October 20, 2017 Animation is Film, Founder Eric Beckman

GKIDS, the acclaimed producer and distributor of animation for adult and family audiences, Annecy International Animation Film Festival, the world’s leading animation Festival and Market, and Variety magazine, have announced the launch of ANIMATON IS FILM, an annual animation film festival in Los Angeles. The first edition will run October 20-22 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theater in Hollywood (Mann’s Chinese Theater) with a showcase of 20 programs including feature films in competition, special presentations, retrospectives and short film programs. ANIMATION IS FILM aims to fill a gap in the US market by establishing a world class animation festival on par with the major events in Europe and Asia – and locating it in the world capital of animated filmmaking. The Festival will be a vocal advocate  in the heart of Hollywood, for excellence in animation, and for filmmakers who push the boundaries of their art to the fullest range of expression that the medium is capable of. GKIDS and Animation is Film founder Eric Beckman stops by to talk about his love of animation and the endless possibilities for enriching and entertaining filmmaking contained in it.

For information and updates go to: animationisfilm.com

 

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Dates: The festival will be the weekend of Friday, October 20 through Sunday, October 22, 2017.

Location: Films will be screened at 6801 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90028 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatre Multiplex on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Click here to meet the filmmakers of Animation is Film

Animation is Film Festival seeks to:

Present a highly selective, annual showcase of the best new works of animation from around the world, with programs for both adults and families.

• Champion and support filmmakers who use animation to pursue unique cinematic visions and who are unconstrained by conventional notions of what animation is capable of.

• Champion and support women filmmakers.

• Champion and support filmmakers from a wide range of cultural, economic, national and geographic backgrounds.

• Have a positive impact on Los Angeles’ diverse communities by making the Festival programs available to the widest range of audiences.

August 4, 2017 – Some Freaks, Director Ian MacAllister McDonald

When high school senior Matt (Thomas Mann) meets fellow outcast Jill (Lily Mae Harrington), he falls more in love than he thought possible. However, after graduation comes and Jill moves cross-country to go to college, she loses more than 50 pounds and changes her appearance entirely – much to Matt’s surprise when he arrives to visit her six months later. While Matt struggles to accept Jill’s new choices, Jill begins to question whether Matt is really the man she wants to date. As the distance widens between them, the characters are propelled onto a collision course with brutality and loss, forcing them to confront who they are, who they were, and who everyone thinks they’re supposed to be. Also starring Ely Henry, Lachlan Buchanan, and this feature by writer-director Ian MacAllister-McDonald. McDonald joins us to talk about his touching, heartfelt feature film debut.

For new and updates go to: somefreaksthemovie.com

Special added event: Please join us for a Q&A session after the 7:20PM show on Friday 8/4. Participants will be writer/director Ian MacAllister-McDonald along with cast members Thomas Mann, Lily Mae Harrington, Ely Henry, and Lachlan Buchanan.

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“All the actors are good, but Harrington is remarkable. It’s not just the physical changes in her character, but the genuineness with which she inhabits her”. – Billy Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic

“Playwright Ian MacAllister-McDonald’s debut feature is a refreshingly grounded, unsentimental yet empathetic slice of D-list teenage life that goes a bit overboard in its final act.” – Dennis Harvey, Variety

“The characters are authentic and deeply felt.” – Bradley Gibson, Film Threat

“Brittle and beautifully-acted and cleverly written “find your tribe” high school romance.” – Roger Moore, Movie Nation

Hare Krishna! The Mantra, The Movement and the Swami Who Started It All – Co-Director Lauren Ross (John Griesser, Jean Griesser)

 

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1965: America is in turmoil. Unprecedented introspection and questioning of societal norms roil the country. Prabhupada, an unassuming 70-year-old Swami from India, arrives in New York City alone and without support or money. He carries only the ancient scriptures he has translated, and the firm faith in his teacher’s request: “offer spiritual wisdom to the people of the world!” Suddenly thrust into the raging counterculture movement, Prabhupada speaks of the world’s real need, which is not necessarily satisfied by political or social revolutions, but by a revolution of consciousness. This divergence from the status quo successfully captures the attention of a generation of youth seeking answers to life’s existential questions. From a tiny storefront on 26th 2nd Avenue, Prabhupada shares with them the idea that the way to find real happiness, love and freedom is to search within and connect to your true self. All this, the Swami says, begins by simply chanting a rhythmic, meditative 16-word mantra – Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. This universal message resonates with more and more people, including musician George Harrison whose hit song ‘My Sweet Lord’, features the Hare Krishna chant. From there, Prabhupada’s movement explodes, and his followers – now known as the Hare Krishnas – become infamous for chanting and dancing in the streets. Co-director Lauren Ross (John Griessen, Jean Griessen) joins us to talk about the remarkable life and time of Swami Prabhupada and his mission to teach happiness.

For news and updates: harekrishnathefilm.com

“A dynamic documentary about the visionary Vedic scholar who launched the Hare Krishna movement.” – Spirituality and Practice

HARE KRISHNA! director John Griesser and producer Lauren Ross will participate in Q&A’s at the Monica Film Center after the 7:30 PM screenings on Friday and Saturday, June 23 and 24. HARE KRISHNA! writer Jean Griesser will join them on Friday and HARE KRISHNA! composer Michael Mollura will join them on Saturday.

Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story, Director Daniel Raim

 

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In the new documentary Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story, Award-winning director Daniel Raim (The Man on Lincoln’s Nose, Something’s Gonna Live) brings to life a fascinating and moving account of the romantic and creative partnership of storyboard artist Harold Michelson and film researcher Lillian Michelson: two unsung heroes of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story spans the Golden Age of Hollywood through New Hollywood and beyond. It’s a portrait of a time, and an intimate chronicle of their epic journey of life, love, family, and making great movies. Harold and Lillian worked on hundreds of renowned films including The Ten Commandments, The Apartment, The Birds, Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?, The Graduate, Rosemary’s Baby, Fiddler On The Roof, Scarface, Full Metal Jacket and many more. Although the couple was responsible for some of Hollywood’s most iconic examples of visual storytelling, their contributions remain largely uncredited. Through an engaging mix of love letters, film clips and candid conversations with Harold and Lillian, Danny DeVito, Mel Brooks, Francis Ford Coppola and others, this deeply engaging documentary from Academy Award®-nominated director Daniel Raim (who first encountered Harold Michelson as a student at the AFI Conservatory in 1997), chronicles their remarkable marriage and extraordinary careers through six decades of movie-making history.  Harold and Lillian’s story humanizes Hollywood—an industry sustained by numerous hard-working cinema artisans; master craftsmen and craftswomen who give their lives, their genius and their hearts to the movies. Beyond Harold and Lillian’s contribution to cinema, their story can’t be told without weaving in their 60-year marriage—a creative, challenging, and profoundly loving partnership. Director Daniel Raim stops by for a conversation on his loving tribute to a beguiling pair of artists, partners and lovers.

For news and updates go to: Harold and Lilian: A Hollywood Love Story

**100% on RottenTomatoes

Truly charming…A terrifically moving human story!” – Glenn Kenny, Vanity Fair

“CRITICS’ PICK! Charming… Like flipping through misplaced leaves in a photo book, the documentary maintains a free-flowing tone as it uncovers the work that went into creating some of the indelible scenes in Hollywood history.” – Monica Castillo, The New York Times

“For an hour and a half, this charming little movie, with its chatty talking heads and its sweet-natured subjects, offers a glimpse into the lives of two fascinating people whom I had never heard of, and who shared an unlikely life filled with achievements and setbacks, wonder and pain.” – Bilge Ebiri, The Village Voice

“One of the very best documentaries ever made about movies…I have rarely seen any movie, fact or fiction, that was quite so suffused with love—movie love and human love—as this one.” – David Noh, Film Journal

“An awesome film… funny, heartbreaking, and packed with delicious film lore.” – Ken Kwapis, Director of The Office

The Green Fog – A San Francisco Fantasia, Composer Jacob Garchik


 

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Jacob Garchik, multi-instrumentalist and composer, was born in San Francisco and lived in New York since 1994. At home in a wide variety of styles and musical roles, he is a vital part of the Downtown and Brooklyn scene, playing trombone with the Lee Konitz Nonet, Ohad Talmor/Steve Swallow Sextet, Mary Halvorson Octet, and the John Hollenbeck Large Ensemble. He has released 4 albums as a leader including “The Heavens: the Atheist Gospel Trombone Album”. He co-leads Brooklyn’s premiere Mexican brass band, Banda de los Muertos. Since 2006 Jacob has contributed dozens of arrangements and transcriptions for Kronos Quartet of music from all over the world. He composed the score for Kronos for the documentary “The Campaign” (2013), and “The Green Fog” (2017) directed by Guy Maddin. He has created arrangements for vocalists Anne Sofie von Otter, Angelique Kidjo, Laurie Anderson, Rhiannon Giddens, kd lang, Natalie Merchant, Tanya Tagaq, and Alim Qasimov. Garchik returns to San Francisco Sunday, April 16 for a live performance during the 60th San Francisco International Film Festival’s closing night screening of The Green Fog – A San Francisco Fantasia. Commissioned by the San Francisco Film Society, that reimagines one of the most iconic San Francisco films of all time, Vertigo, as a visual collage by award-winning filmmaker and cultural iconoclast Guy Maddin. The Green Fog will screen at the historic Castro Theatre on Sunday, April 16 at 7:00 pm, followed by the Closing Night Party at Mezzanine. Jacob Garchik joins us for a conversation on collaborating with director Guy Maddin and his own musical journey.

 For news and updates go to: jacobgarchik.com

For news and updates on the 2017 San Francisco International Film Festival go to: sffilm.org/festival

Audience Awards Film Festival CEO & Founder Page Williams

 

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Audience Awards is a company started by filmmakers for filmmakers, we have a deep desire to do what we can to introduce you to real opportunity and connection. Submit quality content for our creative and brand contests and grab your chance to win cash, prizes and screenings at some of the most amazing film festivals on the circuit. It’s not the norm to play up a film festival as your first, but Audience Awards isn’t the norm and this isn’t your normal film festival. With an online community of over 150,000 filmmakers and film lovers, AudFest is our filmmaker family reunion! We’ve known many of you for years online and now we get to meet face-to-face. We’ve planned some amazing things for you in preparation.  With a focus on innovation and diversity in short-form filmmaking, this four-day fest hosts panels and workshops with the top tier in this industry on branded content, Super 8 film, festival strategy, social impact of filmmaking and more. A company started by filmmakers for filmmakers, we have a deep desire to do what we can to introduce you to real opportunity and connection. Attendees will have access to representatives from Women In Film, SAG-AFTRA, SAGIndie, Paramount, Filmmakers Alliance and VICE, to name a very few. Audience Awards CEO and Founder Paige Williams stops by for a conversation on the quality and diversity of short films being produced and the support that Audience Awards is providing to that filmmaking community.

For news and updates go to: theaudienceawards.com and theaudienceawards.com/audfest

HyperNormalisation, Director Adam Curtis

 

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In Adam Curtis’s acclaimed BBC documentary, HyperNormalisation, he employs masterfully edited found footage to investigate how, at a time of confusing and inexplicable world events, politicians and other power brokers construct new, slippery realities. Curtis tells a story that begins in 1975 in New York and Damascus, and ends with today’s world.          

Adam Curtis on his work and HyperNormalisation: ”Those in power in society – the politicians, the journalists, the experts – maintain their power by telling us stories about the world. Those stories tell us what is true and what is false, what is right and wrong, and what is real – and what is illusion. But there come times when these stories begin to break down. And people start to distrust those in power – and their definition of what is real and what is fake. At that point you enter the Zone. The film Hypernormalisation tells the story of how we got to this place. It is also about the new systems of power that we cannot see – because we are trapped inside the Zone.”

Adam Curtis is an award-winning widely influential documentary filmmaker and journalist. He works for BBC television in London. His acclaimed films include The Century of the Self (2002), The Power of Nightmares  (2004), All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace (2011), Bitter Lake (2015) – and most recently HyperNormalisation..  His films go back into the recent past to tell dramatic stories that lead the viewer to look again at the present day – and help them make sense of it. They try to show how power really flows in today’s complex society, not just through politics – but through science, public relations and advertising, psychology, computer networks and finance. Curtis has also done live shows with the immersive theatre group Punchdrunk and the band Massive Attack. His films have been shown at the Cannes film festival and have won awards – including 6 BAFTAs. Curtis joins us to talk about power, journalism, the world as is understood today and his work.

For news and updates go to: bbc.co.uk/blogs/adamcurtis

“I want to be Adam Curtis when I grow up.” – Oscar-winning filmmaker Errol Morris

“Hypernormalisation” feels like a greatest hits compilation of familiar Curtis themes — the decline of political power in a corporate age, the rise of global terrorism, America’s tortuous secret history in the Middle East, the hollow narcissism of cyberspace. But this also is a dazzling and thought-provoking film that blurs the line between op-ed journalism and mesmerizing audio-visual art.” – Hollywood Reporter

“‘HyperNormalisation’ is a searching and essential document of our times, a movie that leaves us, as in its opening shot, groping through a pitch-black forest with only a flashlight, wondering what lies in all that terrifying darkness that no one has found a way through.” – The New Yorker

Slamdance, Co-founder and President Peter Baxter

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It all began when a group of cheerful, subversive filmmakers weren’t accepted into the Sundance Film Festival. Unwilling to take “no” for an answer, they instead started their own event – Slamdance: Anarchy in Utah. 22 years later, Slamdance has become a year-round organization fostering the development of unique and innovative filmmakers. The organization now consists of the Film Festival, Screenplay Competition and Slamdance Studios. It has also created Slamdance On The Road, a traveling theatrical showcase that brings popular Slamdance films to audiences that otherwise would not have the opportunity to see them. Dan Mirvish, Jon Fitzgerald, Shane Kuhn and Peter Baxter are the founding forefathers who, along with co-conspirator Paul Rachman, fought for truly peter-baxter-slamdanceindependent filmmakers by giving them a voice in 1995 at the very first Slamdance Film Festival. Since then, the festival takes place every January in the breathtakingly stunning, snow-capped mountains of Park City, Utah at the exact same time as the
Sundance Film Festival, to provide a more authentic representation of independent filmmaking. Up-and-coming writers, directors and producers, alongside seasoned veterans and film lovers, converge for the weeklong celebration of independent cinema, realizing that Slamdance is a great place to find those next, great, visionary films. Slamdance lives and bleeds by its mantra By Filmmakers For Filmmakers. No other film festival in the world is entirely run and organized by the creative force that can only be found in filmmakers. Slamdance adamantly supports self-governance amongst independents, and exists to deliver what filmmakers go to festivals for – a chance to show their work and a platform to launch their careers. The festival has earned a solid reputation for premiering films by first-time writers and directors working within the creative confines of limited budgets. Co-founder and President Peter Baxter joins us to talk about this year’s Slamdance, the groundbreaking films and the innovative new distribution and digital initiatives being launched by Slamdance.

For news and updates on 2017 Slamdance Film Festival go to: slamdance.com/

Friday, November 25, 2016 – Blue Jay and Asperger’s Are Us, Director Alex Lehmann

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BLUE JAY is the story of former high school sweethearts Jim (Mark Duplass) and Amanda (Sarah Paulson) who have been out of touch for more than 20 years — but by sheer coincidence, they run into each other at a grocery store back in their alpine hometown of Crestline, California. Jim’s mother has died and he’s here to put her house on the market. Amanda is visiting her pregnant sister. They get to talking, first over coffee, then over beer and jellybeans. Before they know it they’re at Jim’s mother’s house, where everything sends them spiraling back into the past. Jim and Amanda’s lives have taken different directions, yet here they are, reconnecting like nothing has changed. This is one of 2016’s best films.

For news on Blue Jay go to: blue-jay

“Though the film largely trains on the simple, dialogue-fueled interaction of two people, it feels more spectacular than theatrical, showcasing the acting prowess of two master performers feeding on mutual chemistry and performative bravado.” – Joey Nolfi, Entertainment Weekly

“Even after twenty years apart, Amanda and Jim can ask each other the questions no one else would dare to, and understand the answers that go beyond words.” – Serena Donadoni, Village Voice

aspergers-are-us-film-posterASPERGER’S ARE US is the story of the members of the comedy troupe “Asperger’s Are Us,” whose “condition” make it easier to associate with a faceless audience than with their own families. No matter who the crowd, best friends Noah, New Michael, Jack and Ethan have one simple mantra: “We would much rather the audience appreciate us as comedians than people who have overcome adversity.”   In this coming-of-age heartfelt documentary, this band of brothers finds themselves at a crossroad. With real life pulling them apart, they decide to plan one ambitious farewell show before they all go their separate ways. People with Asperger’s don’t deal well with uncertainty, and this is the most uncertain time in their lives.

“Asperger’s Are Us” rarely stretches to be funny or poignant or touching, and that makes this documentary all the more of each.” Ken Jaworowski, New York Times

“The four young men at the heart of this documentary will easily find a home in all but the hardest of hearts.” – Kimber Myers, LA Times

“Warm, funny and enormously entertaining.” – Avi Offer, NYC Movie Guru

For news on Asperger’s Are Us go to: facebook.com/aspergersareus/

alex-lehmannDirector / cinematographer Alex Lehmann was born in France and studied film at Emerson College in Boston.  ASPERGER’S ARE US is his first documentary feature, it premiered this year at SXSW and was the first Netflix acquisition of the festival. Alex most recently released BLUE JAY starring Mark Duplass and Sarah Paulson which marked his second collaboration (ASPERGER’S ARE US) with the Duplass Brothers. Alex has mostly worked in the industry as a cinematographer, most recently having shot the upcoming Katherine Keener political drama Little Pink House. He and Mark Duplass met on the set of “The League”, where Alex served as a camera operator. Alex stops by for a lively conversation on is collaboration with Mark and Jay Duplass and the on-set challenges / rewards of shooting and directing and bonding with a troupe of four very funny performers.

For more on Alex Lehmann go to: facebook.com/mralexlehmann

Friday, October 7, 2016 – Kate Plays Christine, Director Robert Greene

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What does it mean to tell somebody else’s story? In this ingenious blend of documentary and psychological thriller, Robert Greene (ACTRESS) follows Kate Lyn Sheil (House of Cards, LISTEN UP PHILIP) through her creative process as she prepares for her next, tragic role: Christine Chubbuck, the Florida newscaster who committed suicide live on-air in 1974. As Kate investigates (and ultimately becomes obsessed with) Chubbuck’s story, she discovers that little is actually known about the real woman (despite the urban myth that her story was the inspiration for the classic Hollywood film NETWORK). Through their collaboration, Robert, Kate and cinematographer Sean Price Williams (HEAVEN KNOWS WHAT) raise questions surrounding the sometimes unstable boundaries between performance, the authentic self and the storytelling impulse. Winner of a Special Jury Prize at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE is as much about unraveling a mystery as it is a document of the creative process. Director Robert Greene joins us for a conversation on blurring the line between documentaries and narrative films, just what did he learn about Christine Chubbuck’s life  and how has making KATE PLAYS CHRISTINE changed his approach to storytelling.

For news and updates go to: kateplayschristine.com

Also check out Kate Plays Christin edistributor grasshopperfilm.com

** Winner of a Special Jury Prize at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival

“Kate’s transformation shifts from merely documenting a process to questioning the motives behind it. The final result is deeply unsettling, and (likely unintentionally) a timely indictment of recent headline-making method-acting histrionics.” – Mallory Andrews, Movie Mezzanine

“ documentary Vertigo, Robert Greene’s re-creation of a woman who fell to her inner demons — something of a ghost story — feels dangerous. It pokes the bear, then slaps it.” – Joshua Rothopf, Time Out

“We are a society of gawkers,” asserts one newsperson as Sheil wrestles with the task at hand. By the end of Kate Plays Christine, Greene seems to argue that we’re all complicit in that indictment.” – Eric Kohn, Indiewire

“A tour de force in the blending and bending of genres.” – Richard Brody, New Yorker

Demon, Producer Olga Szymanska, widow of DEMON director Marcin Wrona

demon-film-posterNewly arrived from England to marry his fiancée Zaneta (Agnieszk Zulewska, Chemo), Peter (Israeli actor Itay Tiran, Lebanon) has been given a gift of her family’s ramshackle country house in rural Poland.  It’s a total fixer-upper, and while inspecting the premises on the eve of the wedding, he falls into a pile of human remains.  The ceremony proceeds, but strange things begin to happen…During the wild reception, Peter begins to come undone, and a dybbuk, the iconic ancient figure from Jewish folklore, takes a toehold in this present-day celebration-for a very particular reason, as it turns out.  Based on noted Polish writer Piotr Rowicki’s play Adherence, DEMON is the final work by Marcin Wrona, who died just as DEMON was set to premiere in Poland, is part absurdist comedy, part love story-that scares, amuses, and charms in equal measure.  Acclaimed at several festivals including New Directors/New Films, the Toronto Film Festival, and Austin Fantastic Fest where it won the Award for Best Horror Feature. Producer Olga Szymanska, widow of DEMON director Marcin Wrona joins us for a conversation on this hauntingly beautiful film.

For news and updates go to: demon.film

Winner: Austin Fantastic Fest, Best Horror Feature, 2015

Winner: Haifa Film Festival, Tobias Spencer Award, 2015

“Wrona keeps everything creepily ambiguous right up to the end, when the foggy dawn breaks and what we have witnessed becomes like a dream within a dream.” – Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor

“..a unique take on the Jewish legend of the Dybbuk that feels both deeply rooted in cultural nightmares and refreshingly new…“Demon” is stylish and clever from its concept..but it’s the execution that really matters.  There’s a great energy to the piece, from the framing of the visual compositions, to the eerie atmosphere created by the lights hanging from the ceiling of what looks like a barn.  There’s fantastic costume design as well as a lead performance that engages on every level.” — Brian Tallerico, Rogerebert.com

“Crackling, spookily atmospheric, intelligent, sometimes funny ghost story. It builds on family secrets to take on wider social and historical resonance for Poles and Jews.” – Nora Lee Mandel, Film Forward

“A darkly humorous reworking of “The Dybbuk,” with a deftly realized switch that turns that familiar tale of love from beyond the grave into a parable of Polish anti-Semitism in the post-war era….  a black comedy in the vein of “The Exterminating Angel.” — George Robinson, The Jewish Week

The Netflix Effect, Technology and Entertainment in the 21st Century, Co-author and editor Kevin P. McDonald

The Netflix Effect- Technology and Entertainment in the 21st Century 

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Netflix is the definitive media company of the 21st century. It was among the first to parlay new Internet technologies into a successful business model, and in the process it changed how consumers access film and television. It is now one of the leading providers of digitally delivered media content and is continually expanding access across a host of platforms and mobile devices. Despite its transformative role, however, Netflix has drawn very little critical attention-far less than competitors such as YouTube, Apple, Amazon, Comcast, and HBO. The Netflix Effect, Technology and Entertainment in the 21st Century addresses this gap, as the essays are designed to critically explore the breadth and diversity of Netflix’s effect from a variety of different scholarly perspectives, a necessary approach considering the hybrid nature of Netflix; its inextricable links to new models of media production and distribution, to new modes of viewer engagement and consumer behavior, its relationship to existing media conglomerates and consumer electronics, to its capabilities as a web-based service provider and data network, and to its reliance on a broader technological infrastructure. Marking the first scholarly work to address its significance. Co-author and editor Kevin P. McDonald talks about how The Netflix Effect provides a critical framework for understanding the company’s specific strategies as well as its broader social, economic, and cultural impact. McDonald teaches at the Communication Studies Department at Cal State Northridge, USA. His research focuses on film theory, contemporary Hollywood, and media industries. His work has appeared in Jump-Cut, Velvet Light Trap, and Alphaville. 

For more on Netflix Effect go to: bloomsbury.com/us/the-netflix-effect

Making the American Man, Director Gregory Caruso

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Men’s style has changed dramatically over the past few years. MAKING THE AMERICAN MAN will grant viewers access into the creative minds of the artisans and entrepreneurs who are leading this movement. Some of these “makers” are tried-and-true, rediscovered heritage American brands, dedicated to an unwavering tradition of union-made quality. Others are young entrepreneurs who mourn the transition to disposable, imported clothing—and so were inspired to make menswear that equaled the artisanal quality products that their parents and grandparents took for granted. MAKING THE AMERICAN MAN draws its power from intimate conversations with over 35 cult-cool designers and tastemakers who have defined what classic masculinity looks like today, and how they feel it must be produced. From Los Angeles to New York and everywhere in between, these cultural trendsetters shed light on the modern age of American men’s style, the value of American-made goods—and how one cannot exist without the other. MAKING THE AMERICAN MAN Director Gregory Caruso joins us to talk about the present and future of American manufacturing, craftsmanship and modern masculinity.

Now available on Netflix

For news and updates go to: makingtheamericanman.com

Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, Director of Programming Mike Dougherty

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The Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) is devoted to a greater appreciation of Indian cinema and culture by showcasing films, supporting emerging filmmakers, recognizing the leadership of entertainment industry performers and business executives, and promoting the diverse perspectives of the Indian diaspora. Each year the festival is held at ArcLight Hollywood and features a rich mix of film programs designed to build and support the growing interest in the Indian entertainment industry. This includes programming that cultivates an audience for Indian films while supporting filmmakers of Indian descent in career development as they navigate the larger studio system in Hollywood. IFFLA’s creative and business programs include the the One-on-One Michael Doughteryprogram where industry professionals from major and independent production and distribution companies are invited to participate in meetings with the IFFLA filmmakers; and panel discussions with speakers from the film industry. The 14th Annual Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) will take place April 6-10, 2016 at ArcLight Hollywood, the elegant, state-of-the-art facility at Sunset and Vine in Hollywood, and the festival’s home since its inception. Director of Programming Mike Dougherty join us to talk about the wide ranging films that will be showcase at this year’s festival.

For the latest news and updates go to: indianfilmfestival.org

IFFLA film guide: indianfilmfestival.org/film-guide-2016

2016 Academy Award Nominated Short Program, Carter Pilcher

2016 OSCAR SHORT POSTER 

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Since founding Shorts International in 2000, Carter Pilcher has worked to make his company the world’s leading short movie entertainment company. Shorts International has become the first choice distributor, broadcaster and producer for hundreds of films. Carter has extensive experience in short movie production and short movie entertainment. He is a voting member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and a member of the Short Film and Feature Animation Branch of The US Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) – the guys who pick the Oscars. Carter talks to us about the fifteen wonderful films nominated for the Live Action, Documentary and Animated Short Film 2016 Academy Awards.

Drunk Stone Brilliant Dead, Director Douglas Tirola

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Douglas Tirola‘s outrageous documentary DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD: THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON, is an inside look at the rise and fall of the legendary humor magazine that launched dozens of careers and broke thousands of taboos. From the 1970s thru the 1990s, there was no hipper, no more outrageous comedy in print than The National Lampoon, the groundbreaking humor magazine that pushed the limits of taste and acceptability – and then pushed them even harder. Parodying everything from politics, religion, entertainment and the whole of American lifestyle, the Lampoon eventually went on to branch into successful radio shows, record albums, live stage revues and movies, including ANIMAL HOUSE and NATIONAL LAMPOON’S VACATION, launching dozens of huge careers on the way, including John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Christopher Guest, Richard Belzer, Gilda Radner, Brian Doyle-Murray, Bill Murray, Joe Flaherty, Harold Ramis, Michael O’Donoghue, Doug Kenney, Henry Beard, George W. S. Trow, Chris Miller, P. J. O’Rourke, Michael O’Donoghue, Chris Rush, Sean Kelly, Tony Hendra, Brian McConnachie, Gerald Sussman, Ellis Weiner, Danny Abelson, Ted Mann, Chris Cluess, Al Jean, Mike Reiss, Jeff Greenfield, and John Hughes. As well as cartoonists, photographers and illustrators appeared in the magazine’s pages, including Neal Adams, Gahan Wilson, Michael Sullivan, Ron Barrett, Peter Bramley, Vaughn Bode, Bruce McCall, Rick Meyerowitz, M. K. Brown, Shary Flenniken, Bobby London, Edward Gorey, Jeff Jones, Joe Orlando, Arnold Roth, Rich Grote, Ed Subitzky, Mara McAfee, Sam Gross, Charles Rodrigues, Buddy Hickerson, B. K. Taylor, Birney Lettick, Frank Frazetta, Boris Vallejo, Marvin Mattelson, Stan Mack, Chris Callis, John E. Barrett, Raymond Kursar and Andy Lackow. Director Tirola tells the story of its rise and fall through fresh, candid interviews with its key staff, and illustrated with hundreds of outrageous images from the magazine itself (along with never-seen interview footage from the magazine’s prime). Director Tirola stops by to talk about the supernova of comedic satire that was The Lampoon and its influential legacy.

For news and updates go to: magpictures.com/nationallampoon

DRUNK STONED BRILLIANT DEAD: THE STORY OF THE NATIONAL LAMPOON opening in Los Angeles at the Nuart Theatre on October 2, and at Laemmle’s Playhouse 7 in Pasadena and Laemmle’s NoHo 7 in North Hollywood on October 9 (opens in NY and on VOD/iTunes September 25). 

Director Douglas Tirola will be doing a Q & A Friday, October 2nd and Saturday, October 3rd after the 7:30PM screenings.

“Punch-drunk and very much alive. A generous and briskly entertaining doc that traces the titular humor magazine’s lasting influence on American comedy  – a real nonfiction crowdpleaser. ” – Ben Kenigsberg, Variety

“Energetic, laugh-stuffed and very colorful – A lively, very entertaining look at the Lampoon’s unlikely empire.” – John DeFore, The Hollywood Reporter

The Man Who Saved the World – Director Peter Anthony

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On September 26th, 1983, an alarm sounded to indicate that five American nuclear missiles had been launched against the Soviet Union. Russian Lt. Colonel Stanislav Petrov defied military protocol, ignoring the incoming attack that was being confirmed by all his warning systems. He followed his own sense of responsibility and declared it a false alarm. His decision spared the world a nuclear holocaust. Decades later, this forgotten hero travels to the United States to accept an award from the United Nations and finally receive acknowledgement for his historical act. The Man Who Saved the World becomes a dramatic hybrid documentary; a historical thriller, and a story of great, personal redemption. It seamlessly melds together non-fiction and narrative filmmaking depicting the actual events that took place more than thirty years ago. Stanislav Petrov reminds us how close the world came to World War III – but, he also challenges us to contemplate the true alternative to his choice: The complete annihilation of human life on earth. Featuring Kevin Costner with appearances by Walter Cronkite, Robert De Niro, Matt Damon, and Ashton Kutcher. Director / writer Peter Anthony joins us to talk about a man and an event that has been virtually unknown to the world outside a small circle of people who have long understood the impact Stanislav Petrov’s actions had on the fate of the world.

For news and updates go to: themanwhosavedtheworldmovie.com

The Man Who Saved the World screens at the Arena Theatre starting Friday, September 25.

“I was just at the right place at the right time,” Mr. Petrov says, a simple truth that becomes shocking when considering the alternative. For that alone, this account of a Cold War near miss deserves a wide audience.” – Daniel Gold, New York Times

“The Man Who Saved The World…combines elements of narrative and documentary filmmaking for a true and powerful story about (and starring, as himself) Stanislov Petrov, who actually averted a nuclear holocaust but remained unknown, until now.”
– Mitch Myers, The Hollywood Reporter

“I often get the chance to play heroes. But Stanislav is a true real-life hero.”
– Kevin Costner

The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution

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Change was coming to America and the fault lines could no longer be ignored—cities were burning, Vietnam was exploding, and disputes raged over equality and civil rights. A new revolutionary culture was emerging and it sought to drastically transform the system. The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense would, for a short time, put itself at the vanguard of that change. THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION is the first feature length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party, its significance to the broader American culture, its cultural and political awakening for black people, and the painful lessons wrought when a movement derails. Renown documentarian Stanley Nelson goes straight to the source, weaving a treasure trove of rare archival footage with the voices of the people who were there: police, FBI informants, journalists, white supporters and detractors, and Black Panthers who remained loyal to the party and those who left it. Featuring Kathleen Cleaver, Jamal Joseph, and many others, THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION is an essential history and a vibrant chronicle of this pivotal movement that birthed a new revolutionary culture in America. THE BLACK PANTHERS: VANGUARD OF THE REVOLUTION, is the latest film from renowned documentarian Stanley Nelson (FREEDOM RIDERS, THE MURDER OF EMMETT TILL). Director / writer / producer Nelson joins us to talk about the formation of the Black Panther Party, the assassination of Panther leader Fred Hampton, the social unrest that made it a such a influential force in the struggle for political power and racial equality.

For news and updates go to: theblackpanthers.com/home

Opening Friday September 25th at the Landmark Nuart with Director Stanley Nelson
- Friday, September 25
1:30 Q & A; 4:15 Q & A; 7:00 Q & A
- Saturday, September 26
1:30 Q & A; 4:15 Q & A; 7:00 Q & A

9/25, 1:30pm: Stanley Nelson in person

9/25, 4:15pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Michael McCarty, moderated by Prof. Joshua Bloom of UCLA’s Bunche Center for African American Studies

9/25, 7:00pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Michael McCarty, moderated by Ava DuVernay

9/26, 1:30pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak, moderated by Denise Hamilton of BADWest

9/26, 4:15pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak

9/26, 7:00pm: Stanley Nelson and Panther Mohammad Mubarak, moderated by Prof. Melina Abdullah of Cal State LA

” Critics’ Pick. EXCELLENT. What is clear from from this sober yet electrifying film is that the power of the Panthers was rooted in their insistence – radical then, radical still – that black lives matter.”  -A.O. Scott, The New York Times

“MAGNIFICENT! A coherent picture of the messiest, most contentious radical group of a chaotic era, and arguably its most consequential.” -Stuart Klawans, The Nation

“It’s the kind of documentary that’s easy to view as distant history, except that so many of the issues the Panthers took up (police brutality, systemic poverty, healthcare, feeding children) are, sadly, not history at all.” – Jason Bailey, Flavorwire

A Brilliant Young Mind, Director Morgan Matthews

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Inspired by true events, A BRILLIANT YOUNG MIND tells the story of teenage math prodigy Nathan (Asa Butterfield), who struggles when it comes to building relationships, not least with his caring mother, Julie (Sally Hawkins). In his confusing world, Nathan finds comfort in the predictability of numbers. And when he’s taken under the wing of an unconventional and anarchic teacher (Rafe Spall), the pair forge an unusual friendship. Eventually, Nathan’s talents win him a place on the U.K.’s National team at the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) and the team travels to a training camp in Taiwan, under the supervision of enthusiastic squad leader Richard (Eddie Marsan). Featuring an all-star British cast, A BRILLIANT YOUNG MIND is directed by BAFTA award-winning filmmaker Morgan Matthews and photographed by Oscar-nominated cinematographer Danny Cohen. We are joined by the director Morgan Matthews (Beautiful Young Minds) for a conversation on the inherent advantages of moving from the documentary into narrative filmmaking, balancing multiple storylines and working with a remarkable cast of new and experienced actors.

For news and updates on A Brilliant Young Mind go to: xplusymovie.com

“A Brilliant Young Mind” is not the film you think it is. It’s better.” – Kenneth Turan, LA Times

“Hawkins gives a performance of remarkable grace and sensitivity.” – Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor

“[A] deeply affecting, sensitively handled British drama.” – Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter

“At the core of this tender-hearted and moving British indie film is a fascinating relationship between a single mum and her autistic teenage son.” – Dave Calhoun, Time Out

“The sensitive young genius story has been done to death, but apparently there’s still room for the gentle nuance presented in “A Brilliant Young Mind.” – New York Daily News

FICG in LA, Director & Producer Hebe Tabachnik

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The Guadalajara International Film Festival in Los Angeles or FICG in LA is a window into the world of contemporary Mexican and Ibero-American cinema and it is an extension of the Guadalajara International Film Festival. This year′s FICG in LA will be back at the Hollywood′s historic Egyptian Theatre, right in the heart of the worldwide film and entertainment industry. The festival is designed to help critically acclaimed films from Mexican and Ibero-America cinema reach a wider audience. Among this year’s attendees will be Karina García Casanova (director, screenwriter and producer Juanicas), Safa (director, El Jeremías), Sebastián Schindel (director, screenwriter, producer,Hebe Tabachnik ficg director : producer El patrón, radiografía de un crimen), Flavio Florencio (director, scriptwriter and photography, Made in Bangkok), Michael Dwyer (director, Pocha-Manifest Destiny), Verónica Sixtos (lead actress, Pocha-Manifest Destiny), Jean-Cosme Delaloye (director, screenwriter, and sound La Prenda), Carolina Ramírez (actriz principal, Ciudad Delirio), Humberto Busto (director, scriptwriter, La teta de botero), Ximena Urrutia (director, Ella), Sofía Carrillo (director, Prita Noria and La Casa Triste), and Luis Téllez (animator, screenwriter, Jacinta and La Noira). This week FICG in LA, Director / Producer Hebe Tabachnik joins us to talk about the exciting and dynamic collection of films being offered at this years festival/

For news and updates on FICG go to: ficginla.com

For more information call (424) 382-2535 or visit www.ficginla.com

Trailer:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsXflYrncGU   

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FICGinLosAngeles

Twitter: https://twitter.com/FICGinLA

I Believe in Unicorns, Director and Writer Leah Meyerhoff

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Davina is an imaginative and strong-willed teenage girl who often escapes into a beautifully twisted fantasy life. Having grown up quickly as the sole caretaker of her disabled mother, she looks for salvation in a new relationship with an older boy. Davina is swept into a whirlwind of romance and adventure, but the enchantment of her new relationship quickly fades when Sterling’s volatile side begins to emerge. I BELIEVE IN UNICORNS takes us on a road trip through the stunning and complex landscape of troubled young love. Leah Meyerhoff’s debut feature film I BELIEVE IN UNICORNS premiered in narrative competition at SXSW 2014 and traveled to over 50 film festivals around the world, winning the Grand Jury Prize at the Atlanta Film Festival, Best Score at the Nashville Film Festival, Honorable Mention at the Woodstock Film Festival and additional awards from IFP, San Francisco Film Society, Tribeca Film Institute and the Adrienne Shelly Foundation. Director and writer Leah Meyerhoff joins us to talk about her imaginative, daring and emotionally resonant feature film debut.

For news and updates go to: ibelieveinunicorns.com

For upcoming screenings go to: Unicorn screenings

I Believe in Unicorns open at the Arena Cinema Hollywood in LA this Friday, June 19th and opening in San Francisco at the Roxie Theater July 3rd. 

“Haunting, and beautiful, and as painful as love can be, “I Believe in Unicorns” left me musing on the power of our personal magic, wondering why we choose to spend it where we do.” – Huffington Post

“Writer-director Leah Meyerhoff asks a lot of Dyer for the emotionally taxing role, and Dyer flies with the challenge. She’s complete dynamite.” – Indiewire

“I Believe in Unicorns is one of the most authentic and down-to-earth coming of age stories I’ve seen in cinema.“ – Filmmaker Magazine.

“Refreshing in its sexual frankness and uniquely feminine perspective on young love’s complications, the dreamily evocative Unicorns is a beautiful 16mm nightmare.” – The Skinny

Results, Director Andrew Bujalski

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Recently divorced, newly rich, and utterly miserable, Danny (Kevin Corrigan) would seem to be the perfect test subject for a definitive look at the relationship between money and happiness. Danny’s well-funded ennui is interrupted by a momentous trip to the local gym, where he meets self-styled guru/owner Trevor (Guy Pearce) and irresistibly acerbic trainer Kat (Cobie Smulders). Soon, their three lives are inextricably knotted, both professionally and personally.  Writer/director Andrew Bujalski (Computer Chess, 2013) returns with a fun, intimate fable that’s utterly grounded in real life. As wrinkles turn into complications, then blow up into full-fledged issues, the talented ensemble keeps the pensive tone light and the complex plot breezy. Bujalski stops by to talk about his charming shaggy-dog tale that’s been hitting the gym: taut, limber, and powerful.

For news and updates go to: magpictures.com/Results

“ENCHANTING – WONDERFULLY ALIVE AND UNPREDICTABLE. Plus it’s funny as hell. Results manages to reinvent the rom-com.” – Bilge Ebari, New York Magazine

“KEVIN CORRIGAN IS SOMETHING OF A COMIC GENIUS. A pleasing romantic-comedy triangle. The triumph of ‘Results’ is that it pretends to be loose, lazy and lived-in when it’s actually disciplined, hard-working and IN ALMOST PERFECT SHAPE.” – A.O. Scott, NY Times

“AN IRRESISTABLE TALE. A love story full of twists and turns.” – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

A TERRIFIC, VERY FUNNY NEW COMEDY. What’s really wonderful is director Buljaski’s sympathy for his characters.” – Ella Taylor, NPR

“One of the strangest and strongest of recent romantic triangles forms in the course of this lyrical, fanatically realistic comedy.” – Richard Brody, The New Yorker

Mammoth Lakes Film Festival – May 27 – 31, Founder Shira Dubrovner

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The Mammoth Lakes Film Festival, held in the scenic and majestic setting of Mammoth Lakes, California, has announced its line-up of screenings for the festival’s inaugural year. The five-day festival will take place May 27-31, 2015, and will open with acclaimed Academy Award winning filmmaker Alex Gibney’s new documentary Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine. The festival will present sixteen films in Narrative and Documentary Competition, as well as special events and screenings, and an industry panel discussion on women in the filmmaking world, with producer Allison Amon (The Queen of Versailles), actress Kristanna Loken actress (Terminator 3) and other guests. Taking place five hours north of Los Angeles by car and thirty minutes south of the entrance to Yosemite National Park, the Mammoth Lakes Film Festival will deliver an intimate and unique Shira Dubrovner MMFF founderexperience for festival goers, filmmakers, and industry guests, with the opportunity to experience screenings and events in a beautiful mountain setting. The festival will present a diverse collection of feature films – from world premieres to film festival favorites, short film screenings and Q&As over five days.  The festival will also include nightly gala events that celebrate the excitement and discovery of visionary filmmaking. Mammoth Lakes Film Festival Founder Shira Dubrovner joins us for a lively conversation on the exciting and inspiring new addition to the film festival lineup.

Ticket sales and updates for the festival go to: www.MammothLakesFilmFestival.com 

Dior and I, Director Frédéric Tcheng

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Dior and I brings the viewer inside the storied world of the Christian Dior fashion house with a privileged, behind-the-scenes look at the creation of Raf Simons’ first haute couture collection as its new artistic director – a true labor of love created by a dedicated group of collaborators. Melding the everyday, pressure- filled components of fashion with mysterious echoes from the iconic brand’s past, the film is also a colorful homage to the seamstresses who serve Simons’ vision. Dior and I director Frédéric Tcheng is a French-born filmmaker. Originally trained in civil engineering, he moved to New York City in 2002 to attend Columbia University’s film school, from which he obtained a Masters of Fine Arts in 2007. He co- produced, co-edited and co-shot Valentino: The Last Emperor (directed by Matt Tyrnauer), the 2009 hit documentary shortlisted for the Best Documentary Oscar. He is the co-director (with Lisa Immordino Vreeland and Bent-Jorgen Perlmutt) of DIANA VREELAND: THE EYE HAS TO TRAVEL, a Samuel Goldwyn release. Director Tcheng joins us to talk about his enthralling behind the scenes look at the iconic fashion institution, its founder, the talented men and women who make it work and the “new” guy in the world of haute couture.

For the latest news and updates go to: diorandimovie.com

“A piece of superb filmmaking that opens a window into a hidden world.” – Independent

“If the ungodly star-driven media frenzy that surrounds the spring collections of the great Paris houses like Christian Dior is the public face of designer fashion, “Dior and I” shows us that what goes on behind the scenes is even more intriguing.” – Kenneth Turan, LA Times

“The drama of getting new dresses on the runway turns out to be transfixing, while the hero redefines the notion of intense.” Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

“’Dior and I’ intimately demonstrates the tricky balance between art and commerce, between perpetuating a mythology while attending to the bottom line, and doing it with the pressure of a ticking clock.” – Christy Lemire, RogerEbert.com

Newport Beach Film Festival, CEO and co-founder Gregg Schwenk

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The Newport Beach Film Festival seeks to bring to Orange County the best of classic and contemporary filmmaking from around the world. Committed to enlightening the public with a first-class international film program as well as providing a forum for cultural understanding and enriching educational opportunities, the Festival focuses on showcasing a diverse collection of both studio and independent films. The Festival supports the creation and advancement of innovative and artistic cinematic works from both emerging and seasoned filmmakers and proudly embraces the passion, vision, and independent spirit of these talented artists. With the integration of the local community and educational institutions, the Festival stimulates an interest in the study and appreciation of film and encourages people of all ages and backgrounds to participate. Since its inception in 2000, the Festival has presented many acclaimed films such as the U.S. Premiere of  Gregg Schwenkn NBFFCrash and other notable films including (500) Days of Summer, The Cove, Waitress, Son of Rambow, Paprika, Broken English, American Teen, Fugitive Pieces, Death Note: The Last Name, The King of Kong, Layer Cake, The Illusionist, Art School Confidential, Emmanuel’s Gift, Mad Hot Ballroom, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, Spellbound, Castle in the Sky, Born into Brothels, and Pieces of April. Through tributes, special screenings and seminars, the Festival has honored film industry notables, including Aaron Sorkin, Haskell Wexler, Robert Wise, Henry Bumstead, Elmer Bernstein, John Waters, Alan Arkin, Bruce Brown, Richard Sherman, Penelope Spheeris, and McG. Co-founder and CEO Gregg Schwenk stops by to talk about the 2015 edition of NBFF, the opening night film, The Water Diviner, directed by Academy Award winner Russell Crowe and many of this year’s special screenings and events.

Newport Beach Film Festival – Thursday, April 23rd – Sunday April 30th

For the latest news and updates go to: newportbeachfilmfest.com