Tuesday, July 21, 2009

SERIES: "Upcoming Film Festivals"

Montreal, Venice and Telluride


The 33rd Montreal World Film Festival (MWFF): Le Festival des Films du Monde Montréal, 27 August - 7 September. The world première of Ricardo Trogi's 1981 will open the Festival 27 August at the Théâtre Maisonneuve of Place des Arts. The semi-autobiographical dramatic comedy will open in Quebec theaters 4 September.

Writer-director Ricardo Trogi came to critical and popular attention in 2003 when his debut feature QUEBEC-MONTREAL won four Jutras, including best film, script and direction, enjoyed box office success in Quebec, and won plaudits in festivals around the world. Trogi's second film, (DODGING THE CLOCK) won the Olivier prize in 2006 for best comedy, and scored a similar hit at the box office.

The Festival will pay tribute to Quebec film, television and stage actor Pierre Lebeau, and will honor him with Festival's highest award, the Grand Prize of the Americas. As a corollary to this tribute, the World Film Festival will show Lebeau's latest starring vehicle, Roger Cantin's CARGO FOR AFRICA (Un Cargo pour l'Afrique), which will receive its world première in the World Competition of this year's Festival.

The complete program has not yet been announced. For more info about tickets, etc., visit the
Web Site, call 514-848-3883, or send an e-mail: info@ffm-montreal.org.


The 66th Venice International Film Festival (VIFF), the world's oldest film festival, opens in Venice 2 September and runs through the 12th. BAARÌA, written and directed by Italian Oscar-winner Giuseppe Tornatore (Cinema Paradiso), will be the Opening Film of the 66th Venice International Film Festival, to be held at the Venice Lido from 2 to 12 September 2009, again under the direction of Marco Müller and organized by the Venice Biennale, which is chaired by Paolo Baratta. The film will screen in competition.

It will also be the gala world première for BAARÌA in the Sala Grande of the Palazzo del Cinema at the Lido. It is the first Italian film to open the Venice Film Festival for two decades and is the Italian film industry’s most costly production for many years.

The Festival also offers an online channel with video and interactive elements. The final film program has not yet been announced.
Web Site.


Alexander Payne, American director and screenwriter, will be this year's Guest Director at the 36thTelluride Film Festival (TFF), 4-7 September 2009, in Telluride, Colorado, presented by National Film Preserve LTD. Director, Alexander Payne.

Each year the Festival’s directors select one of the world’s great film lovers to join them in the creation of the Festival. The Guest Director serves as a key collaborator in the Festival’s programming decisions, bringing new ideas and overlooked films to Telluride.

ACME Passes are sold out - Cinephile, Festival, and Patron Passes still available!

Kudos to the Festival for a much-improved
Web Site.





Additional screenings have been added at the Traverse City Film Festival due to demand. Also, some additional special programs. The Festival runs Tuesday, 28 July, through Sunday, 2 August. Check the Web Site for more info.

Become a 2010 Friend of the Film Festival before noon on 2 August 2009, to be entered into a Grand Prize Drawing for the chance to win a FESTIVAL PASS FOR LIFE and passes to next year's film festival! And Friends who join before 1 September will pay the original Friends prices before they double again!

For current ticketing info call 231-946-3731, or send an email: info@traversecityfilmfestival.org.
Web Site.



The 47th New York Film Festival (NYFF) will return to the newly renovated Alice Tully Hall in NYC. Presented by The Film Society, the 17-day New York Film Festival runs 25 September to 11 October, 2009. September 25 - October 11, 2009. Film submissions have now closed.

This year is the 60th year of the People’s Republic of China, and a Festival sidebar will showcase the first major U.S. retrospective of Chinese cinema between establishment of the People’s Republic in 1949 and the beginnings of the Cultural Revolution in 1966. Also scheduled is a tribute to Hindi director, producer, and actor Guru Dutt, frequently credited with ushering in the golden era of Indian cinema in the 1950s and ’60s.
Festival Web Site. Film Society of Lincoln Center.



The San Sebastián International Film Festival's (SSIFF) early planning and work are paying off as the Festival is ahead of schedule in programming. American filmmaker Quentin Tarantino will open the Zabaltegi-Pearls section with his anticipated INGLOURIOUS BASTARDS, which won the Best Actor Award for Christoph Waltz at Cannes. It will be screened on the first day of the 57th edition, Friday, 18 September.

Already locked are new films by Woody Allen, Ang Lee, Jim Jarmusch, Bahman Ghobadi, Bong Joon-ho and Johnnie To, among others. Much, much more in next post. Web Site.

The films of director Richard Brooks and French Movie Trends will top the retrospective section.
Web Site.



The Toronto Film Festival (10 - 19 September) has announced the 20 films from film festival around the world. Documentary program announced. Canadian films will be announced 4 August. Web Site.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

SERIES - “Upcoming Film Festivals”

Traverse City, Sarajevo & Telluride

Traverse City FF Tickets On Sale

This is it! Tickets for the 5th Traverse City Film Festival went on sale Sunday at noon in downtown Traverse City, Michigan, for Friends of the Festival, which will run Tuesday, 28 July through Sunday, 2 August.

Remaining tickets will go on sale to the general public this coming Saturday, 18 July, at 12 noon in the box office located at 300 E. Front Street, Traverse City. Sales online and by phone (231-946-3731) begin at 6 pm.

For more about the Festival, see my two previous blog posts in this series, Upcoming Film Festivals. There is still time to become a Friend of the Festival. The best way is through the Web site. While you are there, check the site for other passes, get information on the many special programs the Festival is offering this year, as well as the films showing.
Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina

The Sarajevo Film Festival began during the Serbian invasion of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1994-1995, Sarajevo’s residents decided to establish the Sarajevo Film Festival. In the beginning, it looked like a pipe dream, like fighting the windmills. No one thought that the dream of a group of movie enthusiasts would grow from amongst war into the most important annual event not only in B-H, but in the entire region.

Now, the Festival is one of the biggest cultural events in B-H, and the one with the most attendance. The Festival award is the Heart of Sarajevo. This year is the 15th edition, and it will run from 12 - 20 August. American Actor Kevin Spacey, who helped found the Festival is expected to attend again this year. So is UK director Mike Leigh, another Festival sponsor.

Opening the festival is TALES FROM THE GOLDEN AGE, written and directed by Cristian Mungiu, whose last movie was the acclaimed 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS & 2 DAYS (2007). GOLDEN AGE is described as an unconventional personal history of the late Communist period in Romania. Remember what they did to the disabled and orphan children? Web site.

A quick note about Telluride, which will be in the spotlight in the next post of this series. Passes are now on sale. They are expensive and they go fast. If you want to take a chance, go here.
Some festivals that will be spotlighted in the continuation of the Series:

August -

Montreal WFF:
Le Festival des Films du Monde Montréal, Canada, 27 August - 7 September.

2 - 12 September, Italy, the granddaddy of them all.

4 - 7 September, Colorado, a wonderful time of year to be there.

10-19 September, Canada.

San Sebastián:
18 - 26 September.

Friday, July 03, 2009

SERIES - upcoming, TCFF Guide Available

The Traverse City Film Festival Guide is now available. This year is the 5th TCFF, running from 28 July to 2 August. It is held mainly at the historic State Theatre in downtown Traverse City, Michigan.

With 71 features and 50 short films from over 30 different countries and five continents, the TCFF has something for everyone, including children. To get the film guide with everything you want to know about the festival, film selection, special programs, etc., download the pdf version: http://www.traversecityfilmfest.org/tcffguide09.pdf

Meanwhile, if I get any additional info before the opening, I shall post it here. Three highlights from the festival not mentioned in my previous post, but are in the Film Guide:

1. Greetings from Tehran/Palestine and Vine — Two sections of incredible films from the Middle East, a region that needs to have its unfiltered voice heard now more than ever.
2. ROGER AND ME - This is the 20th anniversary of Michael Moore’s groundbreaking documentary.
3. Woodstock 40th Anniversary Celebrate the seminal cultural event of the 20th century with never-before-seen concert footage, and special guests who performed at Woodstock live on stage at the State Theatre.