Posts Tagged 'foreign film'

It’s a New Record!

Well, it’s 9pm, and I’ve spent the last 12 hours writing and uploading to our site short descriptions for most of our 2009 line-up — nearly 40 features and 11 shorts programs you can start reading about a full month before MFF’s 2009 Opening Night (which is, in case it’s not engraved in your brain yet, Thursday, May 7). Of the three festivals I’ve worked for MFF now, this is by far the earliest we’ve gotten this much done this far out before the festival — and maybe the earliest this much has been done… well, ever. Obviously, there’s a lot yet to do, but we’re proud to be able to already offer basic information about most of our films — with some exciting announcements still to come.

This line-up is the result of 100s of hours of viewing, evaluating, and discussing, pursuing and being pursued, making very tough choices in the service of a diverse, well-rounded line-up that really does offer “Film For Everyone.” As mentioned in my last entry, there are plenty of foreign films in our line-up: off the top of my head, we have films shot in Mexico, Rwanda, Australia, Haiti, South Korea, Senegal, Costa Rica, Japan, Egypt, Argentina, Slovakia, Spain, Nigeria, France, China, the UK — even the United States! We have documentaries about bug collectors, ’70s exploitation films, African pop stars, urban gardens, strongmen, teenage go-kart champions, visionary artists, imaginary countries, and invisible girlfriends! We have horror, drama, comedy, art cinema, underground film, even a sci-fi/western/musical! We have… well, you get the drift: we have variety.

Please read, enjoy, and keep checking back. We’ll be updating the titles already announced with more detailed information, images, reviews, links, etc. And still to come are announcements of our Opening and Closing Night presentations, and other annual traditions: a vintage 3-D film, a silent film with live accompaniment, multiple Guest Hosts, and, of course, John Waters’ pick!

And now for some sleep…

Eric Hatch, programming administrator, MFF

Foreign Films at MFF 2009

You’ve asked for it, you’ve got it: When MFF goes public with its line-up in early April, you’ll see 10 or more foreign features included!

MFF has always prided itself on bringing a filmmaker host for each feature film it screens — a director, writer, star, cinematographer, editor, or producer attending every screening, introducing their film and fielding your questions.

This year, we decided to do things a little differently. Every domestic feature we screen will still have a filmmaker host, and some of the foreign films will have filmmakers present, but we’re not going to pass on an exceptional foreign film just because the filmmaker can’t attend.

Why the change? We’re laying a foundation for future years. By devoting a significant portion of our line-up this year to foreign films regardless of whether or not the filmmaker can attend, we’re setting a goal for the near future, envisioning an MFF with the audience, budget, and international reputation needed to bring in filmmakers for every single feature we screen — even if the director lives and works in Senegal, Switzerland, or South Korea.

We’re not ready to announce titles for MFF 2009 quite yet, but I can say that this year’s line-up will be MFF’s most diverse thus far, connecting audiences with the visions of artists from all over the world (rest assured that when we say foreign films, we don’t just mean European films!).

Since cutting-edge international cinema is one of my passions, I couldn’t be more excited to see MFF heading in this direction. If, like me, you’re a foreign-film addict, please vote with your attendance! With your help, we can make MFF a destination festival for the audiences, critics, distributors, and, of course, the filmmakers who keep international film culture alive!

–Eric Hatch, Programming Administrator, MFF