The Los Angeles Film Festival June 21 - July 1, 2007
Yearly, the annual Los Angeles Film Festival, produced by Film Independent (FIND), takes pride in giving some of the best American and international upcoming independent films and uprising filmmakers.
The Festival Center, where box-office is being set up (including the Target Room for filmmakers, porch parties, and free screenings) will take place at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Westwood in Westwood, California.
Among the films included is DreamWorks Pictures and Paramount Pictures’ highly anticipated summer blockbuster “TRANSFORMERS” will have its Los Angeles premiere at the 2007 Los Angeles Film Festival on Wednesday, June 27. One of the largest film premieres of its kind to take place in Los Angeles and open to the public, “TRANSFORMERS” will be screened simultaneously in four Westwood Village theaters with a seating of 4,000. The red-carpet premiere will be followed by a massive block party – which is open to anyone who attends one of the film’s four screenings – on the Festival Promenade on Broxton Avenue. Directed by Michael Bay, “TRANSFORMERS” stars Shia LaBeouf, Tyrese Gibson, Josh Duhamel, Anthony Anderson, Megan Fox, Rachael Taylor, with John Turturro and Jon Voight.
Tickets to the “TRANSFORMERS” premiere are $25 and can be obtained now by purchasing a pass to this year’s Festival. Any single tickets remaining will be sold beginning June 8 by calling 866.FILM.FEST (866.345.6337) or at www.lafilmfest.com.
Screenings will take place at The Landmark Regent Theatre, the Mann National Theatre, the Mann Bruin Theatre, and the Mann Village Theatre, with the main premiere taking place at the Mann National Theatre.
As previously announced, Academy Award®-winning actor and filmmaker Clint Eastwood will receive this year’s Spirit of Independence Award on Thursday, June 28 at a special event sponsored by Target. Kasi Lemmons’ Talk to Me (Focus Features) will kick off the Festival as the Opening Night film on Thursday, June 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Mann Village Theatre.
Danny Boyle’s Sunshine (Fox Searchlight Pictures) will serve as the Closing Night film on Sunday, July 1 at 7:00 p.m. at the Wadsworth Theatre.
The L.A. Filmfest moviegoers will enjoy more than 230 feature films, shorts, and music videos, as well as Coffee Talks, Poolside Chats, and other special star-studded events. Westwood Village will showcase films and events among various venues, all within walking distance of each other, with ample, convenient parking and easy access to shopping and dining, setting the stage for the biggest Festival yet.
Over the course of 10 days and 11 nights, the public is invited to take advantage of world premieres including both independent films and major studio releases, as well as tribute screenings, outdoor movies, celebrity-filled red carpets, and more. Screenings and special events will be held in Westwood at the following locations: Billy Wilder Theater at the Hammer Museum; the Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater at the Geffen Playhouse; Mann Festival Theatre; Mann Village Theatre; Mann Bruin Theatre; Landmark’s Regent Theatre; Italian Cultural Institute; the Majestic Crest Theatre; W Los Angeles – Westwood; the Wadsworth Theatre; and the Festival Promenade on Broxton Avenue. Additional offsite event screenings will take place at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre, Grand Performances at California Plaza, and the Landmark at its new location at the Westside Pavilion.
The Los Angeles Times Ticket and Pass Pavilion – where all festival-goers can purchase tickets and passes to Festival screenings starting Saturday, June 16 – will be located at 1031 Broxton Avenue (at Weyburn). The Target Red Room – filmmaker and press lounge – will be located at 1028 Westwood Boulevard.
The Los Angeles Film Festival is presented by the Los Angeles Times and is supported by Premier Sponsors – Target, Pop Secret®, and Axium International – and by Principal Sponsors – Eastman Kodak Company, IFC, and OPEN from American Express®. Promotional support is provided by Schawk. Special support is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Academy Foundation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. American Airlines is the Official Airline Partner and WireImage is the Official Photography Agency of Film Independent. The W Hotel – Westwood and the Hotel Angeleno are the official hotel partners of the Festival.
OPENING NIGHT Talk to Me Talk to Me is an indelible portrait of Ralph Waldo “Petey” Greene, a former drug addict and thief who became a revered radio disc jockey and a tireless protester against social injustice. DIRECTOR Kasi Lemmons WRITERS Kasi Lemmons, Rick Famuyiwa, Michael Genet PRODUCERS Mark Gordon, Sidney Kimmel, Joe Fries, Josh McLaughlin CAST Don Cheadle, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Taraji Henson, Mike Epps, Vondie Curtis Hall, Cedric the Entertainer, Martin Sheen.
CLOSING NIGHT Sunshine The sun is dying, and mankind’s only hope is the crew of a spaceship speeding towards the fading star in this science fiction thriller by the team behind 28 Days Later. DIRECTOR Danny Boyle WRITER Alex Garland PRODUCER Andrew Macdonald CAST Rose Byrne, Cliff Curtis, Chris Evans, Troy Garity, Cillian Murphy, Hiroyuki Sanada, Mark Strong, Benedict Wong, Michelle Yeoh.
NARRATIVE COMPETITION August Evening – World Premiere After tragedy disrupts the lives of an undocumented worker and his widowed daughter-in-law, the pair struggle to stay together, even as they come to realize the inevitability of growing apart. DIRECTOR/WRITER Chris Eska PRODUCERS Connie Hill, Jason Wehling CAST Pedro Castaneda, Veronica Loren, Abel Becerra, Walter Perez, Sandra Rios, Cesar Flores
The Beautiful Ordinary – World Premiere Unfolding on the last day of school, 1999, this smart take on teenage suburbia avoids coming-of-age clichés to give an honest portrait of what it means to be a wised-up, plugged-in teenager today. DIRECTOR/WRITER Jess Manafort PRODUCERS Judd Payne, Matthew Rhodes CAST Amber Heard, Alexa Vega, Chris Marquette, John Robinson, Melonie Diaz
How to Rob a Bank – World Premiere A heist film that gets everything right about a crime that goes all wrong, writer-director Andrews Jenkins's debut is a fresh, freewheeling take on a genre perennial. DIRECTOR/WRITER Andrews Jenkins PRODUCERS Rick Lashbrook, Darby Parker, Arthur Sarkissian, Tim O'Hair CAST Nick Stahl, Erika Christensen, Gavin Rossdale, Terry Crews Kabluey – World Premiere Writer-director Scott Prendergast stars as oddball Salman, part-time corporate mascot and full-time live-in babysitter for his overwhelmed sister-in-law (Lisa Kudrow), in this visually inventive and touching comedy. DIRECTOR/WRITER Scott Prendergast PRODUCERS Rick Rosenthal, Gary Dean Simpson, Rhoades Rader, Jeff Balis, Doug Sutherland CAST Lisa Kudrow, Scott Prendergast, Christine Taylor, Conchata Ferrell, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Chris Parnell, Teri Garr.
Liberty Kid – World Premiere Two young men struggle to keep their lives on track when they are fired from the Statue of Liberty. With a street-level energy, Ilya Chaiken explores friendship at the fringes of the American Dream. DIRECTOR/WRITER Ilya Chaiken PRODUCERS Larry Fessenden, Roger Kass, Mike S. Ryan CAST Al Thompson, Kareem Savinon, Anny Mariano, Anna Simpson, Joe Bataan.
Owl and the Sparrow (Cu va Chim Se Se) – Vietnam/USA Ten-year-old Thuy escapes from her factory job and heads to Saigon, where she gradually assembles a makeshift family with two lonely strangers—a flight attendant and a zookeeper—in this romantic tale of love and loneliness. DIRECTOR/WRITER Stephane Gauger PRODUCERS Quan Nguyen, Doan Nhat Nam, Stephane Gauger CAST Cat Ly, Le The Lu, Pham Thi Han.
Severed Ways: The Norse Discovery of America – World Premiere In this stunning and inventive epic, two stranded Norsemen struggle to survive on the coast of Newfoundland in 1007 A.D.—contending with the elements, Irish monks, and pursuing natives. DIRECTOR/WRITER Tony Stone PRODUCER Tony Stone CAST Fiore Tedesco, Tony Stone, David Perry, Gaby Hoffmann, Noelle Bailey, Clare Amory, James Fuentes, Nathan Corbin, Sean Dooley.
What We Do Is Secret – World Premiere Shane West gives a committed all-in performance as Darby Crash, lead singer of seminal Los Angeles band The Germs and punk rock supernova, burning white-hot before fading into the darkness. DIRECTOR/WRITER Rodger Grossman PRODUCERS Kevin Mann, Steven Nemeth, Matthew Perniciaro CAST Shane West, Bijou Phillips, Rick Gonzalez, Noah Segan, Ashton Holmes, Tina Majorino
DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION Billy the Kid You will not soon forget Billy P., the remarkable 15-year-old subject of director Jennifer Vendetti's engrossing verité portrait of life, love and growing up different in small-town Maine. DIRECTOR Jennifer Venditti PRODUCERS Jennifer Venditti, Chiemi Karasawa FEATURING Billy P.
Cat Dancers For 14 years, performers Ron and Judy Holiday, their handsome assistant Chuck and a menagerie of trained tigers lived in unconventional bliss, until their amazing romance turned tragic. DIRECTOR Harris Fishman PRODUCERS Harris Fishman, Amanda Micheli FEATURING Ron Holiday, Joy Holiday, Chuck Lizza.
Constantine's Sword – USA/Italy/Germany/Poland – World Premiere Filmmaker Oren Jacoby chronicles the journey of James Carroll, a former Catholic priest exploring an anti-Semitic agenda within Christianity that stems all the way back to Constantine's reign. DIRECTOR Oren Jacoby WRITERS Oren Jacoby, James Carroll PRODUCERS Oren Jacoby, James Carroll, Michael Solomon, Betsy West FEATURING James Carroll.
The Cool School – World Premiere The Ferus modern art gallery was a California earthquake. Its scrappy gang of Venice Beach beats shook up the dull tastemakers, fought amongst themselves and, here, confess all. DIRECTOR Morgan Neville WRITERS Morgan Neville, Kristine McKenna PRODUCERS Morgan Neville, Dylan Robertson, Kristine McKenna FEATURING Dennis Hopper, Frank Gehry, Billy Al Bengston, Irving Blum, Walter Hopps, Robert Irwin, Ed Kienholz, Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha, Dean Stockwell NARRATOR Jeff Bridges
Join Us – World Premiere In Ondi Timoner's chilling documentary, four families flee a Christian cult and check into a treatment facility in an attempt to reclaim the individuality they have given away. DIRECTOR/WRITER Ondi Timoner PRODUCERS Ondi Timoner, Vasco Lucas Nunes, Jared Tobman FEATURING Joaquin Sullivan, Tonya Rogers, Raymund Melz, Deborah Melz, Liz Shaw, Paul Martin.
JUMP! – World Premiere Full of eye-popping routines and incredible endurance tests, JUMP! highlights the growing sport of competitive jump rope, featuring some of the nation's most impressive and unheralded young athletes. DIRECTOR Helen Hood Scheer WRITERS Helen Hood Scheer, Scott B. Morgan PRODUCER Helen Hood Scheer.
Prison Town, USA A critical perspective on America’s growing prison industry is detailed in Susanville, California, where the emergence of a state prison transforms the entire town. DIRECTORS Katie Galloway, Po Kutchins PRODUCERS Katie Galloway, Po Kutchins.
Resolved – World Premiere The fast-paced and intense world of high school debate provides for a perceptive look at racial and class divisions in American education as two inner city debaters attempt to change the rules of the game. DIRECTOR/WRITER Greg Whiteley PRODUCER Greg Whiteley FEATURING Sam Iola, Matt Andrews, Louis Blackwell, Richard Funches.
Saint Death (La Santa Muerte) – USA/Mexico – World Premiere Gael García Bernal narrates this captivating documentary on the rise of Saint Death, a skeletal icon whose worship in Mexico has seen a dramatic increase in recent years among the urban poor and disenfranchised. DIRECTOR/WRITER Eva Aridjis PRODUCER Eva Aridjis FEATURING Enriqueta Romero Romero, Jesse Ortíz Piña, Jesús Padilla Alonso, Ernestina Ramírez Soto NARRATOR Gael García Bernal.
Second Chance Season – World Premiere A story of loss, redemption, and basketball, this documentary follows 17-year-old Nick Young as he faces his last year of high school, college recruiters, and his family's ongoing grief for a lost son. DIRECTOR Daniel H. Forer PRODUCER Daniel H. Forer FEATURING Nick Young, Charles Young, Mae Young, John Young, Andre Chevalier, Jordan Farmar.
The Town That Was Bureaucracy and bad luck combine to bring about the downfall of the small mining town of Centralia, PA, where a fire in the dense coal underneath the town has burned for decades. DIRECTORS Chris Perkel, Georgie Roland PRODUCERS Chris Perkel, Melinka Thompson-Godoy. FEATURING John Lokitis
Charlie Bartlett Newcomer Anton Yelchin and veterans Robert Downey Jr. and Hope Davis shine in this soulful teen comedy about a young man navigating the perilous waters of high school popularity and young love. DIRECTOR Jon Poll WRITER Gustin Nash PRODUCERS Jay Roach, Sidney Kimmel, David Permut, Baron Kidd CAST Anton Yelchin, Robert Downey Jr., Hope Davis, Kat Denning, Tyler Hilton.
Chasing Ghosts Lincoln Ruchti's cheeky documentary pays homage to the classic video games of yore, while its champions wax bombastic about inventing rapid-fire moves and playing Asteroids for eight straight days. DIRECTOR Lincoln Ruchti PRODUCER Michael Verrechia. PLUS SHORT Game Over by PES.
For event information and tickets, call 866.FILM.FEST (866.345.6337) or visit www.lafilmfest.com.