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IFP 2017

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2017 IFP Week: Latest from Falardeau, Menon, Cassidy & Shatzky, Clea DuVall & Franka Potente Among Co-Prod Market

2017 IFP Week: Latest from Falardeau, Menon, Cassidy & Shatzky, Clea DuVall & Franka Potente Among Co-Prod Market

Tucked in between spaces occupied by Venice and Toronto and NYFF, is the indispensable IFP Week. A summit slash showcase for true independent visions in the mostly American indie and documentary field, this year’s listing of projects that are in need of a little production coin includes names such as Clea DuVall (The Intervention), Philippe Falardeau (Chuck), Meera Menon (Equity), Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky (Francine) and actress Franka Potente‘s debut. Amy Dotson and Joana Vicente’s bijou has been a tremendous help in bringing award winning feature films to the masses including a certain Oscar winner from Barry Jenkins.

Look for some key producer names in the list of participants:


Presenting 41 narrative features ranging from an early-late financing stage (i.e. early development/production) to those nearing completion (i.e. in postproduction or at the rough cut stage), this section includes emerging and established filmmakers from the U.S. and 15 countries.

African America directed by Mfundo Mkhize, written by Muzi Mthembu and Phumelele Mthembu, produced by Muzi Mthembu and Phumelele Mthembu, and executive produced by Betty Mthembu, Muzi Mthembu and Phumelele Mthembu. A cynical South African steals money from her workplace and leaves her fiancé to pursue her misguided dream of being a Broadway star in New York city, only to find that there is no place like home. (Drama)

After Birth written and directed by Ben Nabors and produced by Brendan McHugh. A wealthy reclusive couple invites old friends to their rural estate where the prying house guests uncover a terrible secret about the couple’s sick baby. (Dramatic Thriller)

Almost in Love written and directed by Leonardo Brzezicki, produced and executive produced by Violeta Bava and Rosa Martínez Rivero. A chaotic summer in Argentina and Brazil becomes a turning point in the lives of a heart-broken man and his teenage daughter. (Drama)

Apacheria directed by Joey Grossfield, written by Andrew Reuland, and produced by Joey Grossfield and Andrew Reuland. 1896 New Mexico: an Apache reservation cop leads a posse of white ranchers on a manhunt for members of his own tribe. (Historical Fiction)

Blanquita directed by Fernando Guzzoni and produced by Giancarlo Nasi. Blanca, a young Chilean mother, returns to her former foster home and is suddenly embroiled in a national abuse scandal, cast as the victim, key witness and executioner of a case that shakes the foundations of society. (Dramatic Thriller)

Cantering written and directed by HIKARI and produced by Peter Maestrey, HIKARI, and Shin Yamaguchi. A naïve paraplegic artist submits her drawings to an adult comic magazine. Having no sexual experience, she initiates an unraveling adventure to get the job. (Drama)

City on Fire directed by Colman Domingo, written by Corey Miller, and produced by Jason Michael Berman. City on Fire tells the incendiary true story of an escalating conflict between the city of Philadelphia and the radical group MOVE, which led to an armed siege in a residential neighborhood and one of the most shocking decisions ever made by a city against its citizens. (Based on a True Story)

Clara Sola directed by Nathalie Álvarez Mesén, written by Nathalie Álvarez Mesén and Maria-Camila Arias, produced by Cristina Gallego, Katrin Pors and Nima Yousefi, and executive produced by Peter Krupenin. A magical and moving coming-of-age about special Clara and her inner struggle to defend her womanhood in a remote mountain village in Colombia. (Drama)

Close directed by Tahir Jetter, written by Tahir Jetter and Ellie Foumbi, and produced by Billy Mulligan and Tommy Oliver. A strong-willed, but emotionally unstable woman spirals out of control when her feelings for a new coworker are not reciprocated. (Thriller)

The Competition written and directed by Shelagh McLeod and produced by Jessica Adams and Sean Buckley. One old man with one last dream battles his family, ill health – and time – to win a golden ticket for the trip of a lifetime. (Family)

D-Days written and directed by Tamika Guishard, produced by Marttise Hill and Julius Pryor, and executive produced by Seith Mann. Three foster siblings from East New York struggle to forgive their birth-mothers – while healing from invisible wounds inflicted by PTSD, addiction & leukemia – through African rhythms. (Coming of Age)

Death on the Streets directed by Johan Carlsen, written by Johan Carlsen and Micah Magee, and produced by Micah Magee. Unemployed Kenneth leaves his family and rural Indiana hometown and takes to the road in search of work and self-validation. (Drama)

Deliver Us from Evil written and directed by Agnieszka Lukasiak and produced by Peter Krupenin. Interactive camp goes out of hand when students experience intolerance and discrimination in a WW2 exercise. (Drama)

Home written and directed by Franka Potente and produced by Maximilian Leo. Home is the story of someone willing to take on the full consequences of his gruesome past – no matter what it costs… (Drama)

Josephine written and directed by Beth de Araújo. An obedient eight-year-old girl unintentionally witnesses a rape in a park. Unraveling with fear and paranoia, her violent outbursts put her family and classmates in jeopardy. (Dramatic Thriller)

King of the Earth written and directed by Kevan Tucker. A young boy in the Reconstruction Era must stop his father, who has been possessed by a violent supernatural force that is pushing him to restore the former social order of the South. (Thriller)

Layne written and directed by Clea DuVall and produced by Sev Ohanian. When a grief-stricken woman catches a young thief in the act of stealing her car, they form the unlikeliest of friendships through home improvement and grand theft auto. (Drama)

Leventhal directed by Adam Sanderson, written by Adam Sanderson and Dina Sanderson, and produced by Yochanan Kredo and Eilon Ratzkovsky. A New York copywriter tries to figure out how guilty he is in ruining an ex colleague’s life. (Drama)

Light from Light (working title) written and directed by Paul Harrill and produced by James M. Johnston and Elisabeth Moss. In East Tennessee, a single mom and amateur ghost hunter must enlist her teenage son to investigate a grieving widower’s farmhouse. (Drama)

Little written and directed by Logan George and Celine Held and produced by Kara Durrett. Beneath New York City, a five-year-old girl lives in the tunnels with her heroin addicted mother. After a police-mandated eviction, they are forced to flee topside and face the world above, threatening their future as mother and daughter. (Drama)

Lolly directed and produced by John Barker. The somewhat true story of the selftitled King of Sleaze, Lolly Jackson, who struggled against his animal nature to find love and having failed chose notoriety instead. (Based on a True Story)

A Mall and the Night written and directed by Erin Vassilopolous. In a dying mall, a Sleepy’s employee sets out to reexamine her marriage and becomes embroiled in a heist of the mall jewelry store. (Drama)

The Man Who Sold His Skin directed by Kaouther Ben Hania and produced by Habib Attia and Nadim Cheikhrouha. What would happen if a renowned artist proposed to a refugee to become his own artwork to solve his paper problems? (Drama)

Mickey and the Bear written and directed by Annabelle Attanasio and produced by Lizzie Shapiro and Taylor Shung. In rural Montana, teenager Mickey Peck must break out of her oppressive relationship with her unstable, veteran father in order to forge her own independent identity as a woman. (Coming of Age)

Miss Juneteenth written and directed by Channing Godfrey Peoples and produced by James M. Johnston and Neil Creque Williams. A former beauty queen turned hardworking single mom prepares her rebellious teenage daughter for the pageant, hoping to keep her from repeating the same mistakes in life that she did. (Drama)

My Salinger Year written and directed by Philippe Falardeau, produced by Luc Déry and Kim McCraw. A young aspiring writer lands a day-job at J.D. Salinger’s literary agency: will her dreams be choked by the industry, or will she find inspiration? (Drama)

Nieves written and directed by Alejandra Marquez, produced by Nicolas Celis and Eduardo Donjuan. Nieves, 17, comes back to Mexico to meet her biological mother and little sister. New wounds appear and destiny threatens to be reshaped. (Drama)

A Nightmare Wakes written and directed by Nora Unkel, produced by Devin Shepherd, and executive produced by Cory McCrum and DJ Dodd. A Nightmare Wakes is a psychological thriller about the torrid love affair between Mary Shelley and Percy Shelley as Mary writes her famous book, Frankenstein. (Dramatic Thriller)

Nudes written and directed by Stephen Cone. A famous photographer moves back to her small South Carolina town and promptly launches a nude series, providing a much-needed jolt to the sleepy community and causing uneasy ripples in her estranged family. (Drama)

Quetzal (The Feathered Snake) written and directed by Alejandro Sugich, produced by Gaston Pavlovich, Alejandro Sugich and Kjartan Thor Thordarson, and executive produced by Gaston Pavlovich and Kjartan Thor Thordarson. Viking Baldur Helgason’s ship wrecked, and with a small raft made of wood and rope, he managed to find land. A group of natives find him unconscious on the shore and take him to their leader. It was the year 392 AC. (Historical Fiction)

Punch City directed by Bruce Smolanoff, written by Emilie McDonald and Bruce Smolanoff, and produced by Emilie McDonald, Matt Grady, and Bruce Smolanoff. Mel, living with her autistic brother and pill-popping mother, escapes nightly to perform underground comedy, driven by her dream to perform on The Tonight Show. (Drama)

The Room directed by Christian Volckman, written by Eric Forestier and Christian Volckman, and produced by Yaël Fogiel, Laetitia Gonzalez and Reginald de Guillebon. The Room follows a young couple who move deep into the New Hampshire woods to escape the stress of the big city. When they discover a mysterious room that fulfills every wish, their lives will be forever changed. (Supernatural)

Rustic Oracle written and directed by Sonia Bonspille Boileau and produced by Jason Brennan. Eight-year-old Ivy embarks on a desperate road trip with her mother in the hopes of finding her older sister Heather who has mysteriously gone missing from their Mohawk community. (Drama)

Selah and the Spades written and directed by Tayarisha Poe, produced by Lauren McBride, and executive produced by Terence Nance. Once upon a time, 17-year-old Selah’s desire for power and security led her to form her school’s most merciless faction: The Spades. (Drama)

So Long, Farewell written and directed by Adam Pinney. An exploration, physically and metaphysically, into the lives of several people involved in a series of revenge killings in a small Georgia town. (Drama)

Social Justice Warrior directed by Brett Weiner and written by Emma Fletcher and Brett Weiner. A privileged white college sophomore clashes with her history professor and throws her university into chaos when she attempts to ban offensive language on campus. (Dark Comedy)

The Sound of Animals Fighting written and directed by Sibs Shongwe-La Mer and produced by Neil Brandt and Laura Colucci. When two brothers from Johannesburg are accused of a friend’s death, they escape both the law and their demons by skipping the country and hiding out in a fog of hedonism in the megatropolis of Sao Paulo. (Crime Thriller)

Sticks & Stones directed by Martin Skovbjerg, written by Christian Gamst Miller- Harris, produced by Eva Jakobsen, and executive produced by Mikkel Jersin and Katrin Pors. Simon arrives in Vesterby from Copenhagen, ready to start the 10th grade. He is an outsider in a brand new place and alone, until he meets Bjarke – Vesterby’s 15-year-old alpha male. The two teens start challenging each other in intimate and transgressive actions whilst creating their graduation project for school. (Coming of Age)

The Texas High School Regional Theater Festival Murders written and directed by Clay Liford and produced by Steve Berger and Brock Williams. After witnessing a murder at a prestigious theater festival, a teacher and her star pupil must decide what to do in order to still win. (Comedy)

Turquoise written and directed by Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky and produced by Sylvain Corbeil and Ryan Zacarias. Following the tragic death of his older brother, 13 year-old Antoine and his family retreat to a seaside town to grieve. When Antoine falls quietly in love with an enigmatic older girl, obsessive feelings of paranoia and jealousy are aroused in the boy’s mother. (Dramatic Thriller)

The Witchdoctor’s Apprentice directed by Meera Menon, written by Amy Tofte and produced by Reena Dutt and Pacho Velez. Nicole Maxwell’s true quest to discover a legendary fertility plant used by tribes of the Amazon rain forest, in the process learning more about herself in the jungle around her. (Based on a True Story).

Visit the IFP for the entire list.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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