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8 items from 2017


How ‘Poison’ Distributor Zeitgeist Films Found a Lifeline in Kino Lorber

23 June 2017 12:37 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Zeitgeist Films and Kino Lorber have always been kindred spirits, but as of this week, the indie distributors are officially strategic partners, a business relationship that has been in works for the past six months. Richard Lorber’s arthouse distribution company has formed a multi-year alliance with Nancy Gerstman and Emily Russo’s Zeitgeist that will see the two companies co-acquire four to five theatrical titles per year that will be marketed and released by Zeitgeist Films, starting with the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival audience award-winner “The Divine Order.” Directed by Petra Volpe, the film tells the story of a young housewife in Switzerland in 1971 who stands up to the closed-minded villagers in her town and overthrows the status quo.

Read More: Beyond A24: How Hip New Distributors Are Targeting Millennial Tastemakers With Bold Films

“We were at Tribeca and covered every film that we could get our eyes on, but we totally missed ‘The Divine Order’ for some reason,” Lorber said. “Nancy and Emily said it was great, we committed to doing it, and two days later it won the audience prize at Tribeca.”

Founded in 1988, Zeitgeist film’s is known for having distributed early films by directors including Todd Hayes (“Poison”), Christopher Nolan (“Following”), Laura Poitras (“The Oath”) and Atom Egoyan (“Speaking Parts”), but has struggled in recent years to adapt to the changing landscape for indie distributors.

“There’s no denying the fact that the business has gotten tougher, and I think over the years Zeitgeist has maintained an almost artisanal approach, which has not always kept pace with some of the other opportunities that have been available, such as the expansion of digital and alternative venues that films can play in,” Lorber said. Going forward, Kino Lorber will become the exclusive distributor of all Zeitgeist films for the home video, educational, and digital media markets, adding Zeitgeist’s roughly 130-film library to its collection of 1,600 titles.

“Once home video sort of ended as a possibility for us, we really had to go into the digital realm, and dealing with five or six films a year, it’s difficult to really bulk up your digital [catalog] to be able to do the sort of deals that Kino Lorber is able to do,” Gerstman said. “It’s been very tough, so these are really great resources for us to be able to have.

Read More: Hybrid Distribution: One-Night-Only Screenings Could Make Your Documentary a Theatrical Hit

Kino Lorber will release two of Zeitgeist’s 2016 films, the biographical documentary “Eva Hesse” and “Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt.” Zeitgeist’s 2001 film “Nowhere in Africa” won the Academy Award for best foreign language film, taking more than $6 million at the U.S. box office. Some of the company’s most successful theatrical releases include “Bill Cunningham: New York,” “The Corporation” and “Aimee & Jaguar.”

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- Graham Winfrey

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AFI Docs to honour Laura Poitras

23 May 2017 5:38 PM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

The Oscar and Peabody award-winning documentarian will be receive the Charles Guggenheim award on June 16.

The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced that AFI Docs will pay tribute to Laura Poitras.

The director of Risk and Citizenfour will be the festival’s 2017 Charles Guggenheim Symposium honouree.

The symposium will take place at the Newseum on June 16 and will include an in-depth conversation with Poitras along with clips from her films. 

Poitras’ latest film Risk, a six-year project following WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, was released by Neon earlier this month and will air on Showtime this summer. 

Poitras’ documentary catalogue also includes The Oath, Flag Wars, which was Emmy nominated and won a Peabody Award, and My Country, My Country, which was nominated for a best documentary feature Oscar.

In 2015, Poitras won the Academy Award for Citizenfour. That same year, Poitras co-founded Field of Vision, an entity that commissions and creates original short-form nonfiction films about global events »

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Laura Poitras honoured by Amber Wilkinson - 2017-05-23 14:47:13

23 May 2017 6:47 AM, PDT | eyeforfilm.co.uk | See recent eyeforfilm.co.uk news »

Laura Poitras won an Oscar for Edward Snowden documentary Citizenfour The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced AFI Docs will pay tribute to Laura Poitras — the director of Risk, about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, and the Academy Award®-winning Edward Snowden portrait Citizenfour (2014) — as the festival's 2017 Charles Guggenheim Symposium honoree.

Each year, the AFI Docs Charles Guggenheim Symposium honours a master of the nonfiction art form. Taking place at the Newseum on June 16, the Symposium will include an in-depth conversation with Poitras along with clips from her work, which includes The Oath, My Country, My Country and Flag Wars.

AFI Docs director Michael Lumpkin said: "Poitras has the extraordinary instinct and ability to put her camera in the heart of history as it unfolds, regardless of the risk. Using her keen eye, Poitras reveals worlds just beyond what we can see. We are honored to celebrate her remarkable career and dedication to the documentary form. »

- Amber Wilkinson

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AFI Docs to Honor ‘Citizenfour’ Director Laura Poitras

23 May 2017 6:00 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The American Film Institute’s AFI Docs festival will pay tribute to “Citizenfour” director Laura Poitras as the festival’s Charles Guggenheim Symposium honoree.

The award will be presented at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., on June 16 and will include an in-depth conversation with Poitras along with clips from her works. Poitras’ latest film “Risk,” a six-year project following WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, was released by Neon on May 5 and will air on Showtime this summer.

Poitras’ documentary credits include “The Oath” (2010), “My Country, My Country” (2006) and “Flag Wars” (2003). “Citizenfour” grew out of a meeting with Edward Snowden in 2013 after he e-mailed her inside information about illegal wiretapping practices of the U.S. National Security Agency and other intelligence agencies. She won the 2015 Academy Award for  Best Feature Documentary for the film.

“Poitras has the extraordinary instinct and ability to put her camera in the heart of history as it unfolds, »

- Dave McNary

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'Risk' Review: Julian Assange Doc Doubles As Portrait of Power Run Amuck

5 May 2017 1:47 PM, PDT | Rollingstone.com | See recent Rolling Stone news »

Documentarian Laura Poitras is our nonfiction poet laureate of paranoia, a vérité surveyor of the global surveillance state who feels compelled to train her cameras on what's really happening – in occupied war zones (My Country, My Country), Guantanamo P.O.W. trials (The Oath), the eye of Nsa-whistleblowing shitstorms (the Oscar-winning Citizenfour). Even when she's not earning enemy-of-the-state status via aiding and abetting Edward Snowden, there's always a sense of personal danger hovering around her films as she displeases the powers that be; any or all of her movies might plausibly be called Risk. »

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‘Risk’ Takes On Julian Assange: The Dramatic Story Behind Laura Poitras’ Oscar Follow-Up

4 May 2017 1:03 PM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Peripatetic filmmaker Laura Poitras never imagined that “Risk,” her follow-up to the demanding Oscar-winning Edward Snowden documentary “Citizenfour,” would present another set of daunting challenges. This time she’s up close and personal with controversial WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, as he gets on the phone with a lawyer in Hillary Clinton’s State Department in 2010 to alert them of a massive dump of unredacted State Department documents on his site.

Read More: ‘Risk’ Review: Julian Assange Gets An Unflattering Closeup From A Former Friend In New Edit

Poitras and her two cinematographers catch telling details: Assange, with dyed hair, assuming a disguise, has trouble inserting his colored contact lens. Flames lick at shredded documents in a bowl. Kirsten Johnson’s camera looks down from above on Assange emerging from a London court, surrounded by photographers and supporters. (“We were thinking of Coppola’s ‘The Conversation,'” said Poitras.) The filmmaker »

- Anne Thompson

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‘Risk’ Takes On Julian Assange: The Dramatic Story Behind Laura Poitras’ Oscar Follow-Up

4 May 2017 1:03 PM, PDT | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

Peripatetic filmmaker Laura Poitras never imagined that “Risk,” her follow-up to the demanding Oscar-winning Edward Snowden documentary “Citizenfour,” would present another set of daunting challenges. This time she’s up close and personal with controversial WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, as he gets on the phone with a lawyer in Hillary Clinton’s State Department in 2010 to alert them of a massive dump of unredacted State Department documents on his site.

Read More: ‘Risk’ Review: Julian Assange Gets An Unflattering Closeup From A Former Friend In New Edit

Poitras and her two cinematographers catch telling details: Assange, with dyed hair, assuming a disguise, has trouble inserting his colored contact lens. Flames lick at shredded documents in a bowl. Kirsten Johnson’s camera looks down from above on Assange emerging from a London court, surrounded by photographers and supporters. (“We were thinking of Coppola’s ‘The Conversation,'” said Poitras.) The filmmaker »

- Anne Thompson

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Cinema Eye Honors Turn 10: How This Oscar-Season Protest Became a Cozy Documentary Club

11 January 2017 7:00 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

The Oscars can have its annual celebrity luncheon. This week, several documentarians celebrated the Cinema Eye Honors with an after-hours field trip to the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Conceived in 2008 as a bid to broaden awareness for documentary achievements, the Cinema Eyes highlight a dozen categories that range from best director to best cinematography to graphic design. However, while it began as a tonic to the five-nominee limitations that circumscribe the Oscars, the Cinema Eyes have evolved into an idiosyncratic celebration all its own. Although the awards are Wednesday night at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York, the ceremony is now only the culmination of a full week of programming that includes three days of activities.

“It’s kind of like senior skip week,” said co-founder and filmmaker Aj Schnack, catching his breath on Monday night before delivering a speech to the filmmakers in attendance. “Yes, »

- Eric Kohn

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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009

8 items from 2017


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