by Kevin Dreyfuss
The International Film Financing Conference (IFFCON) recently announced
the 60 projects and filmmakers selected to participate in their sixth
annual forum for independent films in development, IFFCON '99, running
from January 15-17 in San Francisco. Selected filmmakers from North
America will have the opportunity to attend seminars, private meetings,
special receptions and screenings alongside top international
executives, buyers and financiers, all with the objective of getting
their films through the thicket of international financing, production
The conference's in-development offerings will include Sasha Bogunovic's
"Under the Bridge," with Edward Norton; Gurineder Chadha (director of
"Bahdji on the Beach") and Paul Berges with "Love in London," a
Cinemascope musical shot Bollywood-style; Joseph A. Infantolino with
"Girl Gone," to be directed by Kevin Bacon; Jonathan Stack (Producer and
co-director of last year's Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner "The Farm")
with "St. Gabriel: Women's Prison"; "Masterpiece" by Chris Chan Lee
(director of "Yellow"); "Treed Murray" by Mehra Meh (producer of
Trimark's "Cube"); and IFFCON veteran Steven J. Wolfe ("Relax, it's Just
Sex") with "The Preacher's Son." Also attending will be Craig H.
Shepherd (producer of Sundance '99 selection "Edge of 17") with "Kaffir
Boy"; about a child growing up in South Africa and his journey to
America on a tennis scholarship, as well as Wally White (writer/
producer/ director of Miramax's "Lie Down with Dogs") with "Waldo
From the Bay Area comes Lynn Hershman Leeson (an IFFCON veteran with her
film "Conceiving Ada"), with "The Memoirs of Elizabeth Frankenstein,"
detailing a provocative tale of the unknown erotic love triangle between
Victor Frankenstein, Elizabeth and the Monster; Buzz Hays (producer,
"Swimming with Sharks") with a documentary on female magicians,
"Conjuring Women"; and Josh Rosen with "Serious toys," a documentary
about buyers and sellers at arms expos and toy fairs in Abu Dhabi and
Entertainment industry leaders attending include Jack Lechner and Matt
Brodie (Miramax), Bingham Ray (October), Joe Pichirallo (Fox
Searchlight), Marcus Hu (Strand Releasing), Peter Broderick (Next Wave
Films), Jacquie Lawrence (Channel4 UK), Nancy Abraham (HBO/ Cinemax),
Wouter Bardenrecht (Fortissimo Film Sales), Mark Smolowitz (Turbulent
Arts) and Clark Peterson (Behavior Entertainment), among others.
While much of the conference is private, the first day seminars, panel
discussions and networking events, known as Open Day, are open to the
paying public. Among this year's topics will be a case study on the
financing and production of Tony Bui's Sundance '99 entrant "Three
Seasons," starring Harvey Keitel and filmed on location in Vietnam.
Director Tony Bui, producers Jason Kliot (Open City Films), Bingham Ray
(October Films) and Kurt Woolner (Film Finances) will all be in
Running alongside the IFFCON seminars and also open to the public is
their 2nd annual Directors Film Series, run in conjunction with the
Asia-Pacific Partnership and the San Francisco Film Society. Five
rising young filmmakers from the Asia Pacific region and their
development projects will be highlighted, including Joan Chen, Park
Kiyong, Eric Khoo, Fruit Chan and Masato Harada.
For further information, call IFFCON's 24 hour hotline at 415.281.9777,
or visit their Web site, www.iffcon.com.
Please take a look at the complete list of IFFCON participants.