Tag Archives: Actor

Casey Affleck to Receive the Desert Palm Achievement Award

Palm Springs, CA (November 11, 2016) – The 28th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Casey Affleck with the Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actor at its annual Film Awards Gala for his performance in Manchester By the Sea. Each year the festival selects an actor and actress to receive this award. The Film Awards Gala, hosted by Mary Hart, will be held Monday, January 2 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The Festival runs January 2-16.

“Casey Affleck delivers his finest performance in Manchester By the Sea, playing a Boston screen-shot-2016-11-24-at-4-21-37-pmjanitor living a lonely and isolated existence,” said Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. “He has earned rave reviews from critics and is sure to garner awards attention. It is our honor to present the Desert Palm Achievement Award, Actor, to Casey Affleck.”

Past actor recipients of the Desert Palm Achievement Award include Jeff Bridges, Bradley Cooper, Johnny Depp, Daniel Day-Lewis, Colin Firth, Matthew McConaughey, Sean Penn, Brad Pitt and Eddie Redmayne. In the years they were honored, Bridges, Day-Lewis, McConaughey, Penn and Redmayne went on to win the Academy Award® for Best Actor, while Cooper, Firth and Pitt received Oscar® nominations.

Affleck stars in Manchester by the Sea, the latest film from award-winning writer and director Kenneth Lonergan, about the life of a solitary Boston janitor who is haunted by his past when he returns to his hometown to take care of his teenage nephew. The story of the Chandlers, a working-class family living in a Massachusetts fishing village for generations, Manchester by the Sea is a deeply poignant, exploration of the power of familial love, community, sacrifice and hope.  The film also stars Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, Lucas Hedges, Gretchen Mol and C.J. Wilson.

Casey Affleck was nominated for an Academy Award®, a Golden Globe Award® and a Screen Actors Guild Award for his performance in the character drama The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. His film credits include Gone Baby Gone, Gerry, Good Will Hunting, To Die For, Interstellar, Out of the Furnace, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, Steven Soderbergh’s Oceans trilogy, Triple 9, and The Finest Hours.

About The Palm Springs International Film Festival
The Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) is one of the largest film festivals in North America, welcoming 135,000 attendees last year for its lineup of new and celebrated international features and documentaries. The Festival is also known for its annual Film Awards Gala, an upscale black-tie event attended by 2,500, honoring the best achievements of the filmic year by a celebrated list of talents who, in recent years, have included Ben Affleck, Javier Bardem, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Bradley Cooper, George Clooney, Daniel Day-Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio, Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, Matthew McConaughey, Julianne Moore, Brad Pitt, Eddie Redmayne, Julia Roberts, David O. Russell, Meryl Streep, and Reese Witherspoon.

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For more information, call 760-322-2930 or 800-898-7256 or visit www.psfilmfest.org.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Steven Wilson / Lauren Peteroy
B|W|R Public Relations
212-901-3920
steven.wilson@bwr-pr.com / lauren.peteroy@bwr-pr.com

David Lee
Palm Springs International Film Society
760-322-2930
david@psfilmfest.org

(Source:www.psfilmfest.org)

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FILM CAPSULE: A Life Begins (Monty, 2010): Canada

Reviewed by Larry Gleeson.

img_5876Viewed during the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) 2011.

A Life Begins, part of the SBIFF’s Focus on Quebec, follows first time film director Michel Monty as he tells a heartfelt story based on his real life experiences.
The film is set in Montreal during the early 1960’s. Monty opens the film with a tracking shot as he follows the action of Etienne Langevin’s father, switches to a POV of Etienne Langevin legs to a matching medium close up, equivocating Etienne’s close attentiveness to his father’s persona. Several scenes show Etienne mimicking his father’s actions and movements. To Etienne his father, Dr. Jacques Langevin, is worthy of such hero worship. The audience is treated to an intimate, playful bedroom scene between Dr. Langevin and his wife Louise, played by the soul-capturing beauty, Julie Le Breton. Monty goes to a close-up of an ear. Anticipation builds. Lips move-in. No words are uttered. We hear the banter of well adjusted seemingly normal children. It appears as though we are witnessing the interactions of a highly functional, representational Quebec family.
However, we quickly come to find out, Dr. Langevin is robbing the pharmacy to feed his out-of-control drug addiction. To his family Dr. Jacques is a model father figure. We see the family out for a joyous Sunday drive with the top down in a used red convertible the Doctor recently purchased. The kids throw their arms up in the air – roller-coaster style foreshadowing the cacophony of events that will transpire in this dramatic film.
Dr. Langevin’s father, seems to be hypercritical of his son and happens to be the hospital’s president. He confronts Dr. Langevin and regretfully tells his son he is fired. Dr. Langevin is unable to disclose to his lovely wife his addiction to drugs and the fact he has been fired because of his drug addiction. The next morning Dr. Langevin, having spent the night in a alcohol fueled and drug-induced stupor clamors up the basement stairs and goes into cardiac arrest dying as the youngest child playfully fires imaginary gunshots into his father.
Louise distraught and financially strapped sells the family house and moves into an apartment with her three children. She goes off to work leaving Etienne home alone. Etienne is an inquisitive young man and has found his father’s stash of morphine, uppers and downers. He begins experimenting with the drugs and a tumultuous life surfaces. Louise trudges on displaying depth and strength of character.
In the Q & A that followed the screening Monty shared that in the family he was the youngest child and that Etienne was his older brother. He chose to tell the story through his brother’s eyes as he felt that his brother had the loneliest time after their father’s passing. Interesting to note that the famous song by rock and roll legend Harry Nilson, “One is the Loneliest Number,” played as the credits rolled.
The film was Monty’s first venture into filmmaking. He was able to shoot the film in 28 days. Due to budgetary and time constraints Monty created a shot list allowing for 2-4 shots per scene for coverage.
I really enjoyed this film. The acting was excellent with limited dialogue. As a result, actions, by Director Monty’s design, told the story. Warm-heartedly recommended.

Paramount Pictures’ FENCES release scheduled for December 25th

fences_posterFENCES, a new film from Paramount Studios,  is scheduled to open in theaters December 25, 2016. The film is directed by Denzel Washington from a screenplay by August Wilson, adapted from Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning play. See trailer below.

The film stars Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Jovan Adepo, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Russell Hornsby, Mykelti Williamson, and Saniyya Sydney.

The film is produced by Denzel Washington, Todd Black and Scott Rudin.

Early Oscar speculation has a best actor nom for Washington for his lead role as a failed baseball player who faces discrimination as a garbage collector.

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(Press materials provided by Paramount Studios)

M. Night Shyamalan’s SPLIT Added to AFI FEST 2016

Universal Pictures’ SPLIT — from Academy Award®-nominated director/writer/producer M. Night Shyamalan and Academy Award®-nominated producer Jason Blum — will play as a Special Screening at AFI FEST 2016 presented by Audi. Watch the trailer below.

Written and directed by Shyamalan, SPLIT is an original thriller that delves into the mysterious recesses of one man’s fractured, gifted mind. Though Kevin (James McAvoy) has evidenced 23 personalities to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher (Betty Buckley), there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy), Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him — as well as everyone around him — as the walls between his compartments begin to shatter apart.

Following last year’s THE VISIT, Shyamalan reunites with producers Blum and Marc Bienstock and executive producers Ashwin Rajan and Steven Schneider for the film, which also stars Jessica Sula and Haley Lu Richardson.

SPLIT joins the already announced Special Screenings BRIGHT LIGHTS: STARRING CARRIE FISHER AND DEBBIE REYNOLDS (DIRS Fisher Stevens, Alexis Bloom), THE COMEDIAN (DIR Taylor Hackford), LION (DIR Garth Davis), MISS SLOANE (DIR John Madden), MOANA (DIRS Ron Clements, John Musker), PATERSON (DIR Jim Jarmusch) and TONI ERDMANN (DIR Maren Ade).

Free tickets to AFI FEST will be available on AFI.com beginning November 1. For the full slate of previously announced titles screening at the festival, visit the Film Guide, now online here.

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(Source:www.blog.afi.com)

FILM REVIEW: Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock, 1954): USA

Reviewed by Larry Gleeson. Viewed at the Mann Chinese theater as part of the AFI film festival, Hollywood, Calif.

alfred_hitchcockRear Window, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, is a brilliantly filmed movie, adapted from Cornell Woolish’s, “It had to be Murder”, of a man, L.B. Jeffries, an injured war photographer/correspondent, played by James Stewart of It’s a Wonderful Life (1946),  who believes he has witnessed a murder in the apartment complex where he lives. Hitchcock uses this window view to film his entire story. John Michael Hayes wrote the screenplay. His other credits include The Man who Knew too Much (1956) and To Catch A Thief (1955). George Tomasini provides the editing as he also worked on other Hitchcock classic films Psycho (1960) and North by Northwest (1959). The viewer is treated to a look into all the neighboring dwellings as seen from the protagonist’s, L.B. Jeffries’ window – seemingly many New York apartment dwellers partake in the alluring fascination of peeping through neighboring windows. The cinematography is credited to Robert Burks. Bruks other works include Vertigo (1958) and North by Northwest (1959). The production design was done by Sam Comer and Ray Moyer of Sunset Blvd (1950) and Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961) fame. James C. Katz is listed as producer having produced the epic Spartacus (1960) and Vertigo (1958). Paramount Pictures with over six thousand pictures to its credit, is listed as the production company.

Hitchcock, known for powerhouse suspense films like Psycho (1960), Birds (1963) and North by Northwest (1959), shows cooped up newlyweds, a buxom young skimpily-clad, shapely exercise-crazed maiden, a lonely, love sick lady, a socially-inclined, romantic-minded musician and a seemingly ordinary housewife married to a seemingly normal traveling salesman, whom Stewart’s character, Jeffries, claims has murdered the wife. Jeffries doesn’t actually see the murder. Nevertheless, he is convinced the salesman murdered his wife after witnessing several highly acute, suspicious events . Stewart’s facial expressions and what appear to be exaggerated eye movements key the viewer in on action as Stewart plays the role of Jeffries, a wounded war hero who confined to a wheelchair and who passes the time by peering out his rear window at the neighbors as they go about their everyday lives.  Jeffries also uses his camera with a telescopic lens to provide up-close detail of his subjects and he frantically uses exploding flashbulbs as he attempts to thwart the murdering salesman’s efforts to silence Jeffries.

Hitchcock  introduces and develops several strong and powerful characters, most notably in the form of Grace Kelly, later known as the Princess Consort of Monaco,  as Jeffries love interest. Kelly’s striking good lucks coupled with her patient, unrequited love for Jeffries provide the viewer a glimpse into Hitchcock’s portrayal of a 1950’s socialite. She credibly plays the role of murder investigator with a refreshing vim and vigor. In addition, Wendell Corey plays a rather uninteresting yet wary detective who also happened to be a war buddy of Jeffries. Thelma Ritter plays Stella, Jeffries’ physical therapist, who drops by for daily therapy and, at times colorful banter. And, Raymond Burr plays the antagonist, a wife-murdering,  traveling salesman who dwells across from the rear window. Rear Window is splendid film, an Academy Award Runner-up for Best Picture to the American drama film, On the Waterfront (1954), about longshoreman corruption and mob violence starring Marlon Brando, I recommend wholeheartedly.

AFI FEST 2016 Cinema’s Legacy Lineup

AFI FEST 2016 presented by Audi has announced its annual Cinema Legacy’s lineup. This section highlights classic movies and, this year, is comprised of nine iconic titles from film history, including Orson Welles’ masterpiece CITIZEN KANE (1941), along with films featuring the three female film trailblazers adorning this year’s festival key art: CARMEN JONES (1954), starring Dorothy Dandridge; THE HITCH-HIKER (1953), directed by Ida Lupino; and PICCADILLY (1929), starring Anna May Wong. Additionally, the Cinema’s Legacy section will present AFI Conservatory alumna Julie Dash’s (Class of 1974) groundbreaking DAUGHTERS OF THE DUST (1991).

CINEMA’S LEGACY

CARMEN JONES – Dorothy Dandridge stars in the title role that made her the first African-American woman to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar®. DIR Otto Preminger. SCR Harry Kleiner. CAST Harry Belafonte, Dorothy Dandridge, Pearl Bailey, Olga James, Joe Adams, Brock Peters, Roy Glenn, Nick Stewart, Diahann Carroll. USA

CITIZEN KANE – Orson Welles’ classic — number one on AFI’s list of the greatest films of all time — follows the tragic life of newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane. DIR Orson Welles. SCRS Herman J. Mankiewicz, Orson Welles. CAST Joseph Cotten, Orson Welles, Linda Winters, Agnes Moorehead, Ruth Warrick, Ray Collins, Erskine Sanford, Everett Sloane, William Alland, Paul Stewart, George Coulouris. USA

DAUGHTERS OF THE DUST – Filmmaker Julie Dash (AFI Class of 1974) weaves lush imagery and a poetic narrative in this tale of three generations of African-American slave descendants on a journey to the North. DIR Julie Dash. SCR Julie Dash. CAST Adisa Anderson, Barbara-O, Cheryl Lynn Bruce, Cora Lee Day, Geraldine Dunston, Vertamae Grosvenor, Tommy Hicks, Kaycee Moore. USA

FLIRTING WITH DISASTER – In David O. Russell’s sophomore feature, Ben Stiller, Téa Leoni and Patricia Arquette play an oddball trio careening across America. DIR David O. Russell. SCR David O. Russell. CAST Ben Stiller, Patricia Arquette, Téa Leoni, Mary Tyler Moore, George Segal, Alan Alda, Lily Tomlin, Richard Jenkins, Josh Brolin. USA

THE HITCH-HIKER – A deranged hitchhiker takes two all-American Everymen as hostages in this gripping film noir classic. DIR Ida Lupino. SCR Ida Lupino, Collier Young, Robert Joseph. CAST Edmond O’Brien, Frank Lovejoy, William Talman, José Torvay, Sam Hayes, Wendell Niles, Jean Del Val, Clark Howat. USA

IL SORPASSO – A classic road trip comedy meets the most fabulous of odd couple pairings in Dino Risi’s IL SORPASSO, considered the holy grail of commedia all’italiana. DIR Dino Risi. SCRS Dino Risi, Ettore Scola, Ruggero Maccari. CAST Vittotio Gassman, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Catherine Spaak, Claudio Gora, Luciana Angiolillo. Italy

MIFUNE, THE LAST SAMURAI – This thoughtful, elegant documentary on Japanese cinema’s greatest actor, Toshiro Mifune, is a cinephile’s dream. DIR Steven Okazaki. SCRS Steven Okazaki, Stuart Galbraith IV. FEAT Keanu Reeves, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, Kyôko Kagawa, Toshio Tshuchiya. Japan

PICCADILLY – Anna May Wong, the first Chinese-American movie star, is astonishing as a dishwasher promoted to the headlining act at outré London club Piccadilly. DIR Ewald André Dupont. Presented with live DJ accompaniment from Ms. 45s. SCR Arnold Bennett. CAST Gilda Gray, Anna May Wong, Jameson Thomas, King Ho-Chang, Cyril Ritchard, Charles Laughton. UK

SPEEDY – Special engagement of the silent film classic, presented with original live music accompaniment by DJ Z-Trip. The great Harold Lloyd stars in the title role as a man who hilariously tries to save the last horse-drawn streetcar in an increasingly modern New York City. DIR Ted Wilde. SCRS John Grey, Lex Neal, Howard Rogers, Jay Howe, Albert De Mond. CAST Harold Lloyd, Ann Christy, Bert Woodruff, Babe Ruth, Brooks Benedict. USA

Tickets to Cinema’s Legacy screenings will be available on AFI.com beginning November 1.

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(Source: www.blog.afi.com)

FILM REVIEW: GIGOLA (CHARPENTIER, 2011)

Reviewed by Larry Gleeson. Viewed at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2011.

Gigola, directed by Laure Charpentier, is a French film with subtitles set in the early 1960’s Paris containing themes of adult sexuality and gender issues. The film made it’s debut at the Cannes Film Festival. From there Gigola was shown at the Hamburg Film Festival in Germany and finished out the year at the Paris Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, in Paris, France. The mise-en-scene is in Gigola is remarkable. The costumes, make-up, and lighting are spectacular conveying images reminiscent of That’s Entertainment (1974), and Moulon Rouge (2001).

The film opens with a teenage school girl named George, played by Lou Dillion, as a  young and slender coming of age debutante, and her teacher, an attractive mid 30ish woman. Playful background music provides energy for a highly sexually charged, sensual transaction between George and her teacher.

Charpentier jumps ahead to 1963 Paris nightlife scene. George’s boy friend has committed suicide. George has decided to withdraw from school and announces to the night-time partiers that she has flunked out of medical school seemingly intentionally.

Next time we see George she is in a Parisian bistro and we are introduced to a Carol Channing like character. George has reinvented herself.

A comment is made  to George, “You look like a gigolo.”

George coolly replies, “Gigola.”

We now see George as Gigola, the name she has given her new self. A well-to-do matron comes to the bistro and Gigola is into action. Dressed in a black tuxedo, Gigola escorts the matron onto the dance floor for a spin. Soon the pair leave the bistro together and head to the matron’s estate. With grace, elegance and a touch of class Gigola seduces the matron in an erotic bedroom scene with a snake-headed cane and white gloves.

Gigola, if nothing else, knows what she wants and she goes after it. She threatens to leave her new found matron unless she receives more money. The matron has already given Gigola a signet ring and a red MG convertible. The matron capitulates handing over to Gigola a large cache of currency. We now witness Gigola expanding her “business” with new girls working under her discretion.

Meanwhile, Gigola’s father, an opium addict, is squandering away the family’s estate as he cogently leads the life of a Parisian gentlemen. Eventually Gigola confronts her father brandishing a loaded revolver after repeatedly warning her father to stay away and, in turn, pleading with her mother to cut him off.

After an attempted suicide, Gigola finds herself under the care of a psychiatrist who bears a striking resemblance to her former teacher. She suggests having a baby to Gigola. Gigola is less than optimistic but the psychiatrist is able to connect with Gigola. Never one to miss an opportunity, Gigola deftly makes clear her intentions to the attractive psychiatrist. When the psychiatrist makes a “house call” Charpentier uses a wrestling take down move to portray the mixed emotions the psychiatrist has – she is attracted to Gigola but she is married and lives according to her principles as a married woman – a defining characteristic of the times. The psychiatrist cares about Gigola and they have dinner together where she tells Gigola that Gigola needs to let go.

Again without missing a beat Gigola moves deeper into the nightclub scene in Paris meeting a Mr. Tony Pasquale, a Sicilian. The two gain a mutual respect for each other and Tony ends up impregnating Gigola. Gigola has the baby and it seems as though Gigola has accepted normalcy and is conforming to societal norms. Gigola has left and George has come back.

However, before a sigh of relief can be expressed, in tromps the cast from the bistro. A raucous scene ensues in the hospital room with Gigola consenting to have her locks cut – a symbol of Gigola’s re-emergence.

The film closes with Gigola adhering to her somewhat circular, misguided idealism. She has turned over the care of her child to her mother and she is shown in tuxedo walking down a Parisian cobblestone alley way with her back back to the camera just before sunrise.

Amazing Friday night film for the right audience. Gigola is currently available on Amazon Prime.

When to speak and when to shut up: the art of a Japanese ‘benshi’

Posted by Larry Gleeson

By Alisa Yamasaki

The silent films screened in Japan from the 1920s to ’40s were never completely silent. Katsudo-shashin benshi, or benshi for short, delivered live narration that provided everything an audience might need to appreciate a film — from commentary to translation. Derived from Japan’s many narrative art forms, benshi were an effective way to introduce cinema to Japanese audiences.

Though the era of silent films is gone, the art of narration lives on through a handful of professionals. Ichiro Kataoka is one of the country’s few active benshi, and he will provide narration for Tomiyasu Ikeda’s 1926 classic “Chushingura” at the Tokyo International Film Festival’s Special Night Event at Kabukiza Theatre. The event will also feature narration by guest benshi Ichiro Furutachi and a special performance by kabuki actor Onoe Kikunosuke.

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Modern day benshi, Ichiro Kataoka (Photo credit: Dan Szpara)

“I had known about benshi but I thought that it was a long lost profession,” Kataoka tells The Japan Times. “When I was 18, I happened to attend a benshi performance by Midori Sawato and it made me want to learn about being one.”

At age 38, Kataoka has built an impressive career out of the art. The professional benshi has narrated more than 300 films and has been invited to perform at events around the world.

“When I perform overseas, I’m asked to narrate classic Japanese films, but I do films from any country: Japanese, European, American, Chinese, anything,” Kataoka explains. Are non-Japanese films more challenging to narrate than domestic ones?

“There’s a specific pacing with classic Japanese films that makes it easier for benshi, since Japanese silent film directors were aware of the benshi and filmed their work with them in mind. With foreign cinema, mostly European, the director tries to convey as much as possible through the cinematography,” he says.

“At the end of the day whether it’s Japanese or not, the film I’m narrating is old. But I’m a modern person and my audience comprises modern people, so I need to constantly think about how to communicate the old film from one modern person to another — what themes to bring up and what scenes to emphasize — in order to present it as a terrific piece.”

While Kataoka has a compelling tone and presence to him, he says it’s crucial for benshi to understand they don’t have the leading role.

“A good benshi always remembers when to shut up and let the images do the talking,” he says. “Silence can be more powerful than words.”

TICKET GIVEAWAY

Special Night Event at Kabukiza Theatre will be held on Oct. 27 and is sold out. However, The Japan Times has two pairs of tickets to give away to readers. To apply, send a postcard by Oct. 23 with your name, address, postal code, phone number and the word “TIFF” to the Life & Culture section of The Japan Times, 4-5-4 Shibaura, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-0023. To apply online, visit jtimes.jp/film.

(Source: www.japantimes.co.jp)

Chicago Film Festival Marks 52nd Year

Posted by Larry Gleeson

By Lisa Fielding

The Chicago International Film Festival is America’s longest running competitive film festival, and organizers are promising something for everyone this year.

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Michael Kutza, Founder and Director, Chicago International Film Festival. (Photo credit: Emily Oscarson)

“Young people films like ‘Trolls’ in 3D for kids, up to musicals like ‘La La Land,’ which is a big, Oscar potential, and we have a whole section on musicals. But really the festival is based on discovering new directors and honoring some of the old ones who’ve been here over the years,” says Michael Kutza, Founder and Artistic Director.

Kutza founded the CIFF in 1964 and has been bringing independent and foreign films to the masses for years.

“We do a mix of independent and Hollywood. We close with a big Hollywood film to tempt you to come see some of our foreign films. It’s a tough town, but we want to get you to see the world, and so we tempt you with Hollywood,” he says.

Kutza says not only does the festival educate fans about films they would never have seen otherwise, but the 15-day festival offers hundreds of feature films. It’s an opportunity to see many features before they are released.

“You want the best films, you want the winner of the Cannes Film Festival, Venice, Sundance, then you start with that. We go all over the world to find what’s best and bring it to film fans here in Chicago,” he says.

There will also be documentaries, films by first-time filmmakers, short-subject films, educational films, big name directors and actors along with films submitted for the Academy Awards.

There’s even a new section this year, an International Musical section.

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Programming Director Mimi Plauche, Chicago International Film Festival (Photo from www.tiff.ro.com)

“We found everything from an Israeli-Palestinian hip-hop musical. Three different Polish musicals were made this year, and we have two of them. It’s really kind of fun looking for and finding a whole new genre of films from around the world,” says Mimi Plauche, programming director.

This year’s main competition jury president is actress Geraldine Chaplin, daughter of Charlie Chaplin. She will join Kutza for a conversation about her career and the 23 days her famous father spent at Chicago’s Essanay Studios in 1915.

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Actress Geraldine Chaplin, daughter of Charlie Chaplin, will serve as the main competition jury president for the 52nd Chicago Film Festival. (Photo courtesy of Chicago International Film Festival)

“I was just in Cuba and spent ten days on a jury with Geraldine. I asked her if she’d ever been to Chicago and she said no. I told her to come and take part and we can honor you and you talk about your life and your dad’s films,” Kutza says.

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Directors Peter Bogdonovich, left, and Steve McQueen will be honored at the 52nd Chicago International Film Festival. (Photo credit: www.chicago.cbslocal.com)

This year, directors Peter Bogdonovich and Steve McQueen will be honored. The film fest opens on Thursday and runs through Oct. 27. For more information, click here.

(Source: www.chicago.cbslocal.com)

Filipino films garnering wider international attention

Filipino films have been garnering international recognition in recent years. “The Woman Who Left” by director Lav Diaz won the prestigious Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival last month.

In May, the Philippines’ Jaclyn Jose won best actress at the Cannes Film Festival.

CCTV’s Barnaby Lo reports this could be a new golden era in Philippine cinema.

It was a red carpet event, and rightly so. After its success in the international film festival circuit, “Ang Babaeng Humayo” or “The Woman Who Left” opened in the Philippines last week. The almost four-hour film about a woman seeking revenge for getting incarcerated for a crime she didn’t commit had won the prestigious Lion Award last month, the highest honor at the Venice Film Festival. But for its Filipino cast and filmmakers, it was both an exciting and nervous moment.

Today’s Filipino films have little to prove abroad, especially with the win of Lav Diaz’s latest epic at the Venice Film Festival. The real battle now is at home, where romantic comedies and commercial dramas still dominate the local movie industry.

While awards do not guarantee box office success, surely, they are a measure of where Filipino films are right now on the world stage.

(Source: www.cctv-america.com)