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Josh Leake Wins the MPA Top Prize for “Emptys” At TROPFEST Short Film Festival

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After nearly eight hours of programming and in front of a capacity crowd of more than 10,000 people, Tropfest – the world’s largest short film festival - concluded in New York with Josh Leake of Portland, Oregon claiming the top prize for a film called “Emptys,” made for merely $1,300 dollars. The aspiring filmmaker beat out seven other hopefuls in the first ever U.S. Tropfest competition, and earned $20,000 from the Motion Picture Association (MPA).  Alexander Poe came in second and Ma...

Fried Chicken

Director: Serdar YILMAZ.
In a family made up of a grandmother, daughter and a 9-year old granddaughter, granddaughter is forced to eat. The moral supporter of this little girl who feels contented about her games and within her own world, is a man behind the curtain only visible to her and no one has any clue whether this man is real or imaginary. While the Fried Chicken is a monstrous and aversive thing for the little girl, it turns in to a four - meter -long avant-garde object that is pulled over by the (same) man behind the curtain under cheers in an isolated corner (street) populated by the homeless.

IFFBoston 2011: The Doc Block

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Page One: Inside the New York Times looks at the inner workings of one of the world’s most influential news organizations in an age of technological transition.  The one-time “New York Times Effect”, where second-tier media outlets follow the NYT by a day, is dependent on a daily print distribution cycle.  Today, as noted by NYT’s Bill Keller, “WikiLeaks doesn’t need us.  Daniel Ellsberg did.”  Page One investigates how “The Grey Lady” adapts to the landscape of 24/7 inform...

AIFF 2011: Spotlight on How to Die in Oregon

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How to Die in Oregon is, in the simplest terms, about the ability to choose your own fate.  The state of Oregon is one of the few places in the world that allow you to literally do so, by granting the terminally ill the right to select their moment of death through assisted suicide.  However, that simple concept is not so simple in practice.  How a society deals with the end of life reveals much about what it values in itself.  This film gives us the opportunity to think about that topic for...

AIFF 2011: Tears and Laughter in Ashland

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A pre-dawn dusting of snow fell on southern Oregon, wrapping Ashland like a gift.  Morning’s bright sun melted white back to green to reveal the start of the 10th Ashland Independent Film Festival.  By midday, the endless crisp, blue sky instead hung low, grey, and ominous.  A freakish snow squall swirled around the queue in front of the Varsity waiting for the first slate of films, then the clouds lifted and the world shone bright again. Those changes - from cheery to dreary and b...

2012 Tribeca Drive-In, Family Festival Street Fair announced

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  The 2012 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by Founding Sponsor American Express, today announced the return of its signature free community events: the Tribeca Drive-In (April 19-21), Family Festival Street Fair (April 28), Tribeca/ESPN Sports Day (April 28) and the second annual Tribeca/NYFEST Soccer Day (April 21).   The Festival also announced the three film titles that will be screened at the Tribeca Drive-In, co-sponsored by JetBlue and Time Warner Cable, hosted b...

Second annual Documentary Lab selects 10 filmmakers

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Film Independent, the non-profit arts organization that produces the Spirit Awards and the Los Angeles Film Festival, has announced the filmmakers and projects selected for its second annual Documentary Lab, sponsored by Latino Public Broadcasting. Starting this week and continuing through the end of April, the Documentary Lab is an intensive seven-week program in Los Angeles, with the main focus of assisting documentary filmmakers on their works-in-progress and providing creative feedback. All ...

The 2012 Tribeca Film Festival Short Film selection

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The 2012 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by founding sponsor American Express, today announced its lineup of 60 short films, 26 of which are world premieres. For the second year running, the recipient of the Tribeca Film Festival’s Best Narrative Short award will qualify for consideration in the Short Films category of the annual Academy Awards® without the standard theatrical run, provided the film otherwise complies with the Academy rules. The 2011 TFF Narrative Short Pentecost was n...

BendFilm 2012 OPENS SUBMISSIONS!

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Hi everyone, hope you’ll submit for 2012.  Please spread the word!!  Thank you   We had a record breaking 2011 and are super-psyched for this coming year!!     Now in its 9th year, BENDFILM FESTIVAL celebrates independent cinema's brave voices by bringing thought-provoking, inspiring, and engaging films from all over the world to Central Oregon's scenic mountainous town of Bend. Unmistakably filmmaker-friendly, BendFilm has been deemed one of "25 Festiva...

BendFilm 2012 OPENS SUBMISSIONS!

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Hi everyone, hope you’ll submit for 2012.  Please spread the word!!  Thank you We had a record breaking 2011 and are super-psyched for this coming year!!   Now in its 9th year, BENDFILM FESTIVAL celebrates independent cinema's brave voices by bringing thought-provoking, inspiring, and engaging films from all over the world to Central Oregon's scenic mountainous town of Bend. Unmistakably filmmaker-friendly, BendFilm has been deemed one of "25 Festivals W...

BendFilm 2012 OPENS SUBMISSIONS!

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Hi everyone, hope you’ll submit for 2012.  Please spread the word!!  Thank you   We had a record breaking 2011 and are super-psyched for this coming year!!     Now in its 9th year, BENDFILM FESTIVAL celebrates independent cinema's brave voices by bringing thought-provoking, inspiring, and engaging films from all over the world to Central Oregon's scenic mountainous town of Bend. Unmistakably filmmaker-friendly, BendFilm has been deemed one of "25 Festiv...

Plus Camerimage announces lineup

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The International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography PLUS CAMERIMAGE, has announced the entries screening in its main competition as well as the films competing in the Feature Length Documentary, Short Documentary, Polish Films, Music Videos, Student Etudes, Directors’ Debuts and Cinematographers’ Debut categories. The festival’s prestigious Golden Frog, Silver Frog and Bronze Frog awards will be bestowed upon main competition titles representing the year’s greatest achievements ...

The Mournful Maturity Of Miranda July

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  For 37-year-old performance artist, writer and filmmaker Miranda July, life is a series of lessons about loss, mortality and the inescapable feeling that time is slipping away. And yet, despite these heavy themes, her depiction of a kind of blank and ironic human comedy has been the hallmark of her style. This maddeningly passivity has clearly connected with some and infuriates others. Well, both these camps will have much to react to as July’s sophomore film effort THE FUTURE starts it...

Concordia University Shakespeare Centre Recognizes Hollywood Filmmaker Roland Emmerich with Arts Award

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I had the privilege to work with Roland Emmerich on the release of ID4 (when I was running UGC Fox distribution in France) I am glad to share the news: he will headline Concordia University's Shakespeare Authorship Research Centre's Fall Conference Sept. 6-9 in Portland, Ore. Emmerich's new film, Anonymous, speculates on a centuries-old question – did William Shakespeare really write the works attributed to him? – and offers one possible answer. At the conference, Emmerich will ...

SURGE Honors the Officialy Selected Films of the SURGE 2011 Film Fest. SURGE 2012 is now accepting film/script entries.

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Screenwriter and Director Rio Collier of the B Media Collective seen here in 2011 after she received the SURGE 'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of equality and social justice burning bright for all the world to see. She received the award for her inspiring film 'Armed with Art: A New Revolution is Necessary - "Armad@s Con Arte. Una Nueva Revolucion es Nescesaria." It was filmed throughout Mexico and shown at the Historic Academy Theater en Español ...

Call for Script/Film Entries: The 6th Annual SURGE Film Festival 2012. Early Bird Deadline for Entries, July 14, 2011

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Call for Script/Film Entries: The 6th Annual SURGE Film Festival Dear friends in this group and beyond, The Sixth Annual S.U.R.G.E. Film Festival is accepting entries. We accept Multimedia, Film and Script Entries. We offer wonderful Early Bird discounts until July 14th on all entry Fees. We accept entries through Withoutabox (click here) or through our website (click here). After that we accept entries until November 2011 for the 2012 festiva...

SURGE Film Festival

"One must remember that in choosing the lesser of two evils, one still chooses evil." --Hannah Arendt, Philosopher, Activist





The SURGE Film Festival was established to enable filmmakers and screenwriters to present all styles of films, scripts, music videos and multimedia content.

Multimedia is media and content that uses a combination of different content forms. The term is used in contrast to media which only use traditional forms of printed or hand-produced material. Multimedia includes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content forms. Multimedia is usually recorded and played, displayed or accessed by information content processing devices, such as computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live performance.

AT SURGE, you will have the opportunity see numerous films from around the world, attend educational panels, hear scripts read by the screenwriters, meet filmmakers and hear from activists from all over the world about the social movements in which they are involved.

SURGE is the first international activist film festival which is not only an annual film, script, music video and multimedia festival but it is also a film festival network which enables people worldwide to bring the festival into their area of the world through the SURGE film festival network! Now in our sixth year our festival promises to be more amazing than ever!

In 2011, SURGE was scheduled to take place for only 3 days in Austin, Texas. Yet, because of increased international interest in SURGE, the SURGE Film Festival took place for a total of over 10 days nationwide, showing a total of over 40 films in the cities of Austin, Texas; Urbana, Illinois; and Portland, Oregon! Films from over 15 different countries were shown. These films included a vast array of independent features and world premiers by new filmmakers as well as feature films such 'In The Footsteps of Elie Wiesel' with internationally recognized Emmy and Golden Globe winning actors such as RICHARD GERE, and feature films such as 'Love & Valor - The Intimate Civil War Letters' with Golden Globe winning actors such as BRIAN DENNEHY.


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Photo: Production still from the film 'In The Footsteps of Elie Wiesel' filmed in France, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania and the U S A. High school students travel through Europe as they trace the life path and, in this photo, sit in front of Nobel laureate, author, humanitarian and Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel.

  

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Director Rio Collier of the B Media Collective seen here in 2011 after she received the SURGE 'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of equality and social justice burning bright for all the world to see. She received the award for her inspiring film 'Armed with Art: A New Revolution is Necessary - "Armad@s Con Arte. Una Nueva Revolucion es Nescesaria." It was filmed throughout Mexico and shown at the Historic Academy Theater en Español with English subtitles.
Video:  To see the video interview in which Director Rio Collier is presented with the Eternal Flame award please click here.



SURGE recognizes that it is extremely difficult for small, independent films to find a wide audience. That is why in 2011, SURGE started the S.U.R.G.E. Collection DVD Compilation which circulated over 1,000 DVDs with two films selected from the 2011 SURGE Film Festival. After filmmakers are officially selected for SURGE they are given a questionnaire and filmmakers who choose to have their film included in the SURGE DVD Collection may receive a wider audience all over the world.

In Addition, in 2012 at least one filmmaker and/or screenwriter will receive our annual “Love & Encouragement” Award. This award is presented to a filmmaker and/or screenwriter who presents an excellent film that simply strives to create art and media that does not promote or cater to politicians or multinational corporations. The filmmaker will receive round-trip airfare from their city to the film festival, housing during the film festival, a spending stipend and much more. In 2011, SHAWN JUNE was honored at the SURGE Film festival in Austin, Texas for his film Asphyxious. He also received round-trip airfare from his home in Des Moines, Iowa to the Portland, Oregon screening of his film at the Historic Academy Theater that screened during the Grand Finale of the Portland, Oregon portion of the 7 day SURGE Film festival! 
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Photo: 'Asphyxious' director Shawn June, standing in front of the Marquee showing the Portland, Oregon screening of the films 'Free World' and 'Asphyxious' at the Historic Academy Theater. This screening celebrated not only the Grand Finale of the Portland, Oregon portion of the 7 day SURGE Film festival, but it also marked the 2011 Grand Finale of the Fifth Annual International SURGE Film festival which ran for over 10 days nationwide in 2011! As always, admission was free of charge for everyone because everything in the world should be free!


Many films were shown with the directors attending Question & Answer sessions after their films and receiving the distinguished SURGE 'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of equality and social flame burning bright for all the world to see. It is notable that the budget for Asphyxious was estimated at $1,000.00. At SURGE, it is not the cost of the film that matters, but the courage to encourage other people to follow their dreams in the quest for a better world.

SURGE also offers officially selected filmmakers user accounts on the SURGE website so they can upload as many trailers for their films as they like to our website. Trailers for their films will remain on our website for at least a year to help promote their films. In addition, when visiting the SURGE website, people will see the “Love to S.U.R.G.E. - Film Festival Directory.” This directory not only extensively profiles the officially selected films of the prior year, but it also features photos and a great deal of press kit material highlighting the filmmaker and some of their biography and/or cast and crew..

SURGE is a non-competitive film festival so all participants are winners. Because we remain a non-competitive film festival, when a film, script or music video is officially selected by our film festival, each member of the cast and crew is permitted to display our official selection SURGE laurels on their website and materials. The SURGE laurels not only distinguish you as being a part of an official selection of SURGE, but more importantly the laurels distinguish you as someone who works for equality and social justice on behalf of all people. In addition, each member of the cast and crew are eligible to receive a certificate. SURGE has also begun interviewing members of the cast and crew who attend SURGE and placing the video interviews on our website through Vimeo as well as Youtube channels. This enables the video interviews to appear not only on the SURGE website, but these video interviews can also appear on the filmmakers website through links.

Each and every year admission and ticket fees for people to attend the SURGE film festival has remained free-of-charge! This enables the largest possible audience, from all different financial, cultural and ethnic backgrounds, to participate in the film festival.

Registration fees to submit films into the SURGE film festival remain low. This enables the largest possible audience, from all different financial, cultural and ethnic backgrounds to submit films...

+...in which anonymous entries are accepted as we encourage whistle-blowers to expose injustice!

+...in which some of the entries that are not included in the festival are still published along with all the other entries in our International, S.U.R.G.E. Multilingual Film Festival Directory! This enables all entries to receive exposure and networking with people from all over the world.

SURGE is so much more than just another film festival: it is in word and in action the sixth annual international Social Uprising Resistance and Grassroots Encouragement (S.U.R.G.E.!) Film Festival!

Mission Statement

Peace, Equality and Solidarity. Although political protests give us the opportunity to unite our thoughts in opposition to the route which our governments are taking us, many of us all over the world have come to the realization that the lack of peace in the world and the problems that we see increasing every day have a foundation deeper than the Republicans, the Democrats, or a few select multinational corporations. What we face are institutionalized problems, problems which can only be confronted at the root, researched and solved by imaginative and broad based, non-violent social movements - not ballot boxes.

A Forum of Unparalleled Access and Outreach
Access, Horizontalism and Outreach. The Annual Social Uprising Resistance and Grassroots Encourage (SURGE) Film Festival begin during the first Annual International A World Beyond Capitalism (AWBC) Conference  that began in 2005.  Much like the AWBC, SURGE has always aimed at contributing to the process of Access, Horizontalism and outreach by providing a space for activists - to reflect on the importance of long term vision, strategy, face-to-face relationship building and the realization that a worldwide multi-racial struggle for true universal equality must pro-actively work to include all races and classes of people, differently abled people, and even those who do not speak English. We also seek to bring together and give voice to people working for a better world: a world of equality, a world of peace.

With this in mind, SURGE is a film festival that is now moving to the next level by once again organizing the Annual International SURGE Film Festival that will take place in several different cities during several large events.

There has been so much talk about what kind of ‘charity’ third world countries and immigrants ‘need.’  But there is little talk about the need for self-empowering justice beyond capitalism and more capitalism. 

Once again, in 2012 SURGE is being organized with hopes of not replicating the style and approach of traditional film festivals, which are often alienating and racially homogenized with little attempt to create outreach and universal accessibility to non-English speaking people and to the disabled people of our society. These segments of our society are often the most vulnerable populations victimized by the oppressive characteristics of capitalism. Rather, SURGE is an attempt to use outreach to create an inclusive gathering.

Our Vision
Those of us who have collectively worked together to make the ‘SURGE’ a reality share the vision below, one that we imagine is also shared by many who have agreed to participate, facilitate, present, translate, or involve themselves in some active way.

We envision a space in which all voices are heard, and see the concept of "horizontalism" as a goal and a tool. It implies directly democratic discussions where theory meets non-violent practice, seeing and hearing one another in our full humanity, and confronting the power hierarchies that we observe amongst ourselves. Given that we all still live under the shadow of capitalism and the consequences of how it affects our behavior and psyches, we know that it is necessary for us to put great amounts of energy and thought into structuring egalitarian and provocative conversations, ones in which all of our voices and ideas can thrive. This at times may mean putting aside our defensive egos which often may inadvertently defend our lifestyles of privilege. At some level, we all have privileges in the United States, and these privileges of our capitalistic society have been gained by exploiting millions of the most vulnerable people throughout the world.

Diverse Perspectives
All of us participating in Film Festival have various experiences and thoughts on all the topics being discussed, from those of us who have spent most of our adult lives contemplating a particular subject, to those of us who are now just thinking about certain things for the first time. There are those of us who are creating alternative energy in our communities, and those of us who are still very much in the dreaming and questioning stage.

We would greatly like for you to help us work towards the goal of education and peaceful, universal alliance building. The best event and intentional community is the one we build in solidarity. Bring a friend, offer housing or a ride, post flyers in your community, volunteer or just be imaginative!

Goals
"Once people understand the strength of non-violence - the force it generates, the love it creates, the response it brings from the total community - they will not easily abandon it."

--Cesar Chavez, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America, Union Activist, Ethical Vegetarian, Philosopher, Activist


You have probably attended many meetings and conferences which speak about building Multi-racial alliances. Here are a few of the many ways in which film festivals that you have attended in the past greatly differ from SURGE Film Festival.

  • We greatly welcome the help of not only face-to-face volunteers but also volunteers who can only help from out-of-state, or out of country who work-from-home with or without the internet.
  • We intend to give people who attend the conference the option of placing contact information into a list which we will later transform into a free Alliance building directory.
  • The directory will also have a list of the languages that each person or organization is able to speak so that even activists or groups that do not speak English can form new alliances.
  • We acknowledge that lack of transportation is a race, class and gender issue. We desire to co-ordinate volunteers to drive to Native American reservations, migrant farm and labor camps, and other extremely low-income communities, to give a free ride, back and forth from the SURGE Film Festival, to people living in those communities.
  • To learn more about lack of transportation issues that face Native Americans, please read the American Indian Relief Council's resource information on obstacles to prenatal care.
  • It is the goal of SURGE that the workshops presenters are not members who are part of Corporate Front Groups.  This is very important because there has been an incredible increase throughout the world of organizations and groups which are deceptively posing as social justice groups and they have increasingly been able to achieve the goals of their government and multinational corporate sponsors.
[To see a list of corporate front groups and corporate-backed groups please go here. Go here to read about the international usage of corporate front groups in an Australian Science article titled 'ecological double agents.' Or go to your local library and find a very detailed list of corporate front groups found in article written by Co-op America titled: 'Unmasking Corporate Front Groups: Will the Real Grassroots Groups Please Stand Up.']

We have many more innovative ideas to build real and lasting multi-racial alliances amongst people who are truly working for world peace. But we can only do it with your help. Volunteer or just make sure you come to the SURGE Film Festival!





"Once people understand the strength of non-violence - the force it generates, the love it creates, the response it brings from the total community - they will not easily abandon it."

--Cesar Chavez, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America, Union Activist, Ethical Vegetarian, Philosopher, Activist

12th Annual Golden Trailer Awards

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Nominations for the 12th ANNUAL GOLDEN TRAILER AWARDS ® were released this morning. Highlights include the Summer 2011 Blockbuster category dominated by trailers for three Stephen Spielberg productions—“Cowboys and Aliens,” “Super 8” and “Transformers:Dark of the Moon”—up against “Pirates of the Caribbean 4”; the reels for the hits “Black Swan” vying for Best Thriller, “Hangover Part II” and “Bad Teacher” for Best Comedy, or “The Tillman Story” for Best Doc...

Ashland’s Other Film Festival

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No, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival has not moved from live stage to film - but this festival is sponsored by another local institution dedicated to the arts on a year-round basis: the Bad Film Society. The festival?  The Bad Film Society Presents ... The Annual Ashland Co-Dependent Film Festival. While the OSF is well known throughout the state, country, even the world, the Bad Film Society is known to a relative few.  Sequestered away in the basement of the Ashland Elks Lodge, the grou...

Tribeca World Narrative and Documentary Competition film selections

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2011 Festival to Present 88 Feature-Length and 61 Short Films April 20 - May 1    The 2011 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by American Express®, announced the World Narrative and Documentary Competition film selections and the first edition of the new section-Viewpoints. Forty-four of the 88 feature-length films were announced. The 10th edition of the Festival will take place from April 20 to May 1 in lower Manhattan.   TFF organizers this year have streamli...

SXSW reveals line up and gets ready for kick off

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SXSW FILM ANNOUNCES 2011 FEATURES LINEUP The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival is thrilled to announce the features lineup for this year's Festival, March 11 - 19, 2011 in Austin, Texas. The 2011 lineup continues the SXSW tradition of tapping into the cultural zeitgeist, highlighting emerging talent and breakthrough performances and supporting first-time filmmakers.  "This is the most exciting moment for us. After a fantastic festival of discove...

10th Tribeca World Narrative and Documentary Competition film selections

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  The 2011 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by American Express®, today announced the World Narrative and Documentary Competition film selections and the first edition of the new section-Viewpoints. Forty-four of the 88 feature-length films were announced. The 10th edition of the Festival will take place from April 20 to May 1 in lower Manhattan. TFF organizers this year have streamlined the Festival's format, which is now comprised of two competition sections, World Narra...

Brooklyn Welcomes A Screen Goddess

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  Brooklyn…..get ready for some true glamour. Catherine Deneuve, the grande dame of French cinema will receive a career retrospective starting on Friday, March 4 at the BAMcinématek, Brooklyn’s leading art house cinema. In the month-long tribute, 25 films from the great actress’ varied career over five decades will be showcased. The program is co-presented by Unifrance,  in collaboration with Music Box Films, the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, and Institut Français. BAM...

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