus Avenue, featured free public outdoor entertainment at the ArcLight Hollywood Cinemas courtyard including performances by the entertaining and eclectic talent assembled are the South Asian acapella group Andaaz; performing duo The Dyad; “conscious” music artist Hoodini; the desi outfit O.C.P.; IFFLA alumni and sketch performer Rasika Mathur; experimental fusion group, The Rhetoricalz; and singer songwriter and multi-instramentalist Tasneem Nanji.

The festival closed with the IFFLA Closing Night Gala presentation of YES MADAM, SIR on Sunday, April 26 at ArcLight Hollywood. A documentary profiling Dr. Kiran Bedi, the first woman to join the Indian Police Service and a controversial and inspiring figure in India. Dr. Bedi attended the festival as a guest of honor that evening along with director, Doneman. The evening concluded with an after party at The Cabana Club, which once again featured culinary delights by Chakra Cuisine and performances by DJ Sandeep Kumar and Indian/Bollywood Fusion dance and drama team Project Pulse.

The 2009 IFFLA lineup showcased 21 features (16 narrative and 5 documentary) and 16 shorts for a total of 37 films representing 5 countries.

AFI DALLAS Announces Award Winners

Posted in Uncategorized by Wildworks on April 9, 2009

2009 AFI DALLAS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
FOUNDING SPONSOR VICTORY PARK,
PRESENTING SPONSOR NORTHPARK CENTER
ANNOUNCES AWARD WINNERS

“GIGANTIC” RECEIVES THE $25,000 TARGET FILMMAKER AWARD
FOR BEST NARRATIVE FEATURE

“PROM NIGHT IN MISSISSIPPI” RECEIVES THE $25,000 TARGET FILMMAKER AWARD
FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

“ST. NICK” RECEIVES $20,000 IN CASH, GOODS AND SERVICES FOR THE MPS STUDIOS TEXAS FILMMAKER AWARD

“CRUDE” RECEIVES THE $10,000 CURRENT ENERGY FILMMAKER AWARD

“PRINCESS MARGARET BLVD.”, “HUG” AND “CHICKEN COWBOY”
ARE NAMED WINNERS
FOR BEST SHORT FILM, STUDENT SHORT AND ANIMATED SHORT

AND

AUDIENCE AWARDS GO TO “SKIN” FOR NARRATIVE FEATURE, “ROCK PROPHECIES” FOR DOCUMENTARY AND “LUCY: A PERIOD PIECE” FOR SHORT

DALLAS, TX, April 2, 2008 – AFI DALLAS International Film Festival, Founding Sponsor Victory Park, Presenting Sponsor NorthPark Center, announces its 2009 award winners with Matt Aselton’s GIGANTIC as the winner of the unrestricted $25,000 cash prize for the Target Filmmaker Award for Best Narrative Feature with Peter Callahan’s AGAINST THE CURRENT receiving a Special Jury Prize, and Paul Saltzman’s PROM NIGHT IN MISSISSIPPI as the winner of the unrestricted $25,000 cash prize for the Target Filmmaker Award for Best Documentary Feature with Gustav Hofer’s and Luca Ragazzi’s SUDDENLY LAST WINTER receiving a Special Jury Prize. The awards were presented by Heather Matarazzo (WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE, THE PRINCESS DIARIES) and Elvis Mitchell (THE BLACK LIST), each of whom served on the Narrative Features and Documentary Features jury, respectively, for AFI DALLAS this year.

Presented by Current Energy’s Joe Harberg, Joe Berlinger’s CRUDE won the $10,000 cash prize for the Current Energy Filmmaker Award, while MPS Studios’ Mark Stephens presented MPS Studios’ Texas Filmmaker Award and $20,000 in cash, goods and services to David Lowery for his film, ST. NICK.

Kazik Radwanski’s PRINCESS MARGARET BLVD. won the award for Best Short with Honorable Mentions going to both Todd Luoto’s OIL CHANGE and Denis Villeneuve’s NEXT FLOOR. The award for Best Student Short went to Khary Jones’s HUG. Jurors John Magary and Bent Jorgen-Pearlmutt presented the awards. Reel FX Entertainment Vice President of Creative, Brandon Oldenberg presented the award for Best Animated Short to Stephen Neary’s CHICKEN COWBOY.

Anthony Fabian’s SKIN won the Audience Award for Best Narrative, while John Chester’s ROCK PROPHECIES won for Best Documentary and Julie Sagalowsky’s LUCY: A PERIOD PIECE won the Audience Award for Best Short. AFI DALLAS Director of Programming James Faust and Senior Programmer Sarah Harris presented the awards.

The winners of the jury prizes for Best Short, Best Student Short and the Audience Awards each receive production and scheduling software from Entertainment Partners.

Faust said, “This year, we were fortunate to have so many exceptional films that challenged the audience artistically and conceptually. It was a very competitive year in that respect and while we were all the beneficiaries of that, by its nature the jury had the difficulty of having to choose one film to honor over the others.”

Michael Cain, AFI DALLAS Artistic Director, added “In our third year, the city of Dallas and the international film community truly have begun to take note of the distinctive personality of this film festival – both through the evolution of our programming and what is becoming more accepted every year – the peerless presentation and hospitality that have been hallmarks of AFI DALLAS from the very beginning.”

JURY AWARDS:

TARGET NARRATIVE FEATURE: GIGANTIC
DIR:     Matt Aselton (USA)
Cast:     Zooey Deschanel, Paul Dano, John Goodman

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE: AGAINST THE CURRENT
DIR:     Peter Callahan (USA)
Cast:    Joseph Fiennes, Justin Kirk, Elizabeth Reaser

TARGET DOCUMENTARY FEATURE: PROM NIGHT IN MISSISSIPPI
DIR:    Paul Saltzman (USA)

SPECIAL JURY PRIZE: SUDDENLY LAST WINTER
DIR:    Gustav Hofer and Luca Ragazzi (Italy)

CURRENT ENERGY FILMMAKER AWARD: CRUDE
DIR:    Joe Berlinger (USA)

MPS STUDIOS TEXAS FILMMAKER AWARD: ST. NICK
DIR:    David Lowery (USA)

SHORT: PRINCESS MARGARET BLVD.
DIR:    Kazik Radwanski (Canada)

HONORABLE MENTION: OIL CHANGE
DIR:    Todd Luoto

HONORABLE MENTION: NEXT FLOOR
DIR:    Denis Villeneuve

STUDENT SHORT: HUG
DIR:    Khary Jones (USA)

ANIMATED SHORT: CHICKEN COWBOY
DIR:    Stephen Neary (USA)

AUDIENCE AWARDS:

NARRATIVE: SKIN
DIR:     Anthony Fabian (UK/South Africa)
Cast:     Sophie Okonedo, Sam Neill, Alice Krige

DOCUMENTARY: ROCK PROPHECIES
DIR:    John Chester (USA)

SHORT: LUCY: A PERIOD PIECE
DIR:    Julie Sagalowsky (USA)


2009 AFI DALLAS JURY MEMBERS:

NARRATIVE FEATURE JURY includes:

Richie Mehta
Richie Mehta is the director of 2008 AFI DALLAS Audience Award winning movie, AMAL. The film has since received multiple Genie nominations in Canada.  Previous films include SYSTEM OF UNITS and ANAMIKA.

Heather Matarazzo
Heather Matarazzo is an acclaimed actress known for her award winning performance in WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE.   Heather is also know for her role in THE PRINCESS DIARIES series and HOSTEL 2. She has also appeared on hit TV series such as LAW & ORDER, LIFE ON MARS and THE L WORD.


DOCUMENTARY FEATURE JURY includes:

Elvis Mitchell
Elvis Mitchell is a former film critic for The New York Times, and is currently the host of KCRW’s pop culture and film interview program “The Treatment.” Mitchell recently produced THE BLACK LIST with director Timothy Greenfield-Sanders. The film examines race, culture and the seeds of success through portraits of 20 influential African Americans.

Doug Pray
Doug Pray is documentary filmmaker and the director of ART & COPY, which screened at the 2009 AFI DALLAS International Film Festival in the Documentary Showcase. Past films include BIG RIG, SCRATCH and HYPE!


CURRENT ENERGY EARTH FRIENDLY JURY includes:

Current Energy
Current Energy is a Dallas-based company that provides energy efficient solutions that are environmentally friendly. The company was founded in 2001, anticipating the impact that energy deregulation would have on companies, and was recognized by the U.S. Department of Energy in the fall of 2007 with an Energy Innovators Award.

MPS STUDIOS TEXAS COMPETITION JURY includes:

David Pomes
David Pomes is the writer/director/producer o COOK COUNTY, which won the2008 AFI DALLAS MPS Studios Texas Filmmaker Award.  David quit his job as a lawyer to film his movie in Texas.

Meredith Stevens/MPS
Meredith Stephens is Vice President of Business Development at MPS Studios and served on the board of the Women in Film- Dallas and the former President of the Texas Motion Picture Alliance.

SHORT COMPETITION JURY includes:

John Magary
John Magary won the 2008 AFI DALLAS Short Jury Award for his film THE SECOND LINE. Past films include OUR NATIONAL PARKS and SITE IN FISHKILL CREEK.

David Zellner
David Zellner is an Austin filmmaker whose movie GOLIATH screened at the 2008 AFI DALLAS International Film Festival. Past films include AFTERMATH ON MEADOWLARK LANE, REDEMPTITUDE and FLOTSAM/JETSAM.

STUDENT COMPETITION JURY includes:

Bent-Jorgen Perlmutt
Bent-Jorgen Perimutt is the 2008 AFI DALLAS Student Short award winner for his movie THE VULNERABLE ONES (Les Vulnerables).

Ben Levin
Andy Anderson is an accomplished artist and filmmaker who served as Chair of the Art and Art History Department at University of Texas at Arlington, where he now continues as a Professor and Writer in Residence, teaching Introduction to Screenwriting, Advanced Screenwriting and the Narrative Film class.

ANIMATION COMPETITION JURY includes:

Henry Selick – Director, Tex Avery Award winner
Henry Selick is the director, production designer and screenplay adapter for CORALINE, the first stop-motion animated feature film ever produced in stereoscopic 3-D.  His feature film directorial projects, including the iconic NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS and JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH.

Brandon Oldenberg/Reel FX
Brandon Oldenberg is Vice President of Creative at Reel FX Studios.

Reel FX Creative Studios, founded in 1993, is an award-winning creative studio where accomplished artists and preeminent technology converge to produce extraordinary creative solutions. Their services include visual effects, animation, design and creative editorial.

AFI DALLAS kicked off with the Opening Night Gala presentation of Rian Johnson’s THE BROTHERS BLOOM with Johnson, Adrien Brody and Rinko Kikiuchi in attendance on Thursday, March 26, 2009 at the AMC NorthPark in Dallas. The evening’s festivities also included the presentation of the AFI DALLAS Star Awards (designed from Steuben Crystal, courtesy of Neiman Marcus) to Brody.

Other highlights included a Centerpiece Screening of Guillermo Arriga’s THE BURNING PLAIN with Arriaga and Joaquim de Almeida in attendance, a screening of the cinema classic CHINATOWN with Robert Towne including the presentation of the AFI DALLAS Star Award to him prior to a special Q&A with film critic Richard Schickel and a special screening of THE LAST PICTURE SHOW with Peter Bogdanovich in attendance (and set to be honored with the AFI DALLAS Star Award the following day at the AFI DALAS Texas Day celebration). Also honored with the AFI DALLAS Star Award were Kathryn Bigelow, prior to a screening of her film THE HURT LOCKER and Rita Hayworth (presented posthumously), while Henry Selick was given the Texas Avery Award. The festival also featured Talk Show panels at the Nasher Sculpture Center and Speakeasy panels at the AFI DALLAS Festival Lounge.

The festival closed with AFI DALLAS Closing Night Gala presentations of Louis Psihoyos’s THE COVE and James Toback’s TYSON on Thursday, April 2, 2009 at the AMC NorthPark in Dallas attended by the two directors.

Other notable attendees at this year’s AFI DALLAS Film Festival included Alice Krige, Jordan Ladd, Patton Oswalt, Rob Siegel, Devon Aoki, Robin Wright Penn, Justin Kirk, Jeremy Renner, Jason Ritter, Jess Weixler, Patrick Warburton, Elaine Hendrix, Tiffany Shepis, Monique Parent, Carlos Cuaron, Matt Tyrnauer, Lou Gossett Jr., Doug Pray, Tim McCanlies and Janine Turner.

Overall, the 2009 AFI DALLAS International Film Festival showcased 81 features and 96 shorts for a total of 177 films from 22 countries.

AFI April Screenings

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 7, 2009

AFI APRIL SCREENINGS
FEATURE

AFI DIRECTORS SCREENING PRESENTATION OF “EVERY LITTLE STEP”


AFI UNCENSORED DOCUMENTARY SCREENING OF “THE GARDEN”

MONTH LONG SERIES INCLUDE
“SCREEN SIRENS” AT ARCLIGHT HOLLYWOOD
AFI “100 LAUGHS” AT ARCLIGHT SHERMAN OAKS

WHAT:
AFI announces April series of screenings featuring the “AFI Directors Screening” presentation of EVERY LITTLE STEP, the “AFI Uncensored Documentary Screening” of Scott Hamilton Kennedy’s Academy Award nominated THE GARDEN.

AFI’s April roster of screenings include top films selected for a “Screen Sirens”  series at ArcLight Hollywood as well as a selection of favorites from the AFI “100 Laughs” list to be screened at ArcLight Sherman Oaks.

AFI Directors Screening
Locaton: ArcLight Hollywood

April 14 –

EVERY LITTLE STEP
2008 96 MIN 35MM Rated PG-13

DIR: James Stern and Adam Del Deo

When the original stage production of A Chorus Line made its debut, in the wake of Vietnam and Watergate, it injected into the fractured landscape a heartbreaking saga of the underappreciated and the overlooked, in the guise of dancers auditioning for their chance to dance in a Broadway musical.

EVERY LITTLE STEP explores the incredible journey of the original show from ambitious idea to international phenomenon, while following the extensive audition process for a 2006 revival of A Chorus Line on Broadway.  The film captures the intimate and grueling behind-the-scenes moments—actors suffering emotional breakdowns, dancers executing the most exquisite pirouettes of their lives, and directors moved to tears by a new delivery of a line they’ve heard a thousand times before.

A Q&A with directors James Stern and Adam Del Deo will immediately follow the screening.

AFI Uncensored Documentary Screening
Location: ArcLight Hollywood

April 16 –

THE GARDEN
2008 80 MIN 35MM Not Rated

DIR: Scott Hamilton Kennedy
FEATURING: Danny Glover, Willie Nelson, Joan Baez, Daryl Hannah, Dennis Kucinich, Zak de la Rocha

THE GARDEN is an engaging and powerful look at the famous political and social battle over the largest community garden in the US located in South Central Los Angeles.

A follow-up to Kennedy’s award-winning documentary, OT: OUR TOWN, the film shows how the politics of power and greed (backroom deals, land developing, green politics, money) tragically intersect with working class families who rely on this communal garden for their livelihood.  Equal parts THE WIRE and HARLAN COUNTY, USA, THE GARDEN, exposes the     fault lines in American society and raises crucial and challenging questions about liberty, equality and justice for the poorest and most  vulnerable among us.

THE GARDEN was a 2008 Academy Award Nominee for Best Documentary Feature.

A Q&A with director Scott Hamilton Kennedy will immediately follow the screening.

The screenings are as follows:

AFI On Screen – AFI at ArcLight
Location:    ArcLight Hollywood

SCREEN SIRENS

April 1 – SHE DONE HIM WRONG – Mae West
April 8 – THE LADY FROM SHANGHAI – Rita Hayworth
April 15 – A PLACE IN THE SUN – Elizabeth Taylor
April 22 – THE BAREFOOT CONTESSA – Ava Gardner
April 29 – SOME LIKE IT HOT – Marilyn Monroe

AFI 100 LAUGHS
Location: ArcLight Sherman Oaks

100 LAUGHS
April 6 – DUCK SOUP
April 13 – ANNIE HALL
April 20 – YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN
April 27 – THE JERK

WHERE:

ArcLight Hollywood in the Historic Cinerama Dome, 6360 W Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA

ArcLight Sherman Oaks, 15301 Ventura Boulevard, Sherman Oaks, CA

IFFLA Announces Seminars/Jury

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 7, 2009


7TH ANNUAL INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL OF LOS ANGELES (IFFLA)
AND PRICEWATERHOUSECOOPERS
ANNOUNCE

“IN PRIME TIME: HOLLYWOOD’S SPOTLIGHT ON INDIA” SEMINARS

IFFLA RHYTHM VILLAGE PERFORMANCES

IFFLA ALSO ANNOUNCES THE FESTIVAL’S JURORS

SPECIAL SCREENING OF BIG PICTURES’ “SIKANDAR”


LOS ANGELES, CA, April 7, 2009 – The 7th Annual Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) and major sponsor PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP announce “In Prime Time: Hollywood’s Spotlight on India” seminars to take place in conjunction with the film festival at the Creative Artists Agency on Friday, April 24.

IFFLA also announces the lineup of jurors for the 2009 edition of the popular festival which runs April 21-26 at ArcLight Hollywood. Members include production executive, Paul Federbush; veteran independent filmmaker Rana Joy Glickman; NPR/KCRW journalist Matt Holzman; Emmy-winning director Richard Shepard; screenwriter Gill Dennis; Academy-Award® winning documentary filmmaker Mark Jonathan Harris; IDA Executive Director Michael Lumpkin; Raskin Peter Rubin & Simon Managing Director David Tenzer; actor Rupak Ginn; SHORTS INTERNATIONAL’s Linda “O.” Olszewski; and Sundance and Los Angeles Film Festival programmer Hebe Tabachnik.

The addition of a special screening of Big Pictures’ dramatic thriller SIKANDAR has been announced for the 2009 IFFLA film schedule. Written and directed by Piyush Jha (KING OF BOLLYWOOD, CHALO AMERICA), the film follows the events that occur after an innocent boy in Kashmir becomes embroiled in a power struggle between militant groups when he finds a gun on his way home from school. The film stars Parzaan Dastur, Madhavan, Sanjay Suri, Ayesha Kapoor and Arunoday Singh.

Held in the Ray Kurtzman Theater at CAA (2000 Avenue of the Stars, Los Angeles) on Friday, April 24 from 2:30PM – 5:30PM, IFFLA and PricewaterhouseCoopers will offer two separate panels focusing on Indian entertainment and filmmaking through the lens of the business community.

After opening comments by David Tenzer and remarks regarding the state of the Indian entertainment industry by Marcel Fenez, managing partner, global entertainment & media practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Smita Jha, director from the India entertainment and media practice, PricewaterhouseCoopers, attendees will have the opportunity to hear insightful discussions with executives from Disney, Fox, Hyde Park Entertainment, Film Independent, NFDC, Nuclear Mango Studios and Phat Phish – all of whom have produced or are in production for Indian-themed films for the international market with an Indian cast. Also participating in the panel discussions will be IFFLA honoree and Bollywood legend Anil Kapoor.

The panel topics are as follows:

PRODUCING INDIAN CONTENT FOR THE INDIAN AND INTERNATIONAL MARKET

MODERATOR:      Mike Goodridge, US Editor, Screen International

PANELISTS:

Ashok Amritraj, Chief Executive Officer, Hyde Park Entertainment                                                                                                            Jill Gwen, Chief Financial Officer, Fox Searchlight
Anil Kapoor, Actor (Slumdog Millionaire), Anil Kapoor Productions
Jason Reed, Executive Vice President, Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production

FILM FINANCING: CO-PRODUCTIONS AND ALTERNATIVES

MODERATOR:      Josh Welsh, Director of Talent Development, Film Independent

PANELISTS:

Karim Ahmad, Programming Manager, Independent Television Service (ITVS)
Sanjay Bhattacharjee, CEO Motion Picture Division, Phat Phish
Nina Gupta, Managing Director, National Film Development Corporation (NFDC)
Govind Menon, Co-President/Nuclear Mango Studios, Founder/Split Image Pictures

The panels will follow the presentation of the IFFLA Industry Leadership Awards to Richard Fox and Amit Khanna which takes place the day prior on Thursday, April 23 (as previously announced). Fox is the Executive Vice President of Warner Bros. International and heads up all of Warner Bros.’ non-US initiatives in all phases of the entertainment industry. Khanna is the Chairman of Reliance BIG Entertainment, the media arm of the $75 billion Ambani Group that recently completed its purchase of Dreamworks and announced that it would spend $1 billion on the Indian film and entertainment business. Presenting the awards will be Walt Disney International Chairman Andy Bird and Deborah Bothun, entertainment media and communications advisory leader, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. The award presentation will be made at the IFFLA Industry Leadership Award Luncheon at the House of Blues in West Hollywood. The event will also include a musical performance by Gingger Shankar.

Christina Marouda, IFFLA Festival Director said, “These seminars and the IFFLA Industry Leadership Awards are major business events for this festival which has always placed an emphasis on strengthening the bonds between the creative side of the Indian and Hollywood entertainment and film community with the business interests that can further their art.”

IFFLA’s popular Rhythm Village, presented by Rukus Avenue, will feature free public outdoor entertainment at the ArcLight Hollywood Cinemas courtyard April 22 – 25. Among the scheduled performances by the entertaining and eclectic talent assembled are the South Asian acapella group Andaaz; performing duo The Dyad; “conscious” music artist Hoodini; the desi outfit O.C.P.; IFFLA alumni and sketch performer Rasika Mathur; experimental fusion group, The Rhetoricalz; and singer songwriter and multi-instramentalist Tasneem Nanji.

Tickets are on sale now at ArcLight Hollywood Cinema’s box office located at 6360 W. Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood, CA and online at http://www.arclightcinemas.com.

For information on how to purchase tickets for the IFFLA Leadership Awards Luncheon and the IFFLA Seminars at CAA, visit http://www.indianfilmfestival.org/events.php.

For more information on IFFLA please go to http://www.indianfilmfestival.org.

Features Jury

Paul Federbush
Paul Federbush is a thirteen-year independent film production, development and acquisition executive. While Paul has spent the majority of his career working within the studio system, most recently as a founding member and Senior Vice President of Production and Acquisitions at Warner Independent Pictures (WIP), he has also served as a conduit between the studios and the worlds of independent and international film.  Some films acquired during his tenure at WIP include SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, PARADISE NOW, and GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK.

Rana Joy Glickman
Rana Joy Glickman rode into the film industry on horseback starting out as an equestrian stunt woman. Raised in NYC, Rana Joy was immersed in theater, film, photography, ballet, and music. She ultimately started producing, writing and directing. Her films have premiered at many festivals including Sundance, SXSW, Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Toronto and New York. Some of her films include: GOD SAID, “HA!”, KICKING AND SCREAMING, FULL TILT BOOGIE, FEMALE PERVERSIONS,  and SLEEP WITH ME. Her production company Shakrah Films is in post and development with a slate of captivating independent films.

Matt Holzman
An award-winning public radio arts and culture reporter, Matt Holzman is now the producer of The Business, public radio’s show about the business of show business heard locally on KCRW 89.9FM. He also comments on the state of the business with The Business Brief during KCRW’s afternoon broadcast of NPR’s All Things Considered and is the curator and host of Matt’s Movies, the station’s highly-regarded screening series for members. His opinions can be strongly swayed by a generous serving of homemade Tikka Masala.

Richard Shepard
Richard Shepard is an Emmy-Winning director (for the pilot of UGLY BETTY) of such movies as THE MATADOR with Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear, and THE HUNTING PARTY with Terrence Howard and Richard Gere. Besides UGLY BETTY, Richard directed the pilot for CRIMINAL MINDS. His latest film, I KNEW IT WAS YOU, a documentary about John Cazale (Fredo in THE GODFATHER), premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and will air on HBO in the fall.

Gill Dennis
Gill Dennis is a Master Filmmaker-in-Residence at the American Film Institute Conservatory. In addition to the 2005 film WALK THE LINE, he wrote the mini-series “Home Fires” for Showtime, which was selected by Time Magazine as among television’s Top Ten in 1987 and has received the Los Angeles Critics Circle Award for Distinguished Direction in the theater. Recently, Gill wrote THE SMALL BOAT OF GREAT SORROWS for Kennedy/Marshall, THE TATTOOED SOLDIER for Davids/Canton, and FOREVER with Tatia Pilieva for Present Pictures.

Documentaries Jury

Mark Jonathan Harris
Mark Jonathan Harris is an Academy-Award® winning documentary filmmaker, journalist, novelist, and film professor. Among the many documentaries he has written, produced and/or directed are THE LONG WAY HOME and INTO THE ARMS OF STRANGERS: STORIES OF THE KINDERTRANSPORT, both winners of an Academy Award® for Best Feature Length Documentary in 1997 and 2000, respectively.  Since 1983 Harris has taught filmmaking at the School of Cinema-Television at the University of Southern California, where he is a Distinguished Professor.

Michael Lumpkin
In January 2009 Michael Lumpkin took over the leadership of the International Documentary Association as its new Executive Director. He had previously served as both Executive Director of Frameline and Festival Director for the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.  He also co-produced the highly acclaimed documentary THE CELLULOID CLOSET.  Michael has participated as a competition juror for the Sundance Film Festival, and served in an advisory capacity for numerous film festivals around the world.

David Tenzer
David Tenzer is an entertainment lawyer, business consultant and content producer, with extensive experience in many sectors of the media industry. For more than 20 years, David worked at Creative Artist Agency as an executive in Motion Picture Business Affairs before moving on to head Television Business Affairs. As a television packaging agent, David was responsible for selling more than 40 produced series, movies and specials, with budgets in excess of $800 million. David currently is on the board of directors of the International Documentary Association and the Banff World Television Festival.

Shorts Jury

Rupak Ginn
Rupak Ginn’s love for acting started at a young age and followed him into college at Harvard University, where during his senior year, director Mira Nair offered him a supporting role in THE NAMESAKE. Upon graduation, he ventured into the off Broadway world of New York City theater before he moved to Los Angeles. While in Los Angeles, he landed a breakout role in Disney’s “The Cheetah Girls: One World”, where he played romantic lead Rahim, a Bollywood star. Rupak sits on Variety’s Power of Youth Advisory Board and volunteers with Aid Still Required in their campaign against genocide in Darfur.

Linda “O.” Olszewski
Linda “O.” Olszewski joined SHORTS INTERNATIONAL in January 2006 as co-head of global acquisitions.  She acquires for and leads SHORTS on iTUNES USA, UK & Canada, and acquires films for SHORTS TV, television broadcast, new media and airline clients. Her credits include co-founder/director of the DreamWorks Short Film Festival; worldwide acquisitions director for EVEO; head of shorts for THE HATCHERY; and senior programmer for the Palm Springs Short Film Festival.

Hebe Tabachnik
Hebe Tabachnik is a short film programmer for Sundance and Los Angeles Film Festival (LAFF), as well as a feature film Latin American Consultant for the LAFF and Palms Springs International Film Festival. She also serves on the selection committee and the Board of Directors for Dance Camera West.  She is also the Co-Founder and Vice President of Lokro Productions, Inc., a film production company established in 1999 which produced the 3-D World Film Expos in 2003 and 2006, the largest retrospectives on 3-D films ever presented in the U.S.

SHORTS…and to the point! Richard Gale (THE HORRIBLY SLOW MURDERER WITH THE EXTREMELY INEFFICIENT WEAPON)

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 1, 2009

Movie trailers have become such an accepted part of our collective movie-going experience that some us actually feel gypped if we miss a few due to a late arrival to the theater. If you haven’t ironically narrated your day’s activities with a ponderous baritone at least a few times in your lifetime then you must be Amish. Or Helen Keller. Because you have. Richard Gale’s THE HORRIBLY SLOW MURDERER WITH THE EXTREMELY INEFFICIENT WEAPON is a funny “preview” of a promised horror epic where a man faces the prospects of his demise at the hands of a relentless assailant armed with a lethal (well, maybe eventually…) spoon. It’s clever, it’s fun, and it delivers the promise of that title.

Will the typical movie trailer format ever not lend itself to being mocked?

Probably not.  The movie trailer is an awesome format for short parodies… and to me, so many horror films and thrillers are filled with the potential to be ridiculous– it’s fun territory to explore.

How many debates did you have with yourself along the lines of “too much spoon, not enough spoon”?

Great question– one of the biggest challenges of this film was that the humor comes from the monotony of the killer, but how do you make monotony entertaining, without it becoming truly monotonous and annoying?  It was decided in the editing.  I wanted to push the joke as far as humanly possible, and the hopefully the many location changes kept things interesting.

You took 22 days to shoot the short film because of all the locations required. Why not just shoot the 9 hour feature film that’s promised by the “trailer”? Or….did you?
We actually shot so much footage(for every second of screen time of the victim being hit by a spoon, there’s five to ten minutes of unused spoon-attack footage) I realized I can actually create a 90-minute “excerpt” from the 9-hour feature.  I plan to put it on the DVD for THE HORRIBLY SLOW MURDERER WITH THE EXTREMELY INEFFICIENT WEAPON, which will come out later this year.  But the 9-hour version?  Trust me, you really wouldn’t want to see that.  Even those who sat through all of Warhol’s Empire (6 hours of a single shot of the Empire State Bldg) couldn’t take it.

Brian Rohan, who plays the ‘Horribly Slow Murderer’ works as ‘Norman Bates’ on the Universal Studios Tour. Did you have to stop the tram in order to cast him?
No, but every time I call my friend Brian during the day when he’s at work, he’s at the Bates Motel.  After a few minutes of talking he says to me, “hold on, I hear a tram coming, just a sec,” and puts the phone down.  After a minute, I can hear forty people screaming in terror in the distance, and a moment later, he returns to the phone and says “sorry about that.”  He has the coolest day job ever.

The “trailer” claims the film contains 20,000 spoonfuls of terror. Would counting each spoonful of terror bring with it it’s own special brand of horror?
I don’t believe anyone has yet attempted to count every spoon hit in the film, but I know I will not attempt it.  Someone suggested making a drinking game around the spoon hits in the film, but that would be truly dangerous.  People would get alcohol poisioning before it was over.  Fear the spoon.

What will happen in the feature-length sequel to THE HORRIBLY SLOW MURDERER WITH THE EXTREMELY INEFFICIENT WEAPON?

The Spoonkiller will take on Freddy, Jason, Leatherface and Pinhead from HELLRAISER, and beat them all into submission with his unstoppable relentlessness, coupled with his relentless unstoppability.

By the way, for info on the Horribly Slow Murderer and updates on the upcoming Special Edition DVD, visit http://www.richard-gale.com <http://www.richard-gale.com&gt;

TEN BURNING QUESTIONS – Tze Chun (CHILDREN OF INVENTION)

Posted in Uncategorized by johnwildman on April 1, 2009

Tze Chun’s CHILDREN OF INVENTION is a timely film. The story of a Chinese immigrant mother desperately trying to make enough money to support her two kids with little to no help and a wandering eye toward one dubious entrepreneurial opportunity after another is familiar. Too familiar. And that’s why it will last and still resonate long after our country rights itself toward the next period of prosperity. Because that elusive dream of instant wealth and relief from the struggle and embarrassment of not being able to pay rent or properly feed your kids will always be here – for someone. And the fear of that happening to all of us and the curiosity of how we would respond to that bleak situation – remains with everyone. But the magic of the film is that Chun illustrates the other hopeful side effect of that struggle in the persons of the mother’s young son and daughter – and that is the spirit of innovation to survive.

1          There is a strong autobiographical inspiration behind this film. Why was it so important for you to make this film?
It’s always hard to say why a certain script will inspire you while you’ll lose interest in another.  I will say that as we were making the film, the cast (Cindy, Michael, and Crystal) continued to inspire me and kept the material fresh.

When I wrote the film, I was writing a personal story about the world I grew up in – a subculture of Americans trying to get-rich-quick in order to get themselves out of a financial hole. I didn’t foresee the current crisis. But with the economy tanking now and foreclosures going through the roof, it seems like everyone’s living through some version of what the Chengs go through in the film.

I hope this film can be a reminder that we’ve had bad times before, individually and as a country, but we’ve always made it out fine.

2            At this point in your life, are you comfortable with people who exhibit that get-rich-quick mentality or does your experiences growing up make you recoil from that?
The only thing that disturbs me is the get-rich-quick mentality without regard for hurting or exploiting others. But there are tons of harmless and brilliant get-rich-quick schemes that I’m very envious that I didn’t come up with — the Million Dollar Homepage, for example.

3            What is the best thing about having your film at AFI DALLAS?

Being eligible for the 25k prize! Also, hanging out with (programmers) James Faust and Sarah Harris.

4            Be honest here – Did you invest any money with Bernie Madoff?

Independent filmmakers generally have little to no money to invest in anything other than their own films, so luckily, no.

5            What should a director do that they never think of until it’s too late?

Wear layers when you go on set.  Directing a movie is stressful, and your body temperature fluctuates a lot!

6            What’s the most underappreciated job on the set?

Hmm… The most underappreciated job on set has got to be the first Assistant Director, who keeps the crew on schedule. People always complain that the first AD isn’t giving their department enough time to get everything perfect before the shot is taken, but no one thanks them when they get to go home on time.

7             What kind of responsibility comes with being one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film last year?
The main responsibility that came with that article was having to buy a dozen copies of the magazine and mailing them to various aunts and uncles in Asia.

8             Do you still have one of those spinning spaghetti fork inventions the kids make in the film? And if so have you ever used it?
Haha, they kept on breaking on set.  We went through a bunch of them. They work well for ramen, but spaghetti will break it in two.

9            What was the last film that made you cry? Laugh out loud?

Last film that made me cry was Spike Lee’s WHEN THE LEVEES BROKE. I hardly ever cry at narrative films, but I will cry at almost any documentary about any serious subject.  Also at E.T.  The last film that made me laugh out loud was H.P. Mendoza’s FRUIT FLY, which I just saw at the San Francisco Int’l Asian American Film Festival.

10    Popcorn or candy?

As I get older, I can’t bring myself to eat anything in the theater… I just don’t need those calories.


DVD EXTRA

You and Anna Boden seem to keep trading off on each other’s skills: She edited WINDOWBREAKER so you painted the poster for HALF NELSON. Now she has edited CHILDREN OF INVENTION. So, what do you owe her now?
God, I think I may be all out of skills to trade. We edited the movie at Anna’s apartment, so I also owe Ryan Fleck for kicking him out of his own place for an entire month. Maybe I’ll clean their bathroom or something.