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July 24 YouTube Time Capsule

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  This coming Saturday, July 24, will mark a milestone for the internet. YouTube and a pair of renowned filmmakers have invited citizens from around the globe to participate in what is being called the first user-generated feature-length documentary shot during the same 24 hours. Titled LIFE IN A DAY, the experiment is being sponsored by the online clip site and involves such celebrated directors as Ridley Scott (ROBIN HOOD, GLADIATOR) and Kevin MacDonald (THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND)...

Roman Polanski Released

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  Following a legal battle that began almost a year ago at the Zurich Airport en route to the Zurich Film Festival, Oscar-winning director Roman Polanski has been released from legal limbo that has kept him under house arrest in Switzerland, and will most likely be back in France by later this week. Switzerland announced earlier today that it will not extradite Roman Polanski to the United States, where the film director faces charges of unlawful sex with a minor over thre...

Roman Polanski Is Released

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  Following a legal battle that began almost a year ago at the Zurich Airport en route to the Zurich Film Festival, Oscar-winning director Roman Polanski has been released from legal limbo that has kept him under house arrest in Switzerland, and will most likely be back in France by later this week. Switzerland announced earlier today that it will not extradite Roman Polanski to the United States, where the film director faces charges of unlawful sex with a minor over three decad...

New York Film Festival Opener

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  It may only be July, but already news is beginning to filter out about one of the major events of the Fall film season. The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced that THE SOCIAL NETWORK, the newest fiilm from Oscar-nominated director David Fincher has been selected as the Opening Night film for the 48th Annual New York Film Festival. The Festival will open at the recently refurbished Alice Tully Hall on the evening of Friday September 24th. The announcement is the first in ...

Bastille Day Film Event in New York

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  By now it is abundantly clear that New Yorkers are more than a little in love with the French and French culture. And with Bastille Day coming on Wednesday, July 14, the amour fou is just getting "fouer". Those ready for a New York dose of haute cuisine and cinema francais can get their fill at this week's Cinemonde program. Cinemonde is an initiative by Jerome Rudes of Mistral Artist Management to bring quality cinema to New Yorkers, who can feast on delicacies and dr...

Cannes Prize Winner Coming to USA

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  Sometimes even a Palme d'Or from the Cannes Film Festival is NOT enough to guarantee US theatrical distribution. The Thai film UNCLE BOONMEE has been distributor-less for 2 months since winning the Festival's top prize. But word now comes out of Los Angeles that veteran distribution company Strand Releasing has acquired all US rights to Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s UNCLE BOONMEE WHO CAN RECALL HIS PAST LIVES. Strand has released three of Weerasethakul’s previous films includ...

IFP and United Nations Present Doc Conference

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The Independent Feature Project (IFP), one of the largest filmmaker membership organizations in the United States, is joining forces with the United Nations Department of Public Information to present a one-day conference on the effect of documentaries as a tool to understanding world problems. The second annual "Envision: Addressing Global Issues through Documentaries" forum will be held on Saturday July 10th at TheTimesCenter, in New York City.  This jointly produced...

Can We Talk, And Talk, And Talk about Joan Rivers?

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When the center of your film is a person whose celebrated motor mouth is both the source of her fame and, sometimes, of her undoing, you definitely have a film that is about the marvels of talk, talk and more talk. That is certainly the case with the popular documentary JOAN RIVERS: A PIECE OF WORK, a disarmingly intimate portrait of the American comic legend. The documentary duo of Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg were on-stage guests at the special screening of the film at the Jacob Burns Film C...

The Complete Clint Eastwood

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Actor, director, screenwriter, jazz musician, music composer, politician, philanthropist, film legend.....these attributes could describe a cadre of people, but when they all wrapped into one outsized personality, it is truly impressive. Such is the career of Clint Eastwood, a television and film master who remains at the top of his professional game at 80 years young. To honor the octogenarian's contribution to the history of cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center is devoting much of its Ju...

The Complete Clint Eastwood

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  Actor, director, screenwriter, jazz musician, music composer, politician, philanthropist, film legend.....these attributes could describe a cadre of people, but when they all wrapped into one outsized personality, it is truly impressive. Such is the career of Clint Eastwood, a television and film master who remains at the top of his professional game at 80 years young. To honor the octogenarian's contribution to the history of cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center is devoting mu...

National Theatre Live: A Hybrid of Film, Television and Theater

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  In these days of high cost travel and rapidly shrinking bank accounts, I quietly considered the bundle I had saved by not needing to board the Concorde to attend the hit London production of the Victorian satire LONDON ASSURANCE, the latest offering from the National Theatre's worldwide satellite broadcasts. Sitting in the plush, air-conditioned environment of the Jacob Burns Film Center thirty miles from New York City, I could only marvel at the experience of a delicious "nig...

Can We Talk, And Talk, And Talk?

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  When the center of your film is a person whose celebrated motor mouth is both the source of her fame and, sometimes, of her undoing, you definitely have a film that is about the marvels of talk, talk and more talk. That is certainly the case with the popular documentary JOAN RIVERS: A PIECE OF WORK, a disarmingly intimate portrait of the American comic legend. The documentary duo of Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg were on-stage guests at the special screening of the film at the Jacob...

Elephant Eye Films Feted At FESTROIA

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  It takes a lot of energy, enthusiasm and patience to handle independent films in this distressed market. The economic depression, the evolution of how film is being watched and the nagging uncertainty of what role the internet plays in it all, have made the independent film distribution not something for the weak of heart. While independent films fight for theater space in a world dominated by the Hollywood majors, it becomes even more important for a company to use innovative techniq...

Elephant Eye Films Feted At FESTROIA

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  It takes a lot of energy, enthusiasm and patience to handle independent films in this distressed market. The economic depression, the evolution of how film is being watched and the nagging uncertainty of what role the internet plays in it all, have made the independent film distribution not something for the weak of heart. While independent films fight for theater space in a world dominated by the Hollywood majors, it becomes even more important for a company to use innovative techniqu...

New York's Shade of Lavender

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  EYES WIDE OPEN (Israel)  After a mercilessly cold and snowy winter, spring has finally sprung in New York, with its explosion of flowers, smells and colors. Amidst the ruby reds, the dazzling yellows and the intoxicating shades of green, there is a distinct shade of lavender, as gay and lesbian films make their annual pilgrimage to the city and its environs in the run-up to the area's gay pride celebrations in June. First out of the starting gate is the Jacob Burns Film C...

Film Festivals On The Brink And Over The Edge

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I had to do a double-take when I saw the headline yesterday: GEN ART TO CLOSE ITS DOORS AFTER SIXTEEN YEARS. The Gen Art organization, which organizes networking and exhibition events for film, music and fashion in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago and several other cities, is closing its doors? After what was an amazingly successful New York festival just two weeks ago? Well, the news apparently is true and joins a wave of bad news for specialized events around the USA (and probably the wor...

Film Festivals On The Brink And Over The Edge

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  I had to do a double-take when I saw the headline yesterday: GEN ART TO CLOSE ITS DOORS AFTER SIXTEEN YEARS. The Gen Art organization, which organizes networking and exhibition events for film, music and fashion in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago and several other cities, is closing its doors? After what was an amazingly successful New York festival just two weeks ago? Well, the news apparently is true and joins a wave of bad news for specialized events around the USA (and p...

Shrek Walks The Tribeca Red Carpet

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  Don't look now....but green monsters are walking the streets of Manhattan!!! Such news will hardly get a busy, self-involved New Yorker to bat an eyelash, except that the green ones are  named Shrek and Fiona, the beloved animated couple who have already starred in three feature films and a Broadway musical last season. Well, Shrek is back....walking the red carpet at the Opening Night Gala screening of SHREK FOREVER AFTER at the Tribeca Film Festival on Wednesday night at the...

Tribeca FF 2010: The Circus Comes To Town

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Do you remember when you were a little kid and you heard that the circus was coming to town? For me, it is a warm and still excitable feeling. Well, as a jaded adult, such simple pleasures are not supposed to create a sense of excitement (been there, done that) but the arrival (sound the trumpets!!!) of the Tribeca Film Festival this week is cause for circus-like jubilation. OK, let's get the jaded criticism out of the way.....the Tribeca Film Festival, formed 9 years ago as a sti...

From Cuba to Gotham: Havana FF Comes To New York

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  The Havana Film Festival New York (HFFNY) launches its second decade, April 16-23, with a program of award-winning films, panel discussions, and Q&A sessions with noted international filmmakers, actors and producers. Over 40 highly anticipated and influential films from and about Latin America, the Caribbean and Latinos in the U.S. will be screened. A variety of genres and themes from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, Cuba, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Mexico, Peru...

Gen Art FF Announces Winners

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The 15th edition of the GEN ART FILM FESTIVAL came to a rousing ending on Tuesday night with the NY Premiere Screening of MERCY, a morality tale starring Scott Caan set in the shark-infested waters of Los Angeles, followed by the announcement of the award winners for this year's event. The Acura Grand Jury Award for Best Feature went to Tatiana Von Furstenberg and Francesca Gregorini’s “Tanner Hall” with both directors on hand to receive their award. The Acura Grand Jury Awar...

Adrian Grenier Takes On The Paparazzi

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  "I am not a celebrity, but I play one on television", actor Adrien Grenier wagged from the stage at the School of Visual Arts Theater last night after the presentation of his documentary film TEENAGE PAPARAZZO at the Gen Art Film Festival in New York. Grenier, best known for his role as young movie star Vincent Chase in the Hollywood buddy comedy ENTOURAGE, has had his own run with the paparazzi, the aggressive photo hounds who are desperate to catch an unposed photo of cel...

Lost Fassbinder Film To Play At MoMA

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  The Film Department of the Museum of Modern Art, one of the most treasured film resources in New York and a major archive of world cinema, will present a true rarity next week in their film program. WORLD ON A WIRE, a lost television film directed by New German Cinema wunderkind Rainer Werner Fassbinder that not been seen since its original broadcast on German television in 1973, is being resurrected and presented at the inestimable institutons for a run from April 14 to 19. The resto...

Accent On Personal Stories At Gen Art Film Festival

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  Most American indie films don't have budgets to attract big stars or show off spiffy special effects. However, what they do have and are arguably much better at than the Hollywood studios, is the ability to offer stories that are more personal and more "real" and which relate to their audiences in a special way. Endings don't always need to be happy, conflicts don't always need to be tied up and emotions don't need to be well mannered in an indie film. In this sense, they a...

Sundance Audience Favorite Opens Gen Art FF

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  Some might say that the most prized award given at the Sundance Film Festival is the public prize. Winners of the Audience Award, as opposed to winners of the juried competitions, tend to indicate an innate audience appreciation that speaks volumes to film distributors and critics. In that light, tonight's Opening Film at the 15th Gen Art Film Festival is bound to be a crowd pleaser. HappyThankYouMorePlease is the directorial debut of actor Josh Radnor, best known for his role o...
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