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Film Festival Roundup: Sarasota Announces Complete Slate, SFIFF Unveils Full Lineup and New Launch Program, and More

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

Jenny Slate in Landline


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

Lineup Announcements

– The Sarasota Film Festival has announced its full lineup, including its Narrative Feature Competition, Independent Visions Competition, Documentary Feature Competition, World and US Cinema Narrative, World and US Cinema Documentary, Spotlight, and Short Films. The festival also announced its three SFF Focus Panels–LGBTQ Community; Environment, Science, & Sustainability; and Sports In Cinema – along with its Closing Night Awards. The 19th annual Sarasota Film Festival will take place from March 31 – April 9. You can find out more information at their official site.

“Film has an integral role in helping us analyze social and political issues in our society that demand attention, thought and dialogue” said Mark Famiglio, President of the Sarasota Film Festival. “Our program is designed to use the art of cinema as a catalyst for important conversations, all the while bringing great films and amazing filmmakers to the Sarasota community.

– The complete lineup has now been announced for the landmark 60th San Francisco International Film Festival, running April 5 – 19 at venues throughout San Francisco and Berkeley. The Festival’s Opening Night selection is Gillian Robespierre’s “Landline,” starring Jenny Slate, Edie Falco, John Turturro, and Jay Duplass. Special guests are expected to attend the kickoff event on April 5. You can check out their full lineup right here.

The Festival’s 2017 award recipients include Eleanor Coppola (George Gund III Craft of Cinema Award), Tom Luddy (Mel Novikoff Award), and Lynn Hershman Leeson (Persistence of Vision Award).

Special Tributes will be presented to Ethan Hawke (including a screening of his new film “Maudie”), James Ivory (with a 30th anniversary screening of “Maurice”), John Ridley (with an early look at his new SHOWTIME series “Guerrilla”), and Gordon Gund (profiled in the short documentary “The Illumination”). The Festival will present a special screening of Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane,” featuring an unprecedented onstage conversation with William Randolph Hearst III (whose grandfather inspired the title character) and film historian David Thomson about the film’s legacy.

Additionally, SFFILM is debuting Launch, a new boutique program designed to introduce a curated slate of films to screen for Festival audiences and select film industry representatives. Kicking off with five world premieres from the official Festival lineup, Launch serves as an experimental alternative to larger-scale film sales environments elsewhere in the U.S.


– Aspen Film has announced today its program for the 26th Aspen Shortsfest. Aspen Film, a year-round film arts and education organization, will bring filmmaking talent from around the globe to Aspen’s Wheeler Opera House, Paepcke Auditorium and Carbondale’s Crystal Theatre from April 4 – 9.

A film-lover’s delight, the festival explores unique themes through a series of eleven programs that feature the newest and most innovative shorts on the scene from the United States and abroad. The 2017 slate of films features 16 world premieres, 5 international premieres, 25 North American premieres and 16 US premieres from filmmakers representing 31 different countries. Nearly 4,000 films were considered, and 64 chosen for the festival’s eleven programs. For the complete Aspen Shortsfest program and schedule visit their official site.

– Hot Docs has announced 16 additional documentary features that will screen in this year’s Special Presentations program. Special Presentations features a high-profile collection of world and international premieres, award winners from the recent international festival circuit and works by master filmmakers or featuring some star subjects. Check out the new additions right here.

Special Presentations is sponsored by CBC Docs and will screen as part of the 2017 Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, running April 27 – May 7. The complete Special Presentations program and the full selection of films to screen at Hot Docs 2017 will be announced on March 21, including the 2017 opening night film.

– The Dallas Film Society has announced the full schedule of film selections for the 11th edition of the Dallas International Film Festival.

The Opening Weekend Celebration at the Dallas City Performance Hall (2520 Flora Street) on March 30 – April 2, will be headlined by a special 50th Anniversary Gala presentation of the groundbreaking classic, “Bonnie and Clyde.” Centerpiece Gala presentations include the Sundance hits, Brett Haley’s “The Hero” and Mark Palansky’s “Rememory,” and DIFF alum David Gordon Green will be the recipient of this year’s L.M. “Kit” Carson Maverick Award. Check out the full lineup right here.

The Hero

“The Hero”

Courtesy of Sundance

– The 5th annual Louisiana International Film Festival (LIFF) has announced its first wave of film selections to premiere during the four-day film festival, representing only a portion of the 50 plus films from Louisiana and around the world to be announced in the coming weeks. The festival runs April – 23 in Baton Rouge.

The festival will kick off on Thursday, April 20 with the Opening Night film, “Patti Cake$.” You can check out the rest of the newly announced lineup right here.

– The Film Society of Lincoln Center announces the Sound + Vision Festival, a three-day showcase celebrating the enduring and mutually enriching relationship between cinema and music, April 7 – 9. Tickets go on sale March 23. Learn more right here.

– The 65th Columbus International Film + Video Festival — the oldest film festival in the United States — has announced their 2017 lineup. Presented by Columbus College of Art & Design, CIF+VF runs April 19 – 23 and features compelling feature- length films, documentaries, short films, cartoons, and student work. You can check out their full lineup and purchase tickets right here.

– The Nashville Film Festival has announced the 33 additional feature films accompanied by several new categories for the Special Presentations, Spectrum and The Inaugural Animated Feature Competitions.

New categories include the inaugural Animated Feature Competition, with films representing four nations – USA, Turkey, South Korea and Canada. Spectrum Q highlights daring cinema showcasing the lives of the LGBTQ community. This announcement increases the total number of features films to 96 showing over the ten days of the festival running from April 20 – 29. You can check out their full lineup and purchase tickets right here.

– The Boston Underground Film Festival has revealed the remainder of its eclectic 19th edition, taking place from March 22 – 26at the Brattle Theatre and Harvard Film Archive. BUFF’s already dynamic lineup is rounded out with even more intriguing films from around the world, including over 80 short films and music videos that promise to disturb, dazzle, and delight. Check out the full lineup right here.

Special Events

– Now in its sixteenth year, Ivy Film Festival (IFF), among the largest entirely student-run film festivals in the world, taking place April 10 – 16 at Brown University, has announced its lineup with keynote appearances by Ezra Edelman, Barry Levinson and M. Night Shyamalan.

IFF will also bring its Satellite Festival back to the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York City on May 12. The festival’s mission is to showcase student filmmakers from around the world and generate a dialogue between renowned film professionals and the next generation of creative talents. Most events will be held at Brown University’s The Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts. Events are ticketed, but free and open to the public. The full schedule will be available March 20 at their official site.

patti cakes sundance

“Patti Cake$”


Other Official Announcements

– The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, celebrating its 20th anniversary April 6 – 9 in Durham, N.C., has announced the titles included in this year’s Thematic Program, DoubleTake. The special program was curated by Full Frame artistic director Sadie Tillery as a retrospective celebrating the films and filmmakers who helped establish the festival as one of world’s premier showcases of nonfiction cinema.

In addition to the 19 films included in the DoubleTake program — one from each year in Full Frame’s history — the festival’s NEW DOCS slate and Invited Program include 71 additional titles (49 features and 22 shorts), some of which will make their World or North American premieres. Specific screening times and venues will be announced with the release of the full schedule on Thursday, March 16 at their official site. Individual tickets go on sale March 30.

– The Montclair Film Festival, New Jersey’s leading film non-profit, has launched its new name and identity, Montclair Film. The name, intended to better express the organization’s year-round commitment to a wide range of film and education programming, will be the new identity under which the non-profit operates. The Montclair Film Festival (MFF), an annual event taking place this year from April 28 – May 7, will retain its name as the organization’s signature program.

Submissions and Calls for Entry

– Kingdomwood International Film Festival (formerly known as Kingdomwood Christian Film Festival) has announced its ninth edition will be held October 6 – 8 at the J.W. Marriott Hotel Atlanta Buckhead. The three-day Festival provides an outlet for faith-based filmmakers to screen their product and gather the tools and resources needed to better understand production, distribution and marketing of their films.

For the second year, Kingdomwood has also expanded its area of submissions to include original screenplays. The top three screenplays will be announced at the festival, with the winning screenwriters given full festival access and scheduled for a one-on-one meeting with one of KIFF’s key network/production partners to discuss their script. Submissions are now open right here.

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