"Next Stop" Kicking Off Third Nantucket Fest, Full Lineup
Unveiled, Larder Jr. Feted
by Mark Rabinowitz
The third annual Nantucket Film Festival (NFF) announced its lineup on
Wednesday — the event is set to kick off with the Boston-filmed Sundance
pic “Next Stop Wonderland” by Brad Anderson. At a kickoff reception in New
York last night, Anderson told indieWIRE that the film is set for an August
release, following its big money acquisition by Miramax in Park City.
The festival closes with the world premiere of Nadia Tass’ “Amy.” The fest
has also programmed the U.S. premiere of Tass’ “Mr. Reliable.”
This year’s event, scheduled to run from June 16-21 on Nantucket Island in
Massachusetts, boasts a handful of world and U.S. premieres, along with
their now familliar lineup of screenplay readings, seminars and “Morning
Coffee With…” sessions. As this is a festival dedicated to screenwriters and
their craft, there are many programs centered around the writer, including
staged screenplay readings, panel discussions, and the first annual Writer’s
The festival will honor Academy Award winner Ring Lardner, Jr. One of
the “Hollywood Ten,” a group of movie professionals blacklisted for
refusing to answer questions put forth by the House Committee on
Un-American Activites (HUAC), Lardner won Oscars for scripting
“Woman of the Year” and “M*A*S*H,” and counts “The Cinicinnati
Kid” among numerous other credits. This year, the festival is
screening both of those Oscar winning films, in addition to a documentary
about the Hollywood Ten, entitled “Hollywood on Trial“, directed by
David Helpern, Jr. The film features such notable victims of the
blacklist as Lardner, Zero Mostel, and Dalton Trumbo.
1998 marks the debut of an audience award that will be given to both a
feature and a short. Additionally, the event hosts the Tony Cox Award
for Screenwriting, created by the NFF and Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI)
in honor of the late Winston H. (Tony) Cox, former CEO of SNI. This
three-year-old competition will present the winner of the award at a
lunch on the festival’s opening day. The past winners are Michael
Almereyda for “Fever” and Frederick Rendina for “Kabi.”
The festival’s program boasts some notable films from recent festivals,
in addition to some noteworthy premieres. Amos Poe’s “Frogs For Snakes,”
starring Barbara Hershey, Robbie Coltrane and Debi Mazar will have its
U.S. bow, and John Shea’s “Southie,” a film workshopped as a
work-in-progress last year at the fest, will have its East Coast
premiere. Other films of note include multiple Sundance award winner
“Smoke Signals,” directed by Chris Eyre; Will Kern’s LAIFF entry
“Chicago Cab,” starring Gillian Anderson, John Cusack and Julianne
Moore; Susan Skoog’s Sony Pictures Classics release, “Whatever“; Tamra
Jenkins’ “Slums of Beverly Hills“; Joan Micklin Silver’s “A Fish in the
Bathtub,” and Tony Gatlif’s Gadjo Dilo from France.
Notable shorts in the fest include “Dirty Baby Does Fire Island“
by Todd Downing; award winning “The Rocking Horse Winner“, from a short
story by D.H. Lawrence, adapted and directed by Michael Almereyda; the
hilarious “Phil Touches Flo,” The FxM-produced short by David Birdsell;
the equally uproarious “Culture“, by Will Speck & Josh Gordon; Amy
Talkington ‘s “Second Skin,” and Elizabeth Schub’s award-winning “Cuba
The complete lineup for the festival follows:
OPENING NIGHT FILM:
NEXT STOP WONDERLAND – Directed by Brad Anderson. 96 min. 1997.
CLOSING NIGHT FILM:
AMY – Written by David Parker. Directed by Nadia Tass. 104 minutes.
RING LARDNER, JR. SERIES:
HOLLYWOOD ON TRIAL – Written by Arnie Reisman Directed by David Helpern,
M*A*S*H – Written by Ring Lardner, Jr. Directed by Robert Altman. 116
WOMAN OF THE YEAR – Written by Ring Lardner, Jr. Directed by George
Stevens. 114 minutes. 1942.
A FISH IN THE BATHTUB – Written by Jay Silverstein, David Chudnovsky,
Raphael Silver Directed by Joan Micklin Silver. 96 minutes. 1998.
MOJO – Written and Directed by Jez Butterworth. 90 Minutes. 1997.
UNMADE BEDS – Written and Directed by Nicholas Barker. 93 minutes.
SAFE MEN – Written and Directed by John Hamburg. 89 Minutes. 1997.
GADJO DILO – Written and Directed by Tony Gatlif. 97 Minutes. 1997.
Principal Cast: Romaine Duris, Rona Hartner, Izidor Serban, Ovidiu
WEDNESDAY – Written and Directed by Viktor Kossakovsky. 97 minutes.
MR. RELIABLE – Written by Don Catchlove and Terry Hayes. Directed by
Nadia Tass. 113 minutes. 1996.
ROJA – Written and Directed by Mani Rathnan. 137 minutes. 1997.
WHATEVER – Written and Directed by Susan Skoog. 112 minutes. 1997.
SMOKE SIGNALS – Written by Sherman Alexie. Directed by Chris Eyre. 89
CHICAGO CAB – Written by Mary Cybulsky and John Tintori. Directed by
FROGS FOR SNAKES (U.S. Premiere) Written and Directed by Amos Poe. 95
GAME DAY (World Premiere) – Written and Directed by Steve Klein. 105
SLUMS OF BEVERLY HILLS – Written and Directed by Tamara Jenkins. 91
SOUTHIE – Written by Jimmy Cummings and David McLaughlin. Directed by John Shea. 92
SHORTS PROGRAM I:
DANCE, LEXIE, DANCE – Written and Directed by Tim Loane. 15 min. 1997.
SUGAR MAMA – Directed by Edward Rosenstein. 5 min. 1997.
TIS THE SEASON – Written and Directed by Justin Dorazio. 19 min. 1997
TREE SHADE – Written and Directed by Lisa Collins. 25 min. 1998
BICYCLE – Written and Directed by Jonah Kaplan. 6 min. 1997
CUBA 15 – Directed by Elizabeth Schub. 12.30 min. 1997.
SNAKE FEED – Written by Debra Granik, J. Scheuer, C. Stralka, R.
Lieske. Directed by Debra Granik. 23 minutes. 1997.
SHORTS PROGRAM II:
TWO WEDDINGS – Directed by Edward Rosenstein & Harvey Wang. 7 min.
DIRTY BABY DOES FIRE ISLAND – Written and Directed by Todd Downing.
8:30 min. 1997.
THE FIRST SEVEN YEARS – Written and Directed by Rachel Saltz & Kryssa
Schemmerling. 27 min. 1998.
IMMER ZU – Written and Directed by Janie Geiser. 8:30 min. 1997.
SECOND SKIN – Written by Lara Shapiro. Directed by Amy Talkington. 15
TADDO – Written and Directed by Aaron Matthews. 10 min. 1998.
WHACKED – Written and Directed by Rolf Gibbs. 5 min. 1997.
THE ROCKING HORSE WINNER – Written by D.H. Lawrence. Adapted and
Directed by Michael Almereyda. 23 min. 1997.
SHORTS PROGRAM III:
THE DEADNESS OF DAD – Written by Stephen Volk. Directed by Philippa
Cousins. 23 min. 1997.
REFLEXUS – Written and Directed by Mark Yoshikawa. 8:30 min. 1997.
PHIL TOUCHES FLO – Written and Directed by David Birdshell. 6:48 min.
IS IT THE DESIGN ON THE WRAPPER? – Written and Directed by Tessa
Sheridan. 7 min. 1997.
CULTURE – Written and Directed by Will Speck & Josh Gordon. 29 min.
THE BYSTANDER FROM HELL – Written by Chris Grimm. Directed by Matthew
Harrison. 3:00 min. 1997.