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iPOP at the Bahamas International Film Festival

Indiewire By Indiewire | Indiewire December 21, 2004 at 2:0AM

iPOP at the Bahamas International Film Festival
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iPOP at the Bahamas International Film Festival

by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE

Eighty degree weather in December and the blue Atlantic are two pluses when launching a film festival, and the Bahamas International Film Festival delivered to the delight of the visiting filmmakers and industry who attended. The opening night screening of "Oceans 12" brought out both the Bahamian Prime Minister and Miss Bahamas, while the party afterward brought out a mini-Junkanoo. The festival's headquarters, the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort also added to the festival's highlights with attendees taking some time off to hit the water slides, or to lounge with a Bahama Mama.




Director/producer Roger Corman received the festival's Honorary Maverick award with a simple ceremony at Mountbatten House, in Nassau. Lord Louis Mountbatten, the last British Viceroy of India who was later murdered by the IRA apparently housed his mistress at the villa in the Bahamian capital. There were rumors he was gay, but apparently not... Anyway, Corman praised the festival saying he expected it to become an "important" event.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




The Rt. Hon. Perry G. Christie, Prime Minister of the Bahamas attended the opening night film, "Oceans 12" at the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort," and gave a speech before the screening. He said the Bahamas International Film Festival was important to the country, and vowed that the nation's resources would support its success. When introducing him, organizers promised he'd keep his speech short, which he pretty much did.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE







Raquel Simone Horton aka Miss Bahamas came out for the opening night as well, pictured here in front of the Versace store at the Atlantis, which hosted a VIP cocktail party that got quite crowded. Attendees spilled out into the adjoining shopping arcade with cocktails in hand for a little elbow room.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




A loud band and dancers lead the way through the mall in the Atlantis following the screening of "Ocean's 12" to the sight of the official party. Their costumes were similar to ones worn during the annual Junkanoo, the Bahamas' version of Mardi Gras, which takes place prior to Christmas. Apparently it's quite a raucous event.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE







BIFF director Leslie Vanderpool (center) brightens up the warm evening with a colorful dress, posing with "Santa Smokes" director Till Schauder and Tribeca Film Festival associate programmer, Sara Nodjoumi. Till, who opened his film soon after the festival at New York's Pioneer Theater, indulged in some beach time when not off to screenings etc. along with many other fest attendees. Of course nobody at iW went to the beach, we were always working, naturally (just kidding).


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




One of the biggest attractions at the Atlantis were the water slides built into this Mayan-looking structure. The "Leap of Faith" plunged swimmers down a vertical drop and into a tube that ran through a shark-infested aquarium (the lazy-ass sharks pretty much rested atop the glass tube) then spouted people into a pool below. The Leap of Faith is fun, it's just hard to keep your eyes open.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE







"Undertow" director David Gordon Green and publicist Jenny Chikes wait for a car in front of the Atlantis to head into Nassau for the Corman tribute. Jenny became quite proficient in driving on the left. The Bahamas is a former British colony don't you know...


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




Filmmakers and others attended the nightly "happy hour" cocktail parties including "The Untold Story of Emmet Louis Till" director Keith Beauchamp, pictured here with producer and Hamptons International Film Festival board member, Beverly Camhe. Camhe is a good one to get to know at festivals because she seems to know everyone worth knowing.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE







Mitch Levine (left) produced the film festival along with Festival Consulting Group partner Jon Fitzgerald (not pictured). Fitzgerald told iW that the Ministry of Tourism reported that those who attended the fest gave 100% positive feedback, not bad. Levine is pictured here with Greg Kahn of Film Buzz (also a fan of the Leap of Faith).


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




Taking a little time out to attend BIFF ahead of his big upcoming event, the Sundance Film Festival, Trevor Groth takes in the sights with his wife, Susan.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE







Soaking in the warm Bahamian evening at Mountbatten House, New Visions jury members, Chris Gore (left) of Film Threat, and entertainment lawyer Steven Beer of R&B FM (check out Steven's cool coat) having a little wine with Charlene Sullivan, who presented the Torchlight Screenwriting Award to "Dorian Blues" writer/director Tennyson Bardwell later in the fest.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE




"Dorian Blues" director Tennyson Bardwell en route to a festival party with his wife/producer Mary Beth Taylor.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE



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