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FOCUS ON CHICAGO FILMMAKERS AT THE 47th CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
IL-- Cinema/Chicago announced that the 47Th Chicago International Film Festival
will spotlight a diverse group of actors and filmmakers with Illinois
and Chicago connections through two unique
Festival programs: City &
State and Chicago
From the Opening Night Presentation of The Last Rites of Joe May starring longtime Chicago thespian
Dennis Farina to Xan Aranda’s look into the inner world of Chicago-bred
musician Andrew Bird (Andrew Bird: Fever Year), and a short film
program featuring promising new Illinois filmmakers (Shorts 1: City &
State), this year’s City
& State picks showcase
the best features, documentaries and short films with roots in Chicago or
Illinois. A Festival jury will select the best film in this category, which
will be presented with the Chicago Award.
Chicago Connections, a
ticketed series of screenings, discussions and Q&A’s, will honor notable
native Chicagoans John C. Reilly, Haskell Wexler, Joe Swanberg, Ken Nordine,
Braden King and Eric Monte, who have each left their special mark on the film
industry. The fifteen-year anniversary of the Black Perspectives Program will
be celebrated with a special presentation of the groundbreaking Chicago-set
classic Cooley High.
CITY & STATE
Andrew Bird: Fever Year USA
(Director: Xan Aranda)-- Classically trained yet utterly unconventional, musician
Andrew Bird has been defying classification for 20 albums and countless live
shows. And though Fever Year covers the final months of the artist’s last tour,
it’s as much about the creative process as it is about performance. From the
handcrafted gramophone-like amplifiers to Bird’s uniquely creative looping
techniques, the film’s sensuous visual style is a match for the musician whose
combination of voice, violin, and whistle could charm Hades himself. Chicago
·Dir. Xan Aranda is Illinois
born and raised and currently lives in Chicago. Andrew Bird was born in Chicago
and graduated from Lake Forest High School in 1991 and Northwestern University
with a bachelor's degree in violin performance in 1996.
Joint Body USA
(Director: Brian Jun)-- Noir-infused characters, with plenty to be paranoid
about, are thrown together in a desperate situation when recent parolee Nick
Burke (Lost’sMark Pellegrino) comes to the aid of Michelle (Friday
Night Lights’ Alicia Witt),
an exotic dancer living in a mysterious self-imposed exile in downstate Illinois. When they’re
forced to team up and go on the lam, the two wonder whether they can even trust
each other.Chicago Premiere.
·Dir. Brian Jun is from Alton, IL,
where the film was shot and set.
The Last Rites of Joe May USA (Director: Joe Maggio)-- The Chicago
International Film Festival is honored to celebrate the latest creation from
two giant Chicago
institutions: Dennis Farina and the Steppenwolf Theater Company. Farina (Get
Shorty, Out of Sight,Law
and Order) gives the finest performance of his career as an aging hustler
whose way of life is at a crossroads in this film shot in Chicago’s
West Town neighborhood. Written and directed
by Festival veteran Joe Maggio and featuring members of the Steppenwolf
ensemble, The Last Rites of Joe
May is a prime example of the
vitality of Chicago
filmmaking. Chicago Premiere.
·Born in Chicago,
Actor Dennis Farina was formerly a Chicago
police officer and began his acting career at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre. Co-star Gary Cole is from Park Ridge, Illinois
and also began his acting career at the Steppenwolf Theatre. The film is set
and shot on Chicago’s
(Director: Prashant Bhargava)-- Can you ever really go home again? In
Chicago-born Prashant Bhargava’s visually stunning feature debut, a successful Delhi businessman returns to his familial home, urban-bred
daughter in tow, for a surprise visit during India’s largest kite festival. The
excitement of their homecoming soon fades as long-held resentments and distrust
surface. Chicago Premiere.
· Dir. Prashant Bhargava is a Chicago native. Patang was written and post-produced in Chicago.
The Return of Joe Rich USA
(Director: Sam Auster)-- He lost his job, his wife and his home, but not his
sense of honor. When Joe returns to Chicago he looks up his aging but still
dangerous Uncle Dom in the hopes of getting “connected” and living the life of
a made man. When Uncle Dom resists, Joe makes him an offer he can’t refuse. World Premiere.
·Dir. Sam Auster was born in Chicago and attended Columbia College Chicago
film school. Actor Sam Witwer grew up in Glenview, IL.
The film is set and shot in Chicago.
Sadermania: From Fanship to Friendship USA
(Director: Adam Gacka)-- Calling all Hulkamaniacs! When you’re done training,
taking your vitamins, and saying your prayers, then you can meet the purest fan
of all, Chris Sader, in a story that goes from childhood obsession to an
unexpected and touching friendship. In this inspirational tale, Chris and Hulk
Hogan relate how they met and developed a bond through mutual struggles and
personal loss that each would have faced alone if not for the unlikely bond
that develops between them. World
·The documentary was shot in Chicago and its subject, Chris Sader, lives in Chicago.
SHORTS 1: CITY & STATE
A mixture of narrative, documentary and animated
short films shining the light on talented local filmmakers.
12 year old Kyle Krichbaum has an unusual and fascinating
hobby in THE VACUUM KID. A
teenager’s commute through Chicago
in a blizzard reinforces her corrosive spirit in L TRAIN.
THE GHOSTS is a 50’s style tale of a wild
gang of juvenile delinquents who take the life of a sleepy little town, and an
innocent young girl, by storm. Tim Burton fans will love THE DOCTOR’S WIFE, an animated
musical love letter to Frankenstein. A chain gang prisoner desperately dreams
of a break in the atmospheric WINTER.
A young woman is keeping something from her concerned husband in THE TRUTH.
A CONVERSATION WITH JOHN C. REILLY: From Chicago’s
Southwest side to Hollywood’s
A-list, the undeniably lovable John C. Reilly joins us for a talk about his
life and work. The Oscar® and Tony® nominated actor best known for a range of
character types in films like Chicago, Magnolia, Gangs of New York, The Thin Red Line and now, Lynn Ramsay’s We Need to Talk About Kevin,
began his career on stage with Chicago’s renowned Steppenwolf Theatre Company
and the Organic Theatre. Let’s welcome home one of the rising stars of the big
screen. October 12, 11am.
AN EVENING WITH HASKELL WEXLER: One of the most
influential cinematographers the cinema has ever known, Chicago-born Academy
Award®-winning Haskell Wexler’s expertise behind the camera has given the world
such classics as Who’s Afraid
of Virginia Woolf, In the
Heat of the Night, One
Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, and The
Thomas Crown Affair. In addition he’s directed some extremely important
films such as Medium Cool andLatino. Join us for a
conversation with a true visionary of the American screen.October 13, 7pm.
AN EVENING WITH JOE SWANBERG: New film movements
always undergo the torture of critical labeling and mislabeling but whatever
you want to call it, DIY, Mumblecore, Slackavettes, Chicago’s Joe Swanberg is at its forefront.
With such notable independent films of recent years as Kissing On The Mouth, LOL and Hannah
Takes The Stairs, Swanberg, a former staff member of The Chicago
International Film Festival, has made a career of portraying life and
relationships in a way that audiences can relate to. Join us for an open
discussion about the ins and outs of indie film production in Chicago. October 19, 6pm.
AN EVENING WITH KEN NORDINE: Voice-over and radio
legend Ken Nordine has recorded hundreds of radio and TV spots and movie
trailers over the past seven decades and has been the voice of our Festival for
46 years. His 1957 album Word Jazz virtually created a new art form that
combined the free flow of improvisational jazz with poetry. Ken is currently
developing a series of multimedia projects called Image Jazz that will combine
words with computer-generated. This event offers a rare and unique opportunity
to hear Ken talk about his long and innovative career and to experience some of
his best work. October 11, 6pm
AN EVENING WITH BRADEN KING: Braden King is a New
York-based filmmaker, photographer, and visual artist with Chicago roots. His most recent feature film
is the love story within a road movie, Here,
which premiered in competition at Sundance and BerlIn International film
festivals. A live installation derived from the film project was shown at the Museum of Modern Art. King’s previous work
includes the stunning documentary, Dutch
Harbor: Where The Sea Breaks Its Back (co-directed)
with photographer Laura Moya), the short film Home
Movie and music videos for
Sparklehorse, Sonic Youth, Bonnie “Prince” Billy (Will Oldham) and Dirty Three.
A presentation and discussion with the artist will be followed by Q&A. October 16, 7pm
BLACK PERSPECTIVES SPECIAL PRESENTATION, COOLEY HIGH: USA (Director: Michael Schultz)
Set in 1960’s Chicago,
the groundbreaking classic revisits a crucial period in the history of local
black cinema. Heartfelt and moving, this teen pic follows best friends Leroy
“Preach” Jackson and Richard “Cochise” Morris, high school seniors at Cooley Vocational School
Near North side, captures the mood, tone and music of the era preceding
hip-hop. As they begin to consider their future, the two contend with girl
trouble, difficult teachers, an ordeal with a couple of thugs, and the police.
Directed by Michael Schultz (Car
Wash, Krush Groove)
and written by Eric Monte, the creator of the smash hit TV-series Good Times. October 9, 5:15pm
# # #
All events, except Opening Night, are at the AMC River East
21, 322 E. Illinois Street.
Tickets for the 47th Chicago International Film Festival are on sale now.
Opening Night tickets and festival passes may be purchased on the Festival website. All
individual tickets must be purchased by phone 312-332-FILM (3456), in person by
visiting the Festival box office at AMC River East 21 (322 E. Illinois St.), or through Ticketmaster.
Cinema/Chicago is a not-for-profit cultural and educational
organization dedicated to encouraging better understanding between cultures and
to making a positive contribution to the art form of the moving image. The
Chicago International Film Festival is part of the year-round programs
presented by Cinema/Chicago, which also include the International Screenings
Program (May-September), the Hugo Television Awards (April), CineYouth Festival
(May), Intercom Competition (October) and year-round Education Outreach and
Member Screenings Program.
For images and press materials go to http://www.chicagofilmfestival.com/press/ ;
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