IFC Announces Manhattan Film Center and 2003 Plans
by Wendy Mitchell/indieWIRE
The holiday party season is winding down in New York, but a few hundred die-hards turned up for the Independent Film Channel's blow out last Thursday night as the company announced plans for 2003. IFC Companies president Kathleen Dore hosted a news conference touting the new year plans for the group's productions, releases, and television schedule and to give a self-pat on the back for its 2002 successes, especially IFC Films' blockbuster indie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," and "Y Tu Mama Tambien."
Dore introduced a parade of division heads to unveil 2003 including a planned video-on-demand service that will be available in the first quarter of the new year. The service will allow users to "rent" IFC Films' slate of work without leaving the couch by way of new technology. Jonathan Sehring, president of IFC Entertainment, introduced the 2003 IFC Films slate including threesome drama "XX/XY" by Gale Porter and Laleh Soomekh, and Toronto 2002 doc on the failed movie production on Don Quixote, "Lost in La Mancha" by Keith Fulton and Louis Pepe. Also on the slate of upcoming films by the New York-based company include "The Safety of Objects" (Rose Troche), "Manic" (Jordan Melamed), "Sex is Comedy" (Catherine Breillat), and "Casa de los Babys" (John Sayles).
Party attendees were also given a glimpse of renovations taking place at the Waverly Theatre which will be the new IFC Center, due to open late next year. The complex, located on Avenue of the Americas between West 3rd and 4th Streets in Manhattan, will screen first-run movies on three digitally equipped screens. The facility will also have a post-production suite and filmmaker meeting rooms in addition to an indoor/outdoor cafe. "We hope it will grow an audience for independent film," said Sehring on the 12,000 sq. foot project, estimated to cost between $8-10 million.
Other upcoming IFC plans are 13 new episodes of the talk show "Dinner for Five," hosted and created by Jon Favreau, and the IFC Television produced "A Decade Under the Influence." That documentary, directed by Richard LaGravanese and the late Ted Demme, examines the profound changes that occurred in the 1970s for American cinema. IFC Films will have a limited release of the film in spring followed by the three-hour television premiere in August.
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