19th Annual "DANCES WITH FILMS" Festival opens with "WOLF MOTHER"

Dances is an 11-day Film Festival featuring breakthrough unknown filmmakers as well as Fusion films starring Brooke Shields, Ice-T, Sam Trammell, French Stewart, Chris Kattan, Tom Sizemore, Ione Skye, Randall Park, Annette O’Toole, John Glover, Nick Mancuso, Cassidy Freeman, Jay Ellis, among others joining a number of prolific returning alumni.

(LOS ANGELES, CA – May 16, 2016) Dances With Films (DWF), the iconic Los Angeles-based Film Festival today announced its film lineup that includes the opening night film, “Wolf Mother”, making its World Premiere and joining the already announced competition slate. Boasting the most diverse line up for every taste from features, music videos, genre and an unprecedented shorts selection, DWF declares a truly independent spirit of passion, not politics for discerning Los Angeles audiences. DWF is known for their support of Festival alumni beyond their debut, as well as welcoming new voices to their family. Of the festival’s 117 films: documentaries, shorts and music videos, DWF is excited to include a record number of premieres – 60 World, 7 North American, 9 Southern California, and 31 West Coast.

“Wolf Mother” kicks off the festival with its World Premiere. Written and directed by DFW alumni, Erik Peter Carlson, and starring Najarra Townsend, Kevin Pinassi, Nick Frangione, Stephanie Pearson, and Tom Sizemore. In an attempt to rectify their criminal past, a once successful Hollywood and a petty thief set out together to solve a high-profile child abduction case in San Francisco.

“I’m hoping the independent movement happening now, will somehow find its way, the way it did in the 60’s and 70’s. That’s where I belong. Which is why Dances With Films is home after having premiered my first two features there, making my return to open Dances with my latest feature "Wolf Mother" this year all the more sweet. It's simply an honor as they are one of few film festival that truly champion new voices like mine in the indie scene." Erik Peter Carlson, DWF alumni and “Wolf Mother” director.

This year’s captivating slate feature legendary, and soon to be legendary, casts, a number of whom are returning to DWF as alumni: Sam Trammell (“True Blood”), Brooke Shields (“Suddenly Susan”), Ice-T (“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”), Ione Skye (“Say Anything”), Randall Park (“Fresh Off the Boat”), Annette O’Toole (“Superman III”) John Glover (“Smallville”), French Stewart (“3rd Rock From the Sun”), Chris Kattan (“A Night at the Roxbury”), Todd Bridges (“Diff’rent Strokes”), Lee Meriwether (“All My Children”), Nick Mancuso (“Stingray”), Cassidy Freeman (“Smallville”), Jay Ellis (“The Game”), Tom Sizemore (“Saving Private Ryan”), Eric Roberts (“The Dark Knight”), Daphne Zuniga (“Spaceballs”), Patricia Velasquez (“The Mummy”), Erica Dasher (“Jane By Design”), Chris Weihl (“What Boys Like”), Lisa Ann Walter (“Bruce Almighty”), Lucy Russell (“Batman Begins”), Camille Sullivan (“The Butterfly Effect”), Gabrielle Rose (“If I Stay”), among others.

DWF Founder, Michael Trent, states, “While DWF focuses on unknown and unexposed talent, we are happy to include exemplary indie films in our fusion section that represent the building blocks of a successful career.”

The 19th Annual Dances With Films Festival best represents filmmakers who are breaking onto the scene, standing out with their filmmaking skills and remarkable talent in storytelling. The competition films are selected from more than 2,000 film submissions annually and were programmed entirely from blind submissions by the DWF filmmaking community based solely on their unique and powerful cinematic visions.

DWF is 11 days of bliss for those cinephiles who just can’t get enough of the truest of indie filmmaking. The festival starts with the opening night party on Thursday, June 2nd and concludes with the closing awards ceremony & after party on June 12th, all centrally located in the Hollywood & Highland complex. Dances With Films serves as a festival that is unique in its dedication to the independent filmmaker and filmmaking process.

“We are thrilled by the imagination of this year’s slate. The quality of the storytelling, and compelling visuals will thrill audiences once again this year," states Leslee Scallon, Festival Co-Founder.

DWF also facilitates the connection of many filmmakers, allowing for important associations to be made and nurtured even after the festival lowers the curtain on this year's events.

Dances With Films 2016 Film Festival season premieres June 2 - 12, 2016 in Los Angeles, CA at the TCL Chinese Theaters, located at Hollywood & Highland, 6925 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90028.