by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE
New York's Gen Art Film Festival returns for year four later this month,
with seven premieres and seven parties over seven nights -- a format that
it successfully pioneered when the fest began four years ago. The festival runs
April 28th - May 4th, kicking off at Sony's Lincoln Square before moving to the
Worldwide Plaza cinemas. This year, to accommodate increased interest in the
event, Film Division Director Tobin Heminway indicated that the event has
added afternoon "second screenings" of each movie.
Toni Kalem's "A Slipping Down Life," which debuted this year at Sundance,
will kick off the festival, with an after-party at the Limelight. The movie
stars Lili Taylor, Guy Pearce, and Bruno Kirby. Other Park City pics
making the trip to Manhattan for the showcase are Gough Lewis' documentary
"Sex: The Annabel Chong Story" (with a party at VIP Lounge), the Slamdance
premiere, "Dill Scallion," directed by Jordan Brady and featuring Billy
Burke, Willie Nelson, Jason Priestly, Peter Berg, Kathy Griffin, and Henry
Winkler (party at Life), and Lisanne Skyler's "Getting to Know You" which
stars Heather Matarazzo, Zach Braff, and Michael Weston (after-party at
Other films screening at Gen Art '99 are Richard Shepard's "Oxygen"
starring Maura Tierney and James Naughton (party at the Key Club), Michael
T. Rehfield's "Big Monday" (party at Vivid), and on closing night the
festival offers Neil Turitz' "Two Ninas" featuring Amanda Peet, Cara Buono,
Ron Livingston, and Jill Hennessy, with a closing night bash at Cream.
Heminway joined the six-year old Gen Art organization in November,
joining founding brothers Ian and Stefan Gerard. With a master in cinema
studies from NYU, she came from Schulberg Productions and also worked as a
producer of George Hickenlooper's "The Low Life."
When asked what singles her festival out from among the crowded heap of
NYC film events, Heminway explained, "The whole idea it is that it is
curated. Filmmakers love it because they are stars for the day -- so
many festival in this city are geared towards a cultural or political
P.O.V., (while this) is an open palette of emerging talent.
The film selection committee was pared down slightly for 1999, according to
Heminway, with a group that included Toby Miller from NYU, Nevette Previd
from Fox Searchlight, Sundance Channel's Adam Pincus, and MoMA's Graham
Seven short films will unspool at the 1999 event, they are: Amie Steir's
"Her," James Cox's "Atomic," Ari Gold's "Culture," Jarl Olsen's "Devil
Doll," Justin Dorazio's "Tis the Season," Tom Krueger's "Fuzzy Logic," and
Maura Naughton's "Gunshy."
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