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International Film Festival

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    Oscar Watch: When We Leave (Die Fremde)

    This past summer I spent in Berlin and was invited to the first screening of When We Leave (Die Fremde), Germany's submission for Academy Award Nomination for Best Foreign Language film. I was welcomed to the screening by a tall young man who turned out to be American but had come to Berlin on a Fulbright Scholarship and stayed to enter the film business there. We became friendly and he asked my advice about going to UCLA film school where he had applied. I strongly suggested he go if accepted, telling him he would have such an advantage over others because he already had the international perspective so needed in film today. Not only is ...

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    More on African Cinema

    I have discovered a wonderful new blog on Africa for those of you interested in keeping up with the latest developments taking place in cinema there. African Screens' Don Omope describes it below.Don Omope

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    UPDATE: Iraq's First Academy Award Nomination?

    Son of Babylon film, has simultaneous global screenings to recognize 10th December, International Human Rights Day - including special UK solidarity screening at Leeds University Occupation. Leeds, UK 9th December, 2010 - Son of Babylon, Iraq’s official entry for the Golden Globes and Oscars 2011 will simultaneously screen internationally, giving new audiences the opportunity to see the extraordinary film by director Mohamed Al-Daradji. The film was made with the intent to raise awareness of the 1,000,000 + people who are currently missing in Iraq, as well as inspiring activism that will help find answers for their families. Human Film have ...

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    Slamdance Narrative & Docs

    IndieWIRE posts the Slamdance selection of ten narrative and eight documentary features for this year’s event, taking place January 21 - 27. “All Is Not Lost” is the theme for this year’s Slamdance and all films, the fest touts, have been “made on a small budget and head to Park City without distr...

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    Latino Days Are Here Again!

    Looking forward to what's new at Ventana Sur and being able to watch films via Cinando during the event itself, I am made aware that Latin America has a rapidly expanding film industry due to new technologies, new well trained filmmakers and governments who have stepped up local support of local filmmaking. The current call for submissions for Cine En Construcion, the twice-yearly rendezvous held at the San Sebastian and Toulouse Festivals gives a welcome place for networking in Toulouse on March 24 and 25, 2011. This initiative by the San Sebastian International Film Festival and the Rencontres Cinémas d’Amérique Latine in Toulouse focuses ...

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    Sundance Film Festival Offers A Window on the World (with Contacts)

    Sundance's announcement yesterday of the 4 main categories plus Premieres - U.S. Dramatic Competition, U.S. Documentary Competition, World Cinema Dramatic Competition, World Cinema Documentary Competition -- is a mash of many cultures not only in "World" sections, but within the U.S. sections themselves. Consistent with my vision (and wish) to see world cultures enter the mainstream of independent features as I write about Africa (and its diaspora), Latino films, and about women filmmakers (♀), and Asia, a look at the Sundance lineup takes us beyond these cultures as they increasingly merge with one another. European cinema also looks healthy...

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    Africa and the Movies

    Today there is a great interest throughout the world in Africa. Its cinema is slowly entering the world's film markets and the festivals. In the U.S., though not made by Africans, still "of African interest", this week's release of Claire Denis's ♀White Material has garnered a strong review by Kenneth Turan in the L.A. Times.Simultaneously poetic, dramatic and realistic, "White Material" is an altogether stunning work. Directed by Claire Denis and starring Isabelle Huppert in a bravura performance as a woman confronting armed chaos in Africa, this is filmmaking that is at once exhilarating and chilling, powerful and powerfully disturbing. W...

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    Ethiopia's First Academy Award Submission

    This year for the first time in history, an Ethiopian film, The Athlete aka Atletu (ISA: Arrow), has been submitted to the Academy for consideration for the Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language film. Over the years, the Best Foreign Language Film Award has been given almost exclusively to European films: out of the 62 awards handed out by the Academy since 1947 to foreign language films, fifty-one have gone to European films, five to Asian films, three to films from the Americas, and three to African films (1969 Z from Algeria directed by Costa Gavras who is French, 1976 Black and White in Color directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud who is F...

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    Documentary Short List Posted by the Academy

    IndieWIRE and all the trades have listed the shortlisted documentaries submiitted for nomination for Best Documentary Oscar 2010. Unfortunately for me, I have not seen all the 15 shortlisted docs (30% of which are directed by women ♀). But I have seen a few and heard about many of the others. Of those that should have been on the list, personally the two I miss most are Cave of Forgotten Dreams by the ever vigorous German New Film survivor, Werner Herzog (see what Patrick Goldstein has to say about that!) and Sundance premiere, A Film Unfinished, the extraordinary testament to the Warsaw Ghetto, created as cinematic propaganda by the Nazi...

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    Free Saturday and Sunday on MUBI: Revolucion

    EXCLUSIVE WORLDWIDE FREE PREMIEREIn partnership with Celluloid Dreams, playing for free this weekend only is the online premiere of the Cannes-selected Revolución. Made in honor of the Mexican Revolution, it explores the 2010 centenary by uniting ten of the hottest Mexican directors, including Carlo...

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