Category Archives: Film Festival

AFI FEST 2021 Starts Tonight!

Posted by Larry Gleeson

Final preparations were taking place bright and early this morning at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., as the American Film Institute’s (AFI) 2021 AFI FEST, Nov.10-14th, is slated to open tonight with the World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! starring Andrew Garfield.

The American Film Institute’s AFI FEST 2021 Production Crew begin preparations at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 10th, 2021, for tonight’s Opening Night World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! (Photo by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

The American Film Institute’s AFI FEST 2021 Production Crew begin preparations at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 10th, 2021, for tonight’s Opening Night World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! (Photo by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

The American Film Institute’s AFI FEST 2021 Production Crew begin preparations at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 10th, 2021, for tonight’s Opening Night World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! (Photo by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

The American Film Institute’s AFI FEST 2021 Production Crew begin preparations at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 10th, 2021, for tonight’s Opening Night World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! (Photo by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

On Thursday, the Red Carpet Premieres continue with a sizzling POWER OF THE DOG directed by Jane Campion and starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Jesse Plemons and Kirsten Dunst. The performances led by Cumberbatch and strongly supported by Plemons and Dunst make this a “don’t miss” film. Campion is a front runner for her second screenwriting Oscar and may well make it a twofer ala Chloe Zhao with Nomadland – Writing and Directing!

More to come as the best in global cinema is about to get underway! Stay tuned…

The American Film Institute’s AFI FEST 2021 Production Crew begin preparations at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 10th, 2021, for tonight’s Opening Night World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! (Photo by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

Tickets to in-person and virtual screenings are available on FEST.AFI.com.

 

AFI FEST 2021 Starts Tomorrow!

Posted by Larry Gleeson

The best in global cinema starts tomorrow!

Powerful, enlightening, heartbreaking and heartwarming. Experience it all at AFI FEST 2021. Opening night kicks off tomorrow with the World Premiere of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s tick, tick…BOOM! And on Thursday, the Red Carpet Premieres continue with THE POWER OF THE DOG directed by Jane Campion and starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Jesse Plemons and Kirsten Dunst.

Don’t miss all of the screenings launching virtually!

Buy your tickets to in-person and virtual screenings today on FEST.AFI.com.

SWAN SONG

World Premiere

In this intimate sci-fi drama starring two-time Academy Award® winner Mahershala Ali and eight-time Academy Award® nominee Glenn Close, the moral complexities of cloning force a man to examine everything he knows about love, loss and happiness. Feature directorial debut from Academy Award® winner Benjamin Cleary. Screening in person Friday, November 12 at 7:30 p.m.

 

PARALLEL MOTHERS

In this powerful exploration of how generations and families are held together amongst the greatest challenges, Spanish auteur Pedro Almodóvar’s latest film follows two new mothers (Penélope Cruz and Milena Smit) whose bond unravels in complicated and surprising ways that neither of them expected. After the screening at the TCL Chinese Theatre, join us for a special conversation with director Pedro Almodóvar and The Wrap’s Alonso Duralde. Screening Saturday, November 13 at 2:00 p.m.

TO WHAT REMAINS

This powerful documentary follows Dr. Pat Scannon and a team of professionals, volunteers and other veterans searching for those left behind in forgotten battles. AFI FEST is honored to host the World Premiere of this remarkable film on November 11 to celebrate all U.S. veterans. Screening in person Thursday, November 11 at 5:00 p.m and virtually beginning November 12.

AHED’S KNEE

Spinning wildly around such complex questions as the moral obligation of a citizen whose country is becoming increasingly oppressive and censorial, and the inherent privilege in speaking out against such injustices, the latest from celebrated Israeli filmmaker Nadav Lapid is a provocation as intimate as it is extreme. Screening in person on Friday, November 12 at 4:30 p.m.

(Sourced from AFI News)

The Week of AFI FEST 2021: Festival Programming Intern Payton Ewalt Picks

Posted by Larry Gleeson

By Festival Programming Intern Payton Ewalt

I’d never imagined that the extent of my connection with AFI would go farther trying to complete the AFI 100 Greatest American Films list, but I was beyond lucky to participate in an internship this semester that allowed me to work closely with the amazing AFI FEST Programming team.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been privileged enough to screen incredible films, work with the film database and be a part of a wonderful team that immediately welcomed me and taught me everything to know about AFI FEST.

As a first-time festivalgoer, I’ll admit I’ve never been more excited for anything than to finally see how this all comes together!

From this year’s festival lineup, I’ve had far more than a few favorites, nevertheless, here are my top three short films:

MON AMI QUI BRILLE DANS LA NUIT

A ghost struck with memory loss makes an ephemeral friendship with Arthur, a human, and learns patience in its journey to the afterlife. Minimalist animation with striking colors are combined with the seamless blending of animation over realistic stills for a unique experience. This story becomes a film that makes you feel held in its comforting storytelling. It’s the ghost story that ghosts deserve to have, and one I loved watching. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 2 | November 12, 6:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SHARK

A film that makes you wish your intuition would be wrong. A man who loves practical jokes marries a girl who loves them just the same, but their story continues with some anxiety-ridden twists. With a wonderful cast and set to beautiful scenery, this makes for an entertaining short that plays off the rest of the films in Shorts Program 4 perfectly and shouldn’t be missed! Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 4 | November 13, 2:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

ONLY THE MOON STANDS STILL (明月依旧)

Johnson Cheng’s heartwarming and heartbreaking film beautifully captures another facet of the Chinese-American experience through the relationship of a mother and daughter who choose to sacrifice for each other through trying circumstances. Grief, love and tradition are intertwined in this piece to transcend a culturally specific experience that becomes a part of a shared history for any audience. An absolute must-see! Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 3 |  November 12, 9:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

With health and safety being a top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated.  Learn more about AFI’s annual film festival celebrating the best in global cinema at FEST.AFI.com.

Individual tickets and passes to AFI FEST 2021 are currently available on FEST.AFI.com. AFI Members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.

BECOME A MEMBER

(SOURCE: AFI News)

The Week of AFI FEST 2021! Programmer Picks

Posted by Larry Gleeson

HollywoodGlee celebrating the start of the 2019 AFI FEST presented by Audi. (Photo credit: Larry Gleeson)

With the 2021 AFI FEST starting this week, here are the programming team’s top picks:

Sarah Harris – Director of Programming, AFI Festivals

PETITE MAMAN

You may not see a more magical and charming coming-of-age story this year than PETITE MAMAN. Céline Sciamma adds to her masterful portfolio with a simple story of a mother and daughter relationship. Eight-year-old Nelly – mourning the recent death of her beloved grandmother – meets a girl building a tree fort, like her mother once did. Without spoiling the mystery, this film evokes a timeless and enchanting moment – one of transition, emotional development and compassion – when we begin to understand others. As we continue to navigate daily anxiety or doubt, PETITE MAMAN feels like an exhilarating breath of fresh air. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 1:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

THE FIRST WAVE

While we are living in a post-vaccinated and variant-driven pandemic, it is imperative to process this moment in history – this moment we are still collectively living in. Matthew Heineman’s THE FIRST WAVE documents one of New York City’s hardest hit hospitals as the COVID-19 pandemic peaked in Spring 2020, with doctors, nurses and patients fighting to survive. This powerful and intimate documentary reminds us how far we have come and how many lives have been affected. It is a therapeutic watch, forcing us to confront the harsh reality of the disease, creating space to grieve over our collective trauma and be an active witness to history. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 12, 4:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 12, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

Malin Kan – Programmer, AFI Festivals

AHED’S KNEE

Israeli auteur Nadav Lapid’s breakout THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER (2014) was a revelation, with bursts of a new cinematic language, expressive cinematography and a barely contained frenetic energy. AHED’S KNEE returns to and intensifies this approach within a meta-narrative that poses complex, radical and even personal questions surrounding national identity, masculinity and the moral obligation of an artist. It’s so smart! Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 4:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

ÎNTREGALDE

Radu Muntean’s latest could potentially be described as a critique of altruism under capitalism, but all of that seems momentarily less urgent than the larger concern as to whether our three characters will survive the night trapped in the bitter cold wilderness. Romanian New Wave filmmakers are masters at illustrating that people doing their best is simply not good enough when the system has been poisoned. All of that is here, entrancing and brimming with dark humor and wit. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 14, 7:45 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

THE GIRL AND THE SPIDER

Oh, how patiently I have awaited Ramon Zürcher’s follow-up to THE STRANGE LITTLE CAT (AFI FEST 2013)! Teaming with twin brother Silvan, THE GIRL AND THE SPIDER is the second installment in what they define loosely as a trilogy about human togetherness. Its distinct formal qualities are deeply captivating, nudging you into a different realm of perception, one more attentive to movement, to the profundity of the smallest, oddest moments and the way in which these create a hyper-specific energy or tension. No one makes films like this. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 8:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Eric J Moore – Manager, Programming Operations, AFI Festival

ONLY THE MOON STANDS STILL (明月依旧)

Writer/director Johnson Cheng returns to AFI with yet another incredibly moving film about the complexities of intergenerational families: a slice-of-life tale of three generations of Chinese women confronting the realities of having to shut down their family’s ballroom dance studio and bid farewell to a life that has defined them for so long. I love how the film tells a story of how time marches forward, whether you are ready or not, and how it’s how you choose to face it that really determines who you are. Cheng’s previous film, LONELY BLUE NIGHT, deservingly won the audience award at AFI FEST 2020. Cheng’s star is rising, as people are noticing his impressive work – for example, producer/director/actress Lena Waithe joined this project as an Executive Producer! I dare you to watch this lovely film and not feel a tear or two welling up in your eyes. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 3 |  November 12, 9:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

BABYBANGZ

In British-Nigerian filmmaker Juliana Kasumu’s sophomore documentary short, we meet the incomparable Anastasia Ebel, the owner of the BABYBANGZ hair salon, located in Mid-City, New Orleans. I love how through a mix of captured conversations with Ebel and her patrons, along with stunning tableaus of the women sporting their impressive coiffes in verdant Louisiana landscapes, a warm and supportive community of Black women is revealed. These women love their home of New Orleans but are also not shy to reflect on the important issues: like race, gender, gentrification and identity. Kasumu achieves an intimacy with her subjects that isn’t easy to gain when entering such a personal and insular world. The BABYBANGZ salon chairs are special, a place where the women feel seen as Ebel provides a space where natural hair can be respected and cared for holistically. For me, the film masterfully tackles some pretty heavy topics, while somehow still making you feel pleasantly embraced. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 1 |  November 12, 3:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

Julia Kipnis – Programmer, AFI FEST

HIT THE ROAD

HIT THE ROAD is filmmaker Panah Panahi’s standout feature debut – singular, surprising and unlike any other film in the 2021 AFI FEST program. An endearing yet frenzied family of four – an overprotective mother, a hobbling, nonchalant father, a mysteriously anxious older brother and a scene-stealing, rambunctious younger brother – traverse an expansive Iranian landscape in a rented SUV on a cryptic road trip filled with dark humor, absurdism and charismatic performances. With a knack for portraying wholesome family dynamics and witty banter, Panah Panahi has certainly inherited the filmmaking gene from his father, Iranian auteur Jafar Panahi (3 FACES, TAXI). A bold, breakout debut from an assured new voice in world cinema and an impressive addition to the already monumental, illustrious collection of films hailing from Iran. A profound discovery and one of my top five films of the year! Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 3:45 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

MEDUSA

MEDUSA is Anita Rocha da Silveira’s vibrant homage to classic horror-satire and Argento-esque, supernatural giallo films. Mariana (played with verve by Mari Oliveira) is part of a virtuous Christian girl gang in Brazil that is hellbent on publicly shaming sinful women and posting humiliating videos of their repentance to social media. Deeply seeded carnal desires bubble to the surface and topple over in this cathartic narrative which fuses the darkly morbid with the sublimely feminine. With lush performances and an infectious score, MEDUSA is a fierce and pointed critique of evangelical fanaticism as well as the ways in which society at large crucifies brazen, liberated women. Witnessing the devout slowly shed their saintly conduct and become their most primal selves is certainly worth the watch. Perhaps there’s a snake-haired sinner hiding in all of us… Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 13, 8:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Tickets and Passes on sale here for AFI FEST 2021

 

AFI FEST 2021: Feature Films Screening Virtually

Posted by Larry Gleeson

AFI FEST 2021 is offering some of this year’s outstanding feature films and shorts programs virtually! Join in for AFI FEST 2021, Nov. 10-14, 2021. Learn more about the films below and visit FEST.AFI.com for more curated lists, filmmaker videos, and more.

CITIZEN ASHE

Following the virtual and theatrical screenings, watch a special conversation with director-producer Rex Miller and director Sam Pollard moderated by AFI FEST Programmer Julia Kipnis.

Born and raised in a segregated Virginia, Arthur Ashe rose to the top of the overwhelmingly white world of tennis in the 1960s to achieve many firsts as the most prevalent Black man in the sport. Reticent early in his career to address racial strife in America until the events of 1968, Ashe became an outspoken civil rights activist in the fight against racial discrimination, South African apartheid, and later the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS. This insightful documentary includes exclusive interviews with Ashe’s family, Black activists, and tennis cohorts Billie Jean King and John McEnroe. With striking archival footage and previously unheard audiotapes, FEST alum Sam Pollard (SAMMY DAVIS, JR.: I’VE GOTTA BE ME) and Rex Miller’s latest film celebrates the inspirational life of this groundbreaking tennis champion and humanitarian. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 1:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

THE FIRST WAVE

While we are living in a post-vaccinated and variant-driven pandemic, it is imperative to process this moment in history – this moment we are still collectively living in. Matthew Heineman’s THE FIRST WAVE documents one of New York City’s hardest-hit hospitals as the COVID-19 pandemic peaked in Spring 2020, with doctors, nurses, and patients fighting to survive. This powerful and intimate documentary reminds us how far we have come and how many lives have been affected. It is a therapeutic watch, forcing us to confront the harsh reality of the disease, creating space to grieve over our collective trauma and be an active witness to history. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 12, 4:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 12, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

HIT THE ROAD

In this fascinating, standout debut from Panah Panahi, son of acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi (TAXI, 3 FACES), an endearing yet frenzied family of four is on a mysterious road trip to an unknown destination. An overprotective mother, a nonchalant father, an anxious older brother, and a scene-stealing, rambunctious younger brother pack themselves and their sickly dog into an SUV as they traverse an expansive Iranian landscape. Brimming with charismatic performances and a darkly humorous family dynamic, Panahi takes us on an unforgettable journey that is as profound as it is absurdist. A breakout feature from a bold and assured new voice in world cinema. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 3:45 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT

Adapted from Adrian Tomine’s acclaimed graphic novel, PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT weaves a breezy tapestry of modern love stories. Beautifully realized in crisp black-and-white cinematography, the electrifying, multicultural 13th arrondissement sets the stage for a panoramic tale of four young lovers. Lucie Zhang delivers a breakout performance as free-spirited Émilie, who begins a casual relationship with her new roommate Camille (Makita Samba). Noémie Merlant (PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE) plays wide-eyed student Nora, whose new life in Paris is complicated when she is accidentally mistaken for cam girl Amber Sweet (Jehnny Beth). Stepping away from his usual genre fare, Jacques Audiard, along with script collaborators Céline Sciamma and Léa Mysius, brings to life the sprawling dreams of desire and human connection in the city of love. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 11, 8:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

PETITE MAMAN

After the death of her grandmother, eight-year-old Nelly goes to her mother’s childhood home as her parent’s sort through the estate. Nelly explores the nearby woods where her mother, Marion, used to play as a child and finds the tree fort she’s heard stories about for years. After Nelly’s mother suddenly leaves the next morning, Nelly meets a girl her own age in the woods, building a fort. Following her masterpiece film PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE, Céline Sciamma crafts an enchanting and poetic coming-of-age story. Modest and poignant in its approach, PETITE MAMAN beautifully explores grief, memory, and imagination through a child’s eyes. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 1:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SIMPLE AS WATER

The impact of humanitarian crises knows no real borders. The Syrian civil war has devastated its people, causing refugees to migrate far and wide in an effort to survive. Academy Award®-winning director Megan Mylan (LOST BOYS OF SUDAN; SMILE PINKI) documents just a handful of the courageous families affected by the conflict and the efforts to rebuild their lives in new surroundings. From Germany, Greece, Turkey, and across the ocean to America, these families dream for a better future far away from the traumas caused in their homeland and endured during their treacherous journeys. SIMPLE AS WATER puts faces to a catastrophe that is often too extreme to put into any words. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 11, 4:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

TO WHAT REMAINS

World Premiere

Over 200 aircraft were shot down over the island of Palau in the South Pacific during World War II. In the early 1990s, Dr. Pat Scannon went to Palau to help a dive team locate a Japanese trawler sunk on a mission by future President George H.W. Bush during the war. With a successful discovery, the trip gave Scannon the vision to create Project Recover, an organization with a mission to bring home missing-in-action World War II veterans.

This powerful documentary follows Scannon and a team of professionals, volunteers and other veterans searching for those left behind in forgotten battles. Led by scientific data and personal accounts of war, the team’s perseverance has provided recognition and closure for families over three decades. AFI FEST is honored to host the world premiere of this remarkable documentary to celebrate all U.S. veterans on November 11. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 11, 5:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 12, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

VERA DREAMS OF THE SEA (VERA ANDRRON DETIN)

North American Premiere

Unassuming sign language interpreter Vera (Teuta Ajdini) lives a quiet life alongside retired husband Fatmir in their modest Pristina apartment. Happy to be a vessel for others to navigate the world, her hopes for her daughter and granddaughter’s future are intrinsically linked to the family’s newly valuable country house. But when her husband takes his own life and his cousin Ahmet begins insisting that Fatmir had promised him the rural home, Vera suddenly finds herself trapped in a deeply patriarchal culture where the word of men is final. Unyielding to increasingly violent pressure, Vera discovers how deep the corruption in men’s hearts can run, as well as the strength to stand her ground in this taut drama from director Kaltrina Krasniqi. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person  |  November 13, 7:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 13, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

You might also be interested in…

SHORT FILM PROGRAMS – Screening virtually

Curated from hundreds of entries, this year’s short films highlight unique voices from around the planet – 34 films presented in five programs. And although the films are short – none longer than 23 minutes – each still proves that these emerging and established filmmakers can push the form of storytelling in inventive, challenging, and sometimes hilarious ways.

 

SHORTS PROGRAM 1

Following the virtual program, AFI Festivals Shorts Programmer Eric Moore leads a conversation between filmmakers Louise Monlaü (THE DEATH CLEANER), Diana Cam Van Nguyen (LOVE, DAD), Juliana Kasumu (BABYBANGZ), Alexandra Matheou (A SUMMER PLACE).

ZONDER MEER: A boy has disappeared and may have drowned. Five-year-old Lucie is trying to understand what is going on around her. How long can you hold your breath?

MISERY LOVES COMPANY: One night, Seolgi is lying on a grass field with friends. A shooting star falls, and dark and intrusive thoughts hit her, and her melancholy blooms into “flower people.”

NALUJUK NIGHT: Every January 6th, families in the Inuit community of Nain, Canada, celebrate Nalujuk Night, when eerie figures in tattered fur clothing arrive to reward the good and punish the bad.

THE DEATH CLEANER (EL LIMPIADOR): For a forensic cleaner in Mexico City, healing is at the core of his service.

LOVE, DAD (MILÝ TATI)a; She finds letters full of love her dad wrote her years ago.

BABYBANGZ: BABYBANGZ visualizes the story of Anastasia Ebel, owner of a natural hair salon in Mid-city, and her mission to foster opportunities for intentional reflection, for herself and her community.

A SUMMER PLACE: On the day of Tina’s birthday, she is ready to give up on everything until an extraordinary encounter changes her life.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 3:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SHORTS PROGRAM 2

Following the virtual program, AFI Festivals Shorts Programmer Eric Moore leads a conversation between filmmakers Bar Cohen (HER DANCE), Sean Wang (H.A.G.S.), Cosmo Collins Salovaara (ENVIAR Y RECIBIR), Sorayos Prapapan (NEW ABNORMAL), Güzin Kar (YOUR STREET).

HER DANCE (RIKUD HASSIDI): After not being invited to her sister’s wedding, Aya, a transwoman, shows up by surprise on a Shabbat night at the Orthodox Jewish community where her family lives.

H.A.G.S: https://fest.afi.com/2021/short-film-competition-2021/h-a-g-s/

ENVIAR Y RECIBIR: A warehouse worker at a fast-fashion company forms an attachment to a piece of damaged inventory.

NEW ABNORMAL: Based on a true story, NEW ABNORMAL is a reflection on human life during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as under the Emergency decree. USA Premiere.

MON AMI QUI BRILLE DANS LA NUIT: A ghost loses their memory after being struck by lightning. They meet Arthur, who tries to help them.

YOUR STREET (DEINE STRASSE): The grey present of an industrial area is being charged with its past, linked to a tragic episode in the history of Germany. Are public memorials collective remembrance or repression?

SANDSTORM (MULAQAT): Zara shares a sensual dance video with her virtual boyfriend, who blackmails her. She begins her search for the strength to reject the confines of a patriarchal society.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 6:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SHORTS PROGRAM 3

Following the virtual program, AFI Festivals Shorts Programmer Eric Moore leads a conversation between filmmakers Sam Davis and Rayka Zehtabchi (ARE YOU STILL THERE?), Malika Zouhali-Worrall (VIDEO VISIT), Federico Torrado (YORUGA), Gabriel Herrera (MOTORCYCLIST’S HAPPINESS WON’T FIT INTO HIS SUIT), Michelle Uranowitz and Daniel Jaffe (SALES PER HOUR), Johnson Cheng (ONLY THE MOON STANDS STILL).

ARE YOU STILL THERE?: On a hot day, Safa’s car battery dies, leaving her stranded in a strip mall parking lot. When her mom arrives, the two struggle to jump-start a car.

VIDEO VISIT: Each week, people visit the Brooklyn Public Library to video call incarcerated loved ones. A story of two mothers and their sons, and the librarians who keep the families connected.

YORUGA: A lonely old man pays a visit to Yoruga, one of the last animals on Earth.

MOTORCYCLIST’S HAPPINESS WON’T FIT INTO HIS SUIT (AMOTOCICLISTA NO LE CABE LA FELICIDAD EN EL TRAJE): He sits proudly on his motorbike, encompassed in majestic red and the dazzling admiration of others. A playful re-enactment with reversed roles that targets the hubris of colonial conquerors.

SALES PER HOUR: SALES PER HOUR tells the story of a young woman who faces a moral dilemma when she witnesses a sexual encounter at the clothing store where she works.

ONLY THE MOON STANDS STILL (明月依旧): Three generations of Chinese women say goodbye to their family ballroom dance studio. Executive produced by Lena Waithe, starring Shirley Chen and Mardy Ma.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 9:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SHORTS PROGRAM 4

Following the virtual program, AFI FEST Programmer Julia Kipnis leads a conversation between filmmakers Zahida Pirani (EL CARRITO), Claudrena N. Harold (PRIDE), Eliane Esther Bots (IN FLOW OF WORDS), Stephanie Camacho Castillas (MANO SANTA), Nash Edgerton (SHARK), Siyou Tan (STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE).

EL CARRITO: Nelly slogs through another unsuccessful day of street vending in Queens, New York. Determined to improve her circumstances, she makes a risky business decision that ends in misfortune. World Premiere

PRIDE: An aspiring writer finalizes stories for “Pride,” a student-run newspaper. Over a hectic two days in the early 1990s, she puts the finishing touches on the upcoming issue.

ANXIOUS BODY: Living things, artificial things, geometry shapes, and lines. When these different things encounter, a new direction is born.

IN FLOW OF WORDS: The narratives of three interpreters of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, who interpreted shocking testimonies without regard for their own feelings and personal histories. North American Premiere.

MANO SANTA: A grandfather harbors his runaway grandson after fleeing the constraints of home.

SHARK: SHARK follows the continuing adventures of Jack, who loves to prank. But in his latest relationship, he may have finally met his match.

SOFT ANIMALS: Two ex-lovers cross paths in a train station.

STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE: In Singapore, where even vapes are illegal, three rebellious schoolgirls are caught smoking by the principal. Their revenge prank takes a sinister turn. North American Premiere

Screening in-person |  November 13, 2:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

SHORTS PROGRAM 5

Following the virtual program, AFI Festivals Shorts Programmer Eric Moore leads a conversation between filmmakers Elizabeth Lo (MISTRESS DISPELLER), Urška Djukićz (GRANNY’S SEXUAL LIFE), Karolina Kajetanowicz (GREEN), Suzannah Mirghani (AL-SIT), and Mitch Kalisa (PLAY IT SAFE).

PLAYTIME (GIOCHI): A mother wants to play with her son. A boy wants to find out what his friend is giving a girl. A cat has disappeared. But these are only games. North American Premiere.

MISTRESS DISPELLER: A professional “mistress dispeller” works with a married couple struggling with infidelity in contemporary China. World Premiere.

GRANNY’S SEXUAL LIFE (BABIČINO SEKSUALNO ŽIVLJENJE): A trip into grandmother’s youth and the memories of her intimate life illustrate the status of Slovenian women in the first half of the 20th century. USA Premiere.

GREEN (ZIELEŃ): Roadside greenery is created to be driven past, not to be in. Geometrical, artificial, and overgrown by weeds. Your body is the same, dragged through life instead of living it.

AL-SIT: In a cotton farming village in Sudan, Nafisa has a crush on Babiker, but her parents have arranged her marriage to Nadir, a young Sudanese businessman. Can Nafisa choose for herself?

PLAY IT SAFE: Jonathan is out of place in his drama school. Pigeonholed and typecast in parts, Jonathan decides to demonstrate to his peers their prejudices during a class role-play exercise.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 4:45 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

With health and safety being a top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated.  Learn more about AFI’s annual film festival celebrating the best in global cinema at FEST.AFI.com.

Individual tickets and passes to AFI FEST 2021 are currently available on FEST.AFI.com. AFI Members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.

(Source: AFI News)

AFI FEST 2021: LGBTQ Films

Posted by Larry Gleeson

AFI FEST 2021: LGBTQ Films

Pride comes in many forms. And there’s a lot to be proud of with AFI FEST films exploring people along the queer spectrum! The AFI FEST 2021 lineup has no shortage of incredible films that are sure to pique interest. These films touch on history and activism, uncovering fascinating and inspiring stories alongside personal and emotional ones, celebrating unsung personalities and shedding light on beautiful subcultures. See stories in the concert hall, in the Puerto Rican jungle, a German prison, a small Italian apartment, and the many other places explored within this section. This diverse collection of features and shorts is a veritable rainbow of offerings that are not to be missed.

BERNSTEIN’S WALL

For the better part of the 20th century, composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein was a household name due to his music in WEST SIDE STORY (for which he won an Academy Award®), his role as Musical Director of the New York Philharmonic and his work on television making classical music accessible to the general public. This documentary follows the life of this extraordinary first-generation son of Ukrainian-Jewish parents, from his early life in New England, to the many “firsts” he claimed during his early orchestral career and his constant advocacy of worthy causes. The narration uses Bernstein’s own words, harvested from his many recorded appearances on the radio, television and in-person interviews, which offers a strikingly intimate perspective. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 3:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

CODED

The coded advertisements of legendary early-20th century gay illustrator J.C. Leyendecker quietly, but directly, acknowledged a community that was forced to live in the closet. Screens as part of Meet The Press Shorts 1. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 11, 8:30 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

COMPARTMENT NO. 6 

Finland Official International Feature Film Oscar® Submission

A young Finnish woman escapes an enigmatic love affair in Moscow by boarding a train to the arctic port of Murmansk. Forced to share the long ride and a tiny sleeping car with a larger-than-life Russian miner, the unexpected encounter leads the occupants of Compartment No. 6 to face major truths about human connection. COMPARTMENT NO. 6 shared the Grand Prix award at Cannes in 2021 and has been selected as Finland’s official entry for the 94th Academy Awards®. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 11, 10:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

ENVIAR Y RECIBIR

A warehouse worker at a fast fashion company forms an attachment to a piece of damaged inventory.  Screens as part of SHORTS PROGRAM 2. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 6:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

GREAT FREEDOM 

Austria Official International Feature Film Oscar® Submission

Winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival and nominated for the Queer Palm, Franz Rogowski [who starred in the AFI FEST films HAPPY END (2017) and I WAS AT HOME, BUT…(2019)] captivates as the lovesick Hans in Sebastian Meise’s second narrative feature 10 years following his debut (STILL LIFE). Incessantly imprisoned for breaking Germany’s “Paragraph 175” – a law that makes homosexuality a crime – Hans’ life unfolds in postwar Germany over three periods of time and with three distinct relationships. He has a brief but passionate connection with Leo, a soft-spoken schoolteacher, and a longer, more serious romance with Oskar. But Hans’ most complex and profound relationship is with Viktor, his homophobic cellmate, who after 20 years grows to be his closest confidante. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 14, 4:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

HER DANCE

After not being invited to her sister’s wedding, Aya, a transwoman, shows up by surprise on a Shabbat night at the Orthodox Jewish community where her family lives. Screens as part of  Shorts Program 2. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 12, 6:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

MANO SANTO

A grandfather harbors his runaway grandson after fleeing the constraints of home. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 2:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT

Adapted from Adrian Tomine’s acclaimed graphic novel, PARIS, 13TH DISTRICT weaves a breezy tapestry of modern love stories. Beautifully realized in crisp black-and-white cinematography, the electrifying, multicultural 13th arrondissement sets the stage for a panoramic tale of four young lovers. Lucie Zhang delivers a breakout performance as free-spirited Émilie, who begins a casual relationship with new roommate Camille (Makita Samba). Noémie Merlant (PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE) plays wide-eyed student Nora, whose new life in Paris is complicated when she is accidentally mistaken for cam girl Amber Sweet (Jehnny Beth). Stepping away from his usual genre fare, Jacques Audiard, along with script collaborators Céline Sciamma and Léa Mysius, brings to life the sprawling dreams of desire and human connection in the city of love. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 11, 8:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PLAYTIME

North American Premiere

A mother wants to play with her son. A boy wants to find out what his friend is giving a girl. A cat has disappeared. But these are only games.  Screens as part of Shorts Program 5. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 4:45 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

PRIDE

An aspiring writer finalizes stories for “Pride,” a student-run newspaper. Over a hectic two days in the early 1990s, she puts the finishing touches on the upcoming issue. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 2:15 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

A SUMMER PLACE

On the day of Tina’s birthday, she is ready to give up on everything until an extraordinary encounter changes her life. Screens as part of Shorts Program 1. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person | November 12, 3:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

 

tick, tick…BOOM!

Opening Night / World Premiere 

Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award® winner Lin-Manuel Miranda makes his feature directorial debut with tick, tick…BOOM!, an adaptation of the autobiographical musical by Jonathan Larson, who revolutionized theater as the creator of “Rent.”

Jon is a young theater composer who’s waiting tables at a New York City diner in 1990 while writing what he hopes will be the next great American musical. Days before he’s due to showcase his work in a make-or-break performance, Jon is feeling the pressure from everywhere: from his girlfriend Susan, who dreams of an artistic life beyond New York City; from his friend Michael, who has moved on from his dream to a life of financial security; amidst an artistic community ravaged by the AIDS epidemic. With the clock ticking, Jon is at a crossroads and faces the question everyone must reckon with: What are we meant to do with the time we have? Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 10, 7:30 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

 

WILDHOOD

US Premiere

The road of life can be difficult as Link, an indigenous Mi’kmaw teen, certainly knows. Fortunately, he has his younger half-brother, Travis, by his side. When their abusive father is discovered to be hiding an unimaginable secret about Link’s long-lost mother, the brothers begin a challenging and revelatory. Following the breadcrumbs of information along the way, the brothers begin a journey in search of her. During their quest, they are joined by Pasmay, also two-spirit and Mi’kmaw, known in the community for his dancing. Link soon discovers that Pasmay’s kindness and generosity are infectious. What starts as a bleak story of despair for Link, turns into a charming trek of self-discovery and young love. Writer/director Bretten Hannam’s second feature is overflowing with visual and emotional beauty. Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 13, 4:00 p.m.  | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

 

With health and safety being top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated.  Learn more about AFI’s annual film festival celebrating the best in global cinema at FEST.AFI.com.

Individual tickets and passes to AFI FEST 2021 are currently available on FEST.AFI.com. AFI Members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/

(Sourced from AFI FEST news)

AFI FEST 2021: Scary Good Films

Posted by Larry Gleeson

With Halloween or Hallowe’en, also known as Allhalloween, All Hallows’ Eve, or All Saints’ Eve, this weekend the AFI FEST delivers with this selection of shorts and features sure to satisfy all the thrill-seekers and horror lovers. Imagine yourself in a candy-colored nightmare, trapped in a dark, Romanian forest or in shark-infested waters with these scary good films!

GOOD MADAM

South African auteur and AFI FEST alum Jenna Cato Bass (HIGH FANTASY) delivers a haunting, psychological thriller steeped in remnants of postcolonialism and apartheid. Tsidi (Chumisa Cosa) and her daughter must move in with her estranged mother, Mavis (Nosipho Mtebe), a domestic housekeeper who has worked for her “Madam” Diane since Tsidi was a young girl. While living in Diane’s large and foreboding house, Tsidi is appalled with her mother’s extreme dedication and servitude even after all these years. Gradually, Tsidi’s daughter and then Tsidi herself become submissive to the whims of the rarely seen Madam. Co-written and produced with collaborator Babalwa Baartman, Bass employs stylish imagery and an ominous tone to bring this chilling narrative to life. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 13, 5:00 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

HOLY EMY

North American Premiere

Largely keeping to themselves after their mother is forced to leave Athens and return to the Philippines, Emy and Teresa live a simple, quiet life centered around attending mass, working in a fish market and avoiding the locals. But soon the outside world encroaches as Teresa begins seeing a Greek co-worker and Mrs. Christina, their mother’s former boss, lures Emy into working as a caregiver, a ruse to tap into Emy’s very unique, and very ancient, gifts. When Teresa’s boyfriend sees Emy crying tears of blood, she runs the risk of her abilities being exposed, sending her on a shocking trajectory in this whip-smart feature debut – a potent and visceral tale of race, class and tradition filtered through body and social horror – from filmmaker Araceli Lemos. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 14, 7:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

ÎNTREGALDE

Radu Muntean’s latest could potentially be described as a critique of altruism under capitalism, but all of that seems momentarily less urgent than the larger concern as to whether our three characters will survive the night trapped in the bitter cold wilderness. Romanian New Wave filmmakers are masters at illustrating that people doing their best is simply not good enough when the system has been poisoned. All of that is here, entrancing and brimming with dark humor and wit. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person |  November 14, 7:45 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

MEDUSA

MEDUSA is Anita Rocha da Silveira’s vibrant homage to classic horror-satire and Argento-esque, supernatural giallo films. Mariana (played with verve by Mari Oliveira) is part of a virtuous Christian girl gang in Brazil that is hellbent on publicly shaming sinful women and posting humiliating videos of their repentance to social media. Deeply seeded carnal desires bubble to the surface and topple over in this cathartic narrative which fuses the darkly morbid with the sublimely feminine. With lush performances and an infectious score, MEDUSA is a fierce and pointed critique of evangelical fanaticism as well as the ways in which society at large crucifies brazen, liberated women. Witnessing the devout slowly shed their saintly conduct and become their most primal selves is certainly worth the watch. Perhaps there’s a snake-haired sinner hiding in all of us… Learn more about the film. 

Screening in-person |  November 13, 8:30 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

SHARK

SHARK follows the continuing adventures of Jack, who loves to prank. But in his latest relationship he may have finally met his match. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 4 |  November 13, 2:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE

North American Premiere

In Singapore, where even vapes are illegal, three rebellious schoolgirls are caught smoking by the principal. Their revenge prank takes a sinister turn. Screens as part of Shorts Program 4. Learn more about the film.

Screening in-person as part of Shorts Program 4 |  November 13, 2:15 p.m. | Buy In-Person Ticket(s)

Virtual screening available beginning November 11, 12:00 p.m. PST | Buy Virtual Ticket(s)

With health and safety being top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated.  Learn more about AFI’s annual film festival celebrating the best in global cinema at FEST.AFI.com.

Individual tickets and passes to AFI FEST 2021 are currently available on FEST.AFI.com. AFI Members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.

)Sourced from AFI News)

Telluride Film Festival 2021 – Part II

Posted by Larry Gleeson

A Special Tribute to powerhouse actor, Peter Dinklage, generated massive buzz before his world-premiere in the new film musical, Cyrano. Dinklage is a four-time Emmy Award-winner for his work as Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones and has turned in several strong performances on the big screen in Station Agent, Elf, and I Care A Lot.

In Cyrano Dinklage solidly carries the weight of the lead as Cyrano, a man who feels undeserving of romantic love. The film is breathtakingly beautiful with lavish costuming, epic battles, and spirited musical numbers. Numerous pundits are mouthing Dinklage’s performance as Oscar-caliber – the question being is it enough for this record-setting Emmy recipient to become an Oscar recipient? Cyrano is coming out for the holidays. A “don’t miss” viewing.

 

 

Benedict Cumberbatch was in the house at the Werner Herzog Theatre for a screening of the Jane Campion written, The Power of the Dog, based on a 1967 novel of the same name by Thomas Savage. Campion seems to be a shoo-in to receive her second Oscar for screenwriting for The Power of the Dog. The screenplay might not be the only Oscar talk as Cumberbatch, always a strong screen performer, delves deeply into the soul of his character, Phil Burbank, delivering a dark presence un-before seen from Benedict.

 

Actor Benedict Cumberbatch addresses the audience at the Werner Herzog Theatre before the screening of The Power of the Dog at the 48th Telluride Film Festival in Telluride, Colorado, September 5, 2021. (Photo credit: Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

 

 

Last but certainly not to be thought of as the least, is the new Wes Anderson love letter to journalists at an American newspaper outpost in a fictional French city, The French Dispatch. The film brings to life a series of short stories that had appeared in the magazine, “The French Dispatch Magazine.” The ensemble cast includes Timothy Chalamet, Bill Murray, Leas Seydoux, Tilda Swinton, Owen Wilson, Lyna Khoudri, Steve Park, Matthieu Almaric, Henry Winkler, and Frances McDormand. Sharply written and oh….what a cast!

The Telluride Film Festival has become known as a launch for numerous award season campaign debuts. And this year was no exception. Stay tuned for Part III!

 

Writer/Director, Kenneth Branagh introduces his latest work, Belfast, at the Werner Herzog Theatre during the 48th Telluride Film Festival in Telluride, Colorado, September 5, 2021. (Photo credit: Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)

 

Telluride Film Festival 2021 – Part I

Posted by Larry Gleeson

Spending my birthday at the 48th Telluride Film Festival proved a remarkably pleasant experience. Receiving a warm hug from a lovely young woman who had dressed herself on Halloween as Marcel the Shell with Shoes On, I engaged Marcel the Shell with Shoes On lead, director, writer/creator Jenny Slate in a polite and deeply poignant conversation on the Telluride Film Festival and her latest work with long-time collaborator Dean Fleischer-Camp.

Marcel the Shell With Shoes On (2021), is a feature-length mockumentary on the scruffy mollusk and  life as it is known. Sharp writing and a creative narrative, and spot-on stop-motion animation made Marcel the Shell With Shoes On ) an audience favorite. According to news reports negotiations for the film’s distribution and exhibition are ongoing. Slate and Fleischer-Camp are adamant Marcel gets its due. I couldn’t agree more. Highly recommended!

Kenneth Branagh’s Belfast is an impeccable work based on Branagh’s own upbringing in Belfast in the late 1960’s. The soundtrack features a plethora of Van Morrison’s greatest hits adding joy and optimism to the challenging circumstances a young couple is facing with their young children.. Beautiful actors and a compelling storyline deliver what appears to be an early favorite for the year’s best film.

Sean Baker ( Tangerine, and The Florida Project) and A24’s Red Rocket, featuring Simon Rex, a standout media personality, Brenda Deiss, and Bree Elrod, tells the tail of a Mikey Saber, a washed-up porn star who returns to his small Texas hometown and attempts to make a fresh start. Rex turns in a tour de force performance as Mikey Saber. Baker’s strongest work to date. Not for the faint of heart. Earthy.

Telluride has become known as a launch for numerous award season campaign debuts. And this year was no exception. Stay tuned for Part II.

(***Above media by Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee featuring the 2021 Telluride Film Festival Opening Night Art Sculpture)

 

The Twenty-Second Annual Ojai Film Festival Expands Its Reach to the World of YouTube.

Posted by Larry Gleeson

The Twenty-Second Annual Ojai Film Festival expands its reach from independent films to the world of YouTube. A panel discussing and exploring the free-flowing creativity of the worldwide YouTube phenomenon takes place on Friday, November 5 at 7 p.m.. The premiere recipient of the Outstanding YouTube Filmmaker Award will accept the honor at the Festival’s Awards Brunch on Sunday, November 7 at 11 a.m..

John Branagan, Festival Board Member and filmmaker, spearheaded the development of this award. Branagan sports over 200 films and television shows on his resume and continues to work as a stuntman/stunt coordinator. Some of his latest credits include the feature film “Searching,” starring Jon Chu, the ninth season of the FX show “American Horror Stories,” and a miniseries for Hulu titled “Pam & Tommy.”

“These filmmakers not only supply their YouTube channel with compelling content,” Branagan said. “They shoot, edit and do the post work from remote locations under not so ideal conditions.”

Criteria for the award involves presentation of real stories documenting life, travel and adventures highlighted by challenging settings. Trials faced while shooting also add to consideration. The winning filmmaker must exhibit professionally produced video, sound, and post-production.

Branagan recently announced the five finalists for the 2021 Outstanding YouTube Filmmaker Award:

Jon Lambert

The 2021 award focuses on the world of motorcycle adventure and travel. Festival President Jon Lambert said, “Ojai is one of the top ‘go to’ destinations for motorcyclists in California so this focus is a ‘natural.’”

Tickets are on sale and available here!

(Source: Ojai Film Festival News)