DAILY NEWS: Introducing indieWIRE: BUZZ; and the IFP Market's Narrative Lineup
by Eugene Hernandez and Wendy Mitchell/indieWIRE
>> indieWIRE: BUZZ for Monday, August 12, 2002
(indieWIRE: 08.12.02) — indieWIRE presents a new weekly column focusing
on recent items on the radar (or under the radar) in the indie film
community. Feel free to submit your news items (or gossip!) to
Lot 47 Films‘ Jeff Lipsky confirmed last week that Bill Thompson has exited the company. He joined the Lot 47 about a year ago as VP and general sales
Screenwriter Frank Pierson (“Dog Day Afternoon,” “Cool Hand Luke“) was re-elected president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Thursday night. This is his second term heading the organization.
Joe Quenqua has departed indie PR firm mPRm to head Disney‘s New York PR office.
Killer Films has bid adieu to Daniel Wagner, who has left the company to
work on the production of Todd Graff‘s “Camp” (see news item below).
David Mueller, who worked in exhibitor relations at IFC Films, is leaving
NO “HOURS” IN VENICE: Miramax has pulled Stephen Daldry‘s “The Hours” from the upcoming Venice Film Festival‘s Venezia 59 competition. Organizers indicated that the movie was yanked because “Miramax has to modify some
technical aspects of the film.” It will be replaced in the competition
by Todd Haynes‘ “Far From Heaven,” which had been set to screen out of
CABLEVISION CUTS: Buzz is swirling about changes at Cablevision. At a
shareholder meeting late last week, Chairman Charles Dolan and his son James
(president and CEO) announced that Cablevision will sell its New York-based
Clearview Cinemas and shut some locations of the WIZ retail stores.
Cablevision is the parent company of such well-known indie entities as
Bravo, the Independent Film Channel, IFC Productions, IFC Films, InDigEnt, and Next Wave Films. The Dolans also announced that company-wide staff cuts will affect 7 percent of employees.
IFC GETS CAMPY: IFC Productions is working with Jersey Films and Killer
Films, along with John Wells Productions, on Todd Graff‘s directorial debut, “Camp.” The flick is described as a “a hip musical comedy” about a summer
camp for offbeat performers. Tony-winner Graff’s previous screenwriting
experience includes “Coyote Ugly,” which was musical and unintentionally
comedic, so “Camp” just might work!
ANOTHER GREENLIGHT: For those who aren’t getting quite enough of the
Affleck–Damon tag team, HBO and Miramax announced that “Project Greenlight” will be back for a second season to document the struggles of a first-time filmmaker. But who’s going to document the struggles of anyone who sat
through the first “Greenlight” effort, “Stolen Summer“?
BMW BACK WITH DIRECTOR-DRIVEN SHORTS: BMW is teaming up with brothers Ridley Scott and Tony Scott‘s RSA for a new series of online shorts directed by name filmmakers. John Woo, Tony Scott, and Joe Carnahan are on board for three installments in the new series that will launch in October. Each short features suave “Croupier” vet Clive Owen and, of course, BMW’s latest line of cars.
SORRY, WRONG ‘CHATEAU’: Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw were spotted at New York’s Chelsea West Cinemas for the premiere of Jesse Peretz‘s “The Chateau.” Photographers were snapping away, and Variety even posted pics indicating the famous couple were in attendance, but it looks like Spielberg
was just confused. Upon entering the lobby, the director asked what was going
on and was informed that he was attending the premiere of “The Chateau.”
Spielberg and his wife stopped, admitting that they were actually
intending to see ‘Full Frontal.'” Evidently the the two got lost en route
to the theater, as the Sodergbergh film was screening at another Chelsea
venue one block away. Later, attendees also were buzzing that Tom Brokaw
was in attendance, but it was only a case of mistaken identity for another
silver fox, Jonathan Sehring of IFC Films. Sorry, Mr. Peretz, but at least
musicians Rufus Wainwright and Melissa Auf Der Maur were in attendance. Check out indieWIRE’s “Chateau” review tomorrow.
MIRAMAX GUZZLES COORS: Miramax has signed a multi-year deal with the Coors
Brewing Company for product placement in movies plus co-hosting of premieres
and events. Somehow it still seems unlikely that we’ll see Gwyneth
shotgunning a can of the Silver Bullet.
ROGER THAT: The Wilco doc “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart” opened in the band’s hometown of Chicago on August 2, after a fun-filled friends and
family screening in the Windy City on August 1. At the afterparty at a rock
club called the Hideout, the Wilco coverband Roger (clever name, guys!)
played a set and then was joined by the actual members of Wilco for an
impromptu set in the wee hours.
BOOZING FOR A GOOD CAUSE: From 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. Wednesday night at the
Cellar Bar in the Bryant Park Hotel (40th St.) in NYC, there will be a
benefit for and celebration of Michael Galinksy and Suki Hawley‘s “Horns and Halos.” The $20 suggested donation will help create a 35mm print for the
Toronto-bound doc, about underground publisher Sander Hicks‘ Soft Skull
Press as it republished the discredited George W. Bush bio “Fortunate Son.” Armadale Vodka, Maker’s Mark, Duart, Kodak and the IDA are party sponsors;
visit www.hornsandhalos.com for more info on the movie.
Screenwriter Joe Eszterhas, throat cancer survivor, rallied against
Hollywood’s glamorization of smoking in an op-ed piece in Friday’s New York
“I think smoking should be as illegal as heroin. I’m no longer such a bad
boy. I go to church on Sunday. I’m desperate to see my four boys grow up. I
want to do everything I can to undo the damage I have done with my own
big-screen words and images.”
ASK DR. INDIE
This week’s question: What’s up with those wacky Ryder brothers poisoning
pigeons in “24 Hour Party People“? Is PETA protesting?
Well, Dr. Indie is a 24 Hour Party Person but wasn’t actually on the set of
“24 Hour Party People.” So we’ll have to trust the cast interviews that
indicate the pigeons were already dead (apparently scenic Manchester,
England isn’t in short supply of dead birds). However, the birds did cause
a fracas at Cannes 2001, when some cast members attacked each other with
dead pigeons and fake blood in a publicity stunt for the film. Shocked
onlookers called security and the actors and some journalists were ejected
from the swank private beach. Still, Mr. Animal Rights, Moby, didn’t mind
DJing the U.S. premiere.
Submit your questions to email@example.com.
Coming this week in indieWIRE: An interview with Neil LaBute, who says
working on the lushly romantic “Possession” wasn’t as much of a stretch as
you might think. Also, an interview with the director of “Mostly Martha,”
about a chef who is NOT Martha Stewart. [indieWIRE: BUZZ compiled by
Wendy Mitchell, with reports from Eugene Hernandez]
>> IFP/New York Sets 2002 IFP Market Narrative Slate
(indieWIRE: 08.12.02) — Eighty five narrative projects are set for the 2002
IFP Market, a 40 percent drop following a re-definition of the event by
organizers. [The complete lineup is available now at indieWIRE.com.] The
event runs September 27 to October 4 in downtown Manhattan.
This year marks the first time in the history of the event that no finished
narrative films will screen. Comprising the Market’s Emerging Narrative
section this year are screenplays, short films, and narrative
works-in-progress. Awards will be presented to projects in all narrative
“Since 1979, the IFP Market has provided a unique opportunity for
independent filmmakers to interact directly with industry professionals,”
commented IFP/New York executive director Michelle Byrd in a prepared
statement. “By focusing on what we do best — highlighting the most
noteworthy projects and bringing these works and emerging filmmakers
together with buyers, distributors, programmers, and financiers — we can
heighten attention around a select group of talented, emerging filmmakers
and service that constituency more effectively.” [Eugene Hernandez]
GET THE COMPLETE 2002 IFP MARKET narrative lineup @ indieWIRE.com
>> THURSDAY IN indieWIRE DAILY NEWS: Montreal Fest Lineup; “Washington Heights” Wins in NYC; and Big Mouth Celebrates Five Years
(indieWIRE: 08.08.02) — A total of 216 feature films are set to screen at
this year’s World Film Festival in Montreal , with 159 short films on tap for
the event; The third annual New York International Latino Film Festival
presented its top honor to “Washington Heights” at the close of the six-
day event; And, Big Mouth Productions has launched a special documentary
film series, 5 For 5, to celebrate its fifth anniversary.”
READ THE FULL STORIES @ indieWIRE.com