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Film Festival Roundup: BFI London Announces Full Lineup, Austin Adds Playwriting Track And Much More

Keep up with the always-hopping film festival world with our weekly Film Festival Roundup column.


Best Picture (contender)

Best Director (Kenneth Lonergan, contender)

Best Actor (Casey Affleck, frontrunner)

Best Supporting Actress (Michelle Williams, contender)

Best Supporting Actor (Lucas Hedges, contender)

Best Original Screenplay (Kenneth Lonergan, frontrunner)

Keep up with the always-hopping film festival world with our weekly Film Festival Roundup column. Check out last week’s Roundup right here.

– The BFI London Film Festival has announced its full program, running October 5 – 16. The festival will screen a total of 193 fiction and 52 documentary features, including 18 World Premieres, 8 International Premieres, 39 European Premieres. There will also be screenings of 144 short films, including documentary, live action and animated works. A number of directors, cast and crew are expected to take part in career interviews, Screen Talks, Q&As and Industry Talks: LFF Connects during the fest.

The festival has previously announced both its opener — Amma Asante’s “A United Kingdom” — and its closer — Ben Wheatley’s “Free Fire” — and those titles are joined by a bevy of new additions. Highlights include “The Birth of a Nation,” “Nocturnal Animals,” “Manchester By the Sea,” “La La Land” and many more. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

Other Lineup Announcements

– The Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) released a lineup of heavy hitters set to screen in its prestigious Special Presentations series, part of the festival’s suitably diverse Panorama stream. Featuring the world’s boldest creators and their exceptional works, this programming stream also includes the popular film series Contemporary World Cinema, Spotlight on France and Documentaries. The Special Presentations at this year’s festival includes major festival award winners and early Oscar contenders sure to please Vancouver audiences. Kenneth Lonergan “Manchester by the Sea” will make its Vancouver debut, along with the latest work by acclaimed international filmmakers Andrea Arnold (“American Honey”), Paul Verhoeven (“Elle”) and Park Chan-wook (“The Handmaiden”).

All of VIFF’s feature films are eligible for the prestigious Super Channel People’s Choice Award. To determine the award, festival-goers will be invited to cast ballots after every screening. The results of this voting will also determine the winners of the other audience awards. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

The Handmaiden

“The Handmaiden”

Amazon Studios

– The Aspen Filmfest (running September 21 – 25) will open with the Colorado premiere of “Certain Women” directed by celebrated indie auteur Kelly Reichardt, which premiered at Sundance. The festival will screen 20 highly anticipated features, new foreign films and documentaries, including four U.S. premieres: “Gun Runners,” “The Salesman,” “Soy Nero” and “Trespass Against Us.” You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

– The Iowa Independent Film Festival today announced the full slate of programming for this year’s edition of the film festival (running September 16 – 18). With all programming offered free-to-the-public for the first time, and operating from its hub at the historic Park Inn Hotel in Mason City (15 W State Street), IIFF will be highlighted by rare personal appearances of beloved film couple Richard Benjamin and Paula Prentiss with screenings of two of their classic films, as well as a presentation of the latest in virtual reality (VR) storytelling courtesy of IIFF’s Co-Founder Tanna Frederick and celebrated directing veteran Randall Kleiser. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

– The Austin Film Festival (AFF), the premier film festival recognizing writers’ and filmmakers’ contributions to film, television and new media, has announced new programming for its inaugural Playwriting Track. Held during AFF’s Writers Conference, this October 13-16, the Playwriting Track will feature discussions that delve into the art and craft of dramatic writing and how these techniques can serve to inform storytelling for both the stage and screen.

As part of the track, playwright and screenwriter Beau Willimon will present a staged script reading of his unproduced play “War Story,” which follows two soldiers, two bankers, a war overseas and a war at home. The play explores how people navigate the battlefields of their past while confronting an uncertain future.

AFF also unveiled a new Playwriting Competition, to open in the 2017 season. An extension of its renowned Screenplay Competition, AFF will accept full-length stage plays and provide aspiring playwrights exposure to a wide array of theatre professionals. Writers who place in the competition and seek to transition into film and television will be given access to special programming and networking opportunities through the annual Writers Conference. More information and specifics will be available when the competition opens in early 2017. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.



The Weinstein Company

– The Zurich Film Festival (ZFF) will open the 12th edition of the festival (running September 22 – October 2) with the European premiere of The Weinstein Company’s “Lion,” directed by Garth Davis, on the evening of Thursday, September 22The film, based on a true story, stars Dev Patel, Academy Award nominee Rooney Mara and Academy Award winner Nicole Kidman. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

– The Boise Film Festival will host its Second Annual Film Festival on September 23 – 25. The festival will include 23 documentaries, short films and full feature films, including screenings from local youth filmmakers in collaboration with The Director’s Cut – Boise. Screenings, parties and panels will take place at venues throughout downtown Boise to represent the best of the local community. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

– The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced the complete slate of films for the 2016 AFI Latin American Film Festival, which will take place September 15 – October 5 at the historic AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. The festival, now celebrating its 27th edition, showcases the best in filmmaking from Latin America and, with the inclusion of films from Spain and Portugal, celebrates Ibero-American cultural connections.

This year’s selection of 37 films ranges from international festival favorites and award winners to local box office hits and debut works from gifted new talents. The fest will open with Rober Calzadilla’s “El Amparo” and close with Paul Dugdale’s “The Rolling Stones Ole Ole Ole!: A Trip Across Latin America.” You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

– DOC NYC, America’s largest documentary festival, announced it will open its seventh annual edition with the U.S. premiere of “Citizen Jane: Battle for the City,” directed by Matt Tyrnauer, on Thursday, November 10 at the SVA Theatre. The film documents the historic conflict in the 1960s between the writer and activist Jane Jacobs and the legendary power broker/urban-renewal tsar Robert Moses over plans to tear down much of New York City and replace it with highways and austere housing projects.

The festival also announced tributes to Jonathan Demme, Stanley Nelson and Molly Thompson.

– The Woodstock Film Festival has announced that its honorary Fiercely Independent Award will be presented by actor Ben Foster to Oren Moverman, an Israeli-American film director, screenwriter, producer, and former journalist based in New York City. As previously announced, media executive David Linde, CEO of Participant Media, is being honored with the Trailblazer Award this year for his visionary and tireless commitment to furthering the highest qualities in film and filmmakers. The festival will also celebrate the life and work of Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Leon Gast, and bestow upon him its Lifetime Achievement Award, to be presented to him by his close friend and colleague, Academy Award-winning filmmaker Barbara Kopple. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

Citizen Jane: Battle For The City

“Citizen Jane: Battle For The City”

Altimeter Films

– The Burbank International Film Festival will present a record-breaking 140 films including 22 from outside the US, and 12 world premieres at the Burbank AMC 16 in Downtown Burbank from September 7 through September 11. Now in its eighth year, the Burbank International Film Festival is five-day celebration of independent film bringing together emerging international talent, film enthusiasts, and industry leaders to experience the best in contemporary film. Representative categories include independent full-length films, shorts, special event movies, comedy, drama, student filmmakers, sci-fi, faith-based, animation, foreign language, and documentary films.

In addition to awards being given in each filmmaking genre, the festival will also honor Michelle Nichols with a Lifetime Achievement Award, Danny Woodbury with the Diversity Award and Jane Seymour with the Awareness Award. In recognition of the 15th anniversary of 9/11, the festival will honor a veteran from World War II, and one from Iraq/Afghanistan. Hal Albert (WWII) and Doug Woodhams (Iraq and Afghanistan) will both receive the Act of Valor Award. New this year, in recognition of director Garry Marshall, the inaugural Garry Marshall Spirit Award will be a continuing tribute to his life and legacy, and will be presented to a different recipient every year. You can check out the full lineup at their official site.

Submissions News

– The Montclair Film Festival is currently accepting film submissions, in three competitive categories, including fiction, non-fiction and low-budget independent filmmaking, as well as programs in six non-competitive categories including fiction, non-fiction, world cinema, short films, New Jersey films and student filmmaking.

The festival’s early bird deadline is November 18, the regular deadline is December 16,the extended deadline is January 12, 2017 and the late deadline is January 12, 2017. Interested filmmakers may visit the fest’s official site for more information on how to submit their films.

– The Dallas International Film Festival today announced a Call for Entries for the eleventh edition of the film festival, which will take place next year March 30 – April 9. Competitions include: Narrative Feature Competition, Documentary Feature Competition, Texas Feature Competition, Shorts Competition and Animation Competition. Other film categories featured at the Festival are: World Cinema, Premiere Series, Midnight Specials, Latino Showcase, Family Friendly, Maverick and Deep Ellum Sounds (Music Films). For more information please contact submissions@dallasfilm.org.

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