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Indie Entertainment Media – Oscars 2022 Special Edition

Oscar is alive and well, and this year…. she’s a woman! IEM’s awards issue showcases the “Oscar is a Woman”-themed cover photo shoot featuring Hollywood director/producer Jonathan Baker and international model Erika Stasiuleviciute. Baker has opened his mansion doors once again this year for his annual viewing soirée, collaborating with IEM and French Riviera Film Festival. Also in the issue is an exclusive interview with Danish director Martin Strange-Hansen, nominated for his live action short film “On My Mind,” a sneak peek at artist’s Eva Lanska’s new installation “The Existential Choice,” and a feature by Claude Brickell on architect to the stars Paul R. Williams. The issue also highlights the Women Filmmakers Showcase event taking place on the afternoon before the big day. The event features Morgan Dameron, Anna Fishbeyn, Peggy McCartha, Tracy Vicory-Rosenquest and Dee Wallace, with award-winning filmmaker Sue Vicory as moderator.

– Editor-In-Chief, Nicole Goesseringer Muj

Indie Entertainment Media – Sundance Film Festival 2022 Special Edition

Friends, I’m delighted to unveil our annual Park City festival edition of Indie Entertainment Media. The issue honors some of those talented individuals we sadly lost recently, including a bittersweet article by Lena Basse about her friend  Jean-Marc Vallée, exclusive interviews with NY-based artist Cindy Shaoul and Vietnamese-American director  Mai Thu Huyen, a photo essay spotlighting Las Vegas by Eric Minh Swenson, a feature on the new film Cyrano by Dr. Laura Wilhelm, Claude Brickell’s wisdom on scriptwriting, and of course, our annual  Après-ski gift guide. Also featured are the wonderful participants of the 5th annual Indie Entertainment Showcase that will be held virtually on Saturday, January 22 at 11 am MT/ 10 am PT.  

– Editor-In-Chief, Nicole Muj

Indie Entertainment Magazine Cannes Film Festival 2019 Edition

La main au collet, TO CATCH A THIEF, de AlfredHitchcock avec Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, 1955 (sur la Cote d'Azur, french riviera) Swimsuit Swimming shorts

Indie Entertainment Magazine is pleased to unveil its second annual special Cannes Film Festival Edition. Print edition to be distributed throughout Cannes.
Here’s a sneak peek:

Indie Entertainment Magazine – Sundance Film Festival 2019

John Cho attends the Kia Supper Suite | Photo by Thomas Concordia/Getty Images for Kia)

A sneak peek at the special digital edition of Indie Entertainment Magazine | Sundance Edition 2019.

Sundance Film Festival Announces 2023 Features Lineup

Sundance Institute today announced the comprehensive slate of independent films selected across the feature film categories for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival. The 2023 Festival will take place January 19–29, 2023, in person in Park City, Salt Lake City, and the Sundance Resort, along with a selection of films available online across the country January 24–29, 2023.

Setting the scene, Day One Features will open the Festival in Park City: 11 features, plus a Shorts program, will illustrate the scope of Festival work across genre and form. Day One Features are birth/rebirthL’ImmensitàIt’s Only Life After AllKim’s VideoLittle Richard: I Am EverythingThe Longest GoodbyeThePod GenerationRadical, ShaydaSometimes I Think About Dying, and Run Rabbit Run.

Films will become available online during the second half of the Festival — beginning January 24 — and will include all Competition titles (U.S. Dramatic, U.S. Documentary, World Cinema Dramatic, World Cinema Documentary, and NEXT), as well as exciting work across other sections of the feature film program, Indie Episodic Program, and Shorts Program. Audiences can enjoy the selection of films exclusively on the Sundance Film Festival online platform — those that will be available online are noted below. The online offering reinforces the Institute’s commitment to accessibility by allowing audiences coast to coast to take part in the discovery of captivating stories. The Shorts and Indie Episodic lineups for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival will be announced on December 13.

“Maintaining an essential place for artists to express themselves, take risks, and for visionary stories to endure and entertain is distinctly Sundance,” said Robert Redford, Sundance Institute Founder and President. “The Festival continues to foster these values and connections through independent storytelling. We are honored to share the compelling selection of work at this year’s Festival from distinct perspectives and unique voices.”

“As a program of the Sundance Institute, the Festival provides a place for artists globally to connect with audiences around a shared and inclusive experience of discovery,” said Joana Vicente, Sundance Institute CEO. “These filmmakers reflect the world around us through bold and thrilling storytelling. It is critical for the arts to foster dialogue, especially during unprecedented times — these stories are needed to provoke discussion, share diverse viewpoints, and challenge us. We are delighted to welcome this group of passionate artists to the Festival and look forward to celebrating the films together with audiences.”

“The program for this year’s Festival reiterates the relevancy of trailblazing work serving as an irreplaceable source for original stories that resonate and fuel creativity and dialogue,” said Kim Yutani, Sundance Film Festival Director of Programming. “In so many ways this year’s slate reflects the voices of communities around the world who are speaking out with urgency and finally being heard. Across our program, impactful storytelling by fearless artists continues to provide space for the community to come together to be entertained, challenged, and inspired.”

The 2023 Sundance Film Festival’s Salt Lake City Opening Night Gala Film is Blueback, premiering at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center on January 20The upcoming Festival will expand its presence in Salt Lake City, providing more places to take part in the thrilling experience, including at The Megaplex Theatres at The Gateway.

Also announced today, The Pod Generation, screening in the Premieres section, has been named the winner of the Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize, an annual award given to an artist with the most outstanding depiction of science and technology in a feature film.

The slate announced to date includes SLAM and The Doom Generation, which are featured in the From the Collection section bringing archival screenings back into focus as part of the Festival.

The Sundance Film Festival is an artist program of the Sundance Institute. Proceeds earned through Festival ticket sales go to uplifting and developing emerging artists on a year-round basis through focused labs, direct grants, fellowships, residencies, and more.

The full slate of works announced today, along with the From the Collection films previously announced, includes 101 feature-length films representing 23 countries. The 2023 program is made up of 32 of 115 (28%) feature film directors who are first-time feature filmmakers, and 17 of the feature films and projects announced today were supported by Sundance Institute in development through direct granting or residency labs.

World premieres make up 93, or 94%, of the Festival’s 99 feature films announced today.
These films were selected from 15,855 submissions, including 4,061 feature-length films. Of the 4,061 feature film submissions, 1,662 were from the U.S., and 2,399 were international. Director demographics are available in an editor’s note below.

U.S. DRAMATIC COMPETITION
Presenting 12 world premieres of fiction feature films, the Dramatic Competition offers audiences a first look at groundbreaking new voices in American independent film. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include Nanny, CODAPassingMinari, Never Rarely Sometimes Always,The Farewell, Clemency, Eighth Grade, and Sorry to Bother You.

The Accidental Getaway Driver / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Sing J. Lee, Screenwriter: Christopher Chen, Producers: Kimberly Steward, Basil Iwanyk, Andy Sorgie, Brendon Boyea, Joseph Hiếu) — During a routine pickup, an elderly Vietnamese cab driver is taken hostage at gunpoint by three recently escaped Orange County convicts. Based on a true story. Cast: Hiệp Trần Nghĩa, Dustin Nguyen, Dali Benssalah, Phi Vũ, Gabrielle Chan. World Premiere. Available online.

All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Raven Jackson, Producers: Maria Altamirano, Barry Jenkins, Adele Romanski, Mark Ceryak) – A decades-spanning exploration of a woman’s life in Mississippi and an ode to the generations of people, places, and ineffable moments that shape us. Cast: Charleen McClure, Moses Ingram, Kaylee Nicole Johnson, Reginald Helms Jr., Sheila Atim, Chris Chalk. World Premiere. Available online.

Fair Play / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Chloe Domont, Producers: Leopold Hughes, Ben LeClair, Tim White, Trevor White, Allan Mandelbaum) — An unexpected promotion at a cutthroat hedge fund pushes a young couple’s relationship to the brink, threatening to unravel far more than their recent engagement. Cast: Phoebe Dynevor, Alden Ehrenreich, Eddie Marsan. World Premiere. Available online.

Fancy Dance / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Erica Tremblay, Screenwriter: Miciana Alise, Producers: Deidre Backs, Heather Rae, Nina Yang Bongiovi, Tommy Oliver) — Following her sister’s disappearance, a Native American hustler kidnaps her niece from the child’s white grandparents and sets out for the state powwow in hopes of keeping what is left of their family intact. Cast: Lily Gladstone, Isabel Deroy-Olson, Ryan Begay, Shea Whigham, Audrey Wasilewski. World Premiere. Available online.

Magazine Dreams / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Elijah Bynum, Producers: Jennifer Fox, Dan Gilroy, Jeffrey Soros, Simon Horsman) — An amateur bodybuilder struggles to find human connection as his relentless drive for recognition pushes him to the brink. Cast: Jonathan Majors, Haley Bennett, Taylour Paige, Mike O’Hearn, Harrison Page, Harriet Sansom Harris. World Premiere. Available online.

Mutt / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Vuk Lungulov-Klotz, Producers: Alexander Stegmaier, Stephen Scott Scarpulla, Jennifer Kuczaj, Joel Michaely) — Over the course of a single hectic day in New York City, three people from Feña’s past are thrust back into his life. Having lost touch since transitioning from female to male, he navigates the new dynamics of old relationships while tackling the day-to-day challenges of living life in between. Cast: Lío Mehiel, Cole Doman, MiMi Ryder, Alejandro Goic. World Premiere. Available online.

The Persian Version / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Maryam Keshavarz, Producers: Anne Carey, Ben Howe, Luca Borghese, Peter Block, Corey Nelson) — When a large Iranian-American family gathers for the patriarch’s heart transplant, a family secret is uncovered that catapults the estranged mother and daughter into an exploration of the past. Toggling between the United States and Iran over decades, mother and daughter discover they are more alike than they know. Cast: Layla Mohammadi, Niousha Noor, Kamand Shafieisabet, Bella Warda, Bijan Daneshmand, Shervin Alenabi. World Premiere. Available online.

Shortcomings / U.S.A. (Director: Randall Park, Screenwriter: Adrian Tomine, Producers: Margot Hand, Randall Park, Hieu Ho, Jennifer Berman, Howard Cohen, Eric d’Arbeloff) — Following Ben, Miko, and Alice as they navigate a range of interpersonal relationships and traverse the country in search of the ideal connection. Cast: Justin H. Min, Sherry Cola, Ally Maki, Debby Ryan, Tavi Gevinson, Sonoya Mizuno. World Premiere. Available online.

Sometimes I Think About Dying /U.S.A. (Director: Rachel Lambert, Screenwriters: Kevin Armento, Stefanie Abel Horowitz, Katy Wright-Mead, Producers: Alex Saks, Daisy Ridley, Dori Rath, Lauren Beveridge, Brett Beveridge) — Fran likes to think about dying. It brings sensation to her quiet life. When she makes the new guy at work laugh, it leads to more: a date, a slice of pie, a conversation, a spark. The only thing standing in their way is Fran herself. Cast: Daisy Ridley, Dave Merheje, Parvesh Cheena, Marcia DeBonis, Meg Stalter, Brittany O’Grady. World Premiere. Available online. DAY ONE

The Starling Girl / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Laurel Akira Parmet, Producers: Kevin Rowe, Kara Durrett) — Seventeen-year-old Jem Starling struggles with her place within her Christian fundamentalist community, but everything changes when her magnetic youth pastor Owen returns to their church. Cast: Eliza Scanlen, Lewis Pullman, Jimmi Simpson, Wrenn Schmidt, Austin Abrams, Jessamine Burgum. World Premiere. Available online.

Theater Camp / U.S.A. (Directors and Screenwriters: Molly Gordon, Nick Lieberman, Screenwriters: Noah Galvin, Ben Platt, Producers: Erik Feig, Samie Kim Falvey, Julia Hammer, Ryan Heller, Will Ferrell, Jessica Elbaum) — When the beloved founder of a run-down theater camp in upstate New York falls into a coma, the eccentric staff must band together with the founder’s crypto-bro son to keep the camp afloat. Cast: Molly Gordon, Ben Platt, Noah Galvin, Jimmy Tatro, Patti Harrison, Ayo Edebiri. World Premiere. Available online.

A Thousand and One / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: A.V. Rockwell, Producers: Eddie Vaisman, Julia Lebedev, Lena Waithe, Rishi Rajani, Brad Weston) — Convinced it’s one last, necessary crime on the path to redemption, unapologetic and free-spirited Inez kidnaps 6-year-old Terry from the foster care system. Holding on to their secret and each other, mother and son set out to reclaim their sense of home, identity, and stability in New York City. Cast: Teyana Taylor, Will Catlett, Josiah Cross, Aven Courtney, Aaron Kingsley Adetola. World Premiere. Available online.

U.S. DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
World-premiere American documentaries that illuminate the ideas, people, and events that shape the present day. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include Fire of LoveSummer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), Boys State, Crip Camp: A Disability RevolutionAPOLLO 11, Knock Down the House, One Child Nation,American FactoryThree Identical Strangers, and On Her Shoulders.

AUM: The Cult at the End of the World /U.S.A. (Directors and Producers: Ben Braun, Chiaki Yanagimoto, Producers: Dan Braun, Josh Braun, Rick Brookwell) — On the morning of March 20, 1995, a deadly nerve gas attack in the Tokyo subway sent the nation and its people into chaos. This exploration of Aum Shinrikyo, the cult responsible for the attack, involves the participation of those who lived through the horror as it unfolded. World PremiereAvailable online.

Bad Press / U.S.A (Directors: Rebecca Landsberry-Baker, Joe Peeler, Producers: Conrad Beilharz, Garrett F. Baker, Tyler Graim) — When the Muscogee Nation suddenly begins censoring its free press, a rogue reporter fights to expose her government’s corruption in a historic battle that will have ramifications for all of Indian country. World Premiere. Available online.

The Disappearance of Shere Hite / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Nicole Newnham, Producers: Molly O’Brien, R.J. Cutler, Elise Pearlstein, Kimberley Ferdinando, Trevor Smith) — Shere Hite’s 1976 bestselling book, The Hite Report, liberated the female orgasm by revealing the most private experiences of thousands of anonymous survey respondents. Her findings rocked the American establishment and presaged current conversations about gender, sexuality, and bodily autonomy. So how did Shere Hite disappear? World Premiere. Available online.

Going to Mars: The Nikki Giovanni Project / U.S.A. (Directors and Producers: Joe Brewster, Michèle Stephenson, Producer: Tommy Oliver) — Intimate vérité, archival footage, and visually innovative treatments of poetry take us on a journey through the dreamscape of legendary poet Nikki Giovanni as she reflects on her life and legacy. World Premiere. Available online.

Going Varsity in Mariachi / U.S.A. (Directors: Alejandra Vasquez, Sam Osborn, Producers: James Lawler, Luis A. Miranda, Jr., Julia Pontecorvo) — In the competitive world of high school mariachi, the musicians from the South Texas borderlands reign supreme. Under the guidance of coach Abel Acuña, the teenage captains of Edinburg North High School’s acclaimed team must turn a shoestring budget and diverse crew of inexperienced musicians into state champions. World Premiere. Available online.

Joonam / U.S.A. (Director: Sierra Urich, Producer: Keith Wilson) — Spurred by a provocative family memory and a lifetime of separation from the country her mother left behind, a young filmmaker delves into her mother and grandmother’s complicated pasts and her own fractured Iranian identity. World Premiere. Available online.

Little Richard: I Am Everything / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Lisa Cortés, Producers: Robert Friedman, Liz Yale Marsh, Caryn Capotosto) — This celebration of Little Richard reveals the Black queer origins of rock ’n’ roll, finally exploding the whitewashed canon of American pop music. Through archival and performance footage, the revolutionary icon’s life unspools with all of its switchbacks and contradictions. World Premiere. Available online. DAY ONE

Nam June Paik: Moon is the Oldest TV / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Amanda Kim, Producers: Amy Hobby, David Koh, Mariko Munro, Jennifer Stockman, Jesse Wann) — The quixotic journey of Nam June Paik, one of the most famous Asian artists of the 20th century, who revolutionized the use of technology as an artistic canvas and prophesied both the fascist tendencies and intercultural understanding that would arise from the interconnected metaverse of today’s world. World Premiere. Available online.

A Still Small Voice / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Luke Lorentzen, Producer: Kellen Quinn) — An aspiring hospital chaplain begins a yearlong residency in spiritual care, only to discover that to successfully tend to her patients, she must look deep within herself. World Premiere. Available online.

The Stroll / U.S.A. (Directors: Kristen Lovell, Zackary Drucker, Producer: Matt Wolf) — The history of New York’s Meatpacking District, told from the perspective of transgender sex workers who lived and worked there. Filmmaker Kristen Lovell, who walked “The Stroll” for a decade, reunites her community to recount the violence, policing, homelessness, and gentrification they overcame to build a movement for transgender rights. World Premiere. Available online.

Victim/Suspect / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Nancy Schwartzman, Producers: Julie Goldman, Christopher Clements, Alice Henty, Rachel de Leon, Amanda Pike) — Investigative journalist Rae de Leon travels nationwide to uncover and examine a shocking pattern: Young women tell the police they’ve been sexually assaulted, but instead of finding justice, they’re charged with the crime of making a false report, arrested, and even imprisoned by the system they believed would protect them. World Premiere. Available online.

WORLD CINEMA DRAMATIC COMPETITION
Fiction projects from emerging artists around the world offer fresh perspectives and inventive styles. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include Brian and Charles, Hive, Luzzu, The Souvenir, The Guilty, Monos, YardieThe Nile Hilton Incident, and Second Mother.

Animalia France, Morocco, Qatar (Director and Screenwriter: Sofia Alaoui, Producers: Margaux Lorier, Toufik Ayadi, Christophe Barral) — A young, pregnant woman finds emancipation as aliens land in Morocco. Cast: Oumaïma Barid, Mehdi Dehbi, Fouad Oughaou. World Premiere. Available online.

Bad BehaviourNew Zealand (Director and Screenwriter: Alice Englert, Producers: Molly Hallam, Desray Armstrong) — Lucy, a former child actor, seeks enlightenment at a retreat led by spiritual leader Elon while she navigates her close yet turbulent relationship with her stunt-performer daughter, Dylan. Cast: Jennifer Connelly, Ben Whishaw, Alice Englert, Ana Scotney, Dasha Nekrasova, Marlon Williams. World Premiere. Available online.

GirlU.K. (Director and Screenwriter: Adura Onashile, Producers: Rosie Crerar, Ciara Barry) — Eleven-year-old Ama and her mother, Grace, take solace in the gentle but isolated world they obsessively create. Ama’s growing up threatens the boundaries of their tenderness and forces Grace to reckon with a past she struggles to forget. Cast: Déborah Lukumuena, Danny Sapani, Le’Shantey Bonsu, Liana Turner. World Premiere. Available online.

HeroicMexico, Sweden (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: David Zonana, Producers: Michel Franco, Eréndira Núñez Larios) — Luis, an 18-year-old boy with Indigenous roots, enters the Heroic Military College in hopes of ensuring a better future. There, he encounters a rigid and institutionally violent system designed to turn him into a perfect soldier. Cast: Santiago Sandoval Carbajal, Fernando Cuautle, Mónica del Carmen, Esteban Caicedo, Carlos Gerardo García, Isabel Yudice. World Premiere. Available online.

MAMACRUZSpain (Director and Screenwriter: Patricia Ortega, Screenwriter: José Ortuño, Producer: Olmo Figueredo) — With the help of her newly emigrated daughter, a religious grandmother learns how to use the internet. However, an accidental encounter with pornography poses a dilemma for her. Cast: Kiti Mánver. World Premiere. Available online.

Mami WataNigeria (Director and Screenwriter: C.J. “Fiery” Obasi, Producer: Oge Obasi) — When the harmony in a village is threatened by outside elements, two sisters must fight to save their people and restore the glory of a mermaid goddess to the land. Cast: Evelyne Ily, Uzoamaka Aniunoh, Kelechi Udegbe, Emeka Amakeze, Rita Edochie, Tough Bone. World Premiere. Available online.

La PeceraPuerto Rico, Spain (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Glorimar Marrero Sánchez, Producers: Amaya Izquierdo, José Esteban Alenda) — As her cancer spreads, Noelia’s ultimate decision is to return to her native Vieques, Puerto Rico, and claim her freedom to decide her own fate. She reunites with her friends and family, who are still dealing with the contamination of the U.S. Navy after sixty years of military practices. Cast: Isel Rodríguez, Modesto Lacén, Magali Carrasquillo, Maximiliano Rivas, Anamín Santiago, Idenisse Salamán. World Premiere. Available online.

ScrapperU.K. (Director and Screenwriter: Charlotte Regan, Producer: Theo Barrowclough) — Georgie is a dreamy 12-year-old girl who lives happily alone in her London flat, filling it with magic. Out of nowhere, her estranged father turns up and forces her to confront reality. Cast: Harris Dickinson, Lola Campbell, Alin Uzun, Ambreen Razia, Olivia Brady, Aylin Tezel. World Premiere. Available online.

ShaydaAustralia (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Noora Niasari, Producer: Vincent Sheehan) — Shayda, a brave Iranian mother, finds refuge in an Australian women’s shelter with her 6-year-old daughter. Over Persian New Year, they take solace in Nowruz rituals and new beginnings, but when her estranged husband re-enters their lives, Shayda’s path to freedom is jeopardized. Cast: Zar Amir Ebrahimi, Osamah Sami, Leah Purcell, Jillian Nguyen, Mojean Aria, Selina Zahednia. World Premiere. Available online. DAY ONE

SlowLithuania, Spain, Sweden (Director and Screenwriter: Marija Kavtaradze, Producer: Marija Razgute) — Dancer Elena and sign language interpreter Dovydas meet and form a beautiful bond. As they dive into a new relationship, they must navigate how to build their own kind of intimacy. Cast: Greta Grinevičiūtė, Kęstutis Cicėnas. World Premiere. Available online.

SorceryChile, Mexico, Germany (Director and Screenwriter: Christopher Murray, Screenwriter: Pablo Paredes, Producers: Juan de Dios Larraín, Pablo Larraín, Rocío Jadue, Nicolás Celis) — On the remote island of Chiloé in the late 19th century, an Indigenous girl named Rosa lives and works with her father on a farm. When the foreman brutally turns on Rosa’s father, she sets out for justice, seeking help from the king of a powerful organization of sorcerers. Cast: Valentina Véliz, Daniel Antivilo, Sebastian Hulk, Daniel Muñoz. World Premiere. Available online.

When It MeltsBelgium (Director and Screenwriter: Veerle Baetens, Screenwriter: Maarten Loix, Producers: Bart Van Langendonck, Ellen Havenith, Jacques-Henri Bronckart) — Many years after a sweltering summer that spun out of control, Eva returns to the village she grew up in with an ice block in the back of her car. In the dead of winter, she confronts her past and faces up to her tormentors. Cast: Charlotte De Bruyne, Rosa Marchant. World Premiere. Available online.

WORLD CINEMA DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Documentaries by some of the boldest global filmmakers capturing the world today. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include All That Breathes, Flee, Honeyland, Sea of ShadowsShirkers, This Is HomeLast Men in Aleppo, and Hooligan Sparrow.

5 Seasons of RevolutionGermany, Syria, Netherlands, Norway (Director: Lina, Producer: Diana El Jeiroudi) — An aspiring video journalist in her 20s finds herself already facing self-reckoning. Born in Damascus, Syria, Lina starts to report on the events around her until she is compelled to become a war reporter and, later, the unexpected narrator of her own destiny. World Premiere. Available online.

20 Days in MariupolUkraine (Director and Producer: Mstyslav Chernov, Producers: Michelle Mizner, Raney Aronson-Rath, Derl McCrudden) — As the Russian invasion begins, a team of Ukrainian journalists trapped in the besieged city of Mariupol struggle to continue their work documenting the war’s atrocities. World Premiere. Available online.

Against the TideIndia (Director and Producer: Sarvnik Kaur, Producer: Koval Bhatia) — Two friends, both Indigenous fishermen, are driven to desperation by a dying sea. Their friendship begins to fracture as they take very different paths to provide for their struggling families. World Premiere. Available online.

The Eternal Memory/ Chile (Director and Producer: Maite Alberdi, Producers: Juan de Dios Larraín, Pablo Larraín, Rocío Jadue) — Augusto and Paulina have been together for 25 years. Eight years ago, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Both fear the day he no longer recognizes her. World Premiere. Available online.

Fantastic MachineSweden, Denmark (Directors and Producers: Axel Danielson, Maximilien Van Aertryck) — From the first camera to 45 billion cameras worldwide today, the visual sociologist filmmakers widen their lens to expose both humanity’s unique obsession with the camera’s image and the social consequences that lay ahead. World Premiere. Available online.

Iron ButterfliesUkraine, Germany (Director: Roman Liubyi, Producers: Andrii Kotliar, Volodymyr Tykhyy, David Armati Lechner, Isabelle Bertolone, Trini Götze) — In summer 2014, sunflower fields and coal mines in eastern Ukraine turned into a 12 square kilometer crime scene. A multi-layered investigation into the downing of flight MH17, in which a butterfly-shaped shrapnel was found in the pilot’s body, implicated the state responsible for a war crime that remains unpunished. World Premiere. Available online.

Is There Anybody Out There?U.K. (Director: Ella Glendining, Producer: Janine Marmot) — While navigating daily discrimination, a filmmaker who inhabits and loves her unusual body searches the world for another person like her, and explores what it takes to love oneself fiercely despite the pervasiveness of ableism. World Premiere. Available online.

The Longest GoodbyeIsrael, Canada (Director and Producer: Ido Mizrahy, Producers: Nir Sa’ar, Paul Cadieux) — Social isolation affects millions of people, even Mars-bound astronauts. A savvy NASA psychologist is tasked with protecting these daring explorers. World Premiere. Available online. DAY ONE

MilisuthandoSouth Africa (Director and Screenwriter: Milisuthando Bongela, Producer: Marion Isaacs) — Set in past, present, and future South Africa — an invitation into a poetic, memory-driven exploration of love, intimacy, race, and belonging by the filmmaker, who grew up during apartheid but didn’t know it was happening until it was over. World Premiere. Available online.

PianofortePoland (Director: Jakub Piątek, Producer: Maciej Kubicki) — Young pianists take part in the legendary International Chopin Piano Competition. A unique chance of a lifetime, portrayed from backstage and set to Chopin’s music. World Premiere. Available online.

Smoke Sauna SisterhoodEstonia, France, Iceland (Director: Anna Hints, Producer: Marianne Ostrat) — In the darkness of a smoke sauna, women share their innermost secrets and intimate experiences, washing off the shame trapped in their bodies and regaining their strength through a sense of communion. World Premiere. Available online.

Twice ColonizedGreenland, Denmark, Canada (Director: Lin Alluna, Producers: Emile Hertling Péronard, Alethea Arnaquq-Baril, Stacey Aglok MacDonald, Bob Moore) — Renowned Inuit lawyer Aaju Peter has long fought for the rights of her people. When her son suddenly dies, Aaju embarks on a journey to reclaim her language and culture after a lifetime of whitewashing and forced assimilation. But can she both change the world and mend her own wounds? World Premiere. Available online.

NEXT
Visionary works distinguished by an innovative, forward-thinking approach to storytelling populate this program. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include A Love SongRIOTSVILLE, USAThe InfiltratorsSearchingSkate KitchenA Ghost Story, and Tangerine. NEXT is presented by Adobe.

Bravo, Burkina! / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Walé Oyéjidé, Producers: Giulia Alagna, Heather Barnes) — A Burkinabé boy flees his village and migrates to Italy. When disillusioned by heartbreak and haunted by memories of home, he travels through time in hope of regaining all he has lost. Cast: Alain Tiendrebeogo, Mousty Mbaye, Noel Minougou, Aissata Deme, Afissatou Coulibaly. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Divinity / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Eddie Alcazar, Producer: Steven Soderbergh)—Two mysterious brothers abduct a mogul during his quest for immortality. Meanwhile, a seductive woman helps them launch a journey of self-discovery. Cast: Stephen Dorff, Moises Arias, Jason Genao, Karrueche Tran, Bella Thorne, Scott Bakula. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Fremont / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Babak Jalali, Screenwriter: Carolina Cavalli, Producers: Marjaneh Moghimi, Sudnya Shroff, Rachael Fung, George Rush, Chris Martin, Laura Wagner) — Donya works for a Chinese fortune cookie factory in San Francisco. Formerly a translator for the U.S. military in Afghanistan, she struggles to put her life back in order. In a moment of sudden revelation, she decides to send out a special message in a cookie. Cast: Anaita Wali Zada, Jeremy Allen White, Gregg Turkington. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Kim’s Video / U.S.A. (Directors, Screenwriters, and Producers: David Redmon, Ashley Sabin, Producers: Deborah Smith, Dale Smith, Francesco Galavotti, Rebecca Tabasky) — Playing with the forms and tropes of various cinema genres, the filmmaker sets off on a quest to find a legendary lost video collection of 55,000 movies in Sicily. World Premiere. Documentary. Available online. DAY ONE

King Coal / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Elaine McMillion Sheldon, Producers: Shane Boris, Diane Becker, Peggy Drexler) — The cultural roots of coal continue to permeate the rituals of daily life in Appalachia even as its economic power wanes. The journey of a coal miner’s daughter exploring the region’s dreams and myths, untangling the pain and beauty, as her community sits on the brink of massive change. World Premiere. Documentary. Available online.

KOKOMO CITY / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: D. Smith, Producers: Harris Doran, Bill Butler) — Four Black transgender sex workers explore the dichotomy between the Black community and themselves, while confronting issues long avoided. World Premiere. Documentary. Available online.

To Live and Die and Live / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Qasim Basir, Producers: Nina Yang Bongiovi, Forest Whitaker, Amin Joseph, Dana Offenbach, Samantha Basir) — Muhammad returns home to Detroit to bury his stepfather and is thrust into settling his accounts, but Muhammad’s struggles with depression and addiction may finish him before he finishes the task. Cast: Amin Joseph, Skye P. Marshall, Omari Hardwick, Cory Hardrict, Dana Gourrier, Maryam Basir. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

The Tuba Thieves / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Alison O’Daniel, Producer: Rachel Nederveld, Wendy Ettinger, Maida Lynn, Su Kim, Maya E. Rudolph) — From 2011 to 2013, tubas were stolen from Los Angeles high schools. This is not a story about thieves or missing tubas. Instead, it asks what it means to listen. World Premiere. Documentary. Available online.

Young. Wild. Free. / U.S.A (Director: Thembi L. Banks, Screenwriters: Juel Taylor, Tony Rettenmaier, Producers: Charles D. King, James Lopez, Poppy Hanks, Tommy Oliver, Baron Davis, Tracy “Twinkie” Byrd) — High school senior Brandon is drowning in responsibilities when his world is turned upside down after being robbed at gunpoint by the girl of his dreams. Cast: Algee Smith, Sanaa Lathan, Sierra Capri, Mike Epps. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

MIDNIGHT
From horror and comedy to works that defy genre classification, these films will keep you wide awake, even at the most arduous hour. Films that have premiered in this category in recent years include FRESHHereditary, Mandy, RelicAssassination Nation, and The Babadook.

birth/rebirth / U.S.A. (Director and Screenwriter: Laura Moss, Screenwriter: Brendan J. O’Brien, Producers: Mali Elfman, David Grove Churchill Viste) — A single mother and a childless morgue technician are bound together by their relationship to a little girl they have reanimated from the dead. Cast: Marin Ireland, Judy Reyes, A.J. Lister, Breeda Wool. World Premiere. Fiction. DAY ONE

In My Mother’s Skin / Philippines (Director and Screenwriter: Kenneth Dagatan, Producers: Bradley Liew, Bianca Balbuena, Huang Junxiang, Stefano Centini) — Stranded in the Philippines during World War II, a young girl finds that her duty to protect her dying mother is complicated by her misplaced trust in a beguiling, flesh-eating fairy. Cast: Beauty Gonzalez, Felicity Kyle Napuli, Jasmine Curtis-Smith, James Mavie Estrella, Angeli Bayani. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Infinity Pool / Canada (Director and Screenwriter: Brandon Cronenberg, Producers: Karen Harnisch, Andrew Cividino, Christian Piovesan, Noah Segal, Rob Cotterill, Anita Juka) — James and Em are enjoying an all-inclusive beach vacation when a fatal accident exposes the resort’s perverse subculture of hedonistic tourism, reckless violence, and surreal horrors. Cast: Alexander Skarsgård, Mia Goth, Cleopatra Coleman. World Premiere. Fiction.

My Animal / Canada (Director: Jacqueline Castel, Screenwriter: Jae Matthews, Producers: Andrew Bronfman, Michael Solomon) — Heather, an outcast teenage goalie in a small northern town, falls for newcomer Jonny, an alluring but tormented figure skater. As their relationship deepens, Heather’s growing desires clash with her darkest secret, forcing her to control the animal within. Cast: Bobbi Salvör Menuez, Amandla Stenberg, Stephen McHattie, Heidi von Palleske, Cory Lipman, Joe Apollonio. World Premiere. Fiction.

Onyx the Fortuitous and the Talisman of Souls / U.S.A. (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Andrew Bowser, Producers: Clark Baker, Michael Mobley, Olivia Taylor Dudley) — Onyx joins a group of fellow occultists to attend a dark ritual at the mansion of their idol, Bartok. Suspecting Bartok’s nefarious intentions, Onyx is suddenly immersed in a world of monsters, mystery, and mayhem. Cast: Andrew Bowser, Olivia Taylor Dudley, Jeffrey Combs, Ralph Ineson, Rivkah Reyes, T.C. Carson. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Polite Society / U.K. (Director and Screenwriter: Nida Manzoor, Producers: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Olivier Kaempfer, John Pocock) — Aspiring martial artist Ria Khan believes she must save her older sister, Lena, from her impending marriage. With the help of her friends, Ria attempts to pull off the most ambitious of all wedding heists in the name of independence and sisterhood. Cast: Priya Kansara, Ritu Arya, Nimra Bucha, Akshay Khanna, Seraphina Beh, Ella Bruccoleri.World Premiere. Fiction.

Run Rabbit Run / Australia (Director: Daina Reid, Screenwriter: Hannah Kent, Producers: Sarah Shaw, Anna McLeish) — As a fertility doctor, Sarah has a firm understanding of the cycle of life. However, when she is forced to make sense of the increasingly strange behavior of her young daughter, Sarah must challenge her own beliefs and confront a ghost from her past. Cast: Sarah Snook, Lily LaTorre, Damon Herriman, Greta Scacchi. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online. DAY ONE

Talk to Me Australia (Director and Screenwriter: Danny Philippou, Director: Michael Philippou, Screenwriter: Bill Hinzman, Producers: Samantha Jennings, Kristina Ceyton) —When a group of friends discover how to conjure spirits using an ancient embalmed hand, they become hooked on the new thrill. Until one of them goes too far and opens the door to the spirit world. Cast: Sophie Wilde, Miranda Otto, Alexandra Jensen, Joe Bird, Zoe Terakes, Otis Dhanji. International Premiere. Fiction.

PREMIERES
A showcase of world premieres of some of the most highly anticipated fiction and documentary films of the coming year. Fiction films that have screened in Premieres include Good Luck to You, Leo Grande, Promising Young Woman, Kajillionaire,The Report, Late Night, and The Big Sick. Past documentary films include The Dissident, Lucy and DesiOn the Record, and Miss Americana.

Cassandro / U.S.A (Director and Screenwriter: Roger Ross Williams, Screenwriters: David Teague, Julián Herbert, Producers: Gerardo Gatica, Todd Black, David Bloomfield, Ted Hope, Julie Goldman) — Saúl Armendáriz, a gay amateur wrestler from El Paso, rises to international stardom after he creates the character Cassandro, the “Liberace of Lucha Libre.” In the process, he upends not just the macho wrestling world, but also his own life. Cast: Gael García Bernal, Roberta Colindrez, Perla De La Rosa, Joaquín Cosío, Raúl Castillo. World Premiere. Fiction.

Cat Person / France, U.S.A (Director: Susanna Fogel, Screenwriter: Michelle Ashford, Producers: Helen Estabrook, Jeremy Steckler) — College student Margot meets 33-year-old Robert at the movie theater where she works. After a casual flirtation at the concession stand, they carry on conversations through texts. As their perceptions of each other collide, events spiral out of control. Based on The New Yorker short story by Kristen Roupenian. Cast: Emilia Jones, Nicholas Braun, Geraldine Viswanathan, Hope Davis, Fred Melamed, Isabella Rossellini. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Deep Rising / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Matthieu Rytz) — The fate of the planet’s last untouched wilderness, the deep ocean, is under threat as a secretive organization is about to allow massive extraction of seabed metals to address the world’s energy crisis. Narrated by Jason Momoa. World Premiere. Documentary.

The Deepest Breath / U.K, Ireland (Director and Screenwriter: Laura McGann, Producers: John Battsek, Sarah Thomson, Jamie D’Alton, Anne McLoughlin) — A champion freediver and expert safety diver seemed destined for one another despite the different paths they took to meet at the pinnacle of the freediving world. A look at the thrilling rewards — and inescapable risks — of chasing dreams through the depths of the ocean. World Premiere. Documentary.

Drift / France, U.K, Greece (Director and Producer: Anthony Chen, Screenwriters: Susanne Farrell, Alexander Maksik, Producers: Peter Spears, Emilie Georges, Naima Abed, Cynthia Erivo, Solome Williams) — Jacqueline, a young refugee, lands alone and penniless on a Greek island where she tries to survive, then to cope with her past. While gathering her strength, she begins a friendship with a rootless tour guide and together they find the resilience to forge ahead. Cast: Cynthia Erivo, Alia Shawkat, Ibrahima Ba, Honor Swinton Byrne, Zainab Jah, Suzy Bemba. World Premiere. Fiction.

Eileen / U.S.A (Director and Producer: William Oldroyd, Screenwriters and Producers: Luke Goebel,  Ottessa Moshfegh, Producers: Anthony Bregman, Stefanie Azpiazu, Peter Cron) — Set during a bitter 1964 Massachusetts winter, young secretary Eileen becomes enchanted by the glamorous new counselor at the prison where she works. Their budding friendship takes a twisted turn when Rebecca reveals a dark secret — throwing Eileen onto a sinister path. Based on Ottessa Moshfegh’s award-winning novel. Cast: Thomasin McKenzie, Anne Hathaway, Shea Whigham, Marin Ireland, Owen Teague. World Premiere. Fiction.

Fairyland / U.S.A (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Andrew Durham, Producers: Sofia Coppola, Megan Carlson, Siena Oberman, Greg Lauritano, Laure Sudreau) — Set against the backdrop of San Francisco’s vibrant cultural scene in the 1970s and ’80s, chronicling a father-daughter relationship as it evolves from an era of bohemian decadence to the heartbreaking AIDS crisis. Based on the best-selling memoir Fairyland: A Memoir of My Father by Alysia Abbott. Cast: Scoot McNairy, Emilia Jones, Geena Davis, Cody Fern, Adam Lambert, Maria BakalovaWorld Premiere. Fiction.

Food and Country / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Laura Gabbert, Producers: Ruth Reichl, Paula P. Manzanedo, Caroline Libresco) — America’s policy of producing cheap food at all costs has long hobbled small independent farmers, ranchers, and chefs. Worried for their survival, trailblazing food writer Ruth Reichl reaches out across political and social divides to uncover the country’s broken food system and the innovators risking it all to transform it. World Premiere. DocumentaryAvailable online.

Invisible Beauty / U.S.A (Directors: Bethann Hardison, Frédéric Tcheng, Producer: Lisa Cortés) — Fashion revolutionary Bethann Hardison looks back on her journey as a pioneering Black model, modeling agent, and activist, shining a light on an untold chapter in the fight for racial diversity. World Premiere. Documentary.

It’s Only Life After All / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Alexandria Bombach, Producers: Kathlyn Horan, Jess Devaney, Anya Rous) — Blending 40 years of home movies, film archives, and intimate present-day vérité, a poignant reflection from Amy Ray and Emily Saliers of iconic folk rock duo Indigo Girls. A timely look into the obstacles, activism, and life lessons of two queer friends who never expected to make it big. World Premiere. Documentary. DAY ONE

Jamojaya / U.S.A (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Justin Chon, Screenwriter: Maegan Houang, Producers: Alan Pao, David Matheny, Joseph Dang, Alex Chi, Yama Cibulka, Shaun Sanghani) — A father-son relationship is put to the test when an up-and-coming rapper at the crossroads of his career decides to let go of his manager, who is also his father. This decision forces them to confront the past and figure out what they want of each other. Cast: Brian Imanuel, Yayu A.W. Unru, Kate Lyn Sheil, Henry Ian Cusick, Anthony Kiedis. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Judy Blume Forever / U.S.A (Directors and Producers: Davina Pardo, Leah Wolchok, Producers: Sara Bernstein, Justin Wilkes, Marcella Steingart) — The radical honesty of the books by young adult fiction pioneer Judy Blume changed the way millions of readers understood themselves, their sexuality, and what it meant to grow up, but also led to critical battles against book banning and censorship. World Premiere. Documentary.

Landscape With Invisible Hand / U.S.A (Director and Screenwriter: Cory Finley, Producers: Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner) — When Earth is taken over by aliens who control the economy, a pair of teenagers come up with a plan to save their family. Cast: Tiffany Haddish, Asante Blackk, Kylie Rogers, Josh Hamilton, Michael Gandolfini, William Jackson Harper. World Premiere. Fiction.

A Little Prayer / U.S.A (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Angus MacLachlan, Producers: Lauren Vilchik, Max A. Butler) — In the South, a man tests the limits of patriarchal interference to protect his daughter-in-law when he discovers that his son is having an affair. Cast: David Strathairn, Jane Levy, Celia Weston, Will Pullen, Anna Camp, Dascha Polanco. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Murder in Big Horn / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Razelle Benally, Director: Matthew Galkin, Producers: Ivan Macdonald, Ivy Macdonald) — The deaths of a group of Native American women in rural Montana are the focus as Native families, journalists, and local law enforcement reveal a violent crisis set in motion almost 200 years ago. World Premiere. Documentary. Available online.

Passages / France (Director and Screenwriter: Ira Sachs, Screenwriter: Mauricio Zacharias, Producers: Saïd Ben Saïd, Michel Merkt) — An intimate examination of attraction and emotional abuse between men and women. Cast: Franz Rogowski, Ben Whishaw, Adèle Exarchopoulos. World Premiere. Fiction.

PLAN C / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Tracy Droz Tragos) — A hidden grassroots organization doggedly fights to expand access to abortion pills across the United States keeping hope alive during a global pandemic and the fall of Roe v. Wade. World Premiere. Documentary.

The Pod Generation / Belgium, France, U.K (Director and Screenwriter: Sophie Barthes, Producers: Geneviève Lemal, Yann Zenou, Nadia Kamlichi, Martin Metz) — In a not-so-distant future, amid a society madly in love with technology, tech giant Pegazus offers couples the opportunity to share their pregnancies via detachable artificial wombs or pods. And so begins Rachel and Alvy’s wild ride to parenthood in this brave new world. Cast: Emilia Clarke, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Rosalie Craig, Vinette Robinson, Jean-Marc Barr. World Premiere. Fiction. DAY ONE

Pretty Baby: Brooke Shields / U.S.A (Director: Lana Wilson, Producers: Christine O’Malley, Jack Turner) — A galvanizing look at actor, model, and icon Brooke Shields as she transforms from sexualized young girl to a woman discovering her power. Holding a mirror up to a society that objectifies women and girls, her story shows the perils and triumphs of gaining agency in a hostile world. World Premiere. Documentary.

Radical / U.S.A (Director and Screenwriter: Christopher Zalla, Producers: Ben Odell, Eugenio Derbez, Joshua Davis) — In a Mexican border town plagued by neglect, corruption, and violence, a frustrated teacher tries a radical new method to break through his students’ apathy and unlock their curiosity, their potential… and maybe even their genius. Based on a true story. Cast: Eugenio Derbez, Daniel Haddad, Jenifer Trejo, Mia Fernanda Solis, Danilo Guardiola. World Premiere. Fiction. DAY ONE

Rotting in the Sun / U.S.A (Director and Screenwriter: Sebastian Silva, Screenwriter: Pedro Peirano, Producer: Jacob Wasserman) — After filmmaker Sebastian Silva goes missing in Mexico City, social media celebrity Jordan Firstman begins searching for him, suspecting that the cleaning lady in Sebastian’s building may have something to do with his disappearance. Cast: Jordan Firstman, Catalina Saavedra, Sebastian Silva. World Premiere. Fiction.

Rye Lane / U.K (Director: Raine Allen-Miller, Screenwriters: Nathan Bryon, Tom Melia, Producers: Yvonne Isimeme Ibazebo, Damian Jones) — Two twenty-somethings reeling from bad breakups deal with their nightmare exes and connect over the course of an eventful day in South London. Cast: David Jonsson, Vivian Oparah. World Premiere. Fiction.

Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie / U.S.A (Director and Producer: Davis Guggenheim, Producers: Jonathan King, Annetta Marion, Will Cohen) — The improbable tale of a short kid from a Canadian army base who became the darling of 1980s Hollywood — only to find the course of his life altered by a stunning diagnosis. What happens when an incurable optimist confronts an incurable disease? World Premiere. Documentary.

You Hurt My Feelings / U.S.A (Director and Screenwriter: Nicole Holofcener, Producers: Stefanie Azpiazu, Anthony Bregman) — A novelist’s longstanding marriage is suddenly upended when she overhears her husband giving his honest reaction to her latest book. Cast: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tobias Menzies, Michaela Watkins, Owen Teague, Arian Moayed. World Premiere. Fiction.

NEW FRONTIER FILMS
New Frontier champions artists who engage in experimental storytelling at the crossroads of film, art, performance, and media technology, showcasing cutting-edge work that explores and evolves cinema culture in today’s rapidly changing landscape. New Frontier is presently in a process of reimagination. This year, we return to our roots to offer a lineup of resonant experimental films.

A Common Sequence / U.S.A (Directors and Producers: Mary Helena Clark and Mike Gibisser, Producer: Graciela Guerrero-Reyes) — An interconnected look at tradition, colonialism, property, faith, and science, as seen through labor practices that link an endangered salamander, mass-produced apples, and the evolving fields of genomics and machine learning. World Premiere. DocumentaryAvailable online.

Gush / U.S.A (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Fox Maxy) — An embodied rumination of both male and female power, healing and haunting, all within an apocalyptic world. A transformation that courses through unknown terror to untamed collective joy. Cast: Michel Sayegh, Ruth Fish, Sergio Mejia, Littlebear Sanchez, No’aash Iswut Peltier, Suavitel Paper. World PremiereFictionAvailable online.

Last Things / U.S.A, Portugal, France (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Deborah Stratman, Producers: Anže Peržin, Gaëlle Boucand) — Evolution and extinction from the point of view of rocks. A humid take on minerals, where sci-fi meets sci-fact. The geo-biosphere is a place of evolutionary possibility, where humans disappear but life endures. World Premiere. DocumentaryAvailable online.

SPOTLIGHT
A tribute to the cinema we love from throughout the past year. Films that have played in this category in recent years include The Worst Person in the WorldThe Biggest Little Farm, Birds of Passage, The Rider, Ida,and The Lobster.

The Eight Mountains Italy and Belgium (Directors and Screenwriters: Felix van Groeningen, Charlotte Vandermeersch, Producers: Mario Gianani, Lorenzo Gangarossa) — Pietro spends his childhood summers in the same secluded Italian mountain village where Bruno was raised, in which they form a decades-long friendship. Over the years, their paths diverge as Bruno remains faithful to the mountain while Pietro comes and goes from the city. Cast: Luca Marinelli, Alessandro Borghi, Filippo Timi, Elena Lietti. Fiction. Available online.

L’Immensità Italy (Director and Screenwriter: Emanuele Crialese, Screenwriter: Francesca Manieri, Vittorio Moroni, Producer: Lorenzo Gangarossa, Mario Gianani — Clara has relocated to Rome with Felice and their three children. From their new apartment, Clara sees a city in transition: an old society washed away by an emerging middle class. The paint is fresh, the appliances are new, but expectations around family, desire, and gender remain traditional as ever. Cast: Penélope Cruz, Vincenzo Amato, Luana Giuliani, Patrizio Francioni, Maria Chiara Gorett, Penelope Nieto Conti. North American Premiere. Fiction. Available online. DAY ONE
Joyland / Pakistan (Director and Screenwriter: Saim Sadiq, Producers: Apoorva Guru Charan, Sarmad Sultan Khoosat, Sabiha Sumar, Lauren Mann) — As the Ranas, a happily patriarchal joint family, yearn for the birth of a baby boy to continue the family line, their youngest son secretly joins an erotic dance theater and falls for an ambitious trans starlet. Their impossible love story illuminates the entire family’s desire for a sexual rebellion. Cast: Ali Junejo, Rasti Farooq, Alina Khan, Sarwat Gilani, Sania Saeed, Salmaan Peerzada. Fiction. Available online.

Other People’s Children / France (Director and Screenwriter: Rebecca Zlotowski, Producers: Frederic Jouve, Marie Lecoq — Rachel is 40 years old with no children. She loves her life: her high school students, her friends, her guitar lessons. When she falls in love with Ali, she becomes attached to Leila, his 4-year-old daughter. She loves her like her own, but to love other people’s children is risky. Cast: Virginie Efira, Roschdy Zem, Chiara Mastroianni, Callie Ferreira-Goncalves, Yamée Couture, Michel Zlotowski. U.S. Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

Squaring the Circle (The Story of Hipgnosis) / U.K. (Director: Anton Corbijn, Screenwriter, and Producer: Trish D Chetty, Producers: Ged Doherty, Colin Firth) — An inside look at the studio responsible for some of the most iconic and recognizable album covers of all time.From Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon to Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy, the studio ruled the ’70s. Documentary. Available online.

KIDS
This section of the Festival is especially for our youngest independent film fans. Films that have played in this category in recent years include The Elephant Queen, Science Fair, My Life as a Zucchini, The Eagle Huntress,and Shaun the Sheep.

Aliens Abducted My Parents and Now I Feel Kinda Left Out / U.S.A. (Director and Producer: Jake Van Wagoner, Screenwriter and Producer: Austin Everett, Producers: Micah Merrill, Maclain Nelson, Jeremy Prusso) — Itsy is new in town and her life seems over until she meets her space-obsessed neighbor Calvin, who believes his parents were abducted by aliens. An aspiring journalist, Itsy decides to write an exposé on Calvin but ends up discovering much more. Cast: Emma Tremblay, Jacob Buster, Will Forte, Elizabeth Mitchell, Kenneth Cummins, Matt Biedel. World Premiere. Fiction. Available online.

The Amazing Maurice / Germany, U.K. (Director: Toby Genkel, Screenwriter: Terry Rossio, Producers: Emely Christians, Andrew Baker, Robert Chandler) — A streetwise cat and his gang of rats who come up with a perfect money-making scheme. Based on the novel The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents by Sir Terry Pratchett. Cast: Hugh Laurie, Emilia Clarke, Himesh Patel, Gemma ArtertonNorth American Premiere. Fiction. Available online.
Blueback Australia (Director, Screenwriter, and Producer: Robert Connolly, Producers: Liz Kearney, James Grandison) — An intimate mother-daughter relationship is forged by the women’s keen desire to protect the inhabitants of the pristine blue oceans on the Australian coast where they live. Adapted from Tim Winton’s bestselling and critically acclaimed novella. Cast: Mia Wasikowska, Eric Bana, Radha Mitchell, Ilsa Fogg, Liz Alexander, Ariel Donoghue. U.S. Premiere. Fiction. (SALT LAKE CITY OPENING NIGHT GALA FILM)

In-Person Ticket Packages are currently on sale through December 16, Online Ticket Packages go on sale December 13 at 10 a.m. MT, and single film tickets go on sale January 12 at 10 a.m. MT.

Cardinal du Four Armagnac Celebrates Music Icons during 2022 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Ceremony


Cardinal du Four Armagnac 21 Rébellion was a hit at GBK Brand Bar’s “Backstage Artist Lounge” held in October during the  37th Annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

Hall of Fame Inductees attending the three-day luxury gifting experience celebrating music’s highest honor were gifted with $50,000 in luxury vacations, products and services. Cardinal du Four founder, French-born Christophe Namer introduced his Armagnac to the attendees and presented them with his gorgeous bottles of Cardinal du Four Armagnac 21 Rébellion that featured the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame logo engraved.

Inductees and attendees included Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, Duran Duran, Eminem, Eurythmics, Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon, Judas Priest, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Harry Belafonte, Elizabeth Cotten, Allen Grubman, Jimmy Iovine, Sylvia Robertson and special guests Steven Tyler, Simon Le Bon, Sara Bareilles, Adam Blackstone, Alanis Morissette, Brandi Carlile, Ed Sheeran, Olivia Rodrigo, Zac Brown Band, Alice Cooper, Bruce Springsteen, Dr Dre, Janet Jackson, John Mellencamp, Lenny Kravitz, Pink, Robert Downey Jr, Sheryl Crow, TheEdge, and many others.

Cardinal du Four, 21 Rébellion is a harmonious blend of vintage Armagnacs from 21 to 43 years of age, 30 years old on average with no sugar or caramel added, CdF 21 Rébellion personifies complexity and power with elegance and finesse. Armagnac has become the modern connoisseur’s answer to Cognac. Interestingly, many are not aware that Armagnac is 700 years old, while Cognac is 500 years old, yet year after year, Armagnac has re-emerged as a connoisseur’s drink. 

In the spirit of giving back, GBK Brand Bar auctioned off a backstage experience for three lucky guests to be treated like a celebrity for the day to benefit the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation. The televised award ceremony first aired on HBO and HBO Max on November 19, 2022.

Photos courtesy of Cardinal du Four/GBK Brand Bar.  (Christophe Namer, Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo, Simon Le Bon, Sarah Bareilles & Steven Tyler)

Country Music Artist Jarvis Redd – A Star is Born!

Country artist and songwriter Jarvis Redd is taking the music industry by storm and bringing a new sound to country music. The rising artist gained 800,000 TikTok followers in just one week and has received positive feedback from top artists, including the legendary Tim McGraw, Clay Walker, Chris Young, Dustin Lynch, Brett Young, and Brandy Norwood, to name a few.

Redd has also gained the attention of top music executive Tony Mercedes who discovered Redd on Facebook and signed him to his management company.

When it comes to the internet and its impact on the music business, Redd feels that it’s been a blessing for artists like himself—especially those who don’t have the connections or budget to take their craft to the next level.

“In the past, you would have to get discovered by A&R’s or shows like American Idol, but now all you have to do is showcase your talent on social media platforms like TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram. and you can potentially build a substantial following without spending a dime”, said Redd. “I feel that the internet has leveled the playing field for an independent artist to be competitive.”

Since becoming an artist, Redd has risen through the ranks and has caught the attention of major music artists, as well as Sony and the Country Music Association.

Redd has a country-based voice with shades of all different styles of music that he loves, including gospel soul, R&B, and blues. He was inspired by Tim McGraw’s talent to make the transition from gospel and R&B to country music.

Tim McGraw told the rising star, newcomer, “It’s so discerning to hear someone singing your song better than you.”

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Redd attended New Tribes Bible Institute in Waukesha, Wisconsin and graduated with a degree in theology. Not only talented at singing and song writing, he also plays the piano and some drums. Redd was an aspiring songwriter who wrote for many independent artists before embarking on his career as a solo artist.

TikTok https://www.tiktok.com/@jarvisredd

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jarvisredd/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@jarvisredd3744

Vic Gerami’s ‘Motherland’ Documentary Feature Film Wins Pomegranate Film Festival’s Top Two Awards

‘Motherland,’ which HuffPost’s Thom Senzee called ‘Most Anticipated Documentary Film of 2022’ and director Vic Gerami, won the two top prizes at the annual Pomegranate Film Festival (POM). The film won the ‘Audience Choice Award,’ while Gerami won the festival’s ‘Golden Pomegranate Award’ for outstanding contributions to Armenian Cinema. 

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‘Motherland’ is a contender for the Oscars and is being watched by The Academy members. With the inclusion and the award at the POM, the film is so far an ‘Official Selection’ in fifty-six (56) film festivals and has won thirty-four awards worldwide. 

Official Trailer ‘Motherland’ Documentary Film from Vic Gerami on Vimeo.

Produced and directed by Los Angeles-based Armenian American journalist and activist Vic Gerami, ‘Motherland’ is a new feature-length documentary film about the genocidal assault and the violent ethnic cleansing unleashed on September 27, 2020, by Azerbaijan and Turkey on the Republic of Artsakh. The 113-minute documentary film focuses unwavering attention on the coordinated, systematic, and wholly unprovoked genocidal attack and ethnic cleansing against the Armenians of Artsakh, also known as Nagorno-Karabakh.

‘Motherland exposes the unprovoked genocidal attack and ethnic cleansing that nations of Azerbaijan and Turkey unleashed on the independent Republic of Artsakh in 2020 and massacred more than 5,000 indigenous Armenians while world leaders watched in deafening silence,’ said Vic Gerami. He continued, ‘This largely ignored crime against humanity against Russia’s neighbor was partly Putin’s dry-run and a precursor to his brutal invasion of Ukraine.’ 

Gerami added, ‘I’m humbled by the Pomegranate Film Festival, their recognition of ‘Motherland,’ and the awards we received. It was an honor to attend the festival and experience a truly supportive, inclusive, and extraordinary event.’ 

About Vic Gerami

Vic Gerami is an award-winning journalist, columnist, media commentator, and the host of his prime-time headline news + politics radio program THE BLUNT POST with VIC (TBPV) on Independent + Progressive Radio KPFK 90.7 FM (Pacifica Network). Vic is also the editor + publisher of The Blunt Post

Today reaching national and international audiences, Gerami first built a foundation of knowledge and skills by learning the media industry during his years at Frontiers Magazine, followed by positions at LA Weekly and Voice Media Group. 

Gerami’s radio program, TBPV, covers national, regional, and local headline news, politics, and current events, and Gerami offers analysis and commentary. He also interviews a high-profile member of Congress or other high-profile public figures on each show. His recent guests include Congressman Adam SchiffSenator Bob MenendezCongresswoman Jackie SpeierGovernor Howard DeanCongresswoman Katie PorterCongressman Brad ShermanCongressman Mike LevinCongresswoman Maxine Waters, Congresswoman Judy ChuLA District Attorney George Gascon, among many others. You can listen to all the interviews here

Gerami is also a contributor to some of the most prominent publications in the nation, including Windy City Times, Bay Area Reporter, Armenian Mirror-Spectator, The Advocate, The Immigrant Magazine, GoWeHo, Destination Luxury, OUT Traveler, The Fight, and among others.

Gerami founded the Truth And Accountability League (TAAL), a 501©3 non-profit organization that advocates for Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) and Armenia. TAAL monitors & addresses Armenophobia, extremism & bigotry around the globe on the level of media, including social media, public policy, academia, and intelligentsia. 

The Wall Street Journal featured Gerami as a “leading gay activist” in its landmark 2008 coverage of opposition to Proposition 8, the ballot measure that for years denied same-sex couples in California the freedom to marry. In addition to his years of volunteer work as a leading advocate for marriage equality, Gerami served as a Planning Committee member for the historic Resist March in 2017. 

In 2015, Gerami was referenced in the landmark Supreme Court civil rights case, Obergefell v. Hodges, in which the Court held in a 5–4 decision that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples by both Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Instagram: @vicgerami

Facebook: facebook.com/vic.gerami

Twitter: @vicgerami

“Million Loves In Me” Celebrates 219th Award at Ethos Film Festival

Pandemic prevented producers John Yiu and Kenny Chan from receiving a few of their 219 awards for the 2018 Malaysian production “Million Loves In Me.” Fast forward to 2022 and the producers were able to travel to Santa Monica to showcase their film among 150 others. It ended up receiving the prestigious Grand Jury award, one of the highest honors representing critical and audience consensus at the Ethos Film Festival. 

While many films were showcased and awarded, “Million Loves In Me” was a clear standout, transporting the audience to an alternate world in a city in Asia, full of stylish Crazy Rich Asians type outfits, but set in a backdrop of high-density apartment living. Most importantly, “Million” takes you on a rollercoaster of emotions from pain, disgust, love, laughter, tears and ultimately empathy for the two main characters: a mother and daughter from a famous Hong Kong case of animal hoarding in an apartment, which soon became a national lawsuit and news story. 

The real-life connection to the film is stronger than in most productions. Producer and actor John Yiu was the lawyer who represented the vilified mother and daughter, for two years, understanding and empathizing with the facets of hoarding, mental illness, strained parent-child relationships and ultimately, a very public lawsuit. John won that case and gave the mother and daughter a happy resolution despite a barrage of negative media vilification. Empathy was the difference maker and became a teaching moment not just for John, but the Hong Kong community and now audiences in Santa Monica’s Ethos festival. 

Uniquely, John took this empathy one step further in his creative film adaptation, by playing the role of Katy, the daughter. His portrayal brought humor and charm to the role of the daughter, who transforms in her journey within the movie, an arc that allows her to find assertiveness and an opposition voice to a domineering mother as the movie progressed, spurred by tragedy. 

The execution of John’s gender-bending portrayal was tasteful and focused on substance, not gimmicks. One would arrive at this conclusion: no one would be a better character to play Katy than her real-life lawyer, John Yiu, as the audience explored gender biases in Asian families, living sheltered lives, finding comfort in animals, materialism and shopping as a self soothing mechanism, obsessive compulsive disorders and animal hoarding. 

The characters were all lovable down to Ruby Yap’s powerful moment as the lawyer that berates the journalist, asking poignant questions that never become contrived or sappy. This is testament to the filmmaker’s depth of life experience. 

Audiences connected to the many layers of substance in the film and my organization Asian Industry B2B actually had a hand in bringing audiences locally and as far away as Orange County, who wanted to see a unique Asian flavored indie film and the exploration of the mother-daughter dynamics of Asian culture, not often spoken about. 

One audience member said “I think what the movie really achieved most is a portrayal of mental illness and abuse. Usually, the abusers are the bad guys and of course, we don’t want to like the [abusive] mom, but I actually had feelings of love for her.” The producers achieved the almost impossible: creating an understanding and likability for the villain and thereby allowing us to see a more nuanced view of mental illness and abuse. 

In addition, the movie explored materialism and self-soothing by the characters through extravagant shopping that escalated from handbags and purses to cats and dogs.  The subsequent events where the world came crashing down on both mother and daughter, included the daughter falling in love with a swindler. This sets off a chain of events that reveal secrets hidden in their clandestine apartments exposed by a nosy journalist who honestly believed what he was doing was right. 

Dubbed a “purpose driven” film festival, “Million Loves” was featured and selectively awarded in the ETHOS FILM AWARDS. Ethos was founded by actor/filmmaker Anabelle D. Munro in Las Vegas, and had its 4th annual festival, first in Santa Monica at the renowned Laemmle Monica Film Center and their co-producing partner facility at Santa Monica College’s Public Policy Institute and Film School from Nov. 10-13.

What struck the audience the most was the flawless pacing of the movie, thanks in large part to executive producers Conroy Kanter (“Trafficked”) and Frank Mayor who were on site at the festival. They both edited down the original cut to an American edit suited to our stateside audience, mostly cutting out the court scenes and focusing more on bringing out the emotionality of the movie’s shining moments. 

Asked about their next projects in an exclusive interview, John Yiu said, “I [will be an] executive producer of a psychological thriller with an English-speaking team. I cherish the opportunity to work with talented directors in this upcoming project.”  This film will involve a home invasion and I saw the excitement in John and Kenny’s eyes as they take the next step to pursue their talents further after creating a masterpiece. 

Marc Ang (marc@aib2b.org) is a community organizer in Southern California and the founder of Asian. He focuses on the minority conservative experience. Marc’s book “Minority Retort” was released on November 9, 2022, through Trinity Broadcasting Network. 

Award-winning Epic War Drama ‘SMYRNA’ to have Nationwide Theatrical Screening Event on December 8th

The critically acclaimed epic war drama SMYRNA, hits 700+ screens in select theaters nationwide through Fathom Events, as a one night only event on Thursday, December 8, 2022.

SMYRNA brings to the big screen an extraordinary piece of cinema that details the heartbreaking 1922 catastrophe which destroyed one of the greatest cities in the world, once known as the “Pearl of the Orient.”  It urges us to pay attention to the current refugee crisis that our world continues to face today, as people are forced to flee their homeland because of war, violence, and persecution.

Director Atom Egoyan comments on the film, “An urgent and multilayered examination of an unspeakable atrocity. Told with great passion and brimming with outrage.”

SMYRNA has won the hearts of audiences having received a six-minute standing ovation at BAFTA’s iconic Princess Anne Theatre, in London, as well as receiving the 2022 Los Angeles Greek Film Festival and San Francisco Greek Film Festival Audience Awards. To date, the film stands as highest budgeted Greek film in history.

Fathom Events’ special presentation of the film includes a bonus feature with behind the scenes of the making-of, with exclusive talent interviews and a live recorded performance of select songs from the original soundtrack with world famous singer Alkistis Protopsalti, and other music artists.

Tickets are available at Fathom Events or at participating theater box offices. For a complete list of theater locations, visit the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).

A special screening of the film will take place on November 29th at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, under the Auspices of the Greek Permanent Mission to the United Nations.  It will also be screened at the European Parliament in Brussels on January 11, 2023, as well as other festivals and events around the world.

Written by Mimi Denissi in collaboration with two-time Tony Award nominee, Martin Sherman, SMYRNA has won six Hellenic Academy Awards, including Best Cinematography.

The film is directed by Grigoris Karantinakis with an international cast including Mimi Denissi, Leonidas Kakouris, Burak Hakki, Katerina Geronikolou, Jane Lapotaire, Susan Hampshire, Rupert Graves, Christos Stergioglou and Daphne Alexander. 

The film is produced by Dionyssis Samiotis, alongside executive producers Joseph Samaan and Mimi Denissi. In the U.S., promotional partners include AHEPA, Antenna 1 Satellite (ANT1) and Papadopoulou.  Film Bridge International is overseeing international sales for the film.

SMYRNA is a Tanweer Productions film, in co-production withCentral Stage, ANT1 Group, ERT, Greek Film Center, Tsiatlino, Finos Film, Barking Well Media, York Films, Europa and the support of Ministry of Digital Policy & Media and the National Center of Audiovisual Media and Communication (EKOME).     

Indie Entertainment Media – AFM 2022 Edition

We’re pleased to unveil our 2022 film market edition of IEM that includes an exclusive Q&A with film industry legend Mike Medavoy, an interview by HFPA’s Lena Basse with Oscar-winning actress Julianne Moore, a look at China co-productions by Claude Brickell, a star-studded photo gallery from Turkish chef Jale Balci’s recent book launch event in Los Angeles, and spotlights on rising stars Sensei Chop and Cindy Di Xin. The 5th Annual Production Without Borders Special Event, featuring Eileen Tasca, producer, Cannes Jury Prize winner EO, actress/filmmaker Golsa Sarabi, Michel Shane (Catch Me If You Can, I Robot) and Larry Kasanoff (Terminator 2, Mortal Kombat),  is also highlighted in the issue. 

We hope you enjoy! – Nicole Goesseringer Muj, Editor-In-Chief, Indie Entertainment Media

Clarence Fuller’s ‘Signs of Love’ Awarded Corbucci Distribution Prize At 17th Annual Rome Film Festival

Film Features Stellar Performances by Young Hollywood Royals Dylan Penn, Hopper Penn and Zoë Bleu

Director Clarence Fuller Signs of Love, starring Rosanna Arquette, Dylan Penn and Hopper Penn, the children of Sean Penn and Robin Wright, and Arquette’s daughter Zoë Bleu, took home the Corbucci Distribution Prize at the 17th annual Rome Film Festival, held from October 13-23, 2022 in the Italian capital.

The romantic drama is currently showing in select theatres nationwide. Distributed by Blue Fox Entertainment, the film’s producers are David Michaels and Alexander Norton, with executive producer Terek Ouertani.

“We spent so much time perfecting this film and we knew Rome was a perfect home to showcase this movie. What an amazing achievement to receive at such an artistic and world-renowned festival, featuring an incredible film slate. We are truly honored and humbled by the award received in Rome this past weekend. Our cast, writer and director truly are deserving. This was literally a labor of love,” says Ouertani.

In the film, Frankie, a young man from north Philly, dreams of a better life. When he meets Jane, a deaf girl from a well-off family, he sees hope for love and life but only if he can escape the hardship of the streets and the influence of his sister.

“Growing up poor is stunting and multilayered. It can limit mentalities and therefore, opportunities. On the cover, everyone around you has cool clothes, the best sneakers, or the newest video game console, and you’re getting picked on because you don’t. Behind closed doors, you’re largely unsupervised; your mom is working 12-hour days to stay off food stamps and to raise five kids on her own. There isn’t any time to give you special attention and you are never coddled. Your dad is not present and you are winging it trying to figure out how to navigate what life throws at you. As a teen, you start to make choices based on tangible things in life so you can feel as cool as your peers. As an adult, you realize it’s the intangible things that are important, but you are already trapped by the choices you made as a teen. Or so you think… Meet Frankie,” comments Fuller.

Zoë Bleu

Supporting cast includes Wass Stevens, Jahlil Hill, Da’Jour Jones, Drew Moore, Shannan Wilson, David Pridemore, Cree Kawa, and others https://www.imdb.com/title/tt12070418/

Fifth Annual Production Without Borders Showcase Goes Live On November 6th During Film Market

Cloud 21 International (www.cloud21.com) and Kultura PR International (www.kulturapr.com) will present the fifth Annual Production Without Borders Showcase, a special event to be held on November 6, 2022 at Threshold Entertainment Studios in Santa Monica. The announcement was made today by Gotham Chandna and Nicole Goesseringer Muj.

The by-invitation-only event held each year during AFM will feature some of the top names of the global entertainment industry. Reel360’s West Coast editor Colin Costello will moderate the hourlong panel that will feature filmmakers Eileen Tasca, Golsa Sarabi, Larry Kasanoff and Michel Shane. After the panel there will be an exclusive reception.

Register for the free event: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/5th-annual-production-without-borders-tickets-442930656517

“We are thrilled to be back ‘live’ in Santa Monica once again on November 6th at Larry Kasanoff’s studios,” comments Chandna. “We look forward to seeing our colleagues and industry partners at our annual event during the film market.”

“We have curated a panel of established leaders, and rising stars of film and TV,” adds Muj. “We look forward to learning about their latest projects and to inspire a lively discussion about the current state of global entertainment industry.”

Eileen Tasca is managing director of Alien Films and Task Films, a production whose co-shareholder is legendary Polish film director, Jerzy Skolimowski. In 2015, she was executive producer of Skolimowski’s 11 Minutes that premiered at the 2015 Venice Film Festival. The film won top prize at the Lisbon Film Festival and was selected as Poland’s entry for foreign language film for the 2016 Academy Awards. In 2010, she co-financed Essential Killing, also directed by Skolimowski, that garnered numerous awards at the Venice Film Festival.

Working again with Skolimowski, she is the Italian producer of Cannes Jury Prize Winner EO, a parable focused on the life of a simple donkey, set against the backdrop of today’s maddening reality.

Previously, she worked in venture capital at Citicorp and as a journalist for Variety and several other trade publications.  She is a member of the International Academy of the Television Arts and Sciences.

Golsa Sarabi is an international star and an action actor, who was born in Tehran, Iran and now resides in Los Angeles. Golsa boasts a diverse experience in performing arts, which includes film, stage, producing and scriptwriting. She was one of the executive producers on the film Dreams I Never Had and was nominated for the Best Actress Award at the Burbank International Film Festival for her lead role opposite Malcolm McDowell and Robin Givens. She has produced four short movies and has finished the short, First Title Above Billing, which received three nominations. She also played one of the leads in the TV pilot By Design

Golsa was the first winner of the “Young Acting Award” at the Lee Strasberg Institute in Los Angeles, where she completed a two-year intensive method acting program. Motivated by the desire to empower women, she was the first Persian woman after 35 years since the revolution who represented Iran at the Queen of the Universe Pageant, and won the coveted award. Currently, she is in development process on her first feature titled Mia, as one of the main producers and will star in the lead role. The film is based on a true event that happened in Iran about 40 years ago. She is an executive producer of the feature film Back In The No.

Larry Kasanoff is Chairman and CEO of Threshold Entertainment Group.  He makes movies (Terminator 2, True Lies, Mortal Kombat); animated movies (Lego Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Out) and theme park rides (Star Trek: The Borg Adventure; Marvel Superheroes 4D; The Baywatch Experience).

Previously, as president and co-founder of Lightstorm Entertainment, Larry supervised production, marketing, publicity and merchandising for the four-time Academy Award-winning hit Terminator 2 Judgment Day. He produced two movies with Academy Award-winning director Kathryn Bigelow. As a producer or studio head, Larry has made over 250 feature films, including Dirty Dancing,  and Academy Award Winning Best Picture Platoon.  He has raised well over a billion dollars in the film business.

In the music world, he has packaged or produced video projects with several of the world’s biggest talents, including Michael Jackson, The Rolling Stones and Dick Clark. For Terminator 2, he produced MTV’s top video of the year, “You Could Be Mine” with Gun’s ‘N Roses.

Quebec-native Michel Shane has been a successful entrepreneur for more than 30 years, having achieved great success in the film industry as a movie producer and founder at Shane Gang Pictures. He is best known for his work in developing, creating, and executive producing the blockbusters Catch Me If You Can and I Robot, and financing Northfork, to name a few.   

Michel has just completed a documentary on the horrors of the Pacific Coast Highway in California titled 21 Miles in Malibu. This passion project created to bring awareness to the dangers of this iconic roadway will be released soon. He is also preparing a multi-part television series on Michele Sindona, the Howard Hughes of Italy, who had his fingers in world affairs for over 20 years and at one time was one of the richest men in the world, that no one knew.

He is co-founder/co-CEO of Infinite Percent Partners, a natural products pharmaceutical company based out of Hawaii, California, and the UK. Michel is the Chair of The Emily Shane Foundation. In 2015, he received a Lifelong Achievement Award from President Barack Obama.


The panel will be moderated by WGA-East member Colin Costello, a biracial genre, comedy and horror writer and director.   The former award-winning advertising creative director has written two family feature films. 2013’s, The Stream which stands at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes. His debut short film, that he wrote and directed, 2018’s The After Party has played in 25 festivals and won five. His other short film, 2019’s Dreamwisher has won ten awards in the United States and internationally. His latest short Storage is currently making waves on the festival circuit.


In late 2018, he was selected by The Champions’ Program supported by the WGA Committee of Black Writers and designed to obtain writers of color representation or staffed.  Colin’s writing has gotten the attention of Spike Lee, with whom he helped launch an ad agency, Michael Bay, Dr. Maya Angelou, Reginald Hudlin, Tim Burton, Jan DeBont, Marcus Nispel, Pam Thomas, Disney, ABC, Netflix and The Montecito Picture Show Company. 
 
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Colin is currently editor for industry news outlet, Reel 360 News, a  screenwriting instructor at UCLA Extension and a volunteer for Young Storytellers. 

Event partners include Rondeno Culinary DesignsDr. J’s Natural, and Kaiilani.  

Cloud 21 PR International and Kultura PR International have produced numerous successful industry special annual events, including “French Riviera Film Festival” and  “Global Entertainment Showcase” during the Cannes Film Festival, the “Global Content Creators Showcase” during MIPCOM, “Production Without Borders” event during AFM, “Indie Entertainment Showcase” in Park City, as well as “A Salute to Akira Kurosawa” with China’s Jinke Entertainment in Cannes in 2017, plus many others. The companies have co-produced events and worked with top entertainment and technology brands, including E! Entertainment Television, Eurocinema, Metan Global Entertainment Group, USATV Productions, Maverick Entertainment, Sony Interactive, Oculus, Cinando, Euromed, ECU Film Festival, Creative Coalition, Davines North America, Vesilind, plus many others.

Sue Vicory’s My Power of One Launches Global Song Competition “One Song”

Award-winning filmmaker, founder of Heartland Films, https://suevicory.com and My Power of One Sue Vicory has launched a global song writing competition titled “One Song.”

Songwriters are invited to submit their original songs on the theme of ‘global humanity and the power of one’ through December 31st 2022 at https://suevicory.com/onesong.

“After 20 years of producing and directing films which host original music, I decided to combine my passions into one noteworthy event. My love for global humanity, music, and the spirit of creating original content was destined to collide, the beneficiary being greater humanity,” comments Vicory.

Five finalists will be named in February 2023 and will perform their works on stage to a live audience in Kansas City on May 5, 2023. The winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize and a production contract to produce a music video of their winning song.

Heartland Films, Inc. and My Power of One are lead sponsors for the finale event, with more sponsors expected to join soon.

Full details and rules can be found at  https://suevicory.com/onesong. All submission fees will be donated to  www.playingforchange.com, an organization created to inspire and connect the world through music.

Two-time Emmy nominated and five-time Telly Award winning filmmaker Sue Vicory has been creating community-based films and projects within her not-for-profit production 501c3 company Heartland Films, Inc. since 2003. Her works include Homelessness & the Power of One, feature documentaries One and Kansas City Jazz & Blues; Past, Present & Future and short films Absent and 1898, The W.F. Norman Story. In 2015, she founded Team XX, an all-female team of 25 filmmakers that created the award-winning film Down Stage.

In 2021 Sue premiered a historical documentary titled Original Jayhawker. Sue was named the 2020 recipient of the French Riviera Film Festival’s annual Industry Excellence Award and was awarded a Lifetime Achievement award from Washburn University, her alma mater.

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