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The 1st International Emerging Talent Film Festival

May 13-15, 2007 ~ Monte-Carlo, Monaco

The INTERNATIONAL EMERGING TALENT FILM FESTIVAL (IETFF) will kick-off its inaugural event 13 – 15 May 2007 at the Grimaldi Forum in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. IETFF will present 22 films from emerging filmmakers from 20 countries around the globe in this debut presentation. All features are by first time directors and none have distribution. Amongst the eleven features, there are two world premieres, three European premieres and two French premieres. Highlights of the Festival will include its Global Film Program, Official Competition and the Global Film Expression. In addition, the IETFF will partner with the Natural Resources Defense Council to turn the Festival into one of the world’s only “Green” film events.

The mission of the annual INTERNATIONAL EMERGING TALENT FILM FESTIVAL is to discover and promote promising cinema talents, to encourage dialogue between filmmakers, to promote cultural diversity and international understanding and to engage the art of cinema. The IETFF is particularly interested in discovering filmmaking talent from developing and underdeveloped regions of the globe. The IETFF difference – distinguishing it from other events – is its mandate: to connect new and talented up-and-coming filmmakers with individuals from the entertainment community.

In collaboration with the NRDC, the Festival will become a "Green” event. And, through the use of the Festival’s forums and programs, filmmakers, studio executives, distributors, government leaders, and audiences will be educated on ecologically sound life practices and on environmentally responsible film production techniques.

Announcing the Festival’s debut films, programs, events and guests, are founder and Creative Director, Max Ryerson, co-founder Noriko Bonafede, Association President; Marco Orsini, co-founder and Executive Director of the IETFF; and Mitch Levine, IETFF Festival Producer and President of The Film Festival Group.

The Festival is set to open with the European Premiere of Thom Fitzgerald’s three paneled look at the world’s AIDS crises, 3 NEEDLES, starring Lucy Liu, Shawn Ashmore, Chloë Sevigny, Sandra Oh, Stockard Channing and Olympia Dukakis – who will be joining us in Monte Carlo for the Premiere, as will Thom Fitzgerald. And, of course, the night will be capped off by a gala Monte Carlo party which will set in glorious motion the next few days of films, panels and events.

The IETFF’s Closing Night Film is an International Premiere, special advance screening of Peabody Award-winning filmmaker Paul Freedman’s film on the travesty in Darfur, SAND AND SORROW, featuring, produced and narrated by George Clooney. At the Festival’s “A-list” Party following this screening on the 15th, all eyes will be turned – not toward that little French seaside village an hour or so to the West (that’s later in the week) – but to the exciting and glamorous Monte Carlo and the IETFF.

In addition to the advance screening of SAND AND SORROW, a panel on “Crisis in Darfur – Cinema Responds” will be presented on the afternoon of the 15th. Panelists are expected to include Nicholas Kristof of the NY Times, the African Union’s Major Reuben Colince Ondoua, director Paul Freedman and author John Prendergast (who co-penned “Not on Our Watch: The Mission to End Genocide in Darfur and Beyond” with actor Don Cheadle).

SAND AND SORROW is in part the story of the failure of the international community to take action to cease or prevent further genocide in Darfur. The result - Blood on Our Hands.

Working with ten of the world's leading artists over the coming months, the SAND AND SORROW team are building a campaign to collect handprints – imprinted on the artists’ paintings – from those who are now taking action to end this terrible tragedy: artists, actors, human rights activists

The 'Blood on Our Hands' painting campaign will launch in Monaco at the International Emerging Talent Film Festival, with director of SAND AND SORROW, Paul Freedman, AMIS Peacekeeper Major Colince, as well as other human rights activists and celebrities who will all place their red-paint hand prints onto a painting that is being created by leading British contemporary artist Sacha Jafri, (whose most recent painting sold for 150,000 sterling). Sacha Jafri will attend.

Sacha’s painting features a haunting image selected by Paul Freedman representing his experience while filming in Darfur -- an empty expanse of nothing but the burned out huts of the hundreds of thousands of villagers who have either been ousted from their homes or murdered.

The 'Blood on Our Hands' art pieces will show in an exhibition later in 2007 and then be auctioned to raise funds for Darfur. The aim is to raise over $1.5 million through the campaign.

Another special presentation will be on Monday, May 14th, with a special screening of a film that has sparked a movement, INVISIBLE CHILDREN. The mission of Invisible Children is to improve the quality of life for war-affected children in Uganda. It is one of the most heart-warming, yet wrenching, films you may ever see. A panel on INVISIBLE CHILDREN, with the three young filmmakers, will follow the film.

Additional free Panels and Conversations include “Everything You Wanted To Know About Films But Were Afraid To Ask;” “IETFF Filmmaker Roundtable: How I Made a Movie and Found Myself in Monaco;” and “Financing Films In The Global Marketplace.” There will also be an in-depth Conversation with Allen Hershkowitz of the NRDC.

Among the guests coming into Monte Carlo is Mr. Hidetoshi Nakata. Nakata, from Japan, is one of the world’s greatest football (soccer) player’s. Since his retirement at age 29, he has traveled the world to support causes he believes in and can help to thrive and prosper.

With a trophy depicting wings of flight, the Wing Awards Juried Competition is the true symbol of the festival’s aspirations. In their first year, The Wing Awards will be bestowed upon the Festival’s winners in the following categories: • Outstanding Directorial Effort • Outstanding Film (feature) • Outstanding Film (short) • Outstanding Cinematography • Outstanding Feature Film (Audience Award) • Outstanding Short Film (Audience Award).

Among the international panel of jurors are Jennifer Tilly,

FILMS FOR THE FIRST ANNUAL IETFF (All eligible for Wing Award Competition)

FEATURES

A TALE OF TWO GENERALS – Lebanon. Director/Lorne Thyssen European Premiere
An epic battle movie of civil–war torn Lebanon, with no winners and many losers.

BUNNY CHOW – South Africa. Director/Jon Barker French Premiere
Half improvised and half scripted, this funny film follows a group of comedians on – and off – stage.

DRIVING WITH MY WIFE’S LOVER – South Korea. Director/ Tai-sik Kim
Tae-han, finding out that his wife is having an affair, witnesses his wife's infidelity before his eyes. Knowing that his wife's lover, Joong-sik, is taxi driver, he goes to Seoul, intentionally gets in Joong-sik's cab and asks for a long – distance drive. They encounter various situations as they travel along the highway, sometimes fighting, sometimes sharing adventures. Slowly Tae-han finds out that his wife and Joong-sik might really be in love.

ENTRY LEVEL – USA. Director/Douglas Horn. World Premiere
Romantic Comedy. Being unemployed and middle aged in the US is not funny, but Entry Level finds the humor in this and exposes it.

MARTA – Czech Republic. Director/ Eva Pospisilova French Premiere
A female spy, on the run, is caught in a fur trap and is nurtured back to health by a young man and his estranged father in the middle of nowhere and in the middle of a war.

QUE TAN LEJOS – Ecuador. Director/Tania Hermida
Three strangers travel through remote Ecuador during a road strike and are forced to band together to finish their journey.

SATANAS – Columbia. Director/Andres Baiz. European Premiere
A suspense thriller that peels back the layers of mankind – constantly choosing between good and evil.

SHOONYA – India. Director/ Arindam Mitra
The film follows a star cricket player into the corrupt and seedy world of professional sports gambling. A moral dilemma faces the main character when gifts are construed as match-fixing bribes.

SOVIA – Germany. Director/Robert Franke World Premiere
More than a thriller. A dead woman seeks revenge in an unusual manner.

TÉLÉ GUERRE – Burkina Faso. Director/ Luc Damiba, Abdoulaye Diallo, Gideon Vink
During the civil war in Ivory Coast – as in other countries at war – the unmistakable importance of the media in the dissemination of information and the formation of public opinion is obvious. TÉLÉ GUERRE shows how four years of civil war have depleted the country and the role the international community plays in the realization of a fragile peace.

TIE A YELLOW RIBBON – USA. Director/Joy Dietrich. European Premiere
Drama. A tale of three Asian-American women who fit into neither their adopted American home nor their native homeland.
SHORT FILMS

THE CAT AND CLAUDIA – Australia, Director/Lily Coates
A dark yet surreal look at the place between life and death. Claudia is stuck between the living and the dead and only her cat can see or hear her.

CRICKET HEAD – USA, Director/Grant Greenberg
This film takes a new look and strange look at a teacher who falls in love with her student.

DEWENETI – Senegal. Director/Dyana Gaye
A young boy who begs for a living must write a letter to Santa Claus, fulfilling his promise to those who gave him money.

DI – Singapore. Director/Leong – Huat Kam
Two kids at home alone are bound to get into trouble.

KIBERA KID – Kenya. Director/Nathan Collett
After a theft gone bad, Otieno is forced to choose between saving an innocent man’s life and the Razors, the only family he knows.

LOST MY HEAD – Iceland. Director/Bjargey Olafsdottir
When the heroine of the film gets what she always hoped for, she becomes miserable and unhappy.

LUCIA Y LAS COSAS – Argentina, Director/Paula Abramovich Gullco & Andres Riva
500 hundred children were “reassigned” during the dark days of Argentina’s dictatorship rule. This is the story of one.

MEANDER – Belgium. Director/ Joke Liberge
On a hot summer day, five teenagers seek rest near a river. While we watch, the apparent calm is disrupted. A poetic short film, without dialogue, about a seemingly harmless and innocent day.

MY FRIEND ANA – Canada, Director/Laura Turek
At 14, Sophie’s life is suddenly turned upside down. She finds herself in a surreal work camp with no guards or sentries and where the gates are wide open.

UMA VIDA E OUTRA – Brazil. Director/ Daniel Aragão
A young Brazilian girl is forced to choose between abortion or raising a child on her own.

YEARS OF SOLITUDE – Macedonia. Director/Filip Kondovski
A recurring nightmare: every male in a family is sent to war.

Embracing innovative technologies, all the screenings during the IETFF will be digital provided by our official partner UFO Europe, making the IETFF is the first European festival completely equipped with the UFO solution, thus offering the audience High Definition Digital Cinema screenings.

Among the unique forums and programs of the IETFF is the Global Film Expression (GFE). Beginning the first year in Ethiopia, the Global Film Expression will provide both opportunity and education to those who lack the resources for cinematic expression. Focusing on impoverished and oppressed regions of the world, the IETFF (in collaboration with other partners and NGO’s) will dispatch filmmakers and educators to conduct hands-on outreach, including:

• Develop educators that can teach cinema and filmmaking to the nation’s young people;
• Screen films for communities that have had only limited access, if any, to cinema;
• Educate young people about the craft of filmmaking, with an emphasis on the practical, expressive capabilities of moving pictures and about the employment opportunities available in local film and television for those with these skills;
• Assist interested persons and groups in producing their own films, depicting the stories, events and ideas that inspire and inform them.

At the annual IETFF in May, films produced as a result of the Global Film Expression will be screened and then made available to audiences worldwide.

In addition, the Festival is a forum where industry professionals and emerging filmmakers engage each other throughout the Festival. These meetings precede the Festival’s mentorship program – which offers new and emerging talent the opportunity to work and communicate on a regular basis with established film industry professionals.

Among the festival’s 2007 Board, Advisors and participants are companies such as William Morris Agency, Rotterdam Film Festival, The Australian Film Commission and personalities such as actors Billy Zane and Jennifer Tilly, composer Hans Zimmer, filmmakers including producers Effie Brown, George and Andria Litto, Alan Poul, Nigel Dick, Academy Award-winning producer Bruce Cohen, and renowned entertainment attorney Michael Donaldson, the General Counsel to Film Independent and the Writers Guild Foundation and past President of The International Documentary Association (IDA).

Founded by Robert Kennedy Jr. and John Adams in 1970, the NATURAL RESOURCES DEFENSE COUNCIL’S purpose is to safeguard the Earth: its people, its plants and animals and the natural systems on which all life depends. It is the world’s most effective environmental action organization, using law, science and the support of 1.2 million members and online activists to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places and to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all living things. NRDC affirms the integral place of human beings in the environment. NRDC has been named one of the United States’ 100 best charities, meeting the highest standards for accountability and use of donor funds. Some of NRDC's biggest supporters and spokesmen include Robert Redford, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz and Jack Black.

The IETFF accreditation and help desk, the IETFF Screenings, the Festival Café, the Press Office, and the Industry Lounge will all be housed at the magnificent Grimaldi Forum; 10 Avenue Princesse Grace; 98000 Monaco; T. +377-9999-2000

Ticket and pass information are: Platinum Pass - € 150.00. All Screenings, Panels, Conversations, Galas, Receptions [nonprivate], Access to VIP Lounge; Gold Pass - € 75.00. All Screenings, Panels, Conversations, Access to VIP Lounge; Silver Pass - € 25.00 (with Student ID Only). All Screenings, Panels, Conversations; Day Pass - € 20.00. All Screenings, Panels, Conversations on a Given Day. All regular screenings are € 8.00. Public Party Tickets can be purchased at the door. Passes and tickets can be purchased at the Grimaldi Forum, Fnac and other outlets or by phone: +377.99.99.3000 or email: ticket@grimaldiforum.mc. Information about sponsorships, donations or becoming a “Friend of the Festival” can be obtained through the Festival office: +377.9350.1595.

PRESS CONTACTS:
International: Gary Springer, SPRINGER ASSOCIATES PR, +1.914.659.4802, gary@springerassociatespr.com or geraldinekuster@comcast.net (French speaking).
Monaco: Kristina Lyn, KRISTINA LYNN AND ASSOCIATES PUBLIC RELATIONS, +33.4.93.781.386, mobile: +33.630.737.532 email: lynn_kristina@yahoo.com

Press accreditation can be requested by visiting the website at www.ietff.com and clicking ‘accreditation.’

For more information on the NATURAL RESOURCES DEFENCE COUNCIL please visit the web-site at www.nrdc.org.

For more information on the INTERNATIONAL EMERGING TALENT FILM FESTIVAL and its 2007 films, programs, events and participants, please visit the website at www.ietff.com, or contact IETFF the Festival office at: +377.93.501.595.

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Chatelin Bruno
(Filmfestivals.com)

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