NYFF Turns 40; Weekly indieWIRE: BUZZ, and "The Guys" Deal
by Eugene Hernandez, Matthew Ross, and Wendy Mitchell/indieWIRE
>> New York Film Festival at 40
(indieWIRE: 09.27.02) — The Film Society of Lincoln Center kicks off its
celebration of the 40th anniversary of the New York Film Festival tonight
with Alexander Payne‘s “About Schmidt.” The festival, which runs through
October 13, will close with Pedro Almodovar‘s “Talk to Her.” If today’s
weather forecast holds, the New York Film Festival’s annual opening night
party under the stars at Central Park’s Tavern on the Green will be a soggy
affair. Spirits shouldn’t be dampened though, as the swanky opening night
gala has long reigned as the top film night on the New York City film
community’s social calendar.
Created in 1963 by Richard Roud and Amos Vogel, the event was intended to
showcase films that “might have otherwise passed unnoticed.” In a
publication distributed this year, looking back at 40 years of the festival,
Chairman of the New York Film Festival Selection Committee Richard Pena reminded readers
of the event’s mission. “The NYFF is not a panorama, but a selection; you
might not like or agree with the selection, but it’s clear that the films
chosen offer a distinctive point-of-view on what’s happening in cinema
today.” [Eugene Hernandez]
[indieWIRE is reporting from the 40th New York Film Festival in Manhattan.
Watch for daily coverage throughout the event.]
GET THE COMPLETE NYFF LINEUP @ indieWIRE.com:
[For more information on the New York Film Festival, visit:
>> indieWIRE: BUZZ for Friday, September 27
indieWIRE presents its weekly column focusing on recent items on the radar
in the indie film community.
Eric Di Bernardo has been named the new national sales director for Rialto
Pictures. He replaces Mike Thomas, who has left the company to pursue other
interests. Di Bernardo previously worked at Paramount and Orion Pictures.
Beth English has left her publicity post at IFC Films to go work with former
IFC head Bob Berney over at the newly launched Newmarket Films.
Susan Wrubel recently left her post as VP of Acquisitions for Madstone Films.
Her departure came after Madstone shifted acquisitions duties to its New
Yorker Films unit.
Martin Wendel has re-joined Lot 47 after a stint at Fine Line Features in
New York City.
INDIE VOICES: The Association of Independent Film and Video and Filmmakers
(AIVF) has named today Media Advocacy Day. AIVF members across the country
are organizing meetings with Congressional representatives to ensure
support for independent media. A media advocacy toolkit is available
online at aivf.org or by calling Priscilla Grim at 212-807-1400, x. 236.
FEST OF THE LIVING DEAD: The Independent Film Channel has signed on as
one of the sponsors of The NYC Horror Film Festival, which is slated for
October 25-27 at the Tribeca Film Center. The festival announced plans to
honor horror legend George A. Romero with its first lifetime achievement
award. Romero himself will attend and present a special screening of his
film “Creepshow.” (In other Romero news, he’s slated to deliver the
Academy’s George Pal Lecture on Fantasy in Film on October 17 in Los
Angeles.) The NYCHFF will show classic indie horror movies plus new works
by indie filmmakers working in the genre. Thanks to sponsor DracTour.com,
the winner of the festival’s best feature prize will get an all-expense
paid Dracula Tour in Transylvania. Take that, Cannes.
LUNCH & LEARN: Kodak has kicked off the third season of its Film at 11;
Lunch at 12 seminars. The monthly seminars are geared toward
cinematographers and other filmmakers working in docs, features, or TV
commercials. The next event will be a discussion of digital to film
blow-ups, held on October 29 at Kodak’s Theatre in New York. The series
will also include networking sessions. For information, call 212-631-3464.
OPEN FILM NIGHT: Show your latest work, and spy on drunk strangers, all in
one place! NYC high-tech hotspot Remote Lounge, at Bowery and Second
Street, is hosting a new filmmaker showcase, “Open Reel,” every other
Sunday night. Like an “open mic” night for filmmakers, the Sunday
showcases will let filmmakers bring in tapes and screen them for an
audience. For details, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Remote, famous for
its rather pricey cocktails and its many bar cameras and consoles for
voyeurs, will also host erotic films on Tuesdays in October as part of
SinCine2002 (sincine.multo.com). For details about Remote or the film
events there, check out www.remotelounge.com.
HAIR RAISING: In other news for voyeurs, artist Bill Plympton has launched
his “anicam.” This webcam (www.hairhigh.com) lets folks watch Plympton
create his new animated feature, “Hair High,” from start to finish. The
camera, over Bill’s shoulder, is on from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.
WEDDING BELLS: Congratulations to Fox Searchlight publicist Megan Colligan,
who married Mark Roybal (of Scott Rudin Productions) last weekend.
“That is NOT my sister’s ass.”
— Jake Gyllenhaal, in an interview with Time Out New York, about the racy
posters for his sister Maggie’s film “Secretary.”
Next week in indieWIRE, full coverage of the New York Film Festival,
including reviews of “Russian Ark,” “The Man Without a Past,” and
“The Magdalene Sisters.” Plus, Anthony Kaufman’s World Cinema Report.
>> “The Guys” Lands at Focus Features
(indieWIRE: 09.27.02) — Focus Features has acquired Jim Simpson‘s “The
Guys,” which had its world premiere earlier this month at the Toronto
International Film Festival. The film, an adaptation of the September 11-
themed play, will be released by Focus later this year.
“The Guys” was executive produced by ContentFilm‘s Ed Pressman and John
Schmidt along with Bonnie Timmerman. Jason Kliot and Joana Vicente of Open
City Films produced the movie, with Gretchen McGowan as co-producer.
In an announcement, Focus indicated that a portion of the film’s proceeds
will benefit families of New York City firefighters. [Eugene Hernandez]