FILM FESTIVAL

Sure, Sundance is right around the corner, but it's never too early to start thinking ahead! Though we're still a couple months out from SXSW 2017, it looks like schedule is starting to take form. It was just announced earlier this week that Terrence Malick's "Song to Song" will open the 2017 edition of the festival! An opening night premiere starring Rooney Mara, Michael Fassbinder and Ryan Gosling, this is Malick's first major World Premiere in the US in 10 years. The festival kicks off March 10th and runs through the 19th. For more information on other World Premieres that will be hosted in Austin this year, head over to IndieWire for the full scoop. And stay tuned for more announcements as they roll in!

Ready, set…..make a movie?! Yep, you read that right. Wanna get those creative gears a-turnin’ but worried they might be a bit rusty? Nothing like a good old-fashioned race to get things moving again. Join F*It Club & the NY Indie Theatre Film Festival on January 17 - 21 for a bit of friendly filmmaking competition in the form of F*It Club’s Third Annual Film Race! One theme + Multiple teams + $20 + 72 hours = A whole lotta creativity on the big screen! Always wanted to screen at a film festival or just have an excuse to make something? Looks like you've got what it takes to reach this finish line! The official contest theme and required script elements will be announced January 17th and teams will have around 72 hrs to complete their visions. Get this: ALL films will be screened during closing night of the NY Indie Theatre Film Festival at New Ohio Theatre on January 21st. Don’t worry, like a true competition, there’s another kind of prize, too. And what will the victorious team be awarded? How about ONE FREE HOUR of open bar at The Chester in NYC! Sound tempting? Well, what are you waiting for?! Rally the troops (or just yourself will do!), grab some equipment (a smart phone is good enough!), sign up and get ready to get out there and start making something great! To officially sign up your team (minimum of one person, maximum of ∞), it only costs $20. Never made a film? Well, now is your shot! Creators of all types, including low budget/first time filmmakers, are encouraged to apply! Sign up NOW! Got questions? Email f.itclub2011@gmail.com.Too lazy/busy to make a film and wanna participate with just your eyes and voting capabilities? Then head to closing night of the NY Indie Theatre Film Festival on January 21st to cheer on the teams and support the indie film community! Tickets are only $10 to attend! Make sure to also check out the festival's full line-up for other exciting screenings, too!So, spread the word! OR Make a film! OR Watch the films! Or, F*It and do it all! We hope to see you there! 

The 2017 Slamdance Film Festival is right around the corner and we're getting stoked on checking out all of the outliers and amazing under the radar indie films they are bringing to new audiences! And now the full program is available online! From narrative, documentary, experimental, animation and anarchy short blocks to innovative features, events and more, if you're gonna be in or around Park City on Jan 20th - 26, you've got to check out the full lineup. Don't miss a thing - take a gander and get acquainted with the festival program now!

2017 Indie Street Film Festival CALL FOR ENTRIES!

It’s happening! The second annual Indie Street Film Festival submission kick off is here! Set to take place July 26-30, 2017 in beautiful Red Bank, New Jersey, submissions are now being accepted through Withoutabox and FilmFreeway. Short. Feature. Animation. Documentary. Narrative. You got a film? We want to see it! Join us on our journey to bring the best of the best to NJ audiences!  ISFF aims to discover the most innovative and resourceful storytellers, while also presenting special screenings that celebrate the best in Independent Cinema, past, present and future. The festival expects attendees from around the world but will maintain the grit and hard-working attitude that both New Jersians and Independent filmmakers have shared for decades. The first annual Indie Street Film Festival took place from July 6-10, 2016 and featured 75 new independent feature films, short films, animation and documentaries from nearly 30 different countries. The festival also featured panel discussions, filmmaker Q&A’s, live art and music performances throughout the town.  Since ISFF is more geared towards cooperation than competition, all feature films accepted into the festival will be awarded the opportunity to join Indie Street as a partner filmmaker and be promoted through its VOD platform. Winners from each feature film category will also have the choice to enjoy a minimum 1-week theatrical release in NYC. Short film winners from each category will be considered for co­op inclusion and will be presented and promoted through the Indie Street platform.  We’re looking for Narrative Features, Documentaries and Short Films (narrative, documentary and animation) that highlight innovative storytelling and quality production value, in spite of restrictive budgets. There is also a sidebar of “Jersey Films” either shot in NJ or made by filmmakers from the Garden State. Films must have been completed no earlier than January 1, 2016. Get to submitting!  For more information, please visit www.indiestreetfilmfestival.org.  

Last week, both Slamdance Film Festival and Sundance Film Festival announced their exciting 2017 feature film competition lineups. This week, both followed up those initial reveals by rounding out their full festival programs with the unveiling of their much anticipated short film and special screening lineups. Dozens upon dozens of both new and familiar names and their films (including Indie Street Film Festival Favorite Jim Cummings, director of this year's narrative short winner "Thunder Road") will be making their way to Park City next month. Indie Street can't wait to see the crop of talent that blossoms out of what looks like another amazing launch to the festival season and new year! Check out the full lineup of shorts for Slamdance Film Festival and Sundance Film Festival and get ready for an onslaught of new narrative, documentary, off the wall, and animated talent!

It has been a busy week in the film festival world! Just earlier this week, Slamdance Film Festival announced its 2017 Narrative and Documentary Feature Film lineup. Yesterday, film lovers everywhere finally received the news they’ve been patiently awaiting for months now as the Sundance Film Festival announced its 2017 competition and NEXT lineup. 66 films were selected for the World Competition, US Competition and NEXT programs. This year, a full slate of environmentally focused programming under Sundance’s New Climate Program was also revealed. The 2017 Sundance Film Festival will run from January 19-29 in Park City, Salt Lake City and at the Sundance Mountain Resort. Check out the full lineup below and for more info, head on over to Sundance.org.      US Dramatic Competition:Band Aid / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Zoe Lister-Jones) — A couple who can’t stop fighting embark on a last-ditch effort to save their marriage: turning their fights into songs and starting a band. Cast: Zoe Lister-Jones, Adam Pally, Fred Armisen, Susie Essman, Hannah Simone, Ravi Patel. World PremiereBeach Rats / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Eliza Hittman) — An aimless teenager on the outer edges of Brooklyn struggles to escape his bleak home life and navigate questions of self-identity, as he balances his time between his delinquent friends, a potential new girlfriend, and older men he meets online. Cast: Harris Dickinson, Madeline Weinstein, Kate Hodge, Neal Huff. World Premiere Brigsby Bear / U.S.A. (Director: Dave McCary, Screenwriters: Kevin Costello, Kyle Mooney) — Brigsby Bear Adventures is a children’s TV show produced for an audience of one: James. When the show abruptly ends, James’s life changes forever, and he sets out to finish the story himself. Cast: Kyle Mooney, Claire Danes, Mark Hamill, Greg Kinnear, Matt Walsh, Michaela Watkins. World PremiereBurning Sands / U.S.A. (Director: Gerard McMurray, Screenwriters: Christine Berg, Gerard McMurray) — Deep into a fraternity’s Hell Week, a favored pledge is torn between honoring a code of silence or standing up against the intensifying violence of underground hazing. Cast: Trevor Jackson, Alfre Woodard, Steve Harris, Tosin Cole, DeRon Horton, Trevante Rhodes. World PremiereCrown Heights / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Matt Ruskin) — When Colin Warner is wrongfully convicted of murder, his best friend, Carl King, devotes his life to proving Colin’s innocence. Adapted from This American Life, this is the incredible true story of their harrowing quest for justice. Cast: Keith Stanfield, Nnamdi Asomugha, Natalie Paul, Bill Camp, Nestor Carbonell, Amari Cheatom. World PremiereGolden Exits / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Alex Ross Perry) — The arrival of a young foreign girl disrupts the lives and emotional balances of two Brooklyn families. Cast: Emily Browning, Adam Horovitz, Mary-Louise Parker, Lily Rabe, Jason Schwartzman, Chloë Sevigny. World PremiereThe Hero / U.S.A. (Director: Brett Haley, Screenwriters: Brett Haley, Marc Basch) — Lee, a former Western film icon, is living a comfortable existence lending his golden voice to advertisements and smoking weed. After receiving a lifetime achievement award and unexpected news, Lee reexamines his past, while a chance meeting with a sardonic comic has him looking to the future. Cast: Sam Elliott, Laura Prepon, Krysten Ritter, Nick Offerman, Katherine Ross. World PremiereI Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Macon Blair) — When a depressed woman is burglarized, she finds a new sense of purpose by tracking down the thieves, alongside her obnoxious neighbor. But they soon find themselves dangerously out of their depth against a pack of degenerate criminals. Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Elijah Wood, David Yow, Jane Levy, Devon Graye. World PremiereIngrid Goes West / U.S.A. (Director: Matt Spicer, Screenwriters: Matt Spicer, David Branson Smith) — A young woman becomes obsessed with an Instagram lifestyle blogger and moves to Los Angeles to try and befriend her in real life. Cast: Aubrey Plaza, Elizabeth Olsen, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Wyatt Russell, Billy Magnussen. World PremiereLandline / U.S.A. (Director: Gillian Robespierre, Screenwriters: Elisabeth Holm, Gillian Robespierre) — Two sisters come of age in ‘90s New York when they discover their dad’s affair—and it turns out he’s not the only cheater in the family. Everyone still smokes inside, no one has a cell phone and the Jacobs finally connect through lying, cheating and hibachi. Cast: Jenny Slate, John Turturro, Edie Falco, Abby Quinn, Jay Duplass, Finn Wittrock. World PremiereNovitiate / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Maggie Betts) — In the early 1960s, during the Vatican II era, a young woman training to become a nun struggles with issues of faith, sexuality and the changing church. Cast: Margaret Qualley, Melissa Leo, Julianne Nicholson, Dianna Agron, Morgan Saylor. World PremierePatti Cake$ / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Geremy Jasper) — Straight out of Jersey comes Patricia Dombrowski, a.k.a. Killa P, a.k.a. Patti Cake$, an aspiring rapper fighting through a world of strip malls and strip clubs on an unlikely quest for glory. Cast: Danielle Macdonald, Bridget Everett, Siddharth Dhananjay, Mamoudou Athie, Cathy Moriarty. World Premiere Roxanne Roxanne / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Michael Larnell) — The most feared battle emcee in early-’80s NYC was a fierce teenager from the Queensbridge projects with the weight of the world on her shoulders. At age 14, hustling the streets to provide for her family, Roxanne Shanté was well on her way to becoming a hip-hop legend. Cast: Chanté Adams, Mahershala Ali, Nia Long, Elvis Nolasco, Kevin Phillips, Shenell Edmonds. World PremiereTo The Bone / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Marti Noxon) — In a last-ditch effort to battle her severe anorexia, 20-year-old Ellen enters a group recovery home. With the help of an unconventional doctor, Ellen and the other residents go on a sometimes funny, sometimes harrowing journey that leads to the ultimate question—is life worth living? Cast: Lily Collins, Keanu Reeves, Carrie Preston, Lili Taylor, Alex Sharp, Liana Liberato. World PremiereWalking Out / U.S.A. (Directors and screenwriters: Alex Smith, Andrew Smith) — A father and son struggle to connect on any level until a brutal encounter with a predator in the heart of the wilderness leaves them both seriously injured. If they are to survive, the boy must carry his father to safety. Cast: Matt Bomer, Josh Wiggins, Bill Pullman, Alex Neustaedter, Lily Gladstone. World PremiereThe Yellow Birds / U.S.A. (Director: Alexandre Moors, Screenwriter: David Lowery) — Two young men enlist in the army and are deployed to fight in the Gulf War. After an unthinkable tragedy, the surviving soldier struggles to balance his promise of silence with the truth and a mourning mother’s search for peace. Cast: Tye Sheridan, Jack Huston, Alden Ehrenreich, Jason Patric, Toni Collette, Jennifer Aniston. World Premiere US Documentary Competition:Casting JonBenet / U.S.A., Australia (Director: Kitty Green) — The unsolved death of six-year-old American beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey remains the world’s most sensational child murder case. Over 15 months, responses, reflections and performances were elicited from the Ramsey’s Colorado hometown community, creating a bold work of art from the collective memories and mythologies the crime inspired. World PremiereChasing Coral / U.S.A. (Director: Jeff Orlowski) — Coral reefs around the world are vanishing at an unprecedented rate. A team of divers, photographers and scientists set out on a thrilling ocean adventure to discover why and to reveal the underwater mystery to the world. World Premiere. NEW CLIMATECity of Ghosts / U.S.A. (Director: Matthew Heineman) — With unprecedented access, this documentary follows the extraordinary journey of “Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently”—a group of anonymous citizen journalists who banded together after their homeland was overtaken by ISIS—as they risk their lives to stand up against one of the greatest evils in the world today. World PremiereDina / U.S.A. (Directors: Dan Sickles, Antonio Santini) — An eccentric suburban woman and a Walmart door- greeter navigate their evolving relationship in this unconventional love story. World PremiereDolores / U.S.A. (Director: Peter Bratt) — Dolores Huerta bucks 1950s gender conventions by co-founding the country’s first farmworkers’ union. Wrestling with raising 11 children, gender bias, union defeat and victory, and nearly dying after a San Francisco Police beating, Dolores emerges with a vision that connects her newfound feminism with racial and class justice. World PremiereThe Force / U.S.A. (Director: Pete Nicks) — This cinema verité look at the long-troubled Oakland Police Department goes deep inside their struggles to confront federal demands for reform, a popular uprising following events in Ferguson and an explosive scandal. World PremiereICARUS / U.S.A. (Director: Bryan Fogel) — When Bryan Fogel sets out to uncover the truth about doping in sports, a chance meeting with a Russian scientist transforms his story from a personal experiment into a geopolitical thriller involving dirty urine, unexplained death and Olympic Gold—exposing the biggest scandal in sports history. World PremiereThe New Radical / U.S.A. (Director: Adam Bhala Lough) — Uncompromising millennial radicals from the United States and the United Kingdom attack the system through dangerous technological means, which evolves into a high-stakes game with world authorities in the midst of a dramatically changing political landscape. World PremiereNOBODY SPEAK: Hulk Hogan, Gawker and Trials of a Free Press / U.S.A. (Director: Brian Knappenberger) — The trial between Hulk Hogan and Gawker Media pitted privacy rights against freedom of the press, and raised important questions about how big money can silence media. This film is an examination of the perils and duties of the free press in an age of inequality. World PremiereQuest / U.S.A. (Director: Jonathan Olshefski) — For over a decade, this portrait of a North Philadelphia family and the creative sanctuary offered by their home music studio was filmed with vérité intimacy. The family’s 10- year journey is an illumination of race and class in America, and it’s a testament to love, healing and hope. World PremiereSTEP / U.S.A. (Director: Amanda Lipitz) — The senior year of a girls’ high school step team in inner-city Baltimore is documented, as they try to become the first in their families to attend college. The girls strive to make their dancing a success against the backdrop of social unrest in their troubled city. World PremiereStrong Island / U.S.A., Denmark (Director: Yance Ford) — Examining the violent death of the filmmaker’s brother and the judicial system that allowed his killer to go free, this documentary interrogates murderous fear and racialized perception, and re-imagines the wreckage in catastrophe’s wake, challenging us to change. World PremiereTrophy / U.S.A. (Director: Shaul Schwarz, Co-Director: Christina Clusiau) — This in-depth look into the powerhouse industries of big-game hunting, breeding and wildlife conservation in the U.S. and Africa unravels the complex consequences of treating animals as commodities. World Premiere. NEW CLIMATEUnrest / U.S.A. (Director: Jennifer Brea) — When Harvard PhD student Jennifer Brea is struck down at 28 by a fever that leaves her bedridden, doctors tell her it’s “all in her head.” Determined to live, she sets out on a virtual journey to document her story—and four other families’ stories—fighting a disease medicine forgot. World PremiereWater & Power: A California Heist / U.S.A. (Director: Marina Zenovich) — In California’s convoluted water system, notorious water barons find ways to structure a state-engineered system to their own advantage. This examination into their centers of power shows small farmers and everyday citizens facing drought and a new, debilitating groundwater crisis. World Premiere. NEW CLIMATEWhose Streets? / U.S.A. (Director: Sabaah Jordan) — A nonfiction account of the Ferguson uprising told by the people who lived it, this is an unflinching look at how the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown inspired a community to fight back—and sparked a global movement. World Premiere World Cinema Dramatic Competition:Axolotl Overkill / Germany (Director and screenwriter: Helene Hegemann) — Mifti, age 16, lives in Berlin with a cast of characters including her half-siblings; their rich, self-involved father; and her druggy friend Ophelia. As she mourns her recently-deceased mother, she begins to develop an obsession with Alice, an enigmatic, and much older, white-collar criminal. Cast: Jasna Fritzi Bauer, Arly Jover, Mavie Hörbiger, Laura Tonke, Hans Löw, Bernhard Schütz. World PremiereBerlin Syndrome / Australia (Director: Cate Shortland, Screenwriter: Shaun Grant) — A passionate holiday romance takes an unexpected and sinister turn when an Australian photographer wakes one morning in a Berlin apartment and is unable to leave. Cast: Teresa Palmer, Max Riemelt. World PremiereCarpinteros (Woodpeckers) / Dominican Republic (Director and screenwriter: José María Cabral) — Julián finds love and a reason for living in the last place imaginable: the Dominican Republic’s Najayo Prison. His romance with fellow prisoner Yanelly must develop through sign language and without the knowledge of dozens of guards. Cast: Jean Jean, Judith Rodriguez Perez, Ramón Emilio Candelario. World PremiereDon’t Swallow My Heart, Alligator Girl! / Brazil, Netherlands, France, Paraguay (Director and screenwriter: Felipe Bragança) — In this fable about love and memories, Joca is a 13-year-old Brazilian boy in love with an indigenous Paraguayan girl. To conquer her love, he must face the violent region’s war-torn past and the secrets of his elder brother, Fernando, a motorcycle cowboy. Cast: Cauã Reymond, Eduardo Macedo, Adeli Gonzales, Zahy Guajajara, Claudia Assunção, Ney Matogrosso. World PremiereFamily Life / Chile (Directors: Alicia Scherson, Cristián Jiménez, Screenwriter: Alejandro Zambra) — While house-sitting for a distant cousin, a lonely man fabricates the existence of a vindictive ex-wife withholding his daughter, in order to gain the sympathy of the single mother he has just met. Cast: Jorge Becker, Gabriela Arancibia, Blanca Lewin, Cristián Carvajal. World PremiereFree and Easy / Hong Kong (Director: Jun Geng, Screenwriters: Jun Geng, Yuhua Feng, Bing Liu) — An extended family of widely disparate relations is snowed in when a crime occurs—with tragicomic results. Cast: Gang Xu, Zhiyong Zhang, Baohe Xue, Benshan Gu, Xun Zhang. World PremiereMy Happy Family / Georgia (Directors: Nana & Simon, Screenwriter: Nana Ekvtimishvili) — Tbilisi, Georgia, 2016: In a patriarchal society, an ordinary Georgian family lives with three generations under one roof. All are shocked when 52-year-old Manana decides to move out from her parents’ home and live alone. Without her family and her husband, a journey into the unknown begins. Cast: Ia Shugliashvili, Merab Ninidze, Berta Khapava, Tsisia Qumsishvili, Giorgi Tabidze, Dimitri Oragvelidze. World PremiereGod’s Own Country / United Kingdom (Director and screenwriter: Francis Lee) — Springtime in Yorkshire: isolated young sheep farmer Johnny Saxby numbs his daily frustrations with binge drinking and casual sex, until the arrival of a Romanian migrant worker, employed for the lambing season, ignites an intense relationship that sets Johnny on a new path. Cast: Josh O’Connor, Alec Secareanu, Ian Hart, Gemma Jones. World PremiereThe Nile Hilton Incident / Sweden (Director and screenwriter: Tarik Saleh) — In Cairo, weeks before the 2011 revolution, Police Detective Noredin is working in the infamous Kasr el-Nil Police Station when he is handed the case of a murdered singer. He soon realizes that the investigation concerns the power elite, close to the President’s inner circle. Cast: Fares Fares, Mari Malek, Mohamed Yousry, Yasser Ali Maher, Ahmed Selim, Hania Amar. World PremierePop Aye / Singapore, Thailand (Director and screenwriter: Kirsten Tan) — On a chance encounter, a disenchanted architect bumps into his long-lost elephant on the streets of Bangkok. Excited, he takes his elephant on a journey across Thailand in search of the farm where they grew up together. Cast: Thaneth Warakulnukroh, Penpak Sirikul, Bong. World PremiereSueño en otro idioma (I Dream in Another Language) / Mexico (Director: Ernesto Contreras, Screenwriter: Carlos Contreras) — The last two speakers of a millennia-old language haven’t spoken in 50 years, when a young linguist tries to bring them together. Yet hidden in the past, in the heart of the jungle, lies a secret concerning the fate of the Zikril language. Cast: Fernando Álvarez Rebeil, Eligio Meléndez, Manuel Poncelis, Fátima Molina, Juan Pablo de Santiago, Hoze Meléndez. World PremiereThe Wound / South Africa (Director: John Trengove, Screenwriters: John Trengove, Thando Mgqolozana, Malusi Bengu) — During a traditional initiation into manhood, Xolani, a lonely factory worker, reignites a secret love affair with his married best friend, Vija. When a defiant, teenage initiate from the city discovers their secret and threatens to expose them, Xolani must make a terrible decision. Cast: Nakhane Touré, Bongile Mantsai, Niza Jay Ncoyini. World Premiere World Cinema Documentary Competition:The Good Postman / Finland, Bulgaria (Director: Tonislav Hristov) — In a small Bulgarian village troubled by the ongoing refugee crisis, a local postman runs for mayor—and learns that even minor deeds can outweigh good intentions. North American PremiereIn Loco Parentis / Ireland, Spain (Directors: Neasa Ní Chianáin, David Rane) — John and Amanda teach Latin, English and guitar at a fantastical stately home-turned-school. Nearly 50-year careers are drawing to a close for the pair who have become legends with the mantra: “Reading! ’Rithmetic! Rock ’n’ roll!” But for pupil and teacher alike, leaving is the hardest lesson. International PremiereIt’s Not Yet Dark / Ireland (Director: Frankie Fenton) — This is the incredible story of Simon Fitzmaurice, a young filmmaker who becomes completely paralyzed from motor neurone disease but goes on to direct an award- winning feature film through the use of his eyes. International PremiereJoshua: Teenager vs. Superpower / U.S.A. (Director: Joe Piscatella) — When the Chinese Communist Party backtracks on its promise of autonomy to Hong Kong, teenager Joshua Wong decides to save his city. Rallying thousands of kids to skip school and occupy the streets, Joshua becomes an unlikely leader in Hong Kong and one of China’s most notorious dissidents. World PremiereLast Men in Aleppo / Denmark (Directors: Feras Fayyad, Steen Johannessen) — After five years of war in Syria, Aleppo’s remaining residents prepare themselves for a siege. Khalid, Subhi and Mahmoud, founding members of The White Helmets, have remained in the city to help their fellow citizens—and experience daily life, death, struggle and triumph in a city under fire. World PremiereMachines / India, Germany, Finland (Director: Rahul Jain) — This intimate, observant portrayal of the rhythm of life and work in a gigantic textile factory in Gujarat, India, moves through the corridors and bowels of the enormously disorienting structure—taking the viewer on a journey of dehumanizing physical labor and intense hardship. North American Premiere. NEW CLIMATEMotherland / U.S.A., Philippines (Director: Ramona Diaz) — The planet’s busiest maternity hospital is located in one of its poorest and most populous countries: the Philippines. There, poor women face devastating consequences as their country struggles with reproductive health policy and the politics of conservative Catholic ideologies. World PremierePlastic China / China (Director: Jiu-liang Wang) — Yi-Jie, an 11-year-old girl, works alongside her parents in a recycling facility while dreaming of attending school. Kun, the facility’s ambitious foreman, dreams of a better life. Through the eyes and hands of those who handle its refuse, comes an examination of global consumption and culture. International Premiere. NEW CLIMATERUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked The World / Canada (Director: Catherine Bainbridge) — This powerful documentary about the role of Native Americans in contemporary music history—featuring some of the greatest music stars of our time—exposes a critical missing chapter, revealing how indigenous musicians helped shape the soundtracks of our lives and, through their contributions, influenced popular culture. World PremiereTokyo Idols / United Kingdom, Canada (Director: Kyoko Miyake) — This exploration of Japan’s fascination with girl bands and their music follows an aspiring pop singer and her fans, delving into the cultural obsession with young female sexuality and the growing disconnect between men and women in hypermodern societies. World PremiereWINNIE / France (Director: Pascale Lamche) — While her husband served a life sentence, paradoxically kept safe and morally uncontaminated, Winnie Mandela rode the raw violence of apartheid, fighting on the front line and underground. This is the untold story of the mysterious forces that combined to take her down, labeling him a saint, her, a sinner. World PremiereThe Workers Cup / United Kingdom (Director: Adam Sobel) — Inside Qatar’s labor camps, African and Asian migrant workers building the facilities of the 2022 World Cup compete in a football tournament of their own. World Premiere NEXT:Columbus / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Kogonada) — Casey lives with her mother in a little-known Midwestern town haunted by the promise of modernism. Jin, a visitor from the other side of the world, attends to his dying father. Burdened by the future, they find respite in one another and the architecture that surrounds them. Cast: John Cho, Haley Lu Richardson, Parker Posey, Rory Culkin, Michelle Forbes. World PremiereDayveon / U.S.A. (Director: Amman Abbasi, Screenwriters: Amman Abbasi, Steven Reneau) — In the wake of his older brother’s death, 13-year-old Dayveon spends the sweltering summer days roaming his rural Arkansas town. When he falls in with a local gang, he becomes drawn to the camaraderie and violence of their world. Cast: Devin Blackmon, Kordell “KD” Johnson, Dontrell Bright, Chasity Moore, Lachion Buckingham, Marquell Manning. World PremiereDeidra & Laney Rob a Train / U.S.A. (Director: Sydney Freeland, Screenwriter: Shelby Farrell) — Two teenage sisters start robbing trains to make ends meet after their single mother’s emotional meltdown in an electronics store lands her in jail. Cast: Ashleigh Murray, Rachel Crow, Tim Blake Nelson, David Sullivan, Danielle Nicolet, Sasheer Zamata. World PremiereA Ghost Story / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: David Lowery) — This is the story of a ghost and the house he haunts. Cast: Casey Affleck, Rooney Mara, Will Oldham, Sonia Acevedo, Rob Zabrecky, Liz Franke. World PremiereGook / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Justin Chon) — Eli and Daniel, two Korean-American brothers who own a struggling women’s shoe store, have an unlikely friendship with 11-year-old Kamilla. On the first day of the 1992 L.A. riots, the trio must defend their store—and contemplate the meaning of family, their personal dreams and the future. Cast: Justin Chon, Simone Baker, David So, Curtiss Cook Jr., Sang Chon, Ben Munoz. World PremiereL.A. Times / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Michelle Morgan) — In this classically styled comedy of manners set in Los Angeles, sophisticated thirtysomethings try to determine whether ideal happiness exists in coupledom or if the perfectly suited couple is actually just an urban myth. Cast: Michelle Morgan, Dree Hemingway, Jorma Taccone, Kentucker Audley, Margarita Levieva, Adam Shapiro. World PremiereLemon / U.S.A. (Director: Janicza Bravo, Screenwriters: Janicza Bravo, Brett Gelman) — A man watches his life unravel after he is left by his blind girlfriend. Cast: Brett Gelman, Judy Greer, Michael Cera, Nia Long, Shiri Appleby, Fred Melamed. World PremiereMenashe / U.S.A. (Director: Joshua Z Weinstein, Screenwriters: Joshua Z Weinstein, Alex Lipschultz, Musa Syeed) — Within Brooklyn’s ultra-orthodox Jewish community, a widower battles for custody of his son. A tender drama performed entirely in Yiddish, the film intimately explores the nature of faith and the price of parenthood. Cast: Menashe Lustig. World PremierePerson to Person / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Dustin Guy Defa) — A record collector hustles for a big score while his heartbroken roommate tries to erase a terrible mistake, a teenager bears witness to her best friend’s new relationship and a rookie reporter, alongside her demanding supervisor, chases the clues of a murder case involving a life-weary clock shop owner. Cast: Abbi Jacobson, Michael Cera, Tavi Gevinson, Philip Baker Hall, Bene Coopersmith, George Sample III. World PremiereThoroughbred / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Cory Finley) — Two teenage girls in suburban Connecticut rekindle their unlikely friendship after years of growing apart. In the process, they learn that neither is what she seems to be—and that a murder might solve both of their problems. Cast: Olivia Cooke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Anton Yelchin, Paul Sparks, Francie Swift, Kaili Vernoff. World Premiere

The Slamdance Film Festival announced their Narrative and Documentary Feature Film Competition Lineup this week and looks like the festival will continue to be a haven of up-and-coming indie film charm! With 11 Narratives Features, 8 Documentary Features and 8 directorial debuts from female filmmakers, this is the start of a program you’re not going to want to miss!  Check out the full lineup below and while you’re at it you can head over to Slamdance’s site for more info and to purchase festival passes. The 2017 Slamdance Film Festival takes place in Park City, Utah from January 20 - 26. Stay tuned for more program announcements as they are released!       Narrative Features:  Aerotropolis, Taiwan Director & Screenwriter: Jheng-Neng LI Allen invested everything into a beautiful home to flip for profit only to have it languish on the market, turning his daily life into a haze of financial pressures and an erosion of reality.  Beat Beat Heart, Germany Director & Screenwriter: Luise Brinkmann Daydreaming her way out of a broken heart, Kerstin’s denial as well as her days are shaken up with the arrival of her mother, dealing with her own relationship’s demise.  Cortez, USA Director: Cheryl Nichols; Screenwriter(s): Arron Shiver, Cheryl Nichols Struggling musician Jesse tracks down his ex Anne in a small town in New Mexico, and is forced to face the decisions of his past as present day consequences set in.  Dave Made a Maze, USA Director: Bill Watterson; Screenwriter(s): Steven Sears, Bill Watterson Dave builds a fort in his living room and ends up trapped inside by fantastical pitfalls, booby traps and creatures, leaving his girlfriend Annie to head up the eccentric rescue team to go in after him.  Dim the Fluorescents, Canada Director: Daniel Warth; Screenwriter(s): Miles Barstead, Daniel Warth A struggling actress and an aspiring playwright funnel their uninhibited passion into the only paying work they can find: role-playing demonstrations for corporate seminars.  The Family, China/Australia Director & Screenwriter: Shumin Liu Liu and Deng are a couple in their 70s who set off to visit their adult children in three faraway cities, in an immersive exploration of family dynamics and daily life.  Kate Can’t Swim, USA Director: Josh Helman; Screenwriter(s): Jennifer Allcott, Josh Helman When Kate’s best friend Em returns from abroad with a surprising new lover, they embark on a reunion vacation with their partners, but the peaceful getaway quickly becomes emotionally complicated.  Kuro, France/UK/Germany/LuxembourgDirector(s) & Screenwriter(s): Joji Koyama, Tujiko Noriko A Japanese woman living in Paris tends to her paraplegic lover, passing time by recounting a story about the time they once spent together in Japan, rich with anecdotes, myths and an unexpected dark turn.  Weather House, Germany Director(s): Frauke Havemann; Co-Director: Eric Schefter; Screenwriter: Mark Johnson Set in an unspecific time of extreme climate change, an isolated group of disoriented characters develop their own strange belief systems and engage in absurd activities to process their dilemma.  Wexford Plaza, Canada Director & Screenwriter: Joyce Wong Betty is a lonely strip mall security guard, and an unexpected moment with charming deadbeat Danny ends up setting off the unraveling of both their lives.  Withdrawn, Canada Director: Adrian Murray; Screenwriter(s): Adrian Murray, Marcus Sullivan, Dean Tardioli Living in a basement he can’t afford, Aaron spends his days doing drum solos and talking his way out of paying for utilities, until he finds a lost credit card and devises a plan to defraud its owner.  Documentary Features:  Bogalusa Charm, USA Director: Stephen Richardson; Screenwriter: Jennifer Harrington Through the lens of an anachronistic charm school that has existed for almost three decades in rural Louisiana, we explore a town confronted with contemporary issues of class and race.  The Children Send Their Regards, Austria Director: Patricia Josefine Marchart; Screenwriter(s): Jakob Purkarthofer, Sepp Rothwangl, Patricia Josefine Marchart Adult victims of physical abuse by clergy members in Austria revisit the sites of their childhood trauma and make public their stories to shed light into one of the greatest crimes of the post-war period.  Hotel Coolgardie, Australia Director: Pete Gleeson Somewhere between Australia’s most isolated city and it's largest gold pit lies Coolgardie, where the arrival every three months of a new pair of foreign female backpackers to work the only bar in town is keenly anticipated by the town’s hot-blooded males.  The Modern Jungle, Mexico/USA Director(s) & Screenwriter(s): Charles Fairbanks, Saul Kak A story of globalization filtered through the fever dream of a Mexican shaman, this is an intimate portrait of Zoque culture, commodity fetish, and the predicament of documentary cinema.  On The Sly: In Search of the Family Stone, USA Director & Screenwriter: Michael Rubenstone Director and super-fan Michael Rubenstone sets out in search of long-time reclusive funk legend, Sly Stone. Along the way, he meets with some success, but finds countless more failures in trying to capture a man who refuses to be contained.  Strad Style, USA Director: Stefan Avalos A rural Ohio eccentric with an obsession for 'Stradivari' convinces a famous European concert violinist that he can make a copy of one of the most famous and valuable violins in the world. Fighting time, poverty, and most of all - himself - Danny Houck puts everything on the line for one shot at glory.  Supergirl, USA Director: Jessie Auritt Naomi seems like a typical 11-year-old Orthodox Jewish girl; watching her compete to lift almost three times her bodyweight tells a different story.  Who is Arthur Chu?, USA Director(s) & Screenwriter(s): Scott Drucker, Yu Gu Arthur Chu, eleven time Jeopardy! winner turned internet iconoclast, battles dark forces as a blogger and cultural pundit ultimately realizing that to create positive change in the world he must first heal his own wounds.