Los Angeles -- Over the years the American Film Institute's annual film festival has become the gateway to the award season that culminates with Oscar Night 3 months from now. The films that vie for meritorious awards are in and of themselves of outstanding merit not just in content but in how the content was executed to begin with. Rather than expound on the "buzz" why not go to the source and highlight the dictum better known as a press release the dialogue about this years happenings.
Logan Lerman, Jena Malone and Jenny Slate will be a part of the Los Angeles Times' Young Hollywood Roundtable on Friday, November 7 at the TCL Chinese Theatres. J.C. Chandor, Damien Chazelle, Marion Cotillard, Jake Gyllenhaal, Bill Hader, Michelle Monaghan, Kristen Stewart and Tilda Swinton will be participating in The Hollywood Reporter's Indie Contenders Roundtable taking place Sunday, November 9 in the Cinema Lounge at the Roosevelt Hotel. Director Rupert Wyatt and actor Mark Wahlberg will be in conversation with Jenelle Riley of Variety following the World Premiere of THE GAMBLER on Monday, November 10 at the Dolby Theatre®.
Filmmakers expected to attend this year's festival include Yann Demange (‘71), Nicolás Pereda (THE ABSENT), Giuseppe Tornatore (CINEMA PARADISO), Olivier Assayas (CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA), Bennett Miller (FOXCATCHER), Shim Sung-bo (HAEMOO), Amir Bar-Lev (HAPPY VALLEY), Tommy Lee Jones (THE HOMESMAN), Chuck Workman (MAGICIAN: THE ASTONISHING LIFE AND WORK OF ORSON WELLES), Robert Kenner (MERCHANTS OF DOUBT), Xavier Dolan (MOMMY), J.C. Chandor (A MOST VIOLENT YEAR), Bertrand Bonello (SAINT LAURENT), Wim Wenders (THE SALT OF THE EARTH), Tomm Moore (SONG OF THE SEA), Richard Glatzer & Wash Westmoreland (STILL ALICE), Nick Broomfield (TALES OF THE GRIM SLEEPER), Josephine Decker (THOU WAST MILD AND LOVELY), Abderrahmane Sissako (TIMBUKTU) and Jean-Pierre Dardenne & Luc Dardenne (TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT).
AFI FEST and the American Film Market (AFM) form a strategic alliance for the eleventh year, the only one of its kind in North America. Filmmakers and industry executives benefit from the concurrence of the two events creating opportunities for impactful partnerships of art and commerce. This year, 30 films which will be showcased at AFI FEST will also be represented at AFM and10 films will screen at both events. Several international sales agents including EuropaCorp, Film Factory, Films Distribution, Mongrel International, Protagonist Pictures and WestEnd will have films screening at both events.
For the eleventh year, Audi is the festival's presenting sponsor. Additional top sponsors include AT&T, Coca-Cola, VIZIO, American Airlines (the official airline of AFI), Dunkin' Donuts, Netflix, Stella Artois, Dolby Laboratories and Technicolor. The festival's venue sponsors include the Dolby Theatre®, TCL Chinese Theatres, the Hollywood & Highland Center, the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and the Egyptian Theatre.
New sponsor VIZIO will add an official venue to the festival, the VIZIO Ultra HD Lounge, located in the Roosevelt Hotel. The lounge is open to passholders and will play host to a variety of filmmaker panels, conversations, industry meetings and special events. VIZIO's brand new P-Series Ultra HD televisions will be on display in the lounge.
The American Film Institute is grateful to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, both of which have provided generous support to the World Cinema program at AFI FEST. Additionally, SAG-AFTRA and SAGIndie return as supporters of the festival.
This year's cultural partners include AMEXCID, China Onscreen Biennial, the Consulate General of Belgium in Los Angeles; the Consulate General of France – Film & TV Office; the Consulate General of Israel; the Consulate General of Italy in Los Angeles, the Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles, the Consulate General of Switzerland; Flanders Image; Isituto Italiano di Cultura; Italian Trade Agency; Japan Foundation Los Angeles, Korean Cultural Center Los Angeles, Korean Film Council, Luce Cinecittà; Québec Government Office in Los Angeles; TELEFILM Canada, TV5MONDE, UCLA Latin America, uniFrance Films; University of Guadalajara Foundation, and Wallonie-Bruxelles Images.
AFI FEST and Luce Cinecittà will present the World Premiere of the digitally restored version of Giuseppe Tornatore's CINEMA PARADISO on Monday, November 10 at the Egyptian Theatre with Tornatore in attendance and Danny DeVito introducing the film. The film, which won the 1990 Academy Award® for Best Foreign Language Film, is a Franco Cristaldi and 123' ITA Production. Dolce & Gabbana is the main supporter, along with Luce Cinecittà and Cineteca di Bologna for the restoration. In addition, AFI FEST, Luce Cinecittà and the Italian Trade Agency partner to celebrate "Cinema Italian Style," and will present Paolo Virzi's HUMAN CAPITAL, Italy's official Oscar® entry for Best Foreign Language Film, on Thursday, November 13 at the Egyptian Theatre.
AFI FEST collaborates with the UCLA Confucius Institute on the second edition of the China Onscreen Biennial. The China Onscreen Biennial closes their festival at AFI FEST with BLACK COAL, THIN ICE (DIR Diao Yinan) on Friday, November 7 and Monday, November 10 at the TCL Chinese Theatres.
The AFI FEST 2014 mobile application incorporates the Gimbal context aware and proximity platform to serve up pass offers, festival promotions and movie trailers that allow you to share your AFI FEST experience. Gimbal beacons will be placed in private venues within the festival area, including select Martin Outdoor Media benches. These Gimbal proximity beacons, which communicate with the festival app via Bluetooth® Smart (Bluetooth low energy) technology, provide highly accurate (within a few feet) micro-location information. If the user has opted-in to receive push notifications, the user will get information and offers that are tuned, not just to the fact that the user is at AFI FEST, but to the fact that the user is—in that moment—very near to something of interest.
Official media sponsors include 102.7 KIIS FM; ALT 987; Entertainment Weekly; The Hollywood Reporter; IMDbPRO; Indiewire; The Los Angeles Times; Screen International, Variety, and The Wall Street Journal Magazine.
Free individual tickets to AFI FEST screenings and Galas are available to the general public online at AFI.com or at the AT&T Box Office at Hollywood & Highland. AFI FEST Patron Packages and Passes include access to sold-out Galas and other high-demand films and events. Passes are on sale now at AFI.com/AFIFEST, and AFI Members receive special discounts. The American Film Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational and cultural organization, and Patron Packages are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.
Visitors to AFI FEST can save 10-20% at places to eat nearby when they show their valid TAP card, Metro employee ID or LA County employee ID to the server or cashier. More details can be found here. Those taking the Metro Red Line to the Hollywood/Highland Stations can find their best route by using the Trip Planner on www.metro.net.
About AFI FEST presented by Audi
A program of the American Film Institute, AFI FEST presented by Audi is a celebration of global cinema and today's Hollywood – an opportunity for master filmmakers and emerging artists to come together with audiences in the movie capital of the world. AFI FEST is the only festival of its stature that is free to the public. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognizes AFI FEST as a qualifying festival for both Short Film categories for the annual Academy Awards®. This year's edition takes place November 6–13, 2014. Additional information about AFI FEST is available atAFI.com/AFIFEST. Connect with AFI FEST at facebook.com/AFIFEST, twitter.com/AFIFEST andyoutube.com/AFIFEST.
About the American Film Market
The business of independent motion picture production and distribution reaches its peak every year at the American Film Market. The global film industry converges in Santa Monica for eight days of deal-making on films in every stage of development and production, as well as screenings, conferences, networking and parties.
With 8,000 industry leaders from more than 80 countries, 700 screenings and the industry's largest Conference Series, AFM is the pivotal destination for filmmakers, producers, writers, directors, distributors, financiers, industry executives, talent, the international media and all those who provide services to the worldwide motion picture industry.
The AFM is produced by the Independent Film & Television Alliance® the global trade association of the independent motion picture and television industry.
Twitter: @AFMOFFICIAL #AFM2014
SELMA, from Paramount Pictures, Pathé and Harpo Films, is the story of a movement. The film chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in President Lyndon B. Johnson (Tom Wilkinson) signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the Civil Rights Movement. DuVernay's SELMA tells the story of how the revered leader and visionary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (Oyelowo) and his brothers and sisters in the movement prompted change that forever altered history. The film is produced by Christian Colson, Oprah Winfrey, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner. The film is written by Paul Webb and directed by Ava DuVernay.
THE EVOLUTION OF WETA DIGITAL – Monday, November 10
This presentation will explore the history of how Weta Digital's artists have evolved their technology and techniques over the last 20 years and focus on an in-depth case study of the innovation in performance and effects as seen in DAWN OF THE PLANET OF APES. Panelists include Weta Digital Visual Effects Supervisor Dan Lemmon.
NEW TOOLS: BEHIND THE SCENES OF HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 - Tuesday, November 11
At DreamWorks Animation, the animators have a new tool at their disposal: PrEMO, built on the Apollo Platform with support from HP and Intel, which enables them to manipulate the movement and expressions of characters with unparalleled fluidity and freedom. The use of PrEMO has resulted in a new kind of animations, first brought to life on the screen for HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2. Presenters include writer/director Dean DeBlois and DreamWorks Animation's Chief Technology Officer, Lincoln Wallen.
Welcome Address from Dolby – Sponsored by Dolby Laboratories – Monday, November 10
THE TECHNICOLOR SPONSORED KEYNOTE ADDRESS – Monday, November 10
Technicolor's Production Services' President, Tim Sarnoff, will deliver the keynote address.
Technicolor, a revered name in entertainment, is approaching its 100th year of operations. Over the last century, Technicolor has reinvented itself at strategic crossroads of change – the latest being around the industry's move into digital – while bridging an ever-expanding range of production workflows, as emerging global viewing platforms proliferate. The company has remained current by staying true to a few strategic core values: its enduring commitment to serving storytellers and their creative process.
THE SOUND OF IMAGINED WORLDS – Sponsored by the Dolby Institute – Wednesday, November 12
Filmmakers tend to concentrate on the visuals of their imagined worlds, but what about the sounds? Spend time with leading sound artists Erik Aadahl, Will Files, and Skip Lievsay as they present clips and talk about the imagined worlds of recent blockbuster films GODZILLA, DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, and NOAH, and learn about how technologies like Dolby Atmos help filmmakers immerse their audiences in fully realized environments with detailed soundscapes. Moderated by Dolby's Stuart Bowling and Glenn Kiser.
Free individual tickets to AFI FEST screenings, Galas and events will be available to the general public online at AFI.com beginning Friday, October 24, but only the Cinepass Express pass will provide priority entry to the Tech Showcase, as well as access into the Cinema Lounge. These and other AFI FEST Passes are on sale now at AFI.com/AFIFEST, and AFI Members receive special discounts. The American Film Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational and cultural organization, and Patron Packages are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law.
For the 11th year, Audi is the festival's presenting sponsor. Additional top sponsors include AT&T, Coca-Cola, VIZIO, American Airlines (the official airline of AFI), Dunkin' Donuts, Netflix and Stella Artois. The festival's venue sponsors include the Dolby Theatre, TCL Chinese Theatres, the Hollywood & Highland Center, the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and the Egyptian Theatre.
This year's program also includes 9 films from 22 AFI alumni, including FOXCATCHER edited by Jay Cassidy (AFI Class of 1976); THE GAMBLER by production designer Keith P. Cunningham (AFI Class of 1990); THE HAIRCUT directed by Alexis O. Korycinski (AFI Directing Workshop for Women, Class of 2014); INHERENT VICE by cinematographer Robert Elswit (AFI Class of 1977); SLUT by producer Lisa Gollobin (AFI Class of 2014), screenwriter Chloe Okuno (AFI Class of 2014), cinematographer Benjamin Kirk Nielsen (AFI Class of 2014), editor Michael Block (AFI Class of 2014) and production designer Yihong Annie Ding (AFI Class of 2014); and TALES OF THE GRIM SLEEPER by associate producer Erin Li (AFI Directing Workshop for Women, Class of 2013).
Several filmmakers return to AFI FEST this year including CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA's Olivier Asayas; THE SALT OF THE EARTH's Wim Wenders, MOMMY's Xavier Dolan, THE ABSENT's Nicolás Pereda, SELF MADE's Shira Geffen and BUZZARD's Joel Potrykus.
As previously announced, the Opening Night Gala will be the World Premiere of A MOST VIOLENT YEAR (DIR J.C. Chandor) on Thursday, November 6, INHERENT VICE (DIR Paul Thomas Anderson) will play on Saturday, November 8, the World Premiere of THE GAMBLER (DIR Rupert Wyatt) will play on Monday, November 10, THE HOMESMAN (DIR Tommy Lee Jones) will play on Tuesday, November 11, Sophia Loren will be honored with a special Tribute on Wednesday, November 12 and FOXCATCHER (DIR Bennett Miller) will be the Closing Night Gala on Thursday, November 13. Please note that Opening Night will now be at the Dolby Theatre.
THE HOMESMAN, directed by and starring Academy Award® winner Tommy Lee Jones, will be the Centerpiece Gala on Tuesday, November 11 at the Dolby Theatre®.
AFI FEST's Special Screenings are CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA (DIR Olivier Assayas); MERCHANTS OF DOUBT (DIR Robert Kenner); MOMMY (DIR Xavier Dolan); MR. TURNER (DIR Mike Leigh); SAINT LAURENT (DIR Bertrand Bonello); STILL ALICE (DIR Richard Glatzer & Wash Westmoreland); TALES OF THE GRIM SLEEPER (DIR Nick Broomfield) and TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT (DEUX JOURS, UNE NUIT) (DIR Jean-Pierre Dardenne & Luc Dardenne).
AFI FEST's Conversations include a discussion with Michael Keaton and Edward Norton about their roles in BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE) (DIR Alejandro González Iñárritu) and beyond; Roger Deakins sharing his experience about the art of cinematography and his upcoming release UNBROKEN (DIR Angelina Jolie); the Indie Contenders Roundtable featuring a panel of distinguished filmmakers who have done standout work this year in independent film presented by The Hollywood Reporter; and the Young Hollywood Roundtable with some of the year's hottest rising stars presented by the Los Angeles Times.
The New Auteurs and Shorts sections both showcase filmmakers from around the world; the New Auteurs section highlights first and second-time feature film directors and the Shorts selections represent diverse and varied international perspectives. The Shorts program this year features a full program of animated films in addition to a program of midnight shorts. Both sections are juried and are available for the Grand Jury Awards. This year's New Auteurs jury features Alonso Duralde (The Wrap and The Advocate), Tim Grierson (Screen International), Eric Kohn (IndieWire) and Anne Thompson (Thompson on Hollywood). The Shorts jury features Kahlil Joseph (filmmaker), Sara Murphy (producer), Mike Ott (filmmaker), Matthew Takata (Sundance Institute) and Brian Udovich (producer).
"These sections are where you will see some of the most exciting movies from around the world from filmmakers who take risks," said Lane Kneedler, Associate Director of Programming of AFI FEST. "Our competition this year could not be finer with debuts from countries all over the globe including Vietnam, Ukraine, Korea and the Ivory Coast. These extraordinary filmmakers are making their mark on modern cinema with their genuinely distinctive voices."
Warner Bros. Pictures' INHERENT VICE will play on Saturday, November 8 at AFI FEST presented by Audi. The film is written and directed by Academy Award® nominee Paul Thomas Anderson, based on the novel by Thomas Pynchon, and stars Academy Award® nominees Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin and Owen Wilson, Katherine Waterston, Academy Award® winners Reese Witherspoon and Benicio Del Toro, Martin Short, Jena Malone and Joanna Newsom. The festival will also feature a conversation with Paul Thomas Anderson.
Paramount Pictures' THE GAMBLER will have its World Premiere on Monday, November 10, 2014 at AFI FEST presented by Audi. The film is directed by Rupert Wyatt, with a screenplay by Academy Award® winner William Monahan, and produced by Academy Award® nominee Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson, Academy Award® winner Irwin Winkler, Academy Award® winner Robert Chartoff and David Winkler. The film stars Wahlberg, John Goodman, Brie Larson, Michael Kenneth Williams and Academy Award® winner Jessica Lange. The Gala screening will take place at the Dolby Theatre®.
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