Ahead of the 10th Tribeca Film Festival starting April 20th, indieWIRE is again spotlighting emerging (and some veteran) filmmakers screening new work at this year’s event.
Tuesday’s new director interviews include profiles from Dennis Lee’s “Jesus Henry Christ” (World Narrative Competition); Mona Nicoara and Miruna Coca-Cozma’s “Our School” (World Documentary Competition); and “The Journals of Musan” by Park Jungbum (Viewpoints).
In the days leading up to the festival, iW is focusing on directors with work in TFF’s Narrative Feature Competition, World Documentary Competition and its new Viewpoints sidebar, which the festival describes as a “snapshot of international independent cinema that immerses audiences in distinctive perspectives.”
indieWIRE will continue to publish three new Tribeca interviews Monday through Saturday up to the beginning of the festival.
Soon after Tribeca unveiled its 2011 lineup, indieWIRE invited directors screening their work in Tribeca’s narrative, doc and Viewpoints sections to talk about their work in their own words. Get to know this year’s crop of filmmakers by learning about their projects from the people who know it first-hand.
A snapshot of the Tuesday’s three featured interviews:
“The Journals of Musan” by Park Jungbum is the story of Jeon Seung-chul, a North Korean defector forging a life in capitalist South Korea. Emerging from eight months in a resettlement camp, the unassuming Seung-chul is placed in a home on the rundown outskirts of Seoul, and finds a modest job papering the city with advertisement posters. Yearning for a human bond, he joins a church and meets Sook-young, a choir singer who works nights at a seedy karaoke bar.”I wanted to reveal the desperate situations the North Korean defectors are experiencing in a very realistic way,” Park told indieWIRE. “I tried to avoid dramatic camera movements and made sure to act as an observer, keeping my distance from the performers.”
Dennis Lee’s “Jesus Henry Christ” is a modern family comedy that revolves around a 10-year-old boy genius Henry James Hermin (Jason Spevack) and his fervently left-wing single mother Patricia (Toni Collette), who works at the local university’s cafeteria. A misfit from birth, Henry’s precocious, rabble-rousing ways catch up with him when he gets kicked out of school for writing “Manifestos on the Nature of Truth.” Meanwhile, 12-year-old Audrey (Samantha Weinstein) has her own problems because of her single father, university professor Dr. Slavkin O’Hara (Michael Sheen), who used her as the test subject for his best-selling book Born Gay or Made that Way? When Henry scores a scholarship to the university as a child prodigy, the two families cross paths and everything they knew about their lives is thrown to the wind. “My film is about a perfectly functional American family made up of dysfunctional people.”
In Nicoara and Coca-Cozma’s “Our School,” the film follows three Roma (or “Gypsy”) children in a rural Transylvanian village who are among the pioneer participants in an initiative to integrate the ethnically segregated Romanian schools. When their district is ordered desegregated, Alin, Benjamin, and Dana set out for the city school, optimistic for education and new friendships, even as funds earmarked for integration are questionably used to build a “Roma-only” school in their village. Their innocent optimism quickly sours when the children are met with baseless ostracism from peers and teachers alike. “Shooting was, in many ways, quite easy: We enjoyed tremendous access and were welcomed by everyone in town. By the end, they had seen us there for so many years, and had lost all hope that we would ever finish the film,” Nicoara told iW. “Many of the participants actually shook their heads in pity when we came back last year.”
Tuesday’s full-length Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews 4/12):
Monday’s Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews (4/11):
Friday’s Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews (4/8):
iW’s Thursday Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews (4/7):
iW’s Wednesday Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews (4/6):
iW’s Tuesday Tribeca Film Festival filmmaker interviews (4/5):