Festival Briefs for the week of 02/02/99
Compiled by Eugene Hernandez
>> IFP Aims 10 Films At Berlin Market; 6 Projects for Cinemart
Ten American independent films will participate in the European Film Market in
Berlin this year through the IFP's "American Independents at the Market" (AIM)
program. Of the ten movies, four screened at last month's Sundance Film Festival.
Fresh from Park City are Andrew Shea's "The Corndog Man," Cauleen Smith's
"Drylongso," Roko Belic's "Genghis Blues," and Doug Block's "Home Page." Also
set for the market are Antonio Tibaldi's "Claudine's Return," Thomas Johnston and
David Elton's "Jerome," Bradley Battersby's "The Joyriders," Tamara Hernandez's
"Men Cry Bullets," Jesse Feigelman's "Snapped," and Paul Wagner's "Windhorse."
Additionally, the IFP has announced the six American projects that are participating
in the Cinemart co-production market at the 1999 Rotterdam Film Festival. They
are Elizabeth LeCompte's "Wrong Guys," Ed Radtke's "The Dream Catcher," Xiao-Yen
Wang's "I, Discombobbled," Debra Granik's "Down to the Bone," Pola Rapaport's
"Family Secret," and Ann Hui's "Soshin."
>> Slamdance Heads South
Eight award-winning films from the 1999 Slamdance Film Festival are currently
thawing out after a week in icy Park City and will screen in sunny Los Angeles
next week. On February 10th and 11th, the American Cinematheque at the majestic
Egyptian Theater will host four features and four shorts in special LA screenings.
Set to show are Reed Paget's "Amerikan Passport" (Winner of the Best Documentary
Award), Heidi Van Lier's "Chi Girl" (Winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best
Feature), Christopher Nolan's "Following" (Winner of the Ilford Black & White
Award) and Adam Abraham's "Man of the Century" (Winner of the Audience Award
for Best Feature). The four award winning shorts that will screen are: Jay
Lowi's "12 Stops on the Road to Nowhere" (Winner of Audience Award for Best
Short), Don Hertzfeldt's "Billy's Balloon" (Winner of the Grand Jury Prize for
Best Short), Gert Embrechts' "13" (Winner of the Kodak Vision Award for Best
Cinematography) and Mike Mitchell's "Herd" (Winner of the Spirit of Slamdance
>> A Few More Words About Santa Barbara
Thanks to festival publicist Carol Stone at PMK in LA for catching an error in
yesterday's indieWIRE Briefs. Sally Field is being honored with the Santa
Barbara International Film Festival's first Ruby Award, but not on closing night
-- the event will actually take place on March 6th, the first Saturday of the
event. Also, how could we have failed to single out the Festival's Hou
Hsiao-hsien Retrospective. The filmmaker who J. Hoberman called, "my candidate
for the world's greatest active narrative filmmaker " will be the subject of a
special festival sidebar. The SBIFF will screen "HHH: Portrait of
Hou Hsiao-hsien," as well as five of the master Taiwanese filmmaker's works:
"A Time to Live and a Time to Die," "A City of Sadness," "Good Men, Good Women,"
"Goodbye, South, Goodbye," and "Flowers of Shanghai."
With Sundance '99 in the books, domestic festival eyes will turn to Austin, TX
for the annual South by Southwest Film Festival, running March 12 - 20th.
"Desert Blue," Morgan J. Freeman's follow-up to the Sundance '97 award-winner
"Hurricane Streets," will open the event with its U.S. premiere. The film,
starring Brendan Sexton III, Christina Ricci, Kate Hudson, Casey Affleck, and
Sara Gilbert, debuted in Toronto last fall and was subsequently acquired by
Samuel Goldwyn. Additionally, a handful of Sundance '99 entries are set to
screen in Austin, among them: Cauleen Smith's "Drylongso," Toni Kalem's
"A Slipping Down Life," Jim Shedden's' "Brakhage," David Riker's "La
Ciudad," Gough Lewis' "Sex: the Annabel Chung Story," Jessica Yu's "The
Living Museum," and Doug Block's "Home Page." SXSW '99 and the Austin
Film Society will also offer a selection of films by Nick Broomfield, including
"Kurt & Courtney" which was booted by Sundance last year.
>> Berlinale Rapidly Approaching
In a week, festival-goers and filmmakers still reeling from Park City and
Rotterdam will arrive in Berlin for the 1999 Berlinale: The 49th Berlin
International Film Festival (February 10 - 21st). Tony Bui's "Three
Seasons," the big winner at the Sundance Film Festival, is set to screen in
the festival's international competition. Among the other films in
competition are Alan Rudolph's "Breakfast of Champions," Manuel Gomez
Pereira's "Entre Las Piernas" (Between Your Legs), David Cronenberg's
"Existenz," Claude Chabrol's "Au Coer du Mensonge" (The Color of Lies),
Stephen Frears' "The High-Lo Country," and Robert Altman's "Cookie
Fortune," which opened the Sundance fest.
In the festival's Panorama section this year are a few recent Sundance
entries: Tim Roth's "The War Zone," Mike Figgis' "The Loss of Sexual
Innocence," John Curran's "Praise," Jim Fall's "Trick," and Thom
Fitzgerald's "Beefcake." Also screening in the Panorama are Nickolas
Perry's "Speedway Junkie," Amos Kollek's "Fiona," Greta Schiller's "The Man
Who Drove with Mandela," and Kristen Johnson's "Innocent Until Proven
Guilty," among others. Meanwhile, among the movies screening in the Berlin
Forum are Bennett Miller's "The Cruise," Julian Goldberger's "Trans,"
Michael Almereyda's "Trance," and Susan Korda's "One of Us."
[Get the complete Berlinale lineup at the festival website:
>> Santa Barbara Sets Lineup; Packed with 18 World Premieres
The 14th Santa Barbara International Film Festival (March 4 - 14, 1999)
will open with the World Premiere of Gary Marshall's "The Other Sister,"
starring Diane Keaton, Juliette Lewis, Tom Skerritt, Giovanni Ribisi, Poppy
Montgomery, and Hector Elizondo. Meanwhile, on closing night, the festival
offers "Alegria," the first feature film inspired by the Cirque-du-Soleil.
Following the closing screening, the festival will present the "Ruby Award"
to Sally Field. Other special events include salutes to Carl Reiner and
Elliot Gould, as well as an evening with comedy writer Bruce Vilanch,
subject of the new documentary, "Get Bruce."
World premiere's set for Santa Barbara are: "24 Nights," directed by Kieran
Turner; "A Fare To Remember," directed by Jim Yukich; "Bittersweet: Stories
of Open Adoption," directed by Steve Garrett; "Bobby G. Can't Swim,"
directed by John-Luke Montias; "Crashing Eden," directed by Dean Alioto;
"Daddy Make Me A Star," directed by Lisa Rollins; "Devil's Arithmetic,"
directed by Donna Deitch; "Dumbarton Bridge," directed by Charles
Koppelman; "Exiles in New York," directed by Eduardo Machado; "Here We Are
Waiting For You," directed by Marcel Masagao; "Keepers Of The Frame,"
directed by Mark McLaughlin; "The Other Sister," directed by Garry
Marshall; "Pop and Me," directed by Chris Roe; "The Pornographer," directed
by Doug Atchison; "Roadkill," directed by Matthew Leutwyler; "Secret
People," directed by John Anderson; "Suckerfish," directed by Brien
Burroughs; and "Table For One," directed by Ron Senkowski.
[For more information, visit the festival website at:
>> 9th Cinequest San Jose Festival Again Mixes Movies and Technology
David Corley's "Angel's Dance" kicks off the 9th Cinequest San Jose Film
Festival (February 25 - March 3, 1999), while Steve James' "Passing Glory"
will close the event. The festival will honor Rod Steiger, Vilmos
Zsigmond, and Jennifer Beals, as well as feature a special Q & A with actor
Gabriel Byrne. Notable in '99 is the expansion of the Maverick Film &
Technology Showcase, offering an exploration of digital technologies for
filmmaking in the heart of California's Silicon Valley. Seminars will
explore digital cinematography, editing and effects. Additionally, Bart
Cheever will be on hand with an exhibition of work from D.FILM, the touring
digital film festival.
[For more information, visit the festival website at: