Rooftop Films in New York City is celebrating its 20th Annual Summer Series. This year’s series will feature more than 50 outdoor screenings in more than 13 spectacular venues, with live music, special enhancements and the best new, independent films from around the world.
WorldFest-Houston, the third longest-running International Film Festival in North America, and the oldest independent film festival in the world, celebrated the conclusion of its 10-day run of film, fun and fanfare in its 49th annual independent film showcase with a nine percent increase in box office.
As the U.S. Supreme Court decides in 2016 whether individual states may essentially outlaw abortion (Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt), a new documentary, Trapped, follows the struggles of the clinic workers and lawyers who are on the front lines of a battle to keep abortion safe and legal for millions of American women. The movie premieres April 25 as part of the Big Sky Film Festival in Montana.
After 37 years in Manhattan, IFP’s signature event, IFP Film Week is moving across the river to Brooklyn. The event will set up shop in DUMBO anchored around its headquarters, the Made in NY Media Center By IFP. Since its downtown beginnings as the Independent Feature Film Market in 1979, IFP Week has evolved into a must-attend gathering for the global storytelling community. It remains the only international co-production market for film – and now television, web-based, and VR projects – in the United States, with over 150 projects from over 22 countries curated and presented as scripts and works-in-progress each year.
Opening night celebration for WorldFest Houston the 49th Annual Houston International Film Festival is Friday, April 8. Bo Brinkman’s Last Man Club will open the festival; it will close with Hope, a Charles Irving production directed by Lakisha Lemons. Last Man Club is a film years in the making that pays tribute to Brinkman’s father, a WWII veteran. The film involves a small group of WWII veterans who set out on a personal mission many years after the war has ended to honor a pact they made. It’s a film about grit, true loyalties and determination, real life issues with a touch of humor. Many of the scenes were shot at Ellington Field.
The American Film Institute has announced its collaboration with the White House on the third annual White House Student Film Festival, to be held in late summer 2016. Participant Media, a global entertainment company focused on inspiring social change, joins AFI in support of their work with young filmmakers of the White House Student Film Festival for a second year.
Roundabout Entertainment provided sound design, sound mixing and DCP services for Seth, director Zach Lasry’s short film screening at this month’s SXSW Film Festival. Lorenzo Gutierrez was the sound designer and re-recording mixer for the dark comedy about a man’s desperate attempt to impress his father. Seth will screen as part of SXSW’s Midnight Shorts Competition.
Director Arlene Bogna's independent film The Ballad of Snake Oil Sam will be screened at the New Filmmakers Los Angeles Festival on Match 19. New Filmmakers Los Angeles is a non-profit organization designed to showcase innovative works by emerging global filmmakers. “Part of the Alliance of Women Directors initiative with NFMLA, The Ballad of Snake Oil Sam is an off beat ride into the creative areas we seldom explore with captivating photography and production design along with committed performances,” said NFMLA creative director/co-founder, Susie Kim. “This curious short film will engage you till the end.”
QuVis Technologies has released the Ovation II DCP player 2.1, which the company says is the first player capable of supporting 4K playback in a small form factor and at an affordable price. QuVis spokesman Keith Doughty says the Ovation II is expected to ease the challenges faced by independent film festival organizers for playback and screening. It can also provide a platform for independent film producers to efficiently and effectively test their DCPs before showing them on the big screen.
Three Arab films supported by Sanad, the development and post-production fund of twofour54, have won awards at the 66th annual Berlin International Film Festival held this month in Germany. Mohamed Ben Attia, director of Inhebbek Hedi (Hedi), supported by Sanad in development and post-production, received the Best First Feature Award (50,000 euros) during the official closing ceremony, and the film’s lead actor Majd Mastour received the Silver Bear for Best Actor as part of the official competition awards.