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Film critic Elvis Mitchell guest curator at LA fest

JUNE 16 – 26, 2005

Dawn Hudson, Executive Director of Film Independent (FIND), announced Elvis Mitchell as the Guest Curator for the 2005 Los Angeles Film Festival, which runs Thursday, June 16 through Sunday, June 26, 2005. In this official position, Mitchell will be selecting a number of special screenings and moderating discussions for the 2005 festival. Mitchell joins Festival Director, Richard Raddon and Director of Programming Rachel Rosen.
“We’re are incredibly excited to have Elvis join us at the Festival, he has been a great supporter and a huge advocate for the need for a world class film festival in LA,” said Raddon and Rosen.
Elvis Mitchell has been an entertainment critic for NPR’s Weekend Edition with Scott Simon since the show’s inception in 1985. Mitchell was a film critic for the New York Times for four years, starting in January 2000. Prior to that, he was a film critic for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for two years, starting in December 1997; there, he won the 1999 AASFE Award for criticism. He was also a film critic for the Detroit Free Press, the LA Weekly and California magazine. In 1993, he was nominated for a Writer’s Guild of America award for his contributions to “The AFI Achievement Award Tribute to Sidney Poitier.”
Mitchell is a visiting lecturer on African and African American Studies on Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard University. In October of 2002, at the invitation of Dr. Henry Louis Gates, he gave the Alain Leroy Locke lectures for the African American studies department at Harvard University.
A graduate of Wayne State University with a degree in English literature, Mitchell has hosted The Treatment for KCRW since 1985. Mitchell was editor-at-large for Spin magazine, and has also written for Interview, Esquire and the New York Times Sunday Magazine.
According to Mitchell, “I’ve been close to the Los Angeles Film Festival for some time in an unofficial capacity. I’m honored to be asked to come aboard and show some love for it above ground. The Festival’s contribution to the cultural and artistic lifeblood of Los Angeles is undeniable, in no small part because it’s inclusive of the entire film community in a consistent and matter-of-fact fashion.”
Held annually in the heart of Hollywood, the Los Angeles Film Festival showcases the best of American and international independent cinema. The competitive sections feature recent U.S. narrative and documentary features and a global collection of short films, while the International Showcase features full-length narratives and documentaries from outside the U.S. The Festival also screens short films created by high school students and has a special section devoted to music videos.
The 2005 Los Angeles Film Festival is sponsored by Premier Sponsors – In Style and Target Stores – and Principal Sponsors – Directors Guild of America and Eastman Kodak Company. The Festival is also supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Los Angeles Film Festival has grown to more than 45,000 attendees, unveiling such films as “Rock School,” “Mayor of the Sunset Strip,” “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart,” “Kissing Jessica Stein,” “George Washington,” “The Cruise,” and “Dead Man.” Recent films, which were acquired for theatrical distribution out of the festival, include “Rock School,” “Mayor of the Sunset Strip,” “Kissing Jessica Stein,” “Washington Heights,” and “OT: Our Town.” A total of 195 films including 83 features representing 31 countries screened at the 2004 Los Angeles Film Festival.
FIND is the largest non-profit organization dedicated to supporting independent filmmakers and increasing the audience for independent film. FIND is a community of artists who embody diversity, innovation and the independent spirit. In addition to producing the Independent Spirit Awards and the Los Angeles Film Festival, FIND is an advocate for independent filmmaking and hosts year-round educational programs, a diversity/mentoring program and over 100 screenings that appeal to people involved in the industry and film enthusiasts.

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