SCAD Announces Line-Up For 2016 Savannah Film Festival

Jackie” to Open Fest; “La La Land” and “Arrival” set as Spotlight and Centerpiece Gala Screenings

Additional Gala Screenings and Docs to Watch Announced

The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) has announce its line-up of films for the 2016 Savannah Film Festival, including Gala Screenings, Signature Series, Docs to Watch and a new Global Shorts Forum. The festival will launch on Saturday, Oct. 22 with “Jackie” and will feature the Spotlight Gala Screening of “La La Land” and Centerpiece Gala Screening of “Arrival.”

SCAD Savannah Film Festival

Savannah Film Festival (PRNewsFoto/SCAD)

Hosted by SCAD, the annual event has celebrated cinematic creativity from award-winning professionals and emerging filmmakers for 19 years. The festival will be held in downtown Savannah, Georgia, and runs from Saturday, Oct. 22 to Saturday, Oct. 29.

The 19th annual festival gathers a diverse group of industry professionals from all fields of the business to participate in panels and Q&A discussions on several topics about the film, television and digital media business. More importantly, the Festival, and the competition, provides students with opportunities as unique as the movies on the screen. It’s a chance for SCAD students to exclusively connect with leaders from the entertainment industry through master classes, coffee talks, lectures and panel discussions and a chance for Savannah, a premier film hub, to promote quality movies produced by independent and studio filmmakers.

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS

Opening Gala Screening: “Jackie” – A searing and intimate portrait of one of the most important and tragic moments in American history, seen through the eyes of the iconic First Lady, then Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy (Natalie Portman). “Jackie” places us in her world during the days immediately following her husband’s assassination. Known for her extraordinary dignity and poise, here we see a psychological portrait of the First Lady as she struggles to maintain her husband’s legacy and the world of “Camelot” that they created and loved so well. Director: Pablo Larrain. Cast: Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, Greta Gerwig, Billy Crudup and John Hurt.la_la_land_xlg-1

Spotlight Gala Screening: “La La Land” – Written and directed by Academy Award® nominee Damien Chazelle, “La La Land” tells the story of Mia (Emma Stone), an aspiring actress, and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, who are struggling to make ends meet in a city known for crushing hopes and breaking hearts. Set in modern day Los Angeles, this original musical about everyday life explores the joy and pain of pursuing your dreams. Director: Damien Chazelle. Cast: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone and John Legend.arrival_ver3_xlg

Centerpiece Gala Screening: “Arrival” – When mysterious spacecraft touch down across the globe, an elite team — led by expert linguist Louise Banks (Amy Adams) — is brought together to investigate. As mankind teeters on the verge of global war, Banks and the team race against time for answers — and to find them, she will take a chance that could threaten her life, and quite possibly humanity. Director: Denis Villeneuve. Cast: Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker, Michael Stuhlbarg and Mark O’Brien.

GALA SCREENINGS: The annual Gala Screenings spotlight upcoming studio films before their wide releases, including this year’s entries: Continue reading

Sundance Institute Announces Films in Contention in the U.S. and World Competitions, NEXT Section for the 2014 Sundance Film Festival

30TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL WILL FEATURE 118 FEATURE-LENGTH FILMS The Sundance Institute has announced the films selected for the U.S. and World Cinema Dramatic and Documentary Competitions and the out-of-competition NEXT <=> (Wave) Section of the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, January 16-26 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah. pdc_sundance2014logo Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2014, the Sundance Film Festival (www.sundance.org/festival) has introduced global audiences to some of the most groundbreaking films of the past three decades, including Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Little Miss Sunshine, An Education, sex, lies, and videotape, Reservoir Dogs, The Cove, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, An Inconvenient Truth, Precious, and Napoleon Dynamite, and through its New Frontier initiative, has showcased the cinematic works of media artists including Isaac Julien, Doug Aitken, Pierre Huyghe, Jennifer Steinkamp, and Matthew Barney.

Founded by Robert Redford in 1981, the Sundance Institute (www.sundance.org) is a global, nonprofit cultural organization dedicated to nurturing artistic expression in film and theater, and to supporting intercultural dialogue between artists and audiences. The Institute promotes independent storytelling to unite, inform and inspire, regardless of geo-political, social, religious or cultural differences. Internationally recognized for its annual Sundance Film Festival and its artistic development programs for directors, screenwriters, producers, film composers, playwrights and theatre artists, Sundance Institute has nurtured such projects as the ones previously mention and including Sin Nombre, Spring Awakening, Born into Brothels, Trouble the Water, Light in the Piazza and Angels in America.

Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute, said, “We are energized by the rich diversity of voices, characters and places represented in the films selected for our 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Independent filmmakers continue to engage us with stories from worlds both intimately familiar and unknown.”story-sundance-2014-logo-web-2-220492 For the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, 118 feature-length films were selected, representing 37 countries and 54 first-time filmmakers, including 34 in competition. These films were selected from 12,218 submissions (72 more than for 2013), including 4,057 feature-length films and 8,161 short films. Of the feature film submissions, 2,014 were from the U.S. and 2,043 were international. 97 feature films at the Festival will be world premieres. In addition to those announced, the Festival presents feature-length films in the Spotlight, Park City at Midnight, New Frontier, Premieres and Documentary Premieres sections. Those announcements, as well as selections for the Short Film section and new Sundance Kids section of films for younger audiences, are forthcoming.

John Cooper, Director of the Sundance Film Festival, said, “The films selected for our 2014 Festival show that filmmakers are empowered and emboldened by the 30-year legacy of the independent film movement. The confidence to play with the medium and to surprise audiences indicates the vital role independent film has come to serve in the cultural landscape.”

On Day One, January 16, 2014, the Festival will screen one film from each of the four Competition sections, as well as one shorts program. A selection of films from the 2014 Festival will be among those presented at other Sundance Institute programs throughout the year, including the Sundance London film and music festival, April 25-27 at The O2, and the NEXT WEEKEND summer film festival in Los Angeles.

Robert Redford, President & Founder of Sundance Institute said, “That the Festival has evolved and grown as it has over the past 30 years is a credit to both our audiences and our artists, who continue to find ways to take risks and open our minds to the power of story. This year’s films and artists promise to do the same.”

U.S. DRAMATIC COMPETITION

Presenting the world premieres of 16 narrative feature films, the Dramatic Competition offers Festivalgoers a first look at groundbreaking new voices in American independent film.

Camp X-Ray, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Camp X-Ray, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Camp X-Ray / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Peter Sattler) — A young woman is stationed as a guard in Guantanamo Bay, where she forms an unlikely friendship with one of the detainees. Cast: Kristen Stewart, Payman Maadi, Lane Garrison, J.J. Soria, John Carroll Lynch.

Cold in July, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Cold in July, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Cold in July / U.S.A. (Director: Jim Mickle, Screenwriters: Jim Mickle, Nick Damici) — After killing a home intruder, a small town Texas man’s life unravels into a dark underworld of corruption and violence. Cast: Michael C. Hall, Don Johnson, Sam Shepard, Vinessa Shaw, Nick Damici, Wyatt Russell. Dear White People/ U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Justin Simien) — Four black students attend an Ivy League college where a riot breaks out over an “African American” themed party thrown by white students. With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the film explores racial identity in postracial America while weaving a story about forging one’s unique path in the world. Cast: Tyler Williams, Tessa Thompson, Teyonah Parris, Brandon Bell.

Dear White People/ U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Justin Simien) — Four black students attend an Ivy League college where a riot breaks out over an “African American” themed party thrown by white students. With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the film explores racial identity in postracial America while weaving a story about forging one’s unique path in the world. Cast: Tyler Williams, Tessa Thompson, Teyonah Parris, Brandon Bell.

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets, Sundance Film Festival 2014

Fishing Without Nets / U.S.A., Somalia, Kenya (Director: Cutter Hodierne, Screenwriters: Cutter Hodierne, John Hibey, David Burkman) — A story of pirates in Somalia told from the perspective of a struggling, young Somali fisherman. Cast: Abdikani Muktar, Abdi Siad, Abduwhali Faarah, Abdikhadir Hassan, Reda Kateb, Idil Ibrahim.

God's Pocket - Philip Seymour Hoffman and Eddie Marsan (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God’s Pocket – Philip Seymour Hoffman and Eddie Marsan (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God's Pocket - Christina Hendricks (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God’s Pocket – Christina Hendricks (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God's Pocket - Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Turturro (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God’s Pocket – Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Turturro (Photo credit: Lance Acord)

God’s Pocket/ U.S.A. (Director: John Slattery, Screenwriters: John Slattery, Alex Metcalf) — When Mickey’s stepson Leon is killed in a construction “accident,” Mickey tries to bury the bad news with the body. But when the boy’s mother demands the truth, Mickey finds himself stuck between a body he can’t bury, a wife he can’t please, and a debt he can’t pay. Cast: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Richard Jenkins, Christina Hendricks, John Turturro. Continue reading