“Julie & Julia” to close Rome Fest in October
Nora Ephron’s “Julie & Julia” will close the 4th Rome International Film Festival, organizers said Wednesday. Streep is expected to introduce the film which will be screened out of competition in the Official Selection and participate in a Q&A session with the audience as part of the EXTRA section. Last month the festival announced that Streep would receive the 2009 Golden Marc’Aurelio Acting Award. In addition, the EXTRA section will host two of Italy’s leading filmmakers Gabriele Muccino and Giuseppe Tornatore in an on-stage debate in the popular conversation series, “Duetto.” Additionally, Italian titles . “Viola Di Mare,” directed by Donatella Maiorca, “Alza La Testa,” directed by Alessandro Angelini and “L’Uomo Che Verra” directed by Giorgio Diritti will screen in competition. Alessandro di Robilant’s “Marpiccolo” featuring Anna Ferruzzo, Giorgio Colangeli, Valentina Carnelutti, and newcomer Giulio Beranek, will be featured in the the Alice nella citta section of the festival.
“Trucker” and “Saint Misbehavin'” take Woods Hole Film Festival
James Mottern’s “Trucker,” starring Michelle Monaghan and Benjamin Bratt won the jury award for best narrative feature at teh 18th Woods Hole Film Festival, while Michelle Esrick’s “Saint Misbehavin’: The Wavy Gravy Story” won the prize for best documentary as well as the audience nod in the category. George Kachadorian’s “Shooting Beauty,” a documentary about a world of beauty discovered at a group home for people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities, won the Best of the Fest Audience Award, and “Li Tong,” a Chinese interpretation on “The Red Balloon” by Nian Liu of Beijing, China, won the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature. For more information and winners visit the festival’s website.
“Hunger” takes top nod at New Horizons Fest
Steve McQueen’s “Hunger” won the Grand Prix at the New Horizons International Film Festival in Poland. The film also won the Camera d’Or at last year’s Cannes. The Audience Award went to “Oxygen” by the Russian director Ivan Vyrypayev, while “FLicKeR” by Canadian documentarian Nik Sheehan won the “Films on Art” International competition. During the 11 days of film, music and art exhibition events, the Era New Horizons International Film Festival presented 242 full-length films from 45 countries, with more than 120 of them having their Polish premieres. For more information and winners, visit their website.
“Opera in Cinema” Unveils Fall/Winter line up
Emerging Pictures’ “Opera in Cinema” series gives opera aficionados to experience “what’s happening on stages all across the world to further their appreciation of operas, opera companies, directors, conductors, and singers.” Highlights from the upcoming season include: La Boheme starring Anna Netrebko and Rolando Villazon and then continue with such landmark works as the renowned Salzburg Festival featuring Mozart’s Cosi fan Tutte; Wagner’s Die Walkuere performed at the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia; Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo from La Scala; Bizet’s Carmen, also from La Scala; and Verdi’s Il Trovatore from the Gran Teatre del Liceu. The events will screen in cinemas across the U.S., Canada and other regions worldwide. For more information on the series, visit the Emerging Pictures website.
A Desert Film Festival Complete With Camels
The sixth annual Sahara International Film Festival claims to be the world’s only film festival held in a refugee camp, a conceit organized by filmmakers from Spain to bring attention to a political contest scarcely recognized beyond this corner of northwest Africa. Andy Isaacson profiles Algeria’s film fest in the New York Times.
Tallgras Fest Unveils Initial Details
Wichita Association for the Motion Picture Arts (WAMPA) announced highlights of the 7th annual Tallgrass Film Festival, which will take place at locations in and around downtown Wichita, Oct. 23-25. Kevin Willmott’s “The Only Good Indian” will open the festival with a director Q&A after the screening. Kansas filmmaker Steve Balderson’s “Underbelly,” which documents the world of belly dancing will be the fest’s centerpiece. For more details, visit the Tallgrass website.
Uighur accuses China of inflaming ethnic tension
Rebiya Kadeer, a U.S.-based activist who is in Australia for the screening of a documentary about her life, told reporters that Beijing should be held accountable for the violent crackdown. “The Chinese people should be very careful with the Chinese government’s versions of the events and the ways and means the Chinese government employ … to deceive, to some extent, the Chinese people, to create this kind of terrible relationship between two groups,” Kadeer said at the Melbourne International Film Festival AP reports.
Taiwan denies boycotting Australian film festival
Taiwan’s Beijing-friendly government on Wednesday denied boycotting an Australian film festival amid a row over the exiled leader of the Uighur minority. “We deeply regret that the movie’s overseas distributor, Hong Kong’s Fortissimo Films, pulled [‘Miao Miao’] without notifying Taiwan and we protest such a move,” Taiwan’s government information office said regarding the feature which was pulled from the Melbourne International Film Festival. AFP reports.
– Florida Film Festival announced its call for entries for the event taking place in Spring 2010.
– “Anime” directors such as Hayao Miyazaki, Isao Takahata and Ichiro Itano were expected to attend the Manga Impact section of the Locarno International Film Festival, where 18 features are in the running for the coveted Golden Leopard for best picture. AFP reports.