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17 articles


The 2015 Tribeca Film Festival Awards

23 April 2015 3:15 PM, PDT

Below are the winners of this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. Note that the narrative awards were split evenly between Virgin Mountain and Bridgend, with three apiece. World Narrative Competition Categories: The jurors for the 2015 World Narrative Competition sponsored by Aka, were Paul Attanasio, Sophie Barthes, Whoopi Goldberg, Dylan McDermott, and Burr Steers. ● The Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature – Virgin Mountain, written and directed by Dagur Kári [Iceland, Denmark]. Winner receives $25,000, sponsored by At&T, and the art award “Ash Eroded Film Reel” by Daniel Arsham. The award was given by Robert De Niro and Jane Rosenthal […] »

- Filmmaker Staff

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Tribeca 2015 Critic’s Notebook: When I Live My Life Over Again, Dirty Weekend, Applesauce and Bad Hurt

23 April 2015 10:30 AM, PDT

It’s awards day at Tribeca and judging by the informal polling taking place at parties with free booze and in line at the Shake Shack next to the Regal Battery Park, the cinerati thinks this was a lukewarm edition. The fest’s first weekend provided more than its fair share of dreary viewing, with no films like last year’s still-unreleased Noah Buschel stunner Glass Chin or Angus MacLachlan’s unfairly overlooked Goodbye to All That to salve my hunger for top-shelf small movies that ought to matter. The festival surely has some strong surprises I haven’t uncovered, but time is running out; around mid-fest, everyone’s […] »

- Brandon Harris

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Guess Who’s Watching: Tribeca’s New Online Work

23 April 2015 10:24 AM, PDT

Tribeca’s N.O.W sidebar is noteworthy for two reasons: first, in that it aims to put forth the idea of the independent filmmaker as a brand, rather than the purveyor of a specific project, and secondly, because it suggests that the most successful online content is made for a clearly defined audience, or at least contains eye-catching enough packaging that can propel through the glut. “My Life in Sourdough” and “Eat Your Feelings”, for instance, call on the rather deep bullpen of internet foodies by situating a recipe at the center of each episode. The latter is boy meets girl plus 6 Am homemade pasta, and readymade for the […] »

- Sarah Salovaara

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Steadicam Operator Larry McConkey on Filming the Goodfellas Copacabana Tracking Shot and The Early Days of Steadicam

23 April 2015 8:56 AM, PDT

The Copa Shot: It’s one of the few shots in the history of cinema readily identifiable by name, instantly conjuring the image of Goodfellas gangster Ray Liotta leading Lorraine Bracco – and by extension the audience – through the back entrance of New York’s legendary Copacabana nightclub, as Steadicam operator Larry McConkey glides along behind them. How long did one of film’s most famed tracking shots take to pull off? It was in the can before lunch — which isn’t to say it was easy. With a 25th Anniversary screening of Goodfellas set to close the Tribeca Film Festival on April […] »

- Matt Mulcahey

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Watch: David Lowery’s Pioneer

22 April 2015 2:22 PM, PDT

Technically speaking, not much happens in Pioneer, David Lowery’s 2011 short about a man who tells his son a bedtime story. The action is confined to one room as it cuts between the two actors, but the yarn spun by Will Oldham’s character, and the subtle inflections in the pair’s performance along with a textured sound design, make the film as charged as any meticulously choreographed exchange. Listen closely, and you can even discern some early seeds of Ain’t Them Bodies Saints in the mix. »

- Sarah Salovaara

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“Sometimes You Have to Put Your Camera Down”: Director and Producer Hanna Polak on the She Does Podcast

22 April 2015 9:26 AM, PDT

Hanna Polak, a Polish director and producer, has the stamina and guts that most filmmakers would envy. And now audiences at film festivals around the world are experiencing her dedication through Something Better To Come, a documentary that Hanna shot over the span of 14 years. The documentary follows the lives of Russians living in a massive garbage dump, located 12 miles from the center of Moscow. Hanna filmed many people living in the garbage dump, but one person in particular stood out: a young girl named Yula. We watch Yula grow up on-screen, experimenting with hair dye and makeup, […] »

- Elaine Sheldon and Sarah Ginsburg

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Beyond London: Alastair Roberts of the Royal Opera House on Live Cinema Broadcasts

22 April 2015 9:02 AM, PDT

One useful maxim in the ever-changing world of theatrical distribution is that transforming your cinematic screenings into a one-time events will help drive people to your film. Likewise, theaters are searching for ways to make their products stand out in a world flooded with easily available content. Among the many solutions to these dual problems is the live broadcast of events to theaters — plays, concerts, and any other type of live performances. Stage productions are obviously among the top purveyors of these broadcasts: the Metropolitan Opera in New York and the National Theatre in London both regularly show their productions in cinemas, […] »

- Randy Astle

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Of Tarantino and TV: On Goodfellas‘ Legacy

22 April 2015 7:00 AM, PDT

In the mid-1980s, Martin Scorsese was regaining his footing as a director after a brutal few years. His passion project, The Last Temptation of Christ, had fallen apart at Paramount just days before production was scheduled to begin, and The King of Comedy had been a commercial, and largely critical, failure – in spite of the fact that it was, and is, one of the most incisive films ever made about celebrity culture. After years of working on studio movies with substantial budgets and luxurious schedules, Scorsese went back to ground zero for After Hours in 1985, stripping his methods […] »

- Jim Hemphill

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Five Questions for Peggy Guggenheim — Art Addict Director Lisa Immordino Vreeland

21 April 2015 10:49 AM, PDT

Lisa Immordino Vreeland’s feature debut, 2011’s Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel, examined the life and legacy of the legendary fashion photographer. The filmmaker was the granddaughter-in-law of her subject, and the film established Vreeland’s acumen in reconstructing the life stories of complex, powerful women. That applies to her new subject, Peggy Guggenheim, from whose candid memoirs the subtitle Art Addict was drawn. Almost as well known for her numerous relationships, sexual and otherwise, with many of the key creative figures of her time, Guggenheim’s story is reconsidered in this documentary. The film premiered last night at the Tribeca Film Festival; […] »

- Vadim Rizov

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Tribeca 2015: Ma and Uncertain

21 April 2015 9:15 AM, PDT

Everyone, even The New York Times, is up in arms about the quality disparity in documentary to narrative programming at the Tribeca Film Festival, and it’s with reluctance that I add my voice to the heap. It figures then that the festival’s strongest narrative selection thus far was a work-in-progress screened in far flung Long Island City with negligible publicity fanfare. The “progress” modifier appeared to be fulfilled by a truncated end credit sequence, which director Celia Rowlson-Hall accounted for by reading off a list of names in a squat from the stage to prevent her arms from shaking. When the lights went down in the Wv dome […] »

- Sarah Salovaara

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“We Didn’t Even Have Time For a Table Read”: Cooley High Director Michael Schultz

21 April 2015 7:00 AM, PDT

Forty years ago, a film crew with exploitation financing and art-house ambitions arrived in Chicago to create Cooley High, a funny and poignant slice of life that would eventually become a classic. The movie — which tells the story of black teenagers growing up in the Cabrini-Green housing project as they fall in and out of love, get into trouble, and try to figure out their futures — served as a launching pad for actors Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Glynn Turman, and Garrett Morris, and provided inspiration for a later generation of filmmakers that included John Singleton and the Hughes Brothers. It […] »

- Jim Hemphill

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Jennifer Phang, Nicole Beckwith and Stewart Thorndike Receive Inaugural Sffs Women Filmmaker Fellowships

20 April 2015 1:00 PM, PDT

The San Francisco Film Society announces today three women filmmakers as recipients of its Sffs Women Filmmaker Fellowships, a program supporting women making their second or third features in the genres of science fiction, comedy, action, thriller and horror — areas in which women are traditionally under-represented. Supported by the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, the fellowships are run by Filmmaker360, the Film Society’s filmmaker services department, and they include financial support, programs and events, mentorship services and more. “We’re thrilled to be kicking off this new initiative with such talented individuals, and to help bridge the support gap we have seen […] »

- Scott Macaulay

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“Your Obstacles are Basically Everything”: Writer/Actress/Producer Naomi McDougall Jones Talks Grassroots Female Filmmaking

20 April 2015 12:39 PM, PDT

Once again, the two-decade-old Bermuda International Film Festival, where I’m on the international advisory board, provided some truly unique networking opportunities. While I didn’t find myself star-struck like at last year’s fest – when I had the once in a lifetime chance to serve on a jury with a spry legend, Kubrick’s producer and brother-in-law Jan Harlan – the 2015 edition hosted several impressive names. Rounding out this year’s Academy Award qualifying shorts jury were producer/writer Hilary Saltzman (daughter of Harry Saltzman, best known as the producer of the first nine Bond films), the inimitable Killer Films co-founder Christine Vachon, […] »

- Lauren Wissot

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Tracking Changes: The 53rd Ann Arbor Film Festival

20 April 2015 12:01 PM, PDT

One of the unexpected pleasures of the 53rd Ann Arbor Film Festival (Aaff) was, at first, a cringe-inducing annoyance. It began with the first screening on Wednesday morning, a presentation of work by Aaff juror Jesse McLean. The lights dimmed in the Michigan Theater Screening Room, the smaller of two auditoriums used by Aaff in the spectacular Michigan Theater. Just as the audience nestled into their seats and darkness took hold of the room, something interrupted the transfixed environment: a wincing screech from the front of the room. The sound continued for several seconds before halting with a loud thud. Then, […] »

- James Hansen

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Animate Objects: The 24th Aspen Shortsfest

20 April 2015 9:10 AM, PDT

With its “bodegas” serving $35 seafood entrees and cobble stone streets lined with Prada, Burberry, and every other Madison Avenue ready boutique a yuppie mom could think up, Aspen may seem like an odd location for the country’s preeminent shorts festival. The grungiest thing about the stunningly well-preserved 19th century Wheeler Opera House — the festival’s screening and conversation locus — are the $4 yellow bullet tall boys tucked behind the bar amid top shelf malts. But despite the slightly stuffy portents, audiences seemed game for whatever co-directors Laura Thielen and George Eldred threw their way: dry comedies, 40-minute docs, atmospheric animations, and gutting dramas […] »

- Sarah Salovaara

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Five Questions for Applesauce Writer/Director Onur Tukel

20 April 2015 8:23 AM, PDT

Onur Tukel’s Summer of Blood was a hit of the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival, a work that saw the Brooklyn filmmaker venture from the relationship comedy drama of his previous pictures towards a sly, anarchic genre tale — in this case, a vampire story. Far from a generic riff on the genre, it contained all of Tukel’s typical emotional queasiness and edgy humor while adding quite a bit of the red stuff. With Applesauce, his latest, Dylan Baker plays the role of a man coaxed into recounting a story from his past on a radio show one day. He probably […] »

- Scott Macaulay

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“Can You Get to the Truth of Something?” Mike Finkel on True Story

20 April 2015 7:42 AM, PDT

I first met Mike Finkel around two decades ago through a mutual friend. He was planning to write a piece for Sports Illustrated on the log-rolling championship to be held in Wisconsin, and I was going to go with him to take photographs. It was a fun, strange day. It felt surreal, but it was nothing compared to the kind of surreal that Mike’s future held for him. Mike and I kept in touch. He continued his career as a journalist writing for prestigious publications including The New York Times. He was ultimately fired from the Times for compositing three […] »

- Alix Lambert

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