Tuesday, 1 May 2018

NZIFF: Our First Film Announcements for 2018

NZIFF: Our First Film Announcements for 2018

First Announcements for a 50th Year
We are back in your inbox – and preparing to party. NZIFF hits a milestone in Auckland this year: we turn 50!  How better to herald the event than with our first programming announcements for the year? The first four celebrate Kiwi brilliance behind the camera and in front of it – along with a pair of documentary portraits that, seen together, might provoke comparisons between the appetite for brainy women in popular entertainment then and now: in the Hollywood studio era vs. the presumably more enlightened 21st century.

Our online celebration gets underway today with a new section on the websitefor the recollections of past highlights (and a few low points) we have solicited from NZIFF participants.

And as always, thanks to our friends in high places, we have a great array of ticket offers and giveaways to keep you entertained while you wait for NZIFF to hit town this 19 July. Programme announcements will continue from now until the full revelation on the evening of 25 June.

Stay tuned. We’re definitely working on it!

Bill Gosden and the NZIFF crew
Kiwis shine at Sundance, Tribeca and NZIFF 2018.
From the opulent world of China’s big spenders to the wilderness of Oregon's forests, from the heyday of Hollywood to the world of Brit rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, and activist M.I.A, NZIFF stays true to its mission of covering the world. 
NZ Premiere: Yellow is Forbidden
Kiwi director Pietra Brettkelly takes us into the opulent world of show-stopping Chinese designer Guo Pei as she prepares to make her Paris debut and seeks admission into the exclusive club of haute couture.

“Compelling and stimulating… an intimate, involving portrait of Chinese fashion designer Guo Pei.”  — Keith Uhlich, Hollywood Reporter

Read more about Yellow is Forbidden and watch the trailer on our website.
NZ Premiere: Leave No Trace
New Zealand actress Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie is mesmerising as 13-year-old Tom living off the grid with her war vet father (Ben Foster) in this haunting new film from the director of Winter’s Bone.

“Something deeply compassionate, a story of a father and daughter that speaks truths about some large things.” — Richard Lawson, Vanity Fair

Read more about Leave No Trace on our website.
NZ Premiere: Matangi / Maya / M.I.A.
From refugee daughter of a Tamil revolutionary and aspiring filmmaker to pop stardom and controversy magnet: this stimulating documentary about Sri Lankan musician M.I.A. dances to its own idiosyncratic beat.

“A hypnotic portrait of a restless and inconvenient artist who understood the power of her voice, and felt compelled to use it for a greater cause.” — Leonardo Goi, The Film Stage

Read more about Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. on our website. 
NZ Premiere: Bombshell: Heddy Lamarr
Alexandra Dean’s debut documentary is a revelatory and entertaining portrait of an adventurous woman and talented inventor better known to the world as the embodiment of Hollywood sex and glamour.

“Any girl can look glamorous, all she has to do is stand still and look stupid.” — Hedy Lamarr

Read more about Bombshell: Heddy Lamarr and watch the trailer on our website
The Way We Were
"A motion picture no one will ever forget”, promised the adline in the Auckland Star for our first ever Opening Night film on Sunday September 14, 1969. (The motion picture was Hunger, directed by Henning Carlsen, based on a novel by Knut Hamsun, and winner of a Cannes accolade in 1966 for actor Per Oscarsson.) Maintaining the spirit of no one ever forgetting, we’ve invited numerous participants to share memories and anecdotes of festivals past. We are posting them here from now until July. You’re invited too. If you have a story you would like to share, email us at 50@nziff.co.nz.

Here’s what Wynne Colgan, chairman of the Auckland Division of the first Adelaide/Auckland International Film Festival in the NZ Listener had to say after the inaugural edition. “Auckland is far from making the Berlin-Cannes-Moscow league. Given time, though, it could join places like Cork, Karlovy Vary and San Francisco as a non-competitive showcase for the 20th-century’s most exciting art form. In this city of 600,000 there are young people intelligent, interested and informed enough to make the venture well worthwhile. 16,000 paid admissions prove it."

Two years later Adelaide was out of the equation. The Auckland International Film Festival would morph again in 2009 to be re-branded along with its younger siblings around the country as the New Zealand International Film Festival. Its showcase for the 20th-century’s most exciting art form drew one of its biggest audiences (105,226 admissions) seventeen years into the 21st .This July Auckland’s International Film Festival hits its own half-century. Our celebration starts here.

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