Thursday, 14 May 2015

First NZIFF titles are unveiled

First NZIFF titles are unveiled


Sundance Winners Head to NZIFF
Now we’re talking! Cannes may be underway but it’s the Sundance line-up that we highlight today in our first sneak peek for the year. We began 2015 energised by the sheer vitality of films emerging this January in Park City. The famous bastion of American indie features and documentaries ushered in the year with a multitude of new films worth channelling onto a cinema screen near you. We’re even a little embarrassed at just how many American films we’ve selected as a result – but why be crazy and say no to such a diversity of good ones? NZIFF audiences can look forward to seeing a whole raft of Sundance winners this winter. We’ve chosen four distinct American originals to announce today – and for a little balance, the Sundance World Cinema Audience Award winner from Mumbai.

Meanwhile our Sandra Reid, poor soul, is in the thick of it on your behalf in the South of France. Her mission: to identify and secure the icing for the multi-storied gateau we’ve been cooking up since September.

All the best,
Bill Gosden
The Wolfpack
The winner of the Documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance this year, Crystal Moselle’s film The Wolfpack delves into the bizarrely sheltered lives of six brothers whose father has confined them and their sister since birth to the tiny rooms of their Lower East Side apartment.
The Diary of a Teenage Girl
From the Sundance U.S. Dramatic Competition section NZIFF has secured Marielle Heller’s The Diary of a Teenage Girl based on the graphic novel by Phoebe Glockener. Exhilarating in its candour and ironic verve, The Diary of a Teenage Girl recounts the visceral thrills and spills of 15-year-old boundary-pushing Minnie (Bel Powley) as she throws herself into her first affair – with her mother’s boyfriend.
Umrika
Winner of Sundance’s Audience Award for World Cinema, writer/director Prashant Nair’s Umrika is a handsomely produced Bollywood film telling a classic tale of country lads finding their bearings in the big city.
Grandma
In Grandma, a constantly surprising comedy drama from About a Boy director Paul Weitz, Lily Tomlin is hilarious and moving as a sharp-tongued, taboo-breaking granny who comes out fighting for her pregnant teenage granddaughter.
Cartel Land
Matthew Heineman’s unnervingly action-based documentary Cartel Landcaptures the impact of Mexican drug cartels on both sides of the border. With staggering front-line access, Heineman observes the retaliatory forces that have formed in response to oppressive cartel violence and governmental indifference.

NZIFF programmes will be available in Auckland from Tuesday 23 June and in Wellington from Friday 26 June. NZIFF screens in Auckland from 16 July to 2 August, and in Wellington from 24 July to 9 August, with other centres to follow.
Screening times and regions for all films will be confirmed at time of programme launch.
Christine Jeffs to select our New Zealand’s Best finalists.
We are very pleased to announce that Christine Jeffs, director of RainSylvia, and Sunshine Cleaning, has generously agreed to act as this year’s guest selector of finalists in the New Zealand’s Best Short Film competition. Christine is currently writing a screenplay called Amchitka, based on the beginnings of Greenpeace, as well as working on several U.S. feature films.

For the 2015 competition, we received 75 entries which Michael McDonnell and Bill Gosden are currently short-listing to a dozen picks for Christine’s consideration.

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