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IFP Los Angeles gets “Cooler” opener for 11-day Festival

IFP Los Angeles gets "Cooler" opener for 11-day Festival

IFP Los Angeles gets “Cooler” opener for 11-day Festival

by Brian Brooks

Alec Baldwin and William H. Macy star in Wayne Kramer’s “The Cooler,” which will open the 9th annual IFP Los Angeles Film Festival.

Courtesy of IFP/Los Angeles

The 9th annual IFP Los Angeles Film Festival will open June 11th with Wayne Kramer’s “The Cooler,” according to Dawn Hudson, executive director of IFP/Los Angeles, which organizes the event. Starring William H. Macy, Alec Baldwin, Maria Bello and Shawn Hatosy, Lions Gate Films’ “The Cooler” is the story of a man (Macy) whose bad luck is so reliable, he is hired by dodgy Las Vegas casinos to run interference on other people’s hot streaks.

The doc “Mayor of the Sunset Strip,” by George Hickenlooper, will have its world premiere during the festival. The fest describes the film as a “musical documentary about the Homeric journey of pop impresario Rodney Bingenheimer through the world of fame and rock & roll.” The festival again will be anchored at the 8000 Sunset outdoor plaza, which will feature live entertainment, eating areas and the box office, while films will screen at the Laemmle Sunset 5 Theaters, the DGA, the John Anson Ford Amphitheater and the ArcLight Cinerama Dome. In all, 206 films including 72 features from 32 countries will be showcased at the event through June 21st. Nine world premieres, three North American and two U.S. premieres will unspool during the 11-day event.

“Between the addition of the international section last year and the festival’s cash prizes for the $25,000 Target documentary award and the $50,000 Target filmmaker award, we have seen our profile with the filmmaking community at large increase as more and more filmmakers have discovered this as an opportunity to showcase their films,” commented festival director Rich Raddon in prepared statement. Twelve films will screen in the narrative competition section, while thirteen films, while thirteen films will vie for the prize in the documentary competition section.

Other sections include the international cinema section (16 films), and the spotlight on China (5 films). In addition, the festival will host free outdoor screenings of Mel Stuart’s “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” (1979) and Allan Arkush’s “Rock & Roll High School” (1971). Also screening for free is Tom Peosay’s look at Tibet’s struggle under Chinese occupation in, “Tibet: Cry of the Snow Lion.”

IFC Films’ “Camp,” by writer-director Todd Graff, will close the festival on June 21st. The Sundance 2003 competition film is based on an actual summer camp in Upstate New York for young actors, singers and dancers growing up discovering themselves. IFP/Los Angeles is Southern California’s largest non-profit organization for independent filmmakers with more than 6,000 active members.

The Complete Lineup For the Festival follows (as provided by the IFP/Los Angeles):

— Narrative Competition Section:

“Bomb the System”

Director/Writer: Adam Bhala Lough

“Coney Island Baby”

Director: Amy Hobby, Writer: Karl Geary


Director: Paxton Winters, Writers: Paxton Winters, Kerimcan Guiertüz, Oliver Perrin

“Funny Ha Ha”

Director/Writer: Andrew Bujalski

“Jesus Freak” (World Premiere)

Director: Morgan Nichols

Writer: Laura Lee Bahr

“K” (North American Premiere)

Director/Writer: Shoja Azari

“Last Man Running” (World Premiere)

Director: Damon Santostefano

Created by: Rick Gomez and Damon Santostefano

“Particles of Truth”

Director/Writer: Jennifer Elster

“Piggie” (World Premiere)

Director: Alison Bagnall

Writers: Alison Bagnall and Savannah Haske

“Salt” (North American Premiere)

Director/Writer: Bradly Rust Gray

“Speeder Kills”

Director/Writer: Jim Mendiola

“Virgin” (World Premiere)

Director/Writer: Deborah Kampmeier

— Documentary Competition Section:

“Be Good, Smile Pretty “

Director/Writer: Tracy Droz Tragos

“Beyond the Sea”

Director: Lisandro Perez-Rey

“A Fine State This Is” (World Premiere)

Director/Writer: Jessica Chandler

“Flag Wars”

Director: Linda Goode Bryant

“The Flute Player”

Director: Jocelyn Glatzer

“Iran Is My Home” (World Premiere)

Director: Fariborz David Diaan

Writers: Fariborz David Diaan and Arash Ayrom

“The Lost Boys of Sudan”

Directors: Jon Shenk, Megan Mylan

“My Life with Count Dracula” (World Premiere)

Director: Dustin Lance Black

“Queen of the Gypsies”

Director: Jocelyn Ajami


Director/Writer: Spencer Nakasako

“Sumo East and West”

Director: Ferne Pearlstein

“Sunset Story”

Director: Laura Gabert

“Whole” (World Premiere)

Director/Writer: Melody Gilbert

— International Cinema Section:


Director/Writer: Mahamat-Saleh Haroun

“Baghdad On/Off”

Director/Writer: Saad Salman

“Cold As Summer” (“Froid comme l’été) (U.S. Premiere)

Director: Jacques Maillot

Writers: Jacques Maillot and Pierre Chosson

“Doing Time” (“Keimusho No Naka”)

Director: Sai Yoichi

Writers: Sai Yoichi, Chong Wui Sin and Nakamura Yoshihiro

“Eliana, Eliana”

Director: Riri Riza

Writers: Riri Riza, Prima Rusdi

“Frescoes” (“Freski”)

Director: Alexander Gutman

Writers: Alexander Gutman and Serges Litviarov

“Gabriel Orozco”

Director: Juan Carlos Martín

“The Game of Their Lives”

Director: Daniel Gordon


Director/Writer: György Palfi

“Kiki & Tiger”

Director: Alain Gsponer

Writers: Edin Hinrichs-Hadzimahovic, Alexander Buresch, Alain Gsponer

“Resistencia: Hip Hop in Colombia”

Director: Tom Feiling

“Some Secrets” (“Vylet”)

Director/Writer: Alice Nellis

“Southeast” (“Sudeste”) (North American Premiere)

Director: Sergio Bellotti

Writers: Daniel Guebel and Sergio Bellotti

“State of the Nation” (“Zur Lage”) (U.S. Premiere)

Directors/Writers: Barbara Albert, Michael Glawogger, Ulrich Seidl and Michael Sturminger

“Teesh and Trude” (North American Premiere)

Director: Melanie Rodriga

Writer: Vanessa Lomma

“You’ll Be Back” (“Volveras”)

Director/Writer: Antonio Chavarrías

— Special Screenings:

“28 Days Later”

Director: Danny Boyle

Writer: Alex Garland

“Buffalo Soldiers”

Director: Gregor Jordan

Writers: Gregor Jordan, Eric Axel Weiss, Nora MacCoby

“Cabin Fever”

Director: Eli Roth

Writer: Eli Roth, Randy Pearlstein

“Friday Night” (“Vendredi Soir”)

Director: Claire Denis

Writers: Emmanuelle Bernheim, Claire Denis

“Magdalene Sisters”

Director/Writer: Peter Mullan

“Mayor of The Sunset Strip” (World Premiere)

Director/Writer: George Hickenlooper

“Once Upon a Time in the Midlands”

Director: Shane Meadows

Writers: Paul Fraser and Shane Meadows


Director: Helen Stickler

“Step Into Liquid”

Director/Writer: Dana Brown


Director: Catherine Hardwicke

Writers: Catherine Hardwicke, Nikki Reed

— Free Screenings:

“Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory” (1979) (Free Outdoor Screening)

Director: Mel Stuart

Writer: Roald Dahl

“Tibet: Cry of the Snow Lion”

Director: Tom Peosay

Writers: Sue Peosay, Victoria Mudd

“Rock & Roll High School” (1971) (Free outdoor screening with live punk-rock karaoke)

Director: Allan Arkush

Writers: Richard Whitley, Russ Dvonch, Joseph McBride

“Nat Turner: A Troublesome Property”

Director: Charles Burnett

Writers: Charles Burnett, Frank Christopher, Kenneth S. Greenberg

— Event Screenings:

Cast and Crew Screening — “Hollywood Shuffle” (1987)

“The Grey Automobile” (1919)

“The Great Nickelodeon Show”

Live Music Screening — “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari” (1919)

— Spotlight on China:

“Cala, My Dog!” (“Ka la shi tiao gou”) (North American Premiere)

Director: Lu Xuechang

“Cry Woman” (“Ku Qi de Nu Ren”)

Director: Liu Bingjian

Writers: Liu Bingjian and Deng Ye

“My Camera Doesn’t Lie” (“Wo de shi ying ji bu sa huan”)

Writer/Director: Solveig Klassen and Katharina Schneider-Roos

“Unknown Pleasures” (“Ren Xiaoyao”)

Writer/Director: Jia Zhang-Ke

“West of the Tracks” (“The Xi Qu”)

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