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HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
ANNOUNCES SOUTHAMPTON OPENING, SATURDAY’S CENTERPIECE AND WORLD CINEMA FILMS


 

THE 21ST HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES SOUTHAMPTON OPENING, SATURDAY’S CENTERPIECE FILM AUGUST:
OSAGE COUNTY, SPOTLIGHT AND WORLD CINEMA FILMS INCLUDING LABOR DAY, HER, THE PAST AND MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM

FREEDOM WILL FORTE TO JOIN BRUCE DERN IN “A CONVERSATION WITH…” MODERATED BY NEW YORK FILM CRITICS CIRCLE CHAIRMAN JOSHUA ROTHKOPF

Among those expected to attend the Festival are: Anna Paquin, Bruce Dern, Ralph Fiennes, Renee Zellweger, Dakota Fanning, David Duchovny, Helena Bonham Carter, Edgar Wright, Kevin Connolly, Will Forte, Timothy Hutton, Amy Ryan, Richard Curtis, Adepero Oduye, Brie Larson, Dane DeHaan, David Oyelowo, Jonathan Franzen, Paul Dano, Ralph Macchio, Richard Curtis, Scott Haze, Spike Jonze and Joe Wright.

East Hampton, NY (September 24, 2013) -The Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF) is thrilled to announce that Director Richard Curtis' ABOUT TIME will be the Southampton opener on Friday, October 11th and that Saturday's Centerpiece Film is AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY directed by John Wells. As previously announced, KILL YOUR DARLINGS will open the Festival on October 10th; 12 YEARS A SLAVE will close the Festival; and NEBRASKA is the Sunday Centerpiece.

The Spotlight films include: BREATHE IN, FREE RIDE, HER, LABOR DAY, LOUDER THAN WORDS, MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, THE PAST and CAPITAL.This year the festival will pay special tribute to Oscar Award winning director Costa-Gavras before the screening of his latest film CAPITAL.

The Festival is proud to have the World Premiere of AMERICAN MASTERS – MARVIN HAMLISCH: ONE SINGULAR SENSATION as well as the U.S Premiere of Oscar Winner Alex Gibney’s latest doc THE ARMSTRONG LIE about Lance Armstrong. Additional World Cinema highlights include the World Premiere of GERALDINE FERRARO: PAVING THE WAY, the North American Premiere of A FRAGILE TRUST and the Palme d’Or prize winner from the 2013 Cannes film festival, BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR.

"The films in our 21st edition represent our mission of bringing the best cinema from around the world to the impassioned and curious audiences in the Hamptons,” said David Nugent, HIFF Artistic Director. “With a mixture of new films from master filmmakers, plus work from the next wave of filmmaking talent, we are very excited to share this program with our community."

Documentary innovator Barbara Kopple (RUNNING FROM CRAZY) will kick off HIFF’s third annual ROWDY TALKS series, taking place at Rowdy Hall in East Hampton on Friday at 10am. On Saturday morning, HIFF’s Golden Starfish Competition contenders Christine Molloy (MISTER JOHN), Dan Shadur (BEFORE THE REVOLUTION), and Gudmundur A. Gudmundsson (WHALE VALLEY) will talk highs and lows of their burgeoning filmmaking careers, while “New York Independent Film: Rewind & Fast Forward” is featured on Sunday morning. Variety Executive Editor Steven Gaydos will moderate a discussion focusing on the past, present and future of independent cinema in New York with director Whitney Ransick (MISFIRE: THE RISE AND FALL OF THE SHOOTING GALLERY which is World Premiering at HIFF), Producer John Sloss, and IFP’s Joana Vicente of Independent Filmmaker Project.

In addition to awarding the Alfred P. Sloan film prize to Steven Bernstein’s DECODING ANNIE PARKER, HIFF will present the Sloan Screenplay Readings on Sunday, October 13 at 4:00PM. David Schwab’s FRANCIS TURNBULL and THE BURIED LIFE by Joan Stein Schimke and Averie Storck are the featured selections. Director Terry George will direct the reading of FRANCIS TURNBULL and Joan Stein Schimke and Averie Storck will direct THE BURIED LIFE. Both films were featured in HIFF’s Sloan Screenwriters Lab last April.

New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC) members Joshua Rothkopf, Joe Neumaier, Bilge Ebiri and jury member Karen Durbin will serve as mentors, panelists and jurors at various events throughout the Festival. "We in the New York Film Critics Circle are honored to be a part of this festival, an event that's marked by provocative screenings and spirited Q&As. The Hamptons audience is a perfect one in which to see some of the fall's most rewarding work -- our members wouldn't miss it," said New York Film Critics Circle Chairman Joshua Rothkopf.

For World Cinema feature films, HIFF boasts 13 world premieres, seven North American premieres and ten US premieres. The 21st edition will included films from over 35 countries. Five foreign titles in the lineup are in contention for Academy Award consideration including THE ROCKET (Australia), THE BROKEN CIRCLE BREAKDOWN (Belgium), IN BLOOM (Georgia), THE NOTEBOOK (Hungary), and MOTHER, I LOVE YOU (Latvia). HIFF will also present special screenings of THE SHORT GAME, the SummerDoc Audience Award winner at the Southampton Center, and ABSOLUTE WILSON, in partnership with the Watermill Center.

HIFF is proud to present eight programs of short films, including the GSA competition shorts; short films presented with New York Women in Film and Television; and a Student Short Film Showcase, and eight short works to be shown before feature films. Two short films, Jennifer Ash’s DINER EN BLANC and Ralph Macchio’s ACROSS GRACE ALLEY, are also part of the "Views From Long Island" section.

SPOTLIGHT FILMS BREATHE IN

(USA) East coast Premiere Director: Drake Doremus

As summer turns to fall, music teacher Keith (Guy Pearce) privately reminisces about his days as a starving artist in the city. When his wife Megan (Amy Ryan) and his daughter decide the family should host foreign exchange student Sophie (Felicity Jones), the British high school senior soon rekindles an impetuous aspect of Keith’s personality. Director Drake Doremus, last seen at HIFF with his stunning coming-of-age film LIKE CRAZY (also starring Jones), penetrates the family’s dysfunction and Keith’s mid-life crisis with a sensitive eye for detail.

CAPITAL “Le capital ”

(France) Director: Costa-Gavras

The acclaimed master of political thrillers such as Z and MISSING, Oscar-winning director Costa-Gavras unfurls his latest nail-biter in the dog-eat-dog world of high-stakes international banking. Cutthroat corporate climber Marc Tourneuil becomes the CEO of France’s important Phenix Bank, appointed by the company’s board of directors as an interim leadership solution—or so they think. Tourneuil wields his new power with Machiavellian daring, stunning the old guard, producing dramatic financial results, and ultimately catching the scheming eye of Dittmar Rigule (Gabriel Byrne), an American hedge fund honcho and stakes holder at Phenix.

FREE RIDE

(USA) World Premiere Director/Screenwriter: Shana Betz

Set in the 1970s, FREE RIDE stars Academy Award® winner Anna Paquin (THE PIANO, HBO’s TRUE BLOOD) as a single mother who moves to Florida with her daughters in search of a better life but gets pulled into the perilous drug-trade business. This accomplished, gritty directorial debut, based on writer/director Shana Betz’s life story, delivers as both a provocative crime thriller and a powerfully rendered family portrait. Paquin’s dynamic star turn and a vivid supporting cast, including Cam Gigandet and THE SOPRANO’s Drea De Matteo, help make FREE RIDE an unforgettable trip.

HER

(USA) Director/Screenwriter: Spike Jonze

Written and directed by Spike Jonze, HER is an original love story that explores the evolving nature—and the risks—of intimacy in the modern world. Set in Los Angeles in the near future, it follows Theodore, a complex, soulful man, heartbroken after the end of a relationship, who becomes intrigued with a new, advanced operating system promising to be an intuitive and unique entity in its own right. Upon initiating it, he meets “Samantha,” a bright voice who is insightful, sensitive, and surprisingly funny. As their needs and desires grow in tandem, their friendship deepens into an eventual love.

LABOR DAY

(USA) Director/Screenwriter: Jason Reitman

LABOR DAY, from writer/director Jason Reitman (UP IN THE AIR, JUNO), centers on 13-year-old Henry Wheeler, who struggles to be the man of his house and care for his reclusive mother Adele (Kate Winslet) while confronting all the pangs of adolescence. On a back-to-school shopping trip, Henry and his mother encounter Frank Chambers (Josh Brolin), a man both intimidating and clearly in need of help, who convinces them to take him into their home and later is revealed to be an escaped convict. The events of this long Labor Day weekend will shape them for the rest of their lives.

LOUDER THAN WORDS

(USA) World Premiere Director: Anthony Fabian

John Fareri (David Duchovny) and his wife Brenda (Hope Davis) live an idyllic suburban life. After the sudden death of their young daughter, and deeply shaken by the less than ideal conditions of her hospital, the couple decides to build a premier children’s hospital, with the help of consultant Bruce Komiske (Timothy Hutton). Inspired by true events, this touching film portrays a family who instead of being gripped by loss created an extraordinary place of healing for thousands of ailing children and implemented a national standard for family health facilities.

MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM

(South Africa)

East Coast Premiere Director: Justin Chadwick

The great Idris Elba, best known for his roles on TV’s THE WIRE and LUTHER, transforms into the legendary Nelson Mandela in this exhilarating screen adaptation of the political leader’s autobiography. Director Justin Chadwick’s (THE OTHER BOLEYN GIRL) portrait charts the incredible true story of the many struggles that took Mandela from South Africa’s rural Cape region to armed struggle and arrest, and then to the president’s mansion as his nation’s first democratically elected leader. More than just a historical biopic, the film also tracks the incredible love story between Mandela and his wife Winnie, soulfully embodied by Naomie Harris.

THE PAST “Le passé”

(France/Iran) East Coast Premiere Director: Asghar Farhadi

Family secrets and domestic strife lurk under the surface of this riveting new drama from Asghar Farhadi, the writer/director of A SEPARATION, the 2011 Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Language Film. Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa) travels from Iran to France at the behest of his estranged wife Marie (Bérénice Bejo, THE ARTIST) to finalize their divorce. Further escalating their immediate tension, Marie insists Ahmad stay in her home with live-in boyfriend Samir (Tahar Rahim, A PROPHET), and Samir’s children from his own stalled marriage. With this latest film, Farhadi cements his status as one of the world’s preeminent filmmakers.

WORLD CINEMA DOCUMENTARY

AMERICAN MASTERS – MARVIN HAMLISCH: ONE SINGULAR SENSATION (USA) World Premiere

Director: Dori Berinstein

This hugely entertaining documentary tracks the supernova career of one of our most beloved modern composers. Touched with an extraordinary musical gift, Hamlisch went from a Julliard-enrolled protégé at age of six, to the young film composer of such classics as THE WAY WE WERE and THE STING, to writing Broadway’s then most successful show of all time, A CHORUS LINE. A real showman with a love for theatrics, Hamlisch became a household name, a rare distinction for a composer. Don’t miss this rousing biographical portrait, bursting with Hamlisch’s hit music and featuring interviews with dozens of performing legends.

THE ARMSTRONG LIE (USA) US Premiere

Director: Alex Gibney

After years of avoiding doping allegations, Lance Armstrong admitted to lying about his use of performance-enhancing drugs, an admission that led to one of the most notorious defrocks in sports history. Alex Gibney, the Academy Award®-winning documentarian behind TAXI TO THE DARK SIDE, ENRON: THE SMARTEST GUYS IN THE ROOM, and MEA MAXIMA CULPA, masterfully pieces together raw, unseen footage and interviews from the 2009 Tour de France, documenting Armstrong’s post-cancer return to cycling and the deafening controversy surrounding his current cultural status as a shamed athlete and role model.

EMPTYING THE SKIES (USA) North American Premiere

Director: Douglas Kass, Roger Kass

Based on a New Yorker article by best-selling writer Jonathan Franzen, EMPTYING THE SKIES chronicles the poaching of migratory birds in southern Europe and introduces us to the intrepid volunteers trying to stop it. Trapped at “pinch points” near the Mediterranean, these globetrotting songbirds are considered culinary delicacies and reap big bucks on the black market, yet many species are endangered and some face extinction. Directors Douglas and Roger Kass skillfully bring the spirit of Franzen’s words onto the screen and deservedly win this year’s Zelda Penzel Giving Voice to the Voiceless Award. Preceded by the short film, TODAY

Director: Dayna Goldfine, Dan Geller

Darwin meets Hitchcock in this gripping murder-mystery about European ex-pats in the 1930s searching for utopia on an uninhabited island in the Galapagos. The beautiful, yet brutal landscape of Floreana serves as a perfect background for the drama surrounding Dr. Fredrich Ritter and his lover Dore Strauch. Too soon their lives are invaded by the Wittmer family and the Baroness with her two young lovers. When you’re on an island, there are no good fences to make good neighbors. Featuring rare archival footage not seen in 70 years, and with voice performances by Cate Blanchett and Diane Kruger, THE GALAPAGOS AFFAIR weaves “a human history” with modern-day interviews, spinning an adventurous tale of idealistic dreams gone awry.

GERALDINE FERRARO: PAVING THE WAY (USA) World Premiere

Director: Donna Zaccaro

In 1984, New York attorney and US representative Geraldine “Gerry” Ferraro made history by accepting the Democratic Party nomination and becoming the first female vice presidential candidate. Featuring interviews with political luminaries and with Ferraro herself before her death in 2011, the documentary traces Ferraro’s journey through the peaks and valleys of political success, providing insight into the outlook of a feminist icon. Compelling and genuine, GERALDINE FERRARO paints a portrait of the woman who inspired countless future trailblazers—including Hillary Clinton, whom Ferraro assisted in the 2008 presidential nomination campaign.

THE HUMAN SCALE (Denmark) New York Premiere

Director: Andreas Dalsgaard

After one of the worst earthquakes to hit New Zealand, the people of Christchurch took a different approach to rebuilding their city. They studied how their city could serve humans better. They studied car culture, bike lanes, and pedestrian walkways. They studied the work of Jan Gehl, the Danish architect who for 40 years has been analyzing the symbiosis of cities and their inhabitants. With emerging countries and their economies looking at the viability of urban growth, director Andreas Dalsgaard takes us around the world to see how Gehl’s seminal work is being translated within modern city centers like New York, Copenhagen, Chong Quing, and Dahka.

IF YOU BUILD IT (USA) New York Premiere

Director: Patrick Creadon

In the poorest county in North Carolina, activists Emily Pilloton and Matthew Miller work with students to introduce design and creativity as a tool for community improvement. Barely getting by on grants and loans, Pilloton and Miller are committed to their yearlong initiative to empower their students to re-invent themselves and their struggling community. Culminating with a final project to build a new farmers’ market pavilion, IF YOU BUILD IT, from the director of WORDPLAY, offers a vision for a new kind of classroom and examines design’s power to be an engine of civic transformation. Family Film: Ages 12 and up

THE LAST SAFARI (Kenya/USA) World Premiere

Director: Matt Goldman

When renowned photojournalist Elizabeth L. Gilbert returns to the Rift Valley in Africa to visit the tribes she photographed just a decade earlier, she bears witness to the changes wrought on the region. After her book is published, she hires a crew from Nairobi to assist her in screening a cinema slideshow to tribes-people, like the Masai, in their remote villages. But her ambitious safari is fraught with inclement weather, security issues, and self-doubt. Matt Goldman’s first feature captures the reunions, the dramas, and ultimately the triumphs of this remarkable journey.Preceded by the short film, SKINNINGROVE

MISFIRE: THE RISE AND THE FALL OF THE SHOOTIING GALLERY (USA) World Premiere

Director: Whitney Ransick

The Shooting Gallery was one of the premier production companies for independent film in the 1990s, responsible for art-house hits like LAWS OF GRAVITY, SLING BLADE, and YOU CAN COUNT ON ME. After the success of fellow alum Hal Hartley, a cabal of grads from SUNY Purchase decided to start a fast-paced company with a can-do, DIY attitude. But success came at a cost. Many of the original founders left, as business self-interest replaced the earlier common purpose and expansion into “new media” came to the fore. Director Whitney Ransick, one of the original crew, retells a fascinating, universal story about the “Enron of independent films. Director Whitney Ransick will participate in a Rowdy Talk on Sunday, October 13 at 10am.

RUNNING FROM CRAZY (USA)

Director: Barbara Kopple

Hopeful and heartbreaking, RUNNING FROM CRAZY opens with a vision of perfection: a blonde modeling in the wilderness. This particular pretty face, however, belongs to Mariel Hemingway, Ernest Hemingway’s youngest granddaughter, famous for her role in Woody Allen’s MANHATTAN. Hemingway’s family history of depression, substance abuse, and suicide is not limited to her legendary grandfather. Two-time Academy Award® winner Barbara Kopple uses fascinating archival footage of the Hemingways to explore mental illness as one of the last American taboos and the family’s struggle to heal while communicating honestly about the past. Barbara Kopple will be featured at Rowdy Talk on Friday, October 11 at 10am.

THIS IS WHAT THEY WANT (USA) World Premiere

Director: Brian Koppleman, David Levien

When Jimmy Connors arrived at the 1991 U.S. Open, the one-time tennis superstar was eight years removed from his last Grand Slam title, ranked 174th in the world, and approaching his 39th birthday. But on the verge of a first-round exit, Connors unexpectedly re-captured his magic, embarking on an extraordinary run than included an epic contest with Aaron Krickstein. THIS IS WHAT THEY WANT not only illuminates this improbable march past a series of talented and youthful adversaries, but also explores how Connors became a provocative personality who helped make tennis a high-octane spectator sport.

TIM’S VERMEER (USA)

Director: Teller

Tim Jenison, a Texas based inventor, attempts to solve one of the greatest art mysteries: How did 17th century Dutch master Johannes Vermeer (“Girl with a Pearl Earring”) manage to paint so photo-realistically 150 years before the invention of photography? The epic research project Jenison embarks on is as extraordinary as what he discovers. Spanning a decade, the astounding documentary TIM’S VERMEER tracks Jenison to Delft, Holland, where Vermeer painted his masterpieces; on a pilgrimage to the North coast of Yorkshire to meet artist David Hockney; and eventually even to Buckingham Palace to see the Queen’s Vermeer.

WORLD CINEMA NARRATIVE

BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR “LA VIED’ADÈLE, CHAPITRES 1 & 2” (France)

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche

Based on a graphic novel, BlUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR follows the story of Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos), a high school junior who locks eyes on Emma (Léa Seydoux), a blue-haired college student. They soon ignite a complicated and passionate love affair. Stricken with the stress of homophobia and a turbulent relationship, their lives begin to unravel, revealing the difficulties of growing up together. Winner of the prestigious Palme D’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, this controversial feature has garnered international critical acclaim as a gritty, realistic tale of love and loss. Contains scenes of a sexually explicit nature. Featuring Léa Seydoux: Variety’s 10 Actors to Watch

BOB BIRDNOW’S REMARKABLE TALE OF HUMAN SURVIVAL AND THE TRANSCENDENCE OF SELF (USA)

World Premiere

Director: Eric Steele

Bob Birdnow is a curious candidate for a motivational speaker. Balding, crippled, and past middle-aged. He does have something no one else has though: a remarkable tale of human survival and the transcendence of self. When asked by his old friend to speak at a conference, he avoids the subject, opting for a more traditional speech. However, when forced off the script and desperate, Birdnow takes the audience on an outré, radical, and unforgettable journey that brings us face-to face with one of life’s biggest questions. Based on the hit one-man play/experimental theatre piece by HIFF alum Eric Steele. Preceded by the short film, BALANCE

THE BROKEN CIRCLE BREAKDOWN (Belgium)

Director: Felix Van Groeningen

When Didier and Elise meet, they instinctually know they have both found their match. While his true love was once was reserved only for American bluegrass music, this fiery tattoo artist plucks away all semblance of the brutish bachelor he once was. They bond over music and culture, and dive headfirst into a sweeping romance that plays out on and off stage. When an unexpected tragedy hits, everything they know and love is tested. An intensely moving portrait of a relationship from beginning to end, THE BROKEN CIRCLE BREAKDOWN has been hailed by audiences internationally as a must-see film.

CAMILLE CLAUDEL 1915 (France) New York Premiere

Director: Bruno Dumont

Academy Award® winner Juliette Binoche stars as the troubled French sculptor Camille Claudel, confined to a mental institution after her doomed love affair with painter Auguste Rodin. This immersive, austere film follows the ill-fated artist over the course of a week, early in her incarceration at the Avignon asylum where she will live for the rest of her life. Director Bruno Dumont and Binoche, in a career-topping performance, channel Claudel with heartbreaking clarity, detailing her struggle to maintain her intelligence and dignity amid grueling conditions and her gnawing paranoia.

CHARLIE VICTOR ROMEO (USA)

Director: Robert Berger, Patrick Daniels

With dialogue taken from actual black box transcripts of six real-life major airline emergencies, CHARLE VICTOR ROMEO is a haunting, riveting theatrical experience superbly translated to film by directors Robert Berger and Patrick Daniels. Started on stage in 1999 at the Collective: Unconscious Theater on the lower East Side, this compelling, almost experimental piece recreates the tense cockpit scenes word-for-word based on the CVR, or Cockpit Voice recorder. With unsparing truthfulness, the film has been embraced by the aviation community and used as a training video for pilots. It is truly unique cinema, stretching the boundaries of film, theater, and the traditional documentary.

EXIT MARRAKECH (Germany) US Premiere

Director: Caroline Link

When 17-year-old Ben visits his divorced dad Heinrich in Morocco for the summer, he realizes his dad is as foreign to him as the country itself. Struggling to reconnect, their old conflicts bubble up and eventually push Ben to leave the luxury confines of his father’s world for the wonders the exotic country has to offer. From the colorful streets of Marrakech to the Atlas Mountains, with deserts and oases in between, Academy Award®-winning director Caroline Link (NOWHERE IN AFRICA), takes us through the unexpected twists and turns of Ben’s adventures and Heinrich’s search for his son.

IN BLOOM “GRZELI NATELI DGEEB” (Georgia) US Premiere

Director: Simon Groß, Nana Ekvtimishvili

Early Nineties, in Tbilisi, the capital of the newly independent Georgia after the collapse of the Soviet union. The country is facing violence, war on the Black Sea coast, and vigilante justice plaguing their society. But for Eka and Natia, 14-year-old inseparable friends in bloom, life simply unfolds around them in the streets and at school. It rolls about as friends or elder sisters deal with the brutish dominance of the men, early marriage, and disillusioned love. With two startling lead performances by its young actresses, IN BLOOM is an evocative slice-of-life drama with the capacity to shock. Georgia’s Oscar entry.

JIMMY P. (USA)

Director: Arnaud Desplechin