Tribeca Video On Demand

Tribeca Film, the comprehensive distribution label from Tribeca Enterprises supported by founding partner American Express, today announced that four of its films, 2011 Tribeca Film Festival official selections THE BANG BANG CLUB, THE BLEEDING HOUSE, LAST NIGHT and NEDS, will be released nationwide via video-on-demand under the “Tribeca Film” banner simultaneously with the start of the Festival on April 20. The “Tribeca Film” VOD category will also offer other festival circuit titles, including Dax Shepard’s BROTHER’S JUSTICE and THE HIGH COST OF LIVING, starring Zach Braff.

From April 20 through June 23, these Tribeca Film titles will be available in more than 40 million homes via cable, telco and satellite systems. Additionally, the Tribeca Film platform will be available on the web via digital VOD services. Viewers will be able to access Tribeca Film titles via the “Tribeca Film” category of video-on-demand menus, via pay-per-view offerings and via other branded destinations online. Tribeca Film will also begin to roll out these films’ theatrical releases, starting with THE BANG BANG CLUB in select markets as of April 22 and LAST NIGHT as of May 6.

Tribeca Film’s initial VOD offerings feature notable stars such as Ryan Phillippe, Zach Braff, Keira Knightley, Taylor Kitsch, Sam Worthington and Eva Mendes. Film and television star Dax Shepard gets behind the camera for his directorial debut as he takes viewers on his journey to become an internationally-renowned martial arts star. These films will introduce audiences to the world of conflict photography, the violent side of 1970s Glasgow through the eyes of a bright young boy on the brink of adolescence and the life-changing consequences and relationships that can result in the course of one night.

“We are excited to be able to present a spectrum of specialty films that will simultaneously premiere at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival and on demand in over 40 million homes, giving those not at the Festival in NY a chance to enjoy these quality films,” said Geoff Gilmore, Chief Creative Officer for Tribeca Enterprises.

Films premiering at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, on VOD and in theaters:

• THE BANG BANG CLUB, written and directed by Steven Silver. (Canada, South Africa) – US Premiere. THE BANG BANG CLUB is the true story of four young combat photographers bonded by friendship and their sense of purpose to tell the truth. They risk their lives and use their cameras to tell the world of the violence associated with the first free elections in post-Apartheid South Africa. Ryan Phillippe, Malin Akerman and Taylor Kitsch star in a film that explores the thrills, danger, and moral questions associated with exposing the truth.

THE BANG BANG CLUB will have a platform national theatrical release beginning April 22 in NewYork (Village East Cinema), Los Angeles (Laemmle Sunset 5), Santa Ana/Costa Mesa, CA (South Coast Village) and Chicago (Music Box Theater), and April 29 in Washington DC (West End Cinemas) and Seattle (North West Film Forum), with additional markets and theaters to follow.

• THE BLEEDING HOUSE, written and directed by Philip Gelatt. (USA) – World Premiere in Cinemania. Meet the Smiths—a family full of secrets who keep to themselves on a back road outside a small Midwestern town. In this visceral, tightly wound horror/thriller, their lives are shaken when a sweet-talking Texan arrives on their doorstep on a mission for retribution. Will he succeed in his goal to bleed them of their sins, or will the family’s haunted past prove to be even more deadly than he bargained for? THE BLEEDING HOUSE will have a limited theatrical release in 2011, beginning May 13.

• LAST NIGHT, written and directed by Massy Tadjedin. (USA) – US Premiere, Narrative. Apart for one night, a happily married couple (Keira Knightley and Sam Worthington) is confronted by temptation that may decide the fate of their marriage. LAST NIGHT is ultimately about choices—to be in a relationship with someone, to give yourself to someone physically, to open yourself emotionally, and how to survive all three. Eva Mendes, Guillaume Canet, and Griffin Dunne also star in this sexy, provocative romantic drama.

LAST NIGHT will have a platform national theatrical release beginning May 6 in New York (Angelika and Chelsea Clearview), Los Angeles (Laemmle Sunset 5), Dallas (Angelika), Santa Ana/Costa Mesa, CA (South Coast Village), and San Francisco (Kabuki), and May 13 in Washington DC (West End Cinemas) and Boston (Coolidge), and on May 27 in San Diego (Gaslamp 15), with additional markets and theaters to follow.

• NEDS “Non-Educated Delinquents,” written and directed by Peter Mullan. (UK) – US Premiere, Narrative. Directed by award winning actor/director Peter Mullan (MY NAME IS JOE, THE MAGDALENE SISTERS), NEDS takes place in the gritty and savage world of 1970s Glasgow. On the brink of adolescence, John McGill is a bright and sensitive boy. He’s eager to learn and full of promise, but with no one willing to give him a chance, young John descends into a violent life of crime. NEDS is an intense and tragic portrayal of the loss of hope. NEDS will have a limited theatrical release in 2011, beginning May 13.

Also available on Tribeca Film on VOD and in theaters:

• BROTHER’S JUSTICE, co-directed by Dax Shepard and David Palmer – This Hollywood satire follows Dax Shepard as he makes the rash decision to abandon comedy in pursuit of his true dream: to become an internationally-renowned martial arts star. Winner of the audience award at the Austin Film Festival and an official selection of the Hollywood Film Festival, it marks the directorial debut of Shepard and features performances by Tom Arnold, Bradley Cooper, David Koechner, Michael Rosenbaum and Nate Tuck. BROTHER’S JUSTICE will have a limited theatrical release in 2011.

• THE HIGH COST OF LIVING, written and directed by Deborah Chow – This dark romantic drama about intertwined fates centers on the burgeoning relationship between an unlikely pair. Nathalie (Isabelle Blais) is expecting her first child, and Henry (Zach Braff) is on his way to his next drug deal. Their paths fatefully collide one night in an event that will irrevocably change their lives. The film was an official selection of the Toronto Film Festival. THE HIGH COST OF LIVING will have a limited theatrical release in 2011.

The Interview: NCBFF's 2011 Emerging Filmmaker Honorees

Pictured Here (L to R): Rhonda Bellamy, Saba, Keita, and Tajiya Baba

The North Carolina Black Film Festival salutes Charlotte, NC sisters Tajiya, Keita, and Saba.  What started out as a hobby to entertain friends and family with self-made short movies has turned into a full-time business for the sisters, ages 13, 17, and 21. The three young entrepreneurs have their own animation company and is fully independent with everything from scriptwriting to directing.  We caught up with the three sisters at NCBFF to find out how they got this started!

Tajiya: My name is Tajiya Baba and I am 21 years old.

Keita: My name is Keita Baba and I am 17 years old.

Saba: And my name is Saba Nanette Baba and I am 13 years old and our company is EYI Publications which stands for...

In-Sync (all 3 sisters):  Entrepreneurs of Youth and Integrity.

NCIndieSeen: Awesome!  How did you guys go about starting this company and what inspired you to think of something so groundbreaking as starting a company at such a young tender age?

Tajiya: I can start by saying it started from young early childhood.  When I was about five years old that was when I wanted to become an animator, after watching all of the cartoons that I watched on television.  So from there I kinda was wanting build my skill and develop my artwork so to match that up on a professional level so that I could possibly become an animator which is what I've become now.

Keita: What got me started was when I was young, and my older sister was 8 and I was 4, I was totally inspired by her she was my idol, and I was like her secretary.  Whatever she did was what I wanted to do.  I love art and my mother is an artist and she inspired us greatly.  Tajiya wanted to be an animator ever since she was really young  but that's what I wanted to be as well. 

Saba: Since these two wanted to do animation, when I came along I was like oh well I guess I gotta do animation with them. (laughs)

Keita: When Saba was born she was like oh wow I like this. 

Saba: But also what drove me was I love cartoons, the animation in th emovies and stuff, but when I realized I actually had the talent to create those things, I kept building and building on it and like what happned to them I was like this is what I want to do.  I wanted to be an entrepreneur and be independent and I knew if you strive for that, you will never work a day in your life.

NCIndieSeen:  Obviously this talent is homegrown learning animation and doing it so well.  How did you even think to start a business where did you get the sense that ok we're gonna go ahead and create our own studio and be our own boss.

Keita: Well what we did our mom always taught us to be independent and to be entrepreneurs and to have integrity and thats why we named the company Entrepreneurs of Youth and Integrity.  Its always good to have morals and integrity.  So what we did, we thought about it and we said, you know what since we do love art, and animation that's a wonderful thing to get into.  We might as well actually sell them.  We used to do home animations for our house and for our family and friends.  So our mom took us downtown and she helped us get licensing for the business, and so then it began in 2009.

NCIndieSeen:  What kind of animations do you do?  What type of genres do you dwelve in?

Saba: We do a whole variety of things we do, we have 4 animations out we do things for like little kids, we do things for like a family, and Tajiya will do things for more mature crowd but me and Keita do things for smaller kids and family type movies.  We want postive and family friendly films that will appeal to people.

Tajiya:  Even the more mature cartoons that we might do are the jokes.  The theme may not necessarily be things kids would understand, so it would be something written about funny stuff that I came up with that I have encountered in my own life and stuff I've heard other people encounter and it would be like wow, that would make a funny story.  It may not be something kids would understand, so that's what I mean by more mature.

NCIndieSeen:  Do you guys individually write, direct, and produce your own material?  Do you have help or is it completely independent?

Tajiya: Everything is completely independent, we would come up with an idea and we do write a little but all of the writing comes from our mother.  She's a writer, and she has alot of friends that are involved in theater, and do screenplays and stuff. So she picked up alot from them, and she got into So we let her handle the writing of the scripts but for our latter projects, that we've got going individually, we have produced our own stuff as well.  All of the projects we have now are stuff that was collaborative work. 

NCIndieSeen: What advice do you have for indie entrepreneurs?

Keita: I would say for one thing, always maintain your integrity.  Always remember to never give up and to always have faith in what you do and find something that you enjoy and to pursue it and let that be what you actually turn into your business if you want to become an entrepreneur.  If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life.

The Interview: Benedict A. Dorsey

Benedict A. Dorsey is the director of the 2010 film The Human Web.  The is currently being screened at NCBFF.

NCIndieSeen: I'm here with Benedict A. Dorsey, director of the film The Human Web.  Hi nice to meet you today.  Tell us a little bit about the film.

Benedict:  It's a gritty urban tale dealing with a youg man who has to make some hard decisions in life.  He grew up in a single parent home, so he's making these decisions without the influence of a father figure.  He's making these decisions to please everybody and he gets trapped into this web of trying to please people.  When you're in a web, there's only one way off and it's death.    So in order to get off this web there has to be this sacrifice and he has to figure out, who's going to die.  By this painful sacrifice that is made in the movie he finally gets freed. 
NCIndieSeen: What inspired to you to tell a story like this?

Benedict: I'm a local pastor back in Baltimore, MD and I do alot of counsel with young men who grew up in single parent homes and one day it dawned on me I said I wonder how do these young men make really great sound decisions when normally it usually takes two parents to raise a child.  You have the father who is for wisdom and strength and you have the mother who gives the sustainability and the substance to keep going.  Normally when you keep giving that type of advice and try your best to show that boy or that man his actions through other male mentors.  So when you grow up as a young boy and never had your dad there and was raised by your mom, you're looking for that masculinity knowledge or ability.  The young men I counseled didn't have it, they were making bad decisions.  I wondered, if they did would they have made better choices in life?  They didn't fail, but the struggle was more difficult. 

NCIndieSeen:  Where was this film shot and how long was production?

Benedict: It was shot in Baltimore and the production was 13 days. 

NCIndieSeen: Was it independently financed by you?

Benedict: It was financed fully by myself along with nephew and my mother invested. 

NCIndieSeen:  What kind of film equipment did you shoot on?

Benedict: We shot on Sony HD cameras

NCIndieSeen:  What advice would you give to young indie filmmakers out there trying to break in the industry?

Benedict: Well you know I'm old. (laughs)  I can't give advice to the young people!  The great thing about them is they are starting young, and they have time enough to do what they need to do.  Go after your dream, write what you have a passion for write what you really believe in.  Write the stories you know.  Don't try to write about something you've never experienced or have no knowledge of.  If you do, do your homework and know the facts so you don't get embarrassed when someone watch it.  Just be true to your passion.

To learn more about The Human Web or Benedict A. Dorsey, check out the links below:

The Interview: Corey L. Branch

Corey L. Branch directed the 24 minute short film "Snipped" about a man who gets a vasectomy.  Based on his own real life experience, Corey took the the to talk to NCIndieSeen about his film. 

NCIndieSeen:  I'm here with Corey L. Branch writer and director of the film Snipped it's nice to meet you Corey.

Corey: Thank you very much.

NCIndieSeen: Tell us a little bit about the film.

Corey: Snipped is a comedy about a man who gets a vasectomy.  It pretty much goes through what men typically go through when they are making a decision to get a vasectomy and the discussion he has with his friends. Most people are uneducated about vasectomies and what it does and even just the procedure.  Technology today makes it pretty easy, so going into that you deal with the discouragement from a male and the encouragement from a female and then the attitude and the emotions that come out of his wife.  He's addressing it as a major surgery and her attitude is I've had three kids you don't know what major surgery is and the insecurity that is there.

NCIndieSeen: Very interesting.  I know that most writers draw from what they know, any personal experience with this?

Corey: (laughs) Very much so.  Actually Snipped is me!  The facts are the information the actor gives about the procedure-- the no scalpel procudure-- doctors call NSP is legitimate the fact that he presents that in the film  is real there is nothing exaggerated about what he says.  There is little cutting and no pain with quick recovery all of that is legitimate.  It's just the fact because you are dealing with getting a vasectomy, the private area of a man, its just over-the-top sensitive. 

NCIndieSeen: How was the production on this?  How long did it take to shoot and how did you assemble cast and crew for the film?

Corey: I worked with some guys out of Atlanta and basically I met Brian who was the cameraman at a baby shower I shared with him I was getting into writing film and he was a videographer had done alot of videos.  We pretty much decided to collaborate together and come up with a project that I can showcase my writing he could showcase his film. Fran came in as the middle man he helped continue to keep the production going.  Brian had alot going on and I live in North Carolina and they live in Atlanta, so its hard for me to stay on top of things because of the distance.  Fran was the one who pretty much made sure things continued to move forward with shooting the film.  It took 3 days total to shoot it. 

NCIndieSeen: What are your thoughts about the North Carolina independent film scene and what kind of advice would you give to filmmakers looking to break out in indie film?

Corey: I still consider myself on the ground level, I say don't get overexcited about things.  I'm no longer overexcited about anything anyone says.  My thing is funding and distribution.  Until someone is standing in front of me with a checkbook, I don't get excited about getting my film out there.  I get excited about doing my work, but in this industry, everyone's ultimate goal is to make money on what they do.  I find myself meeting alot of cousins who know "the man" or friend of a friend who know "the man" who got the checkbook.  I find now I don't even wanna talk about it.  You know I'll hear "oh my cousin works with Denzel..." unless you can pick up the phone and call Denzel, and say I got someone who has some material for you, I'm not impressed.  It doesn't move me anymore.  It used to in the beginning, that's how Snipped came about because one of the guys knew the guy who worked with Denzel in one of his movies.  They knew each other and hung out or whatever and that's cool, and as soon as we get Snipped done and we can hang out and we can talk...been waiting on that phone call.  I realize that Hollywood is all about image, and people like to look good.  Don't get overly excited until someone is willing to close the deal and that check clears.

NCIndieSeen:  Thanks for taking the time to chat and Snipped is currently being screened at the North Carolina Black Film Festival.

The Interview: Ava Duvernay

NCIndieSeen: Tell us a little bit about the film "I Will Follow"

Ava: "I Will Follow" is really about a woman at a crossroads.  The main character name is Maye and she's a makeup artist in New York City.  She has a hot career and a hot boyfriend played by Blair Underwood.  Then tragedy strikes in her family and she has to go home and take care of some things and in the process is struggling to keep her balance and keep her identity and so the film explores how to maintain yourself amidst personal chaos.

NCIndieSeen: Where was it shot and how long did it take for production on that?

Ava: 15 days.  In Topanga Canyon, CA.  I was really interested in Topanga its a canyon community in California.  I'm from California and usually when you wanna see black people on screen they're not against greenery unless they're in the South and its a period piece. So I was really interested in seeing contemporary black people in a canyon setting which happens to not really have been captured on screen.  So in moments in the film you see her walking in the street its greenery and that where they live, which I think that it's a little different from how we usually see ourselves in an urban setting or on the mean streets.

NCIndieSeen:  How did you go about casting in this film?

Ava: I met the casting director Aisha Coley who actually cast Secret Life of Bees and Akeelah and The Bee and did alot of work with Spike Lee and so she was agreed to work with me early on and some of it was Aisha Coley auditioning in meetings and some of it was personal relationships like Blair Underwood is a good friend and his part was written with him in mind with hopes he would come out for a couple of days and do it. It was a mixuture of relationships and standard casting.

NCIndieSeen: What advice would you give to independent filmmakers trying to break out in the film industry and start their own feature films?

Ava:  Well that's a huge question there are so many things to do.  In general you have to have a passion for what you are doing for alot of folks when they are thinking about their first feature they're thinking about ok what will sell in the studios or what's in right now or other trends and I think the best films come from someone's heart and so you can tell when something is being done just to be done and something that means something to someone the film just feel different to the audience, and those that have some kind of connection are the most successful with audiences and stand the test of time I think.  So I would just encourage people to dig deep and bare their soul and make something that's important to them, you may not get another chance.

I Will Follow is currently released in selected theaters this month

Opening Selection at NCBFF: Night Catches Us

Director Tonya Hamilton's NIGHT CATCHES US, starring Anthony Mackey and Kerry Washington, is hailed as a "rare American-independent film to go beyond the private dramas of its protagonists, imagining them as players in broader historical moments." In 1976, after years of mysterious absence, Marcus returns to the Philadelphia neighborhood where he came of age in the midst of the Black Power movement. While his arrival raises suspicion among his family and former neighbors, he finds acceptance from his old friend Patricia and her daughter. However, Marcus quickly finds himself at odds with the organization he once embraced, whose members suspect he orchestrated the slaying of their former comrade-in-arms. In a startling sequence of events, Marcus must protect a secret that could shatter everyone’s beliefs, as he rediscovers his forbidden passion for Patricia. Rated R

I Will Follow

NCBFF screening: I Will Follow

Chronicling a day in the life of a black woman at a personal crossroads, I WILL FOLLOW stars Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Omari Hardwick, Michole White and Dijon Talton, with Blair Underwood and Beverly Todd. In addition to a "thumbs up" from Roger Ebert, the film has garnered praise from critics at Village Voice, LA Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, Philadelphia Inquirer, Seattle Times, BET, New York Daily News and more.

I Will Follow will be screened at 10p.m. at Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC

Wolf Call

It is 1956. the previous year, 14-year-old Emmett Till from Chicago had gone missing in Money, Mississippi. Later, the boy's mutilated body was found in a river. William Bradford Huie of Look magazine sits down with the two men acquitted of the boy's murder, Roy Bryant, Jr. and J.W. Milam, to discuss the trial. Not a word had been uttered outside a courtroom by them or theier kin...until now.

Wolf Call will be screening among a Shorts Block at 6p.m. at Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC

Ava Duvernay to Headline NCBFF

 Critically acclaimed director Ava Duvernay will headline the North Carolina Black Film Festival as it celebrates its 10th year. Duvernay will be recognized as the festival’s Distinguished Filmmaker honoree, for her meritorious contributions to American cinema as a publicist, director, and founder of AFFRM. Fresh from its successful opening weekend, her feature film I WILL FOLLOW begins the second-week expansion from five screens in five cities to 22 screens in 15 cities -- all through the black film distribution collective, AFFRM, founded by Duvernay. The film will screen Friday, March 25, at 10:00 p.m. at Screen Gems Studios.

Critics and filmgoers alike are embracing I WILL FOLLOW. Roger Ebert proclaimed on his national television show, "I WILL FOLLOW is one of the best films I've seen about the loss of a loved one. It isn't sentimental. It isn't superficial. It is very deeply true." His sentiments are echoed by reviewers from the Village Voice, NY Daily News, LA Weekly, Philadelphia Inquirer, Seattle Times, BET and The Hollywood Reporter.

Other additions to the festival include FILM HUSTLE, a nuts and bolts, no-holds barred primer chronicling the outrageous grassroots marketing campaign for the independently produced movie, "CONFESSIONS OF A THUG." After getting a distribution deal with Warner Bros., Daron Fordham and his filmmaking team discover that, "the deal is only the beginning..." with Bill Duke, John Martino, Sally Kirkland and Raymond Forchion as themselves.

Directors E. Raymond Brown and William Arntz’s film GHETTO PHYSICS is heralded as " a radically ingenious, in-your-face documentary 'bursting with insights' by the Philadelphia Inquirer. The film takes an eye-opening look at the power relationships that permeate American society from the toughest street corners to Wall Street, from classrooms to boardrooms.

Several North Carolina filmmakers will be featured during the festival, including Corey Branch director of SNIPPED, Rob Underhill of WOLF CALL, Nakia Hamilton of WELCOME TO PORT CITY, and Nick Dalmacy of SCORN. The North Carolina Black Film Festival (formerly Cine Noir) will be held March 24-27, 2011, at Cameron Art Museum, Hannah Block USO Community Arts Center, and Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC.

The festival will showcase dozens of short and feature-length narratives, documentaries, and animation, with cash prizes awarded for the best films. Tickets are $5 per screening block and $25 for festival passes, which can be used to view any screening. Youth are admitted free to all age-appropriate screenings. The film schedule is posted at

Other highlights include:

CineMixer – Our opening reception will be held at Cameron Art Museum on Thursday, March 24, at 6 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. Sponsored by Ken Weeden & Associates. Cameron Art Museum will also offer free tours of two new exhibits during the CineMixer: “Remembering BIG”, honoring the life and work of the late Allen D. Carter, a.k.a. Big Al or Big, and “From Heart to Hand - African-American Quilts from the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts.”

Emerging Filmmaker Honorees - The 2011 honorees are Charlotte sisters Tajiya, Keita, and Saba. What started out as a hobby to entertain friends and family with self-made short movies has turned into a full-time business for the sisters, ages 13, 17, and 21. They have crafted everything on their animation projects from character drawings, scriptwriting, and music scoring, as well producing and directing each project as a team.

Red Carpet Event for Youth – In association with the screenings for our Emerging Filmmaker honorees, we will host a red carpet event for youth prior to the 2 p.m. screening block on Saturday, March 26, at the Community Arts Center.

Visiting Filmmakers – Specially arranged tours of Screen Gems Studios and other film industry venues will be held on Friday, March 25.

The NCBFF is produced by the Black Arts Alliance, Inc. Sponsors include the North Carolina Arts Council, the Landfall Foundation, Cameron Art Museum, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Screen Gems Studios, Hannah Block USO Community Arts Center, Ken Weeden & Associates, DigiEffects, Coast 97.3, and Colortyme.


Rhonda Bellamy, Festival Director


Film Festival Junkie

I am a self-proclaimed film festival junkie.  There is nothing better than the ambiance of all that is cinema.  Festivals contain a plethora of events such as mixers, Q&A's, screenings, seminars, parties, and red carpet premieres.  As a self-proclaimed festival junkie, I've seen it all from small festivals held at college campuses that embrace academic film programs, to large festivals with red carpet premieres patronized by A-list celebrities. 

I've seen the whole gamut and love each and every aspect of it.  Film festivals happen throughout the year and each season has its own flavor.  You can be a snow bunny at Sundance with boots, parka, and a wool scarf.  Or you can attend a summer retreat at the NC Gay & Lesbian Film Festival in August and you can wear sandals with your festival badge.  Fall into Cucalorus or Spring into Tribeca.  There is no doubt that there is a festival for every season.  A film festival attendee can choose to go for a variety of reasons.

Networking is the key to any film festival.  The sky is the limit as to whom you may meet at any given festival.  You can meet a famous Hollywood producer or you can meet a fellow filmmaker, writer, or actor like yourself who is willing to collaborate with you on a future project.  Another reason you may choose to go the festival route is because you have a freakish addiction to movies.  If you're a cinephile, you can watch several movies (sometimes hundreds) within a given week.  You can watch any film, of any length, and of any genre all hours of the day into the late evening.  You may find yourself waking up the next morning with a movie hangover.  You ever had one of those?  Drives me crazy!  So keep that in mind and be careful! 

Film festivals are also a great opportunity to gain tons of wisdom about the film biz.  Many festivals offer seminars and Q&A functions that allow avid film fans to ask filmmakers, writers, and actors about the production process or to engage in comments or questions about the film just screened.  There are workshops available that can help with a myriad of biz tips like how to launch a production company to resume writing.

Finally, some attendees are all about the parties!  Depending on the festival, there can be a party for every event at the festival.  At times, you can find yourself attending 3 or 4 parties a night.  Parties are a great way to relax and hang loose with fellow attendees and festival staff members.  Great food and drink (sometimes even an open bar!) are available to festival patrons to help celebrate.

As a film festival junkie, I embrace all of these elements of the festival circuit and find myself going through periods of withdrawal in-between festivals.  I always need that fix!  Are you a film festival junkie??


NC Black Film Festival CineMixer - The opening reception will be held at Cameron Art Museum on Thursday, March 24, from 6-7 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. Sponsored by Ken Weeden & Associates.

Red Carpet Event for Youth - In association with the screenings for our Emerging Filmmaker honorees, they will host a red carpet event for youth prior to the 2 p.m. screening block on Saturday, March 26, at the Community Arts Center.

Emerging Filmmaker Honorees - The 2011 honorees are Charlotte sisters Tajiya, Keita, and Saba. What started out as a hobby to entertain friends and family with self-made short movies has turned into a full-time business for the sisters, ages 13, 17, and 21. They have crafted everything on their animation projects from character drawings, scriptwriting, and music scoring, as well producing and directing each project as a team.

Robert Redford, Sundance Institute and AEG Europe Launch

Robert Redford, the non-profit Sundance Institute and AEG Europe today announced Sundance London, a four-day multi-disciplinary arts festival that will include film screenings, live music performances, discussions, panels and other public cultural programming to be held 26th – 29th April, 2012 at the world’s most popular music and entertainment venue, The O2.

AEG Europe, owner and operator of The O2, Robert Redford, and his non-profit Sundance Institute will join together to present films from American filmmakers as well as current American music. Sundance Institute, which annually presents the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, U.S.A, will act as curator of the film component , while AEG Europe will use its industry-leading venue and marketing teams to stage and promote music and other related events at The O2.

Speaking to press at The 02, Robert Redford said, "We are excited to partner with AEG Europe to bring a particular slice of American culture to life in the inspired setting of The O2, and in this city of such rich cultural history." Redford continued, "It is our mutual goal to bring to the UK, the very best in current American independent cinema, to introduce the artists responsible for it, and in essence help build a picture of our country that is broadly reflective of the diversity of voices not always seen in our cultural exports."

Alex Hill, Senior Executive Director at AEG Europe said: “The O2 is famous for its exciting and diverse events schedule, but we’re particularly proud to be hosting Sundance London next year. Mr. Redford’s passion for the arts, the depth of his many businesses and the curatorial reputation of Sundance Institute are world renowned and we see this as a natural extension of the music and sporting events presented at The O2 since we opened in 2007. We look forward to extending a warm welcome to the best of the film industry in 2012.”

From Los Angeles, Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute added: “We look forward to bringing to UK audiences some of the most exciting independent American films from the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. The environment provided by AEG and The O2, coupled with London’s reputation as a global cultural destination, should make for a rich and rewarding festival experience and provide the artists with a unique and memorable opportunity.”

Information regarding ticketing and programming may be found at

Punch Me

Punch Me is a 2011 award-winning short film drama about a young man who must embrace his identity or risk losing the two people he loves most. The film examines important messages regarding self, parental and societal acceptance as well as love and health awareness.

With a romance on the rocks and a father on his sick bed, a young man must accept his true identity before he loses the two people he loves the most.

Punch Me emerges amid the tragic suicides of several teenagers in the United States as a result of homophobic bullying.

The film will be screened at the NC Black Film Festival on Friday, March 25th, 2011 at 6PM and Saturday, March 26th, 2011 @ 4PM in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Check out the trailer here:

Take Too Long

In New Orleans, should you survive the winds, the floods and the heat, you are welcome to the dark, on a carpet of shit; without food, drink or dignity.

In the wake of hurricane Katrina, a young couple, Rich and Jessica, attempt to reunite with Rich’s father, Lou Robinson, but an ignorant and under staffed police department (combined with massive flooding and disorganization of a city in peril) conspire to make the reunion almost impossible.

Take Too Long will be screened at Screen Gems Studios at the NC Black Film Festival on Friday March 25th.

Whatever Happened To Rory Cochrane?

First time I saw Rory Cochrane was in the Richard Linklater flick Dazed and Confused.  A great indie era for movies about disillusioned suburbanite teens not giving a damn about the world around them was the 90's.  Linklater ruled the 90's in independent film.  Rory played Ron Slater a stoner who was a pretty cool Mo Fo is you know what I mean.  After all who knew Martha Washington was a pothead?  Just take a look at this clip below so you can see what I'm talking about:

After Dazed and Confused Rory went on to do a substantial amount of awesomely cool indie flicks.  Remember Love and a .45?  It's a forgotten indie film of the past, but Rory played Billy Mack Black, a drug addicted crazed murderer who turns on his old prison buddy after a score.  He's bald and full of tats and you just know this guy has more than a few screws loose, but you love to hate him...or do you hate to love him? 

I remember seeing Empire Records and thinking I want to hang out with these people in real life.  I mean who wouldn't have wanted to work in that record store?  The cast of characters were just that cool and Rory's character Lucas was certainly no exception. Poor Lucas discovers that the store is being bought out and he decides to take the cash receipts and go to Atlantic City.  He had something going with the mop top haircut and the goth attire, not his best, but I liked it. 

Rory went on to do several other films including Flawless and of course the wicked psychotic and yet cryptic Linklater animated flick A Scanner Darkly.  However, then Rory just...fell off.  The indie circuit that is.  Rory left film and branched over to the small screen and starred in TV shows like "CSI Miami" and "24".  Not sure why he left his big screen indie and went for mainstream small screen but I guess you do what you gotta do to pay the rent. 

I miss seeing Rory in indie film.  Please come back.  Perhaps Richard Linklater can cast him in his next film.  The two have built a long term rapport, there's gotta be something out there.  Please no more horribly bad films like Public Enemies either.  If anyone out there has a script out there that you think Rory would be good in email us and we'll let his agent know.  He needs all the help he can get.  Seriously....Rory we need you back.

RECUT: 500 Days Of Summer

JGL and Zooey Deschanel star in a thriller about obsession and lost dreams. Is this Fatal Attraction meets Inception? Or just another piece of trailer trash?

Indie Turned it Selling Out?

It always bewilders me when an independent film actor who makes a conscious effort to stay underground in their cinematic career and then suddenly decides to go mainstream.  Joseph Gordon Levitt (aka JGL) is not exempt from this process.  Many indie actors like Parker Posey, Ryan Gosling, Anthony Mackie, and Jesse Eisenberg have decided to follow suit.  Is it selling out when an actor goes mainstream?  Or is it a way to show some versatility in their career to "stay the course" within the industry without sinking deep down into underground cinematic obscurity.

It's the actor whose face you totally recognize and movies you totally know, but you have no clue what their name is.  A PR agent has a responsibility to make sure you know the name of their client.  In some cases, they make sure you know the bits and pieces of their personal life too. However, maybe it is not about PR, maybe its about scripts?  The lackluster material coming out lately even within the indie circuit could be the reason why actors are not walking, but running into the other direction.  It seems as if the really good indie scripts out there are being outsourced to big wig movie studios. 

The fact that an indie film like Hurt Locker gained such attention is attracting major studios to finance independent films.  As you can see, there are a myriad of reasons why loyal indie actors turn mainstream.  The bigger question here it good or bad?  Good because it generates more work for that actor?  Or bad because they leave their roots and forget about their ties to the indie community?

It's an interesting prospect to ponder either the ticket holder, you be the judge.

Will You Be There?

The North Carolina Black Film Festival (formerly Cine Noir) will be held March 24-27, 2011, at Cameron Art Museum, Hannah Block USO Community Arts Center, and Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC. In its 10th year, the festival will showcase dozens of short and feature-length narratives, documentaries, and animation, with cash prizes awarded for the best films. Tickets are $5 per screening block and $25 for festival passes, which can be used to view any screening. Youth are admitted free to all age-appropriate screenings. The film schedule is posted at

Highlights include:

CineMixer – Our opening reception will be held at Cameron Art Museum on Thursday, March 24, from 6-7

p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. Sponsored by Ken Weeden & Associates. Cameron Art Museum will also offer free tours of two new exhibits during the CineMixer: “Remembering BIG”, honoring the life and work of the late Allen D. Carter, a.k.a. Big Al or Big, and “From Heart to Hand - African-American Quilts from the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts.”

Emerging Filmmaker Honorees - The 2011 honorees are Charlotte sisters Tajiya, Keita, and Saba. What started out as a hobby to entertain friends and family with self-made short movies has turned into a full-time business for the sisters, ages 13, 17, and 21. They have crafted everything on their animation projects from character drawings, scriptwriting, and music scoring, as well producing and directing each project as a team.

Red Carpet Event for Youth – In association with the screenings for our Emerging Filmmaker honorees, we will host a red carpet event for youth prior to the 2 p.m. screening block on Saturday, March 26, at the Community Arts Center.

Visiting Filmmakers – Specially arranged tours of Screen Gems Studios and other film industry venues will be held on Friday, March 25.

The NCBFF is produced by the Black Arts Alliance, Inc. Sponsors include the North Carolina Arts Council, the Landfall Foundation, Cameron Art Museum, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Screen Gems Studios, Hannah Block USO Community Arts Center, Ken Weeden & Associates, DigiEffects, Coast 97.3, and Colortyme.


Rhonda Bellamy, Festival Director


NCIndieSeen Wants To Know YOU!

NCIndieSeen is an outlet for all indie filmmakers, writers, and actors to get involved and in "the know" of what is happening in the North Carolina independent film scene. This site provides a wealth of information ranging from entertainment news, discussion of pop culture, and can be used as a tool for networking.

If you are a filmmaker and would love to tell us about your film background, education, imdb profile, etc. We would love to hear from you! Tell us a little about yourself and we will post your info on the blog for all the world to see!

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NC Black Film Festival

The Black Arts Alliance is pleased to present the North Carolina Black Film Festival, formerly Cine Noir Festival of Black Film. Celebrating its tenth year, the four-day festival will be held March 24-27, 2011 at Cameron Art Museum, Hannah Block Second Street Stage, and Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC. The festival spotlights features, shorts, documentaries and animation by and about African Americans, with cash prizes awarded to the best works in each genre.

The opening night reception, Thursday, March 24, at 6pm is free and open to the public. The opening selection, to be announced, will screen at 7pm. Tickets are $10. All other tickets are $5 per screening block and $25 for festival passes.

10th Anniversary of the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC

“It’s our tenth Tribeca Film Festival, and in our relatively brief existence we have evolved dramatically,” says Nancy Schafer, Executive Director of the Tribeca Film Festival. “The Festival has become an integral part of the cultural landscape of New York City as well as a globally recognized platform for storytelling.”

The 2011 film selection includes feature films from 32 different countries, including 43 World Premieres, 10 International Premieres, 19 North American Premieres, 7 U.S. Premieres and 9 New York Premieres. Ninety-nine directors will be presenting feature works at the Festival, with 54 of these filmmakers presenting their feature directorial debuts. Twelve feature film directors are returning TFF filmmakers. The 2011 film slate was chosen from a total of 5,624 submissions, a record number for the Festival.

“In programming the Festival this year we had to make some incredibly difficult decisions, but we are excited about the quality, ingenuity, risk-taking and diversity of this year’s program,” says David Kwok, Director of Programming. “We are particularly proud that we have 12 directors returning to Tribeca with their feature films as well as the opportunity to showcase an excellent number of films that have been supported by the Tribeca Film Institute.”

Kwok added, “We believe the competition this year is one of our most diverse yet—it includes countries and genres never before represented and highlights the spectrum of world cinema out there today. In our new Viewpoints section, we celebrate films that have unique, personal perspectives in their approach to their subjects, and which connect a wide range of global stories. We can’t wait to share them with our audiences.”

The Festival will introduce new awards this year for films in competition, honoring cinematography, screenwriting and editing, providing further opportunity for those in their field to be recognized. New this year, the Best New Narrative Director and Best New Documentary Director awards are now open to any filmmaker in the Festival making the North American or wider premiere of his or her first feature film.

Now in its second year, the Tribeca Online Film Festival, also supported by Founding Sponsor American Express, will be free and offers features, short films, special events, conversations and red carpet coverage, allowing audiences across the U.S. to experience Tribeca wherever they are.


World Narrative and Documentary Competition

This year, 12 narrative and 12 documentary features all making their North American, International, or World Premieres will compete for combined unrestricted cash prizes amounting to $150,000 and donated artwork from Chanel’s artists program, featuring renowned artists including Robert De Niro Sr., Inka Essenhigh and Stephen Hannock.

The complete list of films selected for the World Narrative Feature and World Documentary Competition is as follows:

World Narrative Feature Competition
The 12 films in the World Narrative Competition—featuring filmmakers from 11 countries, five female directors, and five first-time directors—represent a diverse range of styles and stories in contemporary global cinema. Themes of displacement and coming-of-age resonate throughout this year’s World Narrative Competition. Whether ejected from society because of high school pettiness gone wild (Turn me on, goddammit) or forbidden to have a romance by their religion (Cairo Exit), some characters are struggling to cope with being forced onto the fringes. Others favor self-exile, like two chocolatiers with an intense fear of human connection (Romantics Anonymous), or a young woman who escapes to Mexico to recover from drug addiction with other emotional runaways (Artificial Paradises). Characters young and old are coming to a crossroads in these films. From the intensity of budding girlhood (She Monkeys) and a boy genius searching for his biological father (Jesus Henry Christ) to an aging hustler trying to stave off obsolescence and even the legendary Butch Cassidy reimagined as a recluse trying to return home—coming-of-age proves to be a challenge at any age. Films in this section compete for the Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature, Best New Narrative Director, Best Actor and Actress, Best Screenplay, and Best Cinematography.
· Angels Crest, directed by Gaby Dellal, written by Catherine Trieschmann. (UK, Canada) – World Premiere. In the working-class Rocky Mountain town of Angels Crest, young father Ethan (Thomas Dekker) is doing his best to raise his three-year-old son Nate. He has no choice—Nate’s mother (Lynn Collins) is an alcoholic. But one snowy day Ethan’s momentary lapse in judgment results in tragedy, catapulting the town’s tight-knit community into strange new directions as they try to decide where the blame lies. With Jeremy Piven, Elizabeth McGovern, Mira Sorvino, and Kate Walsh.

Artificial Paradises (Paraísos Artificiales), directed by Yulene Olaizola, written by Yulene Olaizola and Fernando del Razo. (Mexico) – North American Premiere. This beautifully rendered atmospheric story captures a young woman addicted to heroin trying to get clean at a rundown resort on the Mexican Gulf Coast. There she meets a local character and the two begin a unique rapport. First-time narrative filmmaker Yulene Olaizola subverts the conventional addict story and imbues her main characters with a complexity and honesty that inspires this delicate and resonant journey of two old souls. In Spanish with English subtitles.

· Black Butterflies, directed by Paula van der Oest, written by Greg Latter. (Germany, Netherlands, South Africa) – International Premiere. Poetry, politics, madness, and desire collide in the true story of the woman hailed as South Africa’s Sylvia Plath. In 1960s Cape Town, as Apartheid steals the expressive rights of blacks and whites alike, young Ingrid Jonker (Carice van Houten, Black Book) finds her freedom scrawling verse while frittering through a series of stormy affairs. Amid escalating quarrels with her lovers and her government-censor father (Rutger Hauer), the poet witnesses an unconscionable event that will alter her life’s course. In English.

· Blackthorn, directed by Mateo Gil, written by Miguel Barros. (Spain, France, Bolivia, USA) – World Premiere. Legend has it notorious American outlaw Butch Cassidy was killed in Bolivia in 1908. Mateo Gil’s classic Western, however, finds Cassidy (Sam Shepard) 20 years later living on in hiding under the identity of James Blackthorn—and yearning for one last sight of home. Joining forces with a Spanish mine robber named Eduardo, Blackthorn sets out on one final adventure across the sublime landscape of the Bolivian frontier. In English, Spanish with English subtitles.

· Cairo Exit (El Korough), directed by Hesham Issawi, written by Hesham Issawi and Amal Afify. (Egypt, United Arab Emirates) – International Premiere. When 18-year-old Amal becomes pregnant, she struggles with the choice between absconding to Greece with her beloved Muslim boyfriend and staying in Cairo with her Coptic Orthodox Christian family. But when her motorbike gets stolen and she’s fired from her job, Amal must reevaluate her future options as an unmarried young mother in Egypt. In Arabic with English subtitles.

· Grey Matter (Matière Grise), directed and written by Kivu Ruhorahoza. (Rwanda, Australia) – World Premiere. When his grant falls through a few days before production, a young filmmaker hides the bad news from his team and continues preparations on his film The Cycle of the Cockroach without financing or equipment. Reality blurs as scenes from the script suddenly begin to materialize—can this film exist only in his dreams? Assured direction is bolstered by strong and creative visual imagery in one of Rwanda’s first feature-length narrative films. In Kinyarwanda, French with English subtitles.

· Jesus Henry Christ, directed and written by Dennis Lee. (USA) – World Premiere. Precocious doesn’t even begin to describe Henry James Hermin, a petri dish child who writes rabble-rousing manifestos on the nature of truth… at age 10. This boy-genius misfit’s world turns upside down when—to the dismay of the doting single mother who raised him—he embarks on a search for his biological father. Toni Collette and Michael Sheen star alongside bright newcomers Jason Spevack and Samantha Weinstein in this charming comedy that beams with off-the-wall humor and visual flair.

· The Kite (Patang), directed and written by Prashant Bhargava. (India, USA) – North American Premiere. A family saga set against the colorful spectacle of the Uttarayan, India’s largest kite festival, The Kite is a kaleidoscopic whirlwind of energy, romance, and turmoil. A businessman arrives in Ahmedabad for a surprise visit to his once grand family home, bringing with him his daughter and some unexpected news for the family’s future. Amongst the flurry of preparations and the energy of the festival itself, the transformative and intersecting tales of six characters unfold. In English, Hindi with English subtitles.

· The Last Rites of Joe May, directed and written by Joe Maggio. (USA) – World Premiere. Small-time Chicago hustler Joe May (the incomparable Dennis Farina) always felt like a great destiny awaited him, but with his health ailing and his age advancing, he’s never looked more like a bum. Broke and evicted, he’s taken in by a troubled young mother and daughter, in whom he finds one last shot to be a hero. Pulsing with the spirit of classic urban dramas, The Last Rites of Joe May is a subtle, sophisticated tale of redemption.

· Romantics Anonymous (Les émotifs anonymes), directed by Jean-Pierre Améris, written by Jean-Pierre Améris and Philippe Blasband. (France, Belgium) – International Premiere. Two pathologically shy neurotics connect through a love of chocolate in this delectably witty romantic comedy. For Angelique and Jean-René, the social world is one big emotional minefield best avoided. She’s a reclusive candymaker looking for a job, and he runs a chocolate factory in dire need of her savant-like skill. Fate may bring them together, but they’ll need to overcome their common fears to find fairy-tale love. In French with English subtitles.

· She Monkeys (Apflickorna), directed by Lisa Aschan, written by Josefine Adolfsson and Lisa Aschan. (Sweden) – North American Premiere. When 15-year-old Emma lands a competitive spot on the equestrian acrobatics team, she is taken under the wing of a pretty, slightly older teammate, Cassandra. The two begin an intense relationship where the rules of the game blur as psychological stakes get higher and higher. Lisa Aschan’s award-winning directorial debut explores the all-consuming world of teen female friendships through naturalistic direction, evocative imagery, and engrossing performances. In Swedish with English subtitles.

· Turn me on, goddammit (Få meg på, for faen), directed and written by Jannicke Systad Jacobsen. (Norway) – World Premiere. Alma is a small-town teenager with an active imagination and an even more active libido. After a titillating but awkward encounter with school heartthrob Artur turns her into a social outcast, Alma is desperate to move out of town and on with her life. Turn me on, goddammit is an offbeat coming-of-age comedy with a deadpan sense of humor, enlivened by its rich sense of fantasy and frank but sweet approach to teen sexuality. In Norwegian with English subtitles.

World Documentary Feature Competition
The 12 films of this year’s World Documentary Competition tackle today’s stories with their own singular approach to the evolving nonfiction form. From an innocent man serving a life sentence for murder in Give Up Tomorrow to a pregnant HIV-positive wife coping with the lack of opportunities in The Carrier, these films interrogate themes of personal or systematic injustice and weave stories of resistance against oppression in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Among these modern-day David and Goliath stories is a tale of forbidden love between an Israeli and a Palestinian (Love During Wartime), a chronicle of ailing military families holding the U.S. Marine Corps accountable for their willful ignorance of contaminated water (Semper Fi: Always Faithful), and even a four-year-old running prodigy caught in a crossfire of political scandal and ulterior motives (Marathon Boy). The extraordinary potential of children also threads through several documentaries in the Competition. While some films celebrate kids who are nurtured to success, like the inspirational Koran By Heart, others point to the dangers of squandered potential when youthful promise is stifled, witnessed in the ethnically segregated Roma children of Our School or the unfairly abused youth of The Bully Project. Films in this section compete for Best Documentary Feature, Best New Documentary Director, and Best Editing.

· Bombay Beach, directed by Alma Har’el. (USA, Israel) – North American Premiere. The rusting relic of a failed 1960s development boom, the Salton Sea is a barren California landscape and symbol of the failure of the American dream. Using a stylized amalgam of cinema verité and choreographed dance, Bombay Beach revisits this poetically fruitful terrain to find a motley cast including a bipolar seven-year-old, a lovelorn football star, and an octogenarian poet-prophet— creating a moving, distinctive, and slightly surreal documentary experience.

· The Bully Project, directed by Lee Hirsch. (USA) – World Premiere. More than 18 million young people in the U.S. will be bullied this year. This alarming documentary takes us into a disquieting year in the life of several students joining this staggering statistic. As teachers and parents struggle to find the answers, the students do what they can to survive a school day. Rare access and emotionally charged footage offer a never-before-seen exploration of America’s bullying crisis and a necessary call to action.

· The Carrier, directed by Maggie Betts. (USA) – World Premiere. Young mother Mutinta is a Zambian subsistence farmer in a polygamous marriage who has just learned she is HIV positive. Newly pregnant, Mutinta does everything she can to protect her unborn baby while navigating complicated family dynamics and village politics. Newcomer Maggie Betts sculpts a sensitive observational portrait of one woman’s struggle leading up to her newborn’s birth. In Tonga with English subtitles.

· Cinema Komunisto, directed by Mila Turajlic. (Serbia) – North American Premiere. For 32 years, Leka Konstantinovic was the personal film projectionist for Yugoslavian president and noted film enthusiast Josip Broz Tito. Comprised of interviews with Konstantinovic and other important figures in the brief but glowing history of Yugoslavian cinema, as well as archival clips from more than 60 films, Cinema Komunisto is a vibrant, fascinating celebration of a film industry—and a nation—that no longer exists. In Serbian with English subtitles.

· Despicable Dick and Righteous Richard, directed by Joshua Neale. (UK) – World Premiere. Richard has been pissing people off for 50 years. A recovering alcoholic from North Dakota, he finally musters the courage to complete the eighth and ninth steps of the 12-Step Program. With a list of everyone he’s wronged—from ex-wives to ex-mistresses, abandoned children to slighted pals—Richard tries to make amends. But has he really changed? Soulful folk music and rich characters bring levity and humor to an emotional story of redemption.

· Give Up Tomorrow, directed by Michael Collins. (USA, UK) – International Premiere. In 1997, Paco Larrañaga was arrested for the murder of two teenage sisters on a provincial island in the Philippines. Over the next 13 years, his case became the highest profile in the nation’s history, and the focal point in a far-reaching exposé of gross miscarriage of justice. At once an engrossing murder mystery, a courtroom drama, and a stunning indictment of national corruption, Give Up Tomorrow is an enraging true crime chronicle. In English, Spanish, Tagalog with English subtitles.

· Jiro Dreams of Sushi, directed by David Gelb. (USA) – North American Premiere. An appetizing documentary in every sense, Jiro Dreams of Sushi follows 85-year-old master sushi chef Jiro Ono, paying lushly photographed homage to the process of preparing the artisan sushi that earned Ono’s esteemed Sukiyabashi Jiro restaurant three Michelin stars. From the complicated relationship between Jiro and his sons to the ins and outs of the tuna auction, this spirited film profiles all aspects of Jiro’s craft in tantalizing style and detail. In Japanese with English subtitles.

· Koran By Heart, directed by Greg Barker. (USA, UK) – World Premiere. The world’s preeminent Koran-recitation competition takes place each year in Cairo, drawing Muslim children from as far as Tajikistan and the Maldives to perform in front of a panel of prominent judges. Following these talented youngsters from their intense preparation regimes through the rigorous rounds of the tournament, Koran By Heart is both an inspirational competition film and an engaging survey of the unique experiences of Muslim children throughout the world. In Arabic, Dhivehi, English, Tajik, Wolof, Buck with English subtitles.

· Love During Wartime, directed and written by Gabriella Bier. (Sweden) – North American Premiere. Jasmin and Assi are newlyweds, but building a life together seems impossible: She’s an Israeli, he’s a Palestinian. When their homelands turn their backs on them, they choose to live in exile. This tender tale of a love infiltrated by politics follows a real-life Romeo and Juliet on their odyssey from the Middle East through an inhospitable Europe. As their hopes rise and then fade with each bureaucratic hurdle, will their love survive? In Hebrew, Arabic, English, German with English subtitles.

· Marathon Boy, directed by Gemma Atwal. (UK, USA, India) – North American Premiere. Gemma Atwal’s fascinating and dynamic epic follows Budhia, a four-year-old boy plucked from the slums of India and trained as a marathon prodigy by Biranchi Das, a larger-than-life judo coach who runs an orphanage in the eastern state of Orissa. But over the next five years and dozens of marathons, Budhia’s roller-coaster journey turns from an uplifting story of promise and opportunity to one of greed, corruption, and broken dreams. In Oriya, English, Hindi with English subtitles.

· Our School (Scoala Noastra), directed by Mona Nicoara and Miruna Coca-Cozma. (USA, Switzerland) – North American Premiere. Our School follows three Roma (commonly known as Gypsy) children in a rural Transylvanian village who are among the pioneer participants in an initiative to integrate the ethnically segregated Romanian schools. Touching on issues ranging from institutionalized prejudice, public education, and the intractability of poverty, but always firmly rooted in the hypnotic rhythms and profound reality of the Roma community, Our School is a deeply affecting, often infuriating, and ultimately bittersweet story of tradition and progress. In Romanian with English subtitles.

· Semper Fi: Always Faithful, directed by Rachel Libert and Tony Hardmon. (USA) – World Premiere. Iraq war veteran Jerry Ensminger’s loyalty was always to the Marine Corps. But after his nine-year-old daughter died of a rare type of leukemia, Jerry’s relentless search for answers leads to a shocking discovery exposing of the largest water contamination sites in U.S. history. Living by the Marine creed, this drill sergeant-turned-activist puts his own pain aside and takes on the top brass in an impassioned struggle for justice on behalf of his fellow soldiers and family.

New in 2011, the Viewpoints program presents 11 narrative features and nine documentaries as a snapshot of international independent cinema that immerses audiences in distinctive perspectives. Grounded in the personal stories of real-life characters around the world, the documentaries in this program feature intimate portraits of a woman whose own life was overshadowed by the famous beat writers she loved (Love Always, Carolyn), another who must adapt to being poor after the sudden loss of her fortune (The Good Life), and a now-grown “test-tube baby” who uses online social media to connect with biological kin (Donor Unknown). Similarly, the narrative films in Viewpoints also immerse viewers in deeply personal stories while stretching the stylistic potential of the medium, as in the Serbian musical tragedy White, White World or the low-budget American indie comedy Rid of Me.

· The Ballad of Genesis and Lady Jaye, directed by Marie Losier. (USA, France) – New York Premiere, Documentary. Filmmaker and TFF alum Marie Losier, who has created engaging short films on avant-garde artists like George Kuchar and Guy Maddin, makes her feature documentary debut with a mesmerizing and deeply romantic love story between pioneering musician and performance artist Genesis P-Orridge and soul mate Lady Jaye. Breaking new ground in its depiction of gender identity, Ballad chronicles the physical and spiritual merging of two beings into one.

· Donor Unknown, directed by Jerry Rothwell. (UK) – North American Premiere, Documentary. JoEllen Marsh grew up knowing her father only as Donor 150. As one of the first generation of “test-tube babies,” she yearns for connection with potential siblings, and turns to the Internet to track them down. As JoEllen slowly broadens her family tree, in the process she forges a fascinatingly modern model of family. After connecting with dozens of siblings across the country, JoEllen decides it’s finally time to seek out Donor 150.

· Flowers of Evil (Fleurs du Mal), directed by David Dusa, written by David Dusa, Raphaëlle Maes, and Louise Molière. (France) – North American Premiere, Narrative. Paris-Tehran. A rootless story of young love between Gecko, an Algerian-French hotel bellman and parkourer, and Anahita, an Iranian student forced to leave her country for her own safety after the controversial elections in 2009. Obsessed with tracking the political movement, Anahita’s friends broadcast through YouTube and coordinate via Twitter. Romance and the Internet become the ground to explore histories lost and identity yet to be found. In French, Farsi with English subtitles.

· Gnarr, directed by Gaukur Úlfarsson. (Iceland) – International Premiere, Documentary. You’ll never see politics the same after this raucous documentary. Following his country’s economic meltdown, acerbic Icelandic comedian Jon Gnarr launches his own political party, The Best Party. His platform? Free trips to Disneyland, more polar bears in the zoo, and refusing to work with anyone who doesn’t watch The Wire. But when support for Gnarr’s wacky mayoral bid surprisingly snowballs, what started out as a joke quickly captures the imagination of a nation desperate for a change. In Icelandic with English subtitles.

· Gone, directed by Gretchen Morning and John Morning. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary. What would you do if you got a call that your grown son had mysteriously vanished while living abroad? In this riveting, confessional documentary, retired New York cop Kathy Gilleran describes her heartrending journey. In her search for her missing gay son in Vienna, Austria, Gilleran encounters a homophobic police force, unexpected discrepancies in the investigation, and suspicious circumstances. This is her story—a mother’s determination to find truth or simply an answer.

· The Good Life (Det gode liv), directed by Eva Mulvad. (Denmark) – North American Premiere, Documentary. How do you cope with being broke after having lived a life of luxury and privilege? This is the fundamental question facing spoiled Anne Mette and her mother, a once-rich family now living off a small pension and struggling to adapt to their new situation in a coastal Portuguese hamlet. A Grey Gardens for the current financial era, The Good Life is a character study at turns touching and frustrating, but ultimately poignant. In English, Danish, Portuguese with English subtitles.

· The Journals of Musan (Musan Il-gi), directed by Park Jungbum. (South Korea) – North American Premiere, Narrative. Park Jungbum’s stunning and much-lauded debut is the story of a North Korean defector forging a life in capitalist South Korea. As both director and actor, Park (assistant director of Lee Chang-dong’s stirring Poetry) fully realizes a disarmingly beautiful vision of loneliness, disconnect, and ethical ambiguity in this story of a lost soul’s struggle to connect. In Korean with English subtitles.

· Lotus Eaters, directed by Alexandra McGuinness, written by Alexandra McGuinness and Brendan Grant. (UK) – World Premiere, Narrative. The bright young things of London’s social elite lead an existence as languorous and lavish as it is self-destructive. At the center is Alice, a stunning ex-model unable to keep up with the high standards of living her peers feverishly chase. Alexandra McGuinness’ directorial debut presents a contemporary black-and-white portrait of overlapping cliques of friends struggling to get their lives under control before they fall numb to it all.

· Love Always, Carolyn, directed by Maria Ramström and Malin Korkeasalo. (Sweden) – World Premiere, Documentary. They say behind every great man is a great woman. Carolyn Cassady was behind two. Wife of beatnik icon Neal Cassady and lover-muse of Jack Kerouac, Carolyn saw her life story and the memory of the men she loved hijacked by mythmakers. Love Always, Carolyn is the intimate, graceful portrait of a patient matriarch who could never escape the constant wake of her husband’s epic misadventures.

· Magic Valley, directed and written by Jaffe Zinn. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. As one warm October day unfolds, the sleepy town of Buhl, Idaho will never be the same. A fish farmer finds his crop destroyed, a couple of kids are playing an unusual game in the sun-dappled fields, and after a wild party a sleepless teenager is harboring an awful secret…. First-time director Jaffe Zinn presents an atmospheric picture of small-town life with a keen eye and assured hand.

· Maria My Love, directed and written by Jasmine McGlade Chazelle. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. Disoriented by her mother’s death and resentful of her father’s mistakes, a twentysomething woman leaves Santa Barbara for Los Angeles to reconnect with her half-sister. Inspired by a new romance, she decides to help others through volunteer work, but soon gets entangled in an emotionally complex situation revealing more about herself than she might be ready for. Judy Marte (Raising Victor Vargas) and Karen Black star.

· The Miners’ Hymns, directed by Bill Morrison, written by Bill Morrison, Jóhann Jóhannsson, and David Metcalfe. (UK, USA) – World Premiere, Documentary. Experimental filmmaker and frequent TFF alum Bill Morrison combines newly shot aerial scenes that he filmed himself with historic found-footage images of the mining communities of Northeast England that he culled from the British archives. Morrison creates a moving and formally elegant tribute to this vanished era of working-class life, enriched by an original score by avant-garde Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson.

· My Last Round (Mi Último Round), directed and written by Julio Jorquera. (Chile, Argentina) – North American Premiere, Narrative. When successful boxer Octavio falls in love with kitchen hand Hugo, they move from their small-town homes in the south of Chile to capital city Santiago to protect their taboo relationship. But when Hugo feels unexpected desire for co-worker Jennifer, Octavio is left heartbroken and throws himself into a high-stakes boxing match against all odds. A handsome cast and evocative cinematography offer a sexy, subtle film that evokes hits like The Wrestler and Brokeback Mountain. In Spanish with English subtitles.

· NEDS, directed and written by Peter Mullan. (UK) – US Premiere, Narrative. Directed by actor/director Peter Mullan (My Name Is Joe, The Magdalene Sisters), NEDS takes place in the gritty and savage world of 1970s Glasgow. On the brink of adolescence, John McGill is a bright and sensitive boy. He’s eager to learn and full of promise, but with no one willing to give him a chance, young John descends into a violent life of crime. NEDS is an intense and tragic portrayal of the loss of hope.

· Rid of Me, directed and written by James Westby. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. When she moves to Portland, Oregon, Meris does her best to fit in with her husband’s clique of old high school buddies—until she gets dumped. Her life trashed, she takes a job as a candy store clerk, opening unexpected worlds into the Northwest underground punk scene and Cambodian rock. A low budget is no barrier to creativity and cinematic innovation in this black comedy of embarrassments about sticking up for yourself no matter how messy.

· Splinters, directed by Adam Pesce. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary. In the remote seaside village of Vanimo in Papua New Guinea, there are hardly any jobs—but there are infinite prime waves. Twenty years after the first board was introduced on the island, surfing has become a way of life. This spirited documentary, tinged by joyful music and fascinating glimpses into a rare culture, follows four local surfers competing in the country’s first-ever national surfing championships in the hopes their surfboards will carry them to a better life. In English, Tok Pisen with English subtitles.

· Stuck Between Stations, directed by Brady Kiernan, written by Nat Bennett and Sam Rosen. (USA) – World Premiere. Casper, a young soldier home on leave, has a chance run-in with his childhood crush, now a grad student coping with conflicts of her own. In one night, the two traverse a striking Minneapolis cityscape, growing closer but knowing they will inevitably have to part ways at dawn. Featuring standout performances by rising indie stars Zoe Lister-Jones and Sam Rosen, and supported by cameos from Josh Hartnett and Michael Imperioli, Stuck Between Stations is a touching and authentic snapshot of a generational zeitgeist.

· The Swell Season, directed by Nick August-Perna, Chris Dapkins, and Carlo Mirabella-Davis. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary. The world fell in love with Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova when their songwriting collaboration in the film Once culminated in a jubilant Oscar® win. But behind the scenes, where Glen and Mar’s on-screen romance became reality, a grueling two-year world tour threatens to fracture their fated bond. Gorgeously filmed in black and white, this music-filled documentary is an intimate look at the exhilaration and turmoil created by both love and fame.

· Treatment, directed by Steven Schardt and Sean Nelson, written by Sean Nelson. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. When Leonard convinces his best friend Nelson to bankroll his stint at a glitzy L.A. rehab clinic so he can pitch a movie idea to mega-star Gregg D, his blind ambition begins to consume him. The producing team behind Humpday returns with this witty, ridiculous, and sincere tale of co-dependent friendship on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Indie darlings Joshua Leonard, Sean Nelson, and Ross Partridge star.

· White, White World (Beli, beli svet), directed by Oleg Novkovic, written by Milena Markovic. (Serbia, Germany, Sweden) – North American Premiere, Narrative. In this beautiful and brutal drama, King, a handsome boxer-turned-barman falls for Vita, a fiery and untamable beauty in the decaying Serbian town of Bor. Their love triggers a series of events that drive the many residents of Bor inexorably toward a fateful and moving finale. Reminiscent of classical Greek theater, White, White World is an epic musical tragedy staged against the stark landscape of a small, crumbling mining town. In Serbian with English subtitles.

The remaining feature film lineup will be announced on March 14, 2011.

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Awards in the World Narrative and World Documentary Competitions will be presented in the following juried categories: Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature, sponsored by AKA Hotel Residences; Best New Narrative Director (for first-time feature directors in any section), sponsored by American Express; Best Actress in a Narrative Feature; Best Screenplay in a Narrative Feature; Best Cinematography in a Narrative Feature; Best Documentary Feature; Best Editing in a Documentary Feature; and Best New Documentary Director (for first-time feature directors in any section), sponsored by American Express.

In addition, films in the World Narrative Competition, World Documentary Competition, Viewpoints, Spotlight and Cinemania are eligible for the Heineken Audience Award, the audience choice for best feature film. Additional awards include Best Narrative Short; Best Documentary Short; and the Student Visionary Award.

Tickets for 2011 Festival:
Tickets for the Festival will be $16.00 for evening and weekend screenings, and $8.00 for daytime weekday and late night screenings.

Advance selection ticket packages and passes go on sale for American Express Cardmembers on Monday, March 7, and on Monday, March 14 for the general public. All advance packages and passes can be purchased online at, or by telephone, toll free, at (866) 941-FEST (3378).

Single ticket and discounted ticket package sales begin for American Express Cardmembers on Tuesday, April 12, 2011, for downtown residents on Sunday, April 17, 2011, and for the general public on Monday, April 18, 2011. Single tickets can be purchased online, by telephone, or at one of the Ticket Outlets, with locations at Tribeca Cinemas at 54 Varick Street, Chelsea Clearview Cinemas at 260 West 23rd Street, and AMC Village VII at 66 3rd Avenue. The 2011 Festival will continue ticket discounts for evening and weekend screenings for students, seniors and select downtown Manhattan residents. Discounted tickets are available at Ticket Outlet locations only. Discounted ticket packages can only be purchased online and by phone. Additional information and further details on the Festival can be found at

About Tribeca Film Festival:
The Tribeca Film Festival helps filmmakers reach the broadest possible audience, enabling the international film community and general public to experience the power of cinema and promote New York City as a major filmmaking center. It is well known for being a diverse international film festival that supports emerging and established directors.

Founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 following the attacks on the World Trade Center, to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of the lower Manhattan district through an annual celebration of film, music and culture, the Festival brings the industry and community together around storytelling.

The Tribeca Film Festival has screened more than 1,100 films from more than 80 countries since its first edition in 2002. Since inception, it has attracted an international audience of more than 3 million attendees and has generated an estimated $600 million in economic activity for New York City.