By Indiewire | Indiewire September 26, 2002 at 2:00AM
Hamptons Fest Sets Line-up; Avatar Gets "Divine"; "Rose of
Sharon" Slated for Production
by Eugene Hernandez, Matthew Ross, and Wendy Mitchell/indieWIRE
>> Hamptons Festival Unveils Plans for 10th Fest
(indieWIRE: 09.26.02) -- Organizers of next month's Hamptons International
Film Festival (October 16 to 20) announced plans for their 10th anniversary
event at an intimate gathering last night at the Sony Pictures headquarters
in New York City. Anchored in East Hampton, NY, the event will include
screenings in Sag Harbor, Westhampton Beach, and at Southampton College.
New programmer Rajendra Roy unveiled the lineup yesterday along with
festival Chairman Stuart Match Suna and Executive Director Denise Kasell.
Fresh from the Toronto International Film Festival, Phillip Noyce's "Rabbit
Proof Fence" will kick-off the festival on October 16. The event will close
with the U.S. premiere of "Nowhere in Africa." Spotlight films in the
Hamptons this year include Todd Louiso's "Love Liza," Lynne Ramsay's "Movern
Callar," Liliana Cavani's "Ripley's Game," Dylan Kidd's "Rodger Dodger,"
Rose Troche's "The Safety of Objects," and Lynn Hershman Leeson's
Set for the 10th Golden Starfish dramtic competition are: Hans
Canosa's "Alma Mater," Vanessa Parise's "Kiss the Bride," Francois Velle's
"New Suit," Greg Pak's "Robot Stories," and Myra Paci's "Searching for
Paradise." In the documentary competition are Tamara Katepoo's "Bang the
Machine," Angela Christlieb and Stephen Kijak's "Cinemania," Andrew
Rossi and Kate Novak's "Eat This New York, Jamal Joseph's "Hughes' Dream
Harlem," and Brian Bain's "Shalom Y'All."
An annual highlight of the festival is the Conflict & Resolution section.
The lineup for this section was unveiled by programmer Mark Rabinowitz.
Set to screen this year are the include world premieres of "Secret Lives:
Hidden Children and Their Rescuers During WWII," the North American
premiere of "Silent Grace," and the U.S. premiere of "Seeing is
Believing: Handicams, Human Rights and the News."
Other sections of this year's Hamptons International Film Festival will
include an actors showcase, shorts programs, a look back at films from
the first 10 years, and family movies. [Eugene Hernandez]
[For more information, please visit the Hamptons International Film Festival website.]
>> Avatar Films Gets "Divine"
(indieWIRE: 09.26.02) -- Avatar Films has acquired U.S. distribution rights to
Elia Suleiman's "Divine Intervention." The film picked up the jury prize and
FIPRESCI's best film in official competition prize at the 2002 Cannes Film
Festival. It will also be screening at the 40th New York Film Festival, which
kicks off tomorrow.
The film, subtitled "A Chronicle of Love and Pain," is a surreal look at the
lives of Palestinians and the way they deal with their frustration at their
current political situation. "Divine Intervention" will be released
in the U.S. in early 2003, after screening at the New York Film Festival,
AFI Festival, and other regional fests. Jason Leaf and Keith Icove of Avatar
Films began negotiations at Cannes this May with Eric Lagesse of
"We are extremely proud and excited to bring this important and
thought-provoking film to American audiences," said Icove in a prepared
statement. "We are especially eager to bring this politically relevant film
to Jewish audiences as part of the ongoing dialogue about the situation in
the Middle East." Avatar Films plans to organize educational screenings and
panels with the participation of both Jewish and Arab organizations.
>> Simmons Finds Director, Producer At Hamptons Screenwriting Conference
(indieWIRE: 09.26.02) -- Talk about a memorable trip to the Hamptons:
screenwriter Thomas Simmons, who attended the Hamptons International Film
Festival's second-annual Screenwriters Conference last weekend, left the
conference with a deal to turn his script "Rose of Sharon" into a feature
film. Maggie Greenwald ("Songcatcher," "Ballad of Little Jo"), who was
serving as a mentor at the conference, will direct the project, and
Graham Leader ("In the Bedroom") is on board to produce.
The conference was a four-day workshop (co-sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan
Foundation) that attracted six emerging screenwriters to work closely with
Simmons, an ad executive from Virginia, has written five other screenplays,
but "Rose of Sharon" is the first to be readied for production. The script
is about a young couple and their dealings with his mother. [Wendy
[Editor's note: indieWIRE senior editor Matthew Ross was also a participant
in the conference, and he will write about his experiences after the Hamptons