Sal (2011) - News Poster

(II) (2011)


The Weekend Warrior 1/6/17: Underworld: Blood Wars, Hidden Figures, A Monster Calls

Welcome back to the first Weekend Warrior of 2017, your weekly look at the new movies hitting theaters this weekend, as well as other cool events and things to check out (when applicable).

We’ll bypass the past couple holiday weekends cause that was so 2016, and we’ll instead get right into the new movies opening on Friday including two that opened in select cities and are expanding nationwide.

Underworld: Blood Wars (Sony/Screen Gems)

Cast: Kate Beckinsale, Theo James, Tobias Menzies, Lara Pulver, Charles Dance, James Faulkner, Peter Andersson, Clementine Nicholson, Bradley James, Daisy Head

Director: Anna Foerster (debut feature from director of TV shows Outlander & Criminal Minds)

Genre: Action, Horror, Thriller

Rated R

Plot: The vampire death dealer Selene (Kate Beckinsale) finds herself facing both Lycans and vampires, both of them trying to use the blood of her daughter to create new hybrids, so she and David (Theo James
See full article at LRM Online »

First Time Fest – Closing Night Ceremony Report

The final installment of the First Time Fest… The First Time Fest’s closing night was held on March 4th. Hosted by Academy Award winner Ellen Burstyn (The Exorcist), the Players Club lit up with flashes of cameras and smiles of the first time filmmakers anxiously awaiting whose film will win the grand prize- the chance to have their film distributed by Cinema Libre Studios.

Johanna Bennett and Mandy founded the festival after noticing there wasn’t a venue for where new filmmakers can get their film viewed and appreciated. In attendance at the closing night ceremony were Tony Bennett and Jack Huston, as well as Martin Scorsese, who presented the First John Huston Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema to Darren Aronofsky, who was also in attendance. Anthony Rapp presented the awards as guests ate food from Chef Diane Dimeo and drank champagne by Nicolas Feuillatte. Also in attendance
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

First Time Fest – Report #2

The First Time Fest was created by Johanna Bennett and Mandy Ward as a way to showcase new upcoming filmmakers and their works, and to get them a head start in their industry. The festival occurred on March 1st to 4th at The Players Club in New York, which was a club started by some well-known writers and actors, including Edwin Booth (John Wilkes Booth’s brother), Mark Twain, and more.

While the festival does support new filmmakers in their journey, it also awards previous filmmakers who have made names for themselves. Being that this is the first year of the festival, the first ever John Huston Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema went to Darren Aronofsky. The award is named in honor of John Huston as he was a esteemed member of The Players Club, as well as considered to be one of the most influential writer, actor, director and producers of all times.
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

First Time Fest Hits NYC

I support this new NYC Film Fest which a lot of our friends attended and also support. I went to their inaugural event in NYC a few weeks back and it felt good and I certainly like their Indie lineup. The following is from a recent press release:

Celebrating first-time filmmakers with a grand prize of theatrical distribution, hosted by the historic Players Club, First Time Fest also had additional participants to this year's unique event.

Harry Belafonte, Gay Talese, Michael Shannon & Ellen Burstyn have joined Christine Vachon, Fred Schneider, Sofia Coppola, Todd Solondz, Barbara Kopple, Scott Foundas, Eric Kohn, Emily Russo, Jenny Lumet, Darren Aronofsky, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Hal Hartley, Peter Saraf, Nancy Savoca, Amy Ryan And Martin Scorsese participated In First Time Fest.

Belafonte & Shannon appeared onstage in the Ftf’s “Stand Alone! – Conversations With The Outstanding” series, one-on-one interview with notable cinema artists. Renowned author Gay Talese joined Christine Vachon and the B-52s Fred Schneider as another of the Ftf’s five jurors (the entire live audience at each of the 12 competition films was the 5th juror). Together, the jury and audience ultimately selected Grand Prize winner, Sal, a modern-day Western by Argentinian writer-director Diego Rougier which was offered theatrical distribution and full international sales representation from the renowned American film distributor, Cinema Libre Studio.

Acclaimed actress Ellen Burstyn, who worked with both Scorsese and Aronofsky served as the host of the Ftf Closing Night Awards program. As part of that festive evening, Martin Scorsese added his illustrious presence and belief in the art of cinema, presenting the first John Huston Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cinema to Darren Aronofsky. John Huston was one of the most prolific and versatile directors in the history of cinema. And with his mesmerizing debut film, Pi – made independently on black-and-white 16mm film – Darren Aronofsky was instantly recognized as a uniquely gifted new talent. His subsequent films: Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain, The Wrestler and Black Swan, have more than fulfilled that promise.

In addition, Ftf had a special presentation of Andy Grieve and Lauren Lazin’s documentary about the band The Police, Can't Stand Losing You, featuring Sting, Stewart Copeland and Andy Summers.

On an exciting party note, and in conjunction with Ftf’s presentation of the Australian/Mongolian documentary Mongolian Bling, First Time Fest and Hip Hop Saves Lives presented “Project Haiti,” an album release party for Zing Experience at Webster Hall.

Representing a hybrid between a traditional film festival and a highly motivated audience participation event, Ftf presented a dozen Competition Films, which were judged by a panel of industry luminaries and the Ftf audience. All competition screenings were followed by “hot-seat” discussions between the jury and filmmakers, and all audience members then voted on the films. It was truly a contest of the best emerging filmmakers competing for the Ultimate Audience Award.

Competition Films – (please visit here for competition films & descriptions).

In addition to the Competition Films, Ftf presented First Exposure, a series of first films from now prominent filmmakers. Joining the line-up - and mostly attending the fest - was the exciting Opening Night presentation of Sofia Coppola with The Virgin Suicides, Todd Solondz with Welcome to the Dollhouse, Wes Anderson’s Bottle Rocket, Barbara Kopple with Harlan County, USA, Melvin Van Peebles with The Story of a Three-Day Pass, Pi from Darren Aronofsky, The Maltese Falcon from director John Huston, Poison from Todd Haynes, Jack Goes Boating from director Philip Seymour Hoffman, Hal Hartley’s The Unbelievable Truth, and True Love from Nancy Savoca.

First Exposure Films – (please visit here, for First Exposure descriptions)

First Exposure also includes a 60th Anniversary Tribute to Morris Engel’s The Little Fugitive, a cinema vérité classic from 1953 that was shot on Coney Island and has inspired countless filmmakers, from Jean-Luc Godard to the Coen brothers. The tribute included a panel hosted by film historian Foster Hirsch including Mary Engel, daughter of Morris Engel and Ruth Orkin, and James Sanders, author of Celluloid Skyline: New York and the Movies. In addition there was a Special Presentation of Everardo Gout’s thrillingly over-the-top action thriller Days Of Grace (Dĺas De Gracia), which won the Mexican Academy of Film’s prestigious Ariel Award for Best First Feature and was nominated for the Camera d’Or at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.

First Time Fest included a series of panels called “How They Did It,” in which a diverse group of award-winning filmmakers moderated filmmaking case studies and spotlighted some of the most successful and accomplished masters of the industry.

First Time Fest is a four-day, multi-faceted event hosted in New York City’s Gramercy Park by the celebrated Players (16 Gramercy Park South), the club founded by Edwin Booth, Mark Twain and John Singer Sargent, the oldest and most exclusive arts organization of its kind whose membership includes the greatest stars of stage and screen. Each of First Time Fest’s twelve finalists receive high-level industry mentorship and a one-year membership to The Players. The Players was the location for all Ftf panels and events as well as the Filmmaker and VIP Lounge. First Time Fest’s screenings were all held at the Loews Village VII on Third Avenue (on 11th St. & 3rd Ave).

Among the Fest’s terrific sponsors is the delicious Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte. "The forward-thinking Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte draws its inspiration from the call of ‘faraway lands.’ One of the youngest and most fashionable Champagne brands, Nicolas Feuillatte has captured the world's imagination by sharing its passion for creativity and arts in a record 37 years, becoming the #1 Champagne in France. In its role as discoverer of talent, the brand awards its prestige cuvée Palmes d'Or to First Time Fest's winners to complement the celebration in style."

Other terrific sponsors of the fest include Brooklyn Brewery, Moscot, Marquis Vodka and Technicolor Postworks.

For additional Festival Information - Visit The Festival Website at

Johanna Bennett and Mandy Ward are the co-founders of First Time Fest. As an accomplished philanthropist, actor and social entrepreneur, as well as the daughter of singer Tony Bennett, Johanna Bennett has immersed herself within the entertainment and artistic community her entire life. Mandy Ward has worked in the film industry for the past decade in varied capacities, namely as a film producer of several projects. Mitch Levine, CEO of The Film Festival Group, is producing the festival. Through his company, Mitch offers consulting services and expertise to film festivals, film commissions, distribution companies and filmmakers around the world, and was formerly the CEO and Executive Director of the renowned Palm Springs International Film Festival. The Festival’s Director of Programming is David Schwartz, the Chief Curator of Museum of the Moving Image.
See full article at SydneysBuzz »

First Time Fest – Report

This past weekend, March 1st to 4th, marked the first ever First Time Fest at The Player’s Club in New York City. The festival is a celebration of the films of first time film makers which also features a competition in which 12 aspiring film makers get to debut their first film. These 12 filmmakers have competed for their chance to receive major distribution of their film and all competitors will receive advice from those in the industry.

The festival is to help those aspiring filmmakers in the industry obtain important information in making their films successful. There are twelve competition films that come from all over the world to compete against this wonderful grand prize of not only distribution by Sponsor Cinema Libre Studio, but knowledge- knowledge of how to make films and how people got their start.

The festival itself includes films from these 12 competition films as well as
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

First Time Fest awards

Amélie van Elmbt won best director for Headfirst (La Tête la première) and star Alice de Lencquesaing shared acting honors at the inaugural First Time Fest, a celebration of first time filmmakers that took place in New York City from March 1-4.

Anthony Rapp presented the Outstanding Achievement in Directing Award for Headfirst to Belgian filmmaker van Elmbt, who also accepted Lencquesaing's award for Outstanding Achievement in Acting for the role of Zoe in the film. Her producer Frédéric de Goldschmidt joined van Elmbt on stage.

In addition to Sal winning the First Time Fest Grand Prize for director Diego Rougier, David Bravo took home the Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography Award for his beautiful cinematography with rich details, surprising touches, and a sense of humour.

Junction director Tony Glazer accepted the second Outstanding Achievement in Acting Award for Neal Bledsoe, for the ferocity of his performance,...
See full article at »

Diego Rougier takes home First Time Fest Grand Prize

My fellow jurors, Killer Films co-founder Christine Vachon, B52's Fred Schneider, author and reconteur Gay Talese, and I were proud to announce that the First Time Fest Grand Prize of theatrical distribution from Cinema Libre Studio was awarded to an inventive modern-day western with majestic sweep, great acting, and a lot of surprises: Sal, written and directed By Diego Rougier (Chile/Argentina).

The awards night followed a wonderful four days of discoveries, with 12 films in competition for the inaugural competition.

The night's celebration at the Players Club, on Gramercy Park South, New York, was hosted by Academy Award winning actress Ellyn Burstyn, co-president of the Actors Studio. She was the ideal choice.

Two of the best decisions of her life, she said, were taking a chance and saying yes to new filmmakers. She confided in us that she had a project and was looking for a...
See full article at »

'Sal,' 'Headfirst' Among Top Winners At First Annual First Time Fest in New York

'Sal,' 'Headfirst' Among Top Winners At First Annual First Time Fest in New York
This weekend marked the inaugural First Time Fest in New York, which ran from March 1-4, aiming to provide a venue for debut filmmakers to premiere their works and vie for a top prize of distribution from Cinema Libra Studio. Twelve films screened at the festival in competition, each acting as the New York premiere for the films. The Grand Prize Award, guaranteeing theatrical distribution, was awarded to Diego Rougier's modern-day western "Sal." Meanwhile, Amelie Van Elmbt picked up the Ftf Award for Outstanding Achievement in Directing for her work on "Headfirst," which also picked up an acting prize for its star Alice de Lencquesaing, while The Ftf Award for Outstanding Achievement in Writing was awarded to Max Weissberg for his film "Summertime." In addition to the films screened in competition, the festival also features a varied lineup of landmark first films, including those by Todd Solondz, Sofia Coppola,
See full article at Indiewire »

See also

Showtimes | External Sites