More Cannes Deals; Cannes Critics Winner; Kolodner Digital Call; MIX Award
by Eugene Hernandez & Anthony Kaufman/indieWIRE, with a report from Aaron Krach
>> From Critics Week, Shooting Gallery Takes "Housekeeping"
(indieWIRE/05.19.00) - Frank Novak's "Good Housekeeping," an entry in the International Critics Week at the Cannes Film Festival and winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 2000 Slamdance Film Festival, has been acquired for U.S. distribution by the Shooting Gallery, it was announced late yesterday afternoon in Cannes. The company paid out six-figures for the white trash comedy and will release the film this year through the company's output deal
with Universal Pictures, according to a company press release. "Good
Housekeeping" is the second film in the Shooting Gallery's distribution deal
with Universal followed by Kwyn Bader's "Loving Jezebel." [Anthony Kaufman]
>> "Amores Perros" Takes Top Cannes Critics Week Prize
(indieWIRE/5.19.00) -- The awards for the 39th International Critics Week
sidebar were also announced late Thursday. Mexican director Alejandro
Gonzales Inarritu won the top prize for "Amores Perros" ("Love's A Bitch"),
an absorbing, ambitious tale of three interconnected stories about Mexicans
and their dogs. Gonzales Inarritu receives 50,000 Francs himself, and
another 50,000 Francs towards French distribution.
"Amores Perros" also received the youth critics prize. Rumor had it earlier
in the festival that Artisan Entertainment-- which has not acquired any new
films in Cannes -- was eyeing the film for U.S. release. Swedish director
Linus Tunstrom won best short for "To Be Continued" along with 70,000 Francs from Canal + and 15,000 Francs worth of Kodak film stock. The youth critics gave their short film award to Eric Jameux's "Faux Contact." Other feature films competing in the Critics Week sidebar were the well-reviewed trio of Jung Ji-Woo's "Happy End" (Korea), Caroline Vignal's "Les Autres Filles," and Vivian Chang's "Hidden Whisper" (Taiwan), as well as Cesc Gay's "Krampack" (Spain) and Orso Miret's "De L'Histoire Ancienne." [Anthony Kaufman]
>> Kolodner Heading Madstone Search for Feature Digital Directors
(indieWIRE/5.19.00) -- Newly-formed Madstone Films has announced an
international search for first-time feature filmmakers to direct full-length
digital movies -- the effort is being spearheaded by acclaimed indie
producer Eva Kolodner ("Boys Don't Cry," "Safe Men").
As part of the initiative, Madstone will award -- every six months -- a
two-year contract for 3 - 5 directors. The package includes an annual
salary of $50,000, benefits, a 401(K) plan and funding for a feature with a
$500,000 to $1.5 million budget. Filmmakers will receive profit
participation in films produced during their tenure with the organization.
In a prepared statement, Head of Feature Development and Production Eva
Kolodner commented, "Madstone is determined to destroy the myth that you
have to be working three jobs and developing your script in the middle of
the night to make your vision a reality."
According to a company announcement that is being released today, Madstone
is "laying the foundation for a digital distribution network for the
theatrical exhibition of the resulting films." The announcement continues,
"The company plans to create a unique network of community-based cinemas
where theater goers can experience a varied slate of entertainment
uniquely suited to their specific interests."
Madstone indicated that it will be searching for directors through film
festivals, film schools , and sites streaming short films. The company is
also encourging applications via its website. Eligibility requirements
include previous work as a director of short form work, including films,
commercials, music videos or internet content. Applicants must submit a
feature treatment or script. The deadline for the tenure starting July 17,
2000 is Friday, June 16th. [Eugene Hernandez]
[For further submission guidelines, visit www.madstonefilms.com or call Madstone Films at (212) 989-4500.]
>> Hart/Sharp Honored with First MIX Innovator Award
(indieWIRE/5.19.00) -- Producing partners John Hart and Jeff Sharp, ("Boys Don't Cry" and Sundance 2000's Grand Jury Prize winner, ("You Can Count on Me") were awarded the first MIX Innovators Award for Production. The prize was presented Wednesday night at a star-studded reception in Manhattan. In
addition to the awards -- engraved film canisters -- New York City's
second-in-command, Public Advocate Mark Green, delivered official
proclamations to the honorees, who also included Shu Lea Cheang, ("I.K.U,"
which premiered at Berlin 2000, and "Fresh Kill") for direction and Rodney Evans, ("Two Encounters, Close to Home") for emerging talent. MIX, the New York Lesbian & Gay Experimental Film & Video Festival honored the filmmakers for "demonstrating a commitment to addressing lesbian and gay experiences on screen, with fresh, new voices and cutting-edge sensibilities." In
attendance at the Jack Tilton Gallery in Soho were Sundance programmer,
Shari Frilot, directors Alex Sischel and Ela Troyano, NYUFF director Ed Halter, curators Barbara London (MoMA) and John Hanhardt (Guggenheim Museum), Michael Galinsky from InSound, Robert Monroe from IFP, Jenni Olsen
of PlanetOut's PopcornQ and Leon Hall from E! Network's "Fashion Emergency."
In her introduction of Sharp, writer and MIX Festival founder Sarah Schulman
said, "Just when you think that it's not possible to create something true,
to make art, along comes a film like "Boys Don't Cry." And the film makes
you feel like it's possible to have a vision, and that with hard work you
may be able to realize that vision." [Aaron Krach]