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Enjoy here the best of both worlds: Portal with Film & Fest News and Social network for the festival community.  

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Interviews

"Backtrack" (2015); Interview With George Shetsov

  Writer/Director Michael Petroni's film “Backtrack” was sold to international territories at this year's EFM in Berlin by sales agent Bankside Films. The film tells the story of psychologist Peter Bower (Adrien Brody) who is himself troubled by a forgotten past that has come back to haunt him. Visited by ghosts of his childhood, Peter seeks to uncover his unconsciously buried memories. But the more he seeks the truth, the more his life and the lives of his family ...

Why You Should See HOOLIGAN SPARROW: For Women’s Rights, Yes, But To Free a Human Rights Lawyer Too

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent It may be easier to get a trade deal with China than to get a condom, or get a jailed human rights attorney freed — these are just some of the peripheral issues on view in director Nanfu Wang’s documentary HOOLIGAN SPARROW, released last week in Los Angeles. Wang’s documentary also covers child rape, female endangerment, and the universally egregious harassment of voiceless women.  To put it in the words of its champions:...

From The Last Tycoon to Woody Allen’s Café Society: Why We Love Stories About Hollywood

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent Woody Allen’s newest film Café Society just opened July 15, and it fits into a cinematic history of stories about Hollywood that audiences love. But Woody Allen himself has been a lightning rod for so long, the electricity generated off the attendant controversies could power a small town. That said, we’re talking about a movie, folks, not the personal life of the director. With that caveat, Café Soc...

Interview with Russian/Czech Actress Maria Darkina on Emir Kusturica's film 'On The Milky Road' (2016)

    Actress Maria Darkina with director Emir Kusturica (above) Russian/Czech talent Maria Darkina stars in Emir Kusturica's latest film 'On the Milky Road' (2016). She attended the 69th Cannes Film Festival in the Cannes young talent program where she did interviews and promoted her upcoming role in American indie film 'Storefront' (2016). Maria is one to watch on the international film front. Born in Russia and raised in Czech Republic, she now lives in Lo...

Director Susanna White on Brexit, John le Carré & Our Kind of Traitor with Stellan Skarsgård, Ewan McGregor

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent If in the fifty-odd years since British spymaster John le Carré began plying his trade as a novelist, you have somehow missed any of the screen versions of his works, know this: there are favorites. Everybody has one: from 1965’s Richard Burton classic The Spy Who Came in From The Cold to 2005’s The Constant Gardener (Rachel Weisz, Ralph Fiennes) to 2011’s Gary Oldman-starrer Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Spy. John ...

From Punch Cards to Stunt Hacking to Alex Gibney’s ZERO DAYS & Symantec’s Eric Chien on Stuxnet

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by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent You have to hand it to filmmaker Alex Gibney (GOING CLEAR), he has taken on everything from Eliot Spitzer’s political downfall to the Enron debacle to Lance Armstrong’s doping to soft-money “super-lobbyist” Jack Abramoff to Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson, not to mention Nigerian music legend Fela Kuti. So it comes as no surprise that Gibney goes from wrestling Xenu to rattling the NSA’s cage with Z...

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Interview with Director/Writer/Actor John Fortson for 'RATED' (2016) @ Palm Springs International Shortfest

Director/Writer/Actor John Fortson's short film 'RATED' (2016) has been making its round to film festivals since its world premiere at Sonoma International Film Festival in April where it won the Jury Award for Best Comedy Short. The film stars John's actor wife Christie Lynn Smith (Justified, The Crazies) who plays the lead Maggie, their daughter Abby Ryder Fortson (Togetherness, Ant-Man), and their son Joshua Fortson. RATED is currently screening at the 2016 Palm Springs Inte...

Interview with Writer/Director/Producer/Composer Alain Bidard for BATTLEDREAM CHRONICLE.

Martinique multi-talent Alain Bidard is wowing the film world with his debut animation feature film Battledream Chronicle (2015) which he wrote, directed, produced and composed. The film has traveled the globe at international film festivals this past year gaining multiple prize nominations and wins. The film most recently traveled to Animation Days at 2016 Cannes Film Festival. I recently interviewed Alain Bidard about his grand vision behind Battledream Chronicle. Here is what he had t...

Interview with Writer/Director/Producer/Composer Alain Bidard for BATTLEDREAM CHRONICLE.

Martinique multi-talent Alain Bidard is wowing the film world with his debut animation feature film Battledream Chronicle (2015) which he wrote, directed, produced and composed. The film has traveled the globe at international film festivals this past year gaining multiple prize nominations and wins. The film most recently traveled to Animation Days at 2016 Cannes Film Festival. I recently interviewed Alain Bidard about his grand vision behind Battledream Chronicle. Here is what he had t...

Interview with PGA Producer Kayvan Mashayekh on 'Producing Without Borders' @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

Middle East and North Africa Representative for the PGA (Producers Guild America) Kayvan Mashayekh brought his 2nd annual 'Producing Without Borders' panel, hosted by the Royal Film Commission of Jordan, to the 69th Cannes Film Festival. Due to its major social media and Cannes success, the RFC/PGA co-branded event is set to be a mainstay that will now take place twice a year, both at Berlinale and Cannes Film Festival.   I interviewed PGA producer Kayvan about his panel shortly...

Interview with Producers Sofia Sondervan & Tom Butterfield on LONDON TOWN (2016) @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

Set in 1970's London, LONDON TOWN (2016) is a coming-of-age story about 14 year-old Shay Baker (played by Daniel Huttlestone) whose life changes when he is forced to spend the summer alone running his father's music shop while the latter lies sick in hospital. Shay befriends musician Joe Strummer and, like many of his generation, is transformed by the music of The Clash. The rock-n-roll feature film stars Daniel Huttlestone, Dougray Scott, Natascha McElhone, Nell Williams, and Jonatha...

Interview with Spencer Pollard, CEO of Kaleidoscope Film Distribution, at 69th Cannes Film Festival

Spencer Pollard CEO Spencer Pollard started Kaleidoscope Film Distribution (KFD) in 2008, which today holds strong as one of UK's most successful international sales/distribution companies. KFD is an expanding and established International Sales outfit based in Soho, London and a one-stop-shop offering full UK and international distribution and sales capabilities. It is one of the fastest-growing independents in the market. KFD specializes in commercial features films and branded do...

Interview With Actor Dougray Scott for LONDON TOWN (2016) @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

  Actor Dougray Scott (TAKEN 3, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 2) attended the 69th Cannes Film Festival to promote the market premiere of his latest film LONDON TOWN (2016), which Radiant Films International/Cargo Entertainment is handling for international sales. LONDON TOWN takes place in1970s London when British punk rock dominated the music scene and The Clash was at the height of their success. A 14-year-old boy discovers the music of the iconic band and experiences first love over the cou...

Interview with BILAL Writer/Director/Producer Ayman Jamal @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

  “Bilal: A New Breed of Hero” is a 3D computer-animated action-adventure drama about the real life epic story of Bilal ibn Rabah, a young African slave boy who was abducted by Arabian slave-drivers and raised in slavery 1,400 years ago. An inspiring story of freedom and survival in the face of great adversity, Bilal found his freedom after forty years of slavery. Ayman Jamal is writer/director/producer of “Bilal”, which premiered in the film market and Animati...

Interview with Jonathan Wolf (AFM) @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

  Jonathan Wolf has been Managing Director of AFM (American Film Market) since 1998. He has been a visionary and passionate independent film advocate and pivotal force in the film industry for over two decades. I interviewed him in the Dubai Pavilion at the 69th Cannes Film Festival. Here is what he had to say:   Can you explain, for people who don't know, how important is the American Film Market in relation to the Cannes Film Festival? JONATHAN: The AFM is like a bookend t...

Interview with Short Filmmaker Alex Burunova @ 69th Cannes Film Festival

  PALE BLUE (2016) by Alex Burunova featured in 69th Cannes Short Film Corner. Belarus born writer/director/producer Alex Burunova attended Cannes Film Festival for the 2nd year in a row to support her 2nd film in Cannes Short Film Corner. I interviewed Alex about her experience at the festival and if she felt it has benefited her career as an indie filmmaker. Here is what she has to say:   Q: Was 'Pale Blue' based on true events? ALEX: Without giving away too much, ...
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