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The Biggest Indie Breakthroughs of 2013, So Far (Part 1)

By Indiewire | Indiewire July 8, 2013 at 11:09AM

It's been just over six months since we said goodbye to 2012 and hello to 2013, and already we've seen a slew of promising indie talent breakthrough in big ways thanks to the Sundance, SXSW and Tribeca film festivals (among many others), and theatrical releases that caught on with the movie-going public. Today and tomorrow we'll be publishing our picks for this year's biggest indie breakthroughs so far (we still have half a year to go), with our reasons for why they made the cut and info on what they're up to next. Below, find part one.
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Jared Moshe
Profession:
Writer, director
Breakout Film:
"Dead Man's Burden"
Why They're On Here:
Jared Moshe has been active in the business end for a number of years with more credits in the producing arena including "Beautiful Losers" and the Independent Spirit Award nominated "Kurt Cobain About a Son." "Dead Man's Burden" was Moshe's first foray into writing and directing. The post-Civil War western featured production design from "There Will Be Blood" Ruth De Jong and critically acclaimed performances from Clare Bowen, Barlow Jacobs and David Calls. It was picked up by Cinedigm and hit theaters this spring.
What's Up Next:
Mosche's sticking with the genre but bringing it into the 21st century. His next project is an hour long TV drama that he describes as a modern day western. He is developing the show with indie studio Cineflix.

Adam Leon at the ND/NF premiere of "Gimme the Loot"
Godlis Adam Leon at the ND/NF premiere of "Gimme the Loot"

Adam Leon
Profession: Writer, director
Breakout Film: "Gimme the Loot"
Why They're On Here:
With his feature debut, Adam Leon garnered the Narrative Grand Jury Prize at last year's SXSW, as well as playing at New Directors/New Films and Cannes, before an acclaimed limited release this past March. The film in question, "Gimme the Loot," follows two aspiring graffiti artists trying to break through into the Bronx scene, effectively capturing the scrappiness of youth and the evocative vibrancy of the city.
What's Up Next: Leon told Indiewire that he's working on "something that's a little different. I'm so passionate about it that I'm paranoid to talk about."

Terence Nance
Profession: Director
Breakout Film: "An Oversimplification of Her Beauty"
Why They're On Here: Terence Nance began his career as a visual and performance artist under the name Terence Etc. He has said that he feels much more comfortable making experimental music videos, but that didn't stop him from attempting his first narrative film. For "An Oversimplification of Her Beauty," which premiered at Sundance in 2012 and opened theatrically this Spring, Nance mixed visual styles and included animation to create a structurally obscure film that many called brave. "I think there’s something to be said for having a way of approaching everything. And my way is that all forms, all ways of making an image, are on the table," he told Indiewire blog Shadow and Act. "Nothing is off limits."
What's Up Next: Nance is working on his next feature, a surreal thriller titled "The Lobbyist" in which he plays a con man. He hopes to shoot next year.

Jill Soloway
Profession: Writer, director
Breakout Film: "Afternoon Delight"
Why They're On Here: Jill Soloway is a well known producer for hit HBO shows like "Six Feet Under," and "United States of Tara." Her hilarious book "Tiny Ladies in Shiny Pants," is a combo memoir and commentary on modern life. Soloway brought her humor to her first feature "Afternoon Delight," which stars Kathryn Hahn as an L.A. housewife who tries to "rescue" a stripper (Juno Temple) by hiring her as a live-in nanny. Soloway won the U.S. Dramatic Directing Award Sundance and "Afternoon Delight" hits theaters on August 30.
What's Up Next: The Film Arcade will be releasing "Afternoon Delight" theatrically with Cinedigm handling supplementary distribution.

Terence Nance
Terence Nance

Yen Tan
Profession: Director
Breakout Film: "Pit Stop"
Why They're On Here: Yen Tan was born and raised in Malaysia, studied in Des Moines, Iowa, and now resides in Austin, Texas. As in Tan's breakout "Ciao," wherein a Dallas man and an Italian man grieve the loss of their friend, "Pit Stop" also explores a gay relationship with a Texas background. In "Pit Stop," the story of two working class gay men and their families, Tan uses bleak scenery and drab colors to explore his fascination with small town America. The touching drama premiered at Sundance before hitting SXSW this year.
What's Up Next: Back at Sundance, Tan told Indiewire that he's working on a new script about a long-term relationship, and "more key art designs!" Wolfe Releasing will be releasing "Pit Stop" later this year.

[Nigel M. Smith, Ben Travers, Casey Cipriani, Julia Selinger, Madeline Raynor and Clint Holloway contributed to this article.]

This article is related to: Futures, Interviews, Lists, Sundance Film Festival, SXSW Film Festival, Cannes Film Festival, Profile, Actors, The Bling Ring, Fruitvale Station, Pit Stop, The Spectacular Now, After Tiller, Documentary