A sense of optimism flowed through the 37th edition of the Hawaii International Film Festival, held over ten days in Honolulu this past November. Last year’s version may have been sucker-punched midway through thanks to the election of Donald Trump, which knocked the wind out of many audience members and staffers here in this deep-blue, Obama-proud state. A year later the crowds and the energy were back, along with an even-stronger determination to not only hear new stories, but to committedly tell and help preserve their own. While the amount of made-in-Hawaii documentary and narrative features was only slightly over the festival’s usual amount, a first-time “Made in Hawaii” official competition section (spearheaded by new executive director Beckie Stocchetti) offered those titles a welcome, much-needed spotlight in front of the many other events and sections on display (this year’s included Japanese animation, environmental activism documentaries, … [Read more...] about Hawaii Rising: Creating Community at the 37th Hawaii International Film Festival
Maui film festival
Enter the International Film Festival Summit, which runs Dec. 2-4 at the Loews Lake Las Vegas Resort. Founded in 2004 by Todd Brockman and Waco Hoover, the event unites seasoned pros and fest-circuit greenhorns for three days of keynote addresses, panel discussions and informal socializing. "Every industry has a number of different events where professionals have a platform to talk to each other, benchmark, exchange ideas and talk about what's going on in their industry," says Hoover, who also plans conference and trade shows for other segments of the entertainment industry. "But (before IFFS), there was no forum that would allow film festival and industry professionals to come together and exclusively focus on professional issues."In its first year, the summit drew fewer than 100 attendees. But Hoover expects more than 400 guests at this year's event. Scheduled keynote speakers include Piers Handling, president and CEO of the Toronto Film Festival Group, and Gary Meyer, co-director of … [Read more...] about Festival summit talks about everything — except movies.
John Mason, film commissioner for the Big Island Film Office, attributes the draw to the state's recently enacted tax incentive program. "That's what brought 'Indiana Jones' here, when you get right down to it. Of course, they liked the locations. One of the things they were looking for was old-growth jungles for this chase scene they wanted to do. You might think they'd find it in the Amazon, Costa Rica or Mexico, but no. They found it here."According to Hawaii state film commissioner Donne Dawson, the state's refundable production tax credit, known as Act 88, has generated more than $200 million in direct spend since it went into effect on July 1, 2006 (roughly $185 million in the 2007 fiscal year alone). It grants productions an income tax credit equal to 15% of in-state spend incurred on Oahu and 20% on neighbor islands. That figure isn't so impressive compared to Louisiana or New Mexico, which offer 25% production incentives, or Michigan, which recently instituted a 40%-42% … [Read more...] about Hawaii is enticing major filming productions
June International Hamburg Short Film Festival June 2-8 Newport International Film Festival June 3-7 Sydney Film Festival June 3-14 International Huesca Film Festival June 4-13 Annecy: International Animation Film Festival June 8-13 CineVegas Film Festival June 10-15 Donate Life Hollywood Film Festival June 12-13 Shanghai International Film Festival June 13-21 Silverdocs June 15-22 Edinburgh International Film Festival June 17-28 Maui Film Festival June 17-21 Frameline June 18-28 Los Angeles Film Festival June 18-28 Moscow International Film Festival June 19-28 Nantucket Film Festival June 19-21 Palm Springs International Shortfest June 23-29 Filmfest Munchen June 26-July 4 July Karlovy Vary International Film Festival July 3-11 Festival International Du Documentaire De Marseilles July 8-13 Auckland International Film Festival July 9-26 Outfest July 9-19 Anima Mundi July 10-19 and July 22-26 Wellington Film Festival July 17-Aug. 3 … [Read more...] about List of upcoming film festivals
"The Cove"Recipient of the Sundance Film Festival Audience Award this year, Lionsgate's "The Cove" from director Louie Psihoyos follows famed dolphin trainer-turned-activist Richard O'Barry as he and his team fight to expose the clandestine exploitation and slaughter of dolphins in a small town in Japan. This riveting envirodoc is as much a thriller as it is the heartbreaking chronicle of both a public-health nightmare and a tragedy wrought by man upon one of Earth's most intelligent and sensitive creatures."Art Officially Favored"For 25 years, Michael Masley has been hypnotizing crowds on the sidewalks of Berkeley, Calif., with the magical sound of his cymbalom. Masley plays his instrument with bowhammers -- metal bows attached to his fingers by rings. Featuring interviews with such rock greats as Steven Tyler and Joe Elliott, the Atorrante Films documentary from director Martin Yernazian tells the poignant tale of this struggling visionary and musical activist."Dirt! The … [Read more...] about Four docs unspooling at the Maui Film Festival