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Tribeca Film Festival

Online Dailies Coverage of the Tribeca Film Festival.


The 2021 Tribeca Festival Day 8

Debbie Harry performs onstage at the "Blondie: Vivir En La Habana" premiere during the 2021 Tribeca Festival at Battery Park on June 16, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Tribeca Festival)


Day 8 of Tribeca Festival ended with the iconic punk band Blondie, but not before a full day of engaging talks, a live A.I. music showcase, podcasts, and head-turning premieres. Some of today’s highlights include:


Blondie members Debbie Harry and Clem Burke, director Rob Roth, Tribeca Festival co-founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal, and special guests Fab 5 Freddy, Rebecca Hall, and Morgan Spector walked the red carpet at tonight’s screening of Blondie: Vivir En La Habana. The film documents the legendary rock band’s 2019 performance in Havana, Cuba. After the film, the audience was treated to a spectacular concert, and everyone cheered, danced, and sang along as Blondie performed some of their biggest hits, including, “Rapture,” “Call Me,” “One Way or Another,” and “The Tide is High.” Debbie dedicated the set to director Rob Roth and thanked Tribeca for the wonderful welcome, as the crowd applauded and called for an encore. 


Indeed, the world’s number one job site, partnered with Emmy Award-winning writer, creator, and actor Lena Waithe and her company, Hillman Grad Productions, to create the Rising Voices initiative, which aims to uncover, invest in, and share stories created by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) filmmakers and storytellers around the singular theme of the meaning of work, and the idea that jobs can change us all. Each of the initiative’s 10 films premiered during today’s special event at Pier 76. Waithe was in attendance, along with Indeed CEO Chris Hyams, Tribeca Festival co-founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal, Hillman Grad Productions President of Film/TV Rishi Rajani, Indeed Group Vice President of Environmental, Social & Governance LaFawn Davis, and all 10 of the emerging filmmakers.


As part of Tribeca Immersive, AI-powered virtual artists performed along-side three dynamic human artists for a first-of-its-kind, audience-interactive, live music showcase, the WarpSound Music Experience. The musical performances included both a hyper-creative, half-reptilian DJ and a former DMC World Champion turntablist, DJ Dragoon, plus Nayomi, A-Trak, Princess Nokia and Cookies Kawaii. The in real life and virtual artists tag-teamed for a series of genre- and mind-bending duets. Powered by Authentic Artists’ Virtual Artist Platform, the WarpSound Music Experience was a first-ever performance by AI-driven virtual artists producing and performing fresh, original, adaptive music live on stage.


All heads turned at Hudson Yards when the queen Sasha Velour walked by in full-feathered glam to the series preview of Audible Original Hot White Heist. Writer, Creator and Producer Adam Goldman introduced the film created by LGBTQ creatives followed by Director Alan Cumming and Actor/Comedian Bowen Yang who spoke to the podcast through pre-recorded videos. Fabulous fashion moments and performances followed with Vander Von Odd, Neon Calypso, West Dakota, Sasha Colby, Miss Malice, K.James also in attendance. 


For the Werewolves Within premiere, based on Ubisoft’s popular VR game of the same name, director Josh Ruben had the whole cast singing “All Star” by Smash Mouth when he was taking pictures on the red carpet. Josh’s introduction included a nod to the past 16 months of change and encouraged everyone to watch his film once or twice, but if they hate it, don’t tweet it. Catherine Curtin rallied everyone to take a group shot including producers as a memory to remember the amazing film. 


Director Judd Ehlrich made his return to Tribeca with the world premiere of his feature documentary Price of Freedom, which takes an unflinching look into the inner workings of the NRA. Paula Weinstein and Nina Chaudry of Tribeca Studios chatted and took photos with the filmmakers ahead of the screening at Hudson Yards to support the premiere. Also in attendance was Igor Volsky, Fred Guttenberg, Wes Siler, Aidan Tumas, Elena Gaby.


In the Let’s Fly Away international shorts program, Grottaroli, How To Fall In Love in a Pandemic starring Mimi Wilcox made an appearance at the premiere screening. The Kicksled Choir, Beautiful They and Peninsula all debuted at the Tribeca Brooklyn Metrotech location. 


Heartfelt remarks from director Kristine Stolakis and producer Anya Rous during the intro of the Pray Away premiere at Brooklyn MetroTech. Subjects Randy Thomas and Julie Rodgers as well as Jessica Devaney and Carla Gutierrez were also in attendance for the screening of the powerful LGBTQIA documentary that chronicles the “pray the gay away” movement. 


Director Sabrina Van Tassel excitedly took to the photocall for her premiere of State of Texas, joined by film distributors Sal Scamardo, Garineh Nazarian, and Katie Carroll


Director Alexander Rockwell took photos with his family Lana Rockwell (daughter), and actress Karyn Parsons (wife) for the premiere of Sweet Thing. Ahead of the film’s start, Alexander Rockwell told a touching story of how the film almost didn’t get made and thanked several members of the cast and crew for helping him make this film a reality. Producers Kenan Baysal, Deborah Payton George, Michael Ragan, and R.D. Dobson also showed for the photocall along with ML Josepher, Jabari Watkins, Tiffany Elisca, and Daniel Giaimo.


At Brookfields for the Fathom premiere, director Drew Xanthopoulos, producer Megan Gilbride, and film subject Dr. Michelle Fournet were all smiles for their photocall.


Over at the Spring Studios Rooftop, audiences enjoyed a new podcast Ear Hustle. Co-founded by Bay Area artist Nigel Poor along with Earlonne Woods and Antwan Williams, it is the first podcast created and produced in prison and features stories of the daily realities of life inside California’s San Quentin State Prison. The podcast “Combines intimacy with big themes of life: regret, forgiveness, and absolution.” Audiences learned how they start the process of talking to people inside of prisons for the podcast by volunteering at the prisons for over a year, getting to know people, saying hello, and letting the conversation flow.


The Tribeca Talks With Scott Rechler, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of RXR, about the Future Of New York also happened at the spring studio rooftop. In the conversation, panelists discussed how Covid times were about being apart, not like 9/11 which was about coming together. David Rockwell, FAIA, the founder and President of Rockwell Group, came up with a plan on how to come together again in a post-covid world, at the peak of the pandemic. He said Covid was “a chance to think about how to create change” and “creating a space that invites an audience and a sense of empathy.” The conversation continued about the importance of having distinctive architecture and how Covid taught us that “buildings could be turned inside out...buildings are not about the four walls, but what happens between the four walls.” 

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About Tribeca Film Festival

Online Dailies Coverage of the Tribeca Film Festival, April 17-28, 2013


The Tribeca Film Festival brings together local, national, and international talent to provide the New York City, downtown community with five days of screenings, educational workshops, and various special events.
Live coverage with dailies from Lia Fietz, Suzanne Lynch, Claus Mueller, Maria Esteves 


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