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Bahamas Attracts High Profile Industry Players For Jury and Panels

The Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) announced today the members of the jury that will preside over the 4th edition of the Festival. The jury was revealed today by BIFF Founder and Executive Director Leslie Vanderpool.

This year’s Festival will showcase 83 films from 26 different countries, including 54 features of which several are world or international premieres and nearly all Bahamian premieres. The four competition categories at BIFF are Spirit of Freedom: Dramatic; Spirit of Freedom: Documentary; New Vision; and Short Film.

The 2007 BIFF jury includes:

New Vision
Ryan Fleck– Writer/Director (winner of BIFF 2006 New Vision Award for “Half Nelson”)
Ben Lyons– E! Entertainment’s resident film expert
Lauren Craniotes- Vice President of Production at Warner Independent Pictures

Spirit of Freedom: Dramatic
Sharon Swart – Senior Editor of features at Variety
Harlan Jacobsen – USA Today Film Critic, Writer, Director
Antonius Roberts – Bahamian Visual Artists

Spirit of Freedom: Documentary
Elliot Kotek- Editor in Chief of Moving Pictures Magazine
Philip Burk - President of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association
Jennifer Konawal – Talent/Literary Agent at The Gersh Agency

Short Film
Magali Dubie – Buyers Manager, Short Film Corner, Festival de Cannes
Katrina Rothenstein- Programmer for the Short Films at the Miami International Film Festival
Charley Walters – Director of International Casting and Creative Production Marketing at DreamWorks Animaion

In addition to the high profile collection of jurors, BIFF has attracted an esteemed group of industry heavyweights to participate in various panels and seminars taking place over the course of the Festival. Participants include actress Jennifer Tilly, writer/director Susan Jacobsen, Jennifer Konawal of the Gersh Agency; Director Adrien Belic (“Beyond the Call’); filmmaker Lawrence Konner (“Mighty Joe Young”); composer Francis Shaw; Ben Arnon; Chris “Kazi” Rolle; producer Peter Newman (“The Squid and the Whale”); producer Norman Golightly (“Ghost Rider”); Shoreline Entertainment CEO Morris Ruskin, Jerome Paillard – Executive Director of Cannes Marche du film, IFC Entertainment’s Head of Theatrical Marketing Ryan Werner; veteran film festival director Nicole Guillemet; Pape Boyle from Coach 14; Bruno Chatelin co founder; and Joan Graves – Chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

Marquee local names include Angela Archer – Bahamas film commission; Kareem Mortimer – Bahamian Director “Float”; Jonathan Murray- Bahamian actor “Float”; and Sheryl Cartwright – Chairman of the Film Board of the Bahamas.

Panels at this year’s festival will cover a wide range of topics including film finance & production, marketing & distribution, music & film, and international collaboration, among others.

BIFF 2007 takes place from Thursday December 6th, through Thursday, December 13th. Because of the enormous growth and support for the Festival in its first three years, The Festival has been extended to a full seven days beginning this year.

The Festival will open with ThinkFilm’s acclaimed action/drama “Battle in Seattle” starring Academy Award® winner Charlize Theron, Woody Harrelson, Ray Liotta, Michelle Rodriguez, Joshua Jackson and Andre Benjamin and close with “Juno” – the acclaimed coming-of-age comedy drama from Fox Searchlight Pictures, directed by Jason Reitman and starring Michael Cera, Ellen Page, Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman, Allison Janney, Rainn Wilson and J.K. Simmons.

The full BIFF programme is now available online at


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