Festival Lab News
Haigh, Barthes & Terence Nance Among IFP Independent Film Week Participants
The premiere post-TIFF destination (September 20-25th) in the film community and a major leg up for narrative and non-fiction films in development, the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) announced a whopping 140 projects selected for the Project Forum at the upcoming IFP Independent Film Week. Made up of several sections (RBC’s Emerging Storytellers program, No Borders International Co-Production Market and Spotlight on Documentaries), we find latest updates from the likes of docu-helmers Doug Block (112 Weddings) and Lana Wilson (After Tiller), and among the narrative items we find headliners in Andrew Haigh (coming off the well received 45 Years), Sophie Barthes (Cold Souls and Madame Bovary), Terence Nance (An Oversimplification of Her Beauty), Lawrence Michael Levine (Wild Canaries), Jorge Michel Grau (We Are What We Are), Eleanor Burke and Ron Eyal (Stranger Things) and new faces in Sundance’s large family in Charles Poekel (Christmas, Again) and Olivia Newman (First Match). Here is the press release/titles to look out for in the coming months and years.
RBC’s Emerging Storytellers
25 U.S. narrative features in early-stage development with little previous marketplace exposure.
As With Knives and Skin written and directed by Jennifer Reeder.
Sophomore year of high school turns less typical for a group of rural Kentucky teenagers, when a series of tragic events accelerates the coming-of-age process. This take on the southern gothic drama is about a deep sense of innocence and how quickly it is lost…forever. (Coming of Age)
Black on the Vine (working title) written by Charles Poekel and Clare Paterson, directed by Charles Poekel. In the wake of fatal tragedy, a group of close friends is forced into uncharted emotional territory at their annual lake house retreat. (Drama)
Coast to Coast written by Dean Colin Marcial and Brett Potter, directed by Dean Colin Marcial, produced by Brett Potter. A broken Air Force technician reunites with his sister and embarks on a bizarre American odyssey in the last week of 1999. (Adventure)
Drain You written by Amanda Kramer and Benjamin Shearn, directed by Amanda Kramer, produced by Rebecca Rose Perkins. Los Angeles. The Valley. 1994. When Quinn, a bored, horny, teenage riot grrl, is seduced into a surreal world of supernatural slackers, she finds the only thing worse than fighting her inner demons is fighting actual demons. (Horror)
European Zero written and directed by Jared Goodman. The true story of a truck driver who introduced AIDS to Europe while traveling throughout the continent delivering cargo in the late 1960s. (Based on a True Story)
Find the Good written and directed by Jason Headley. A comedy about an aimless artist who starts a religion to avoid tax trouble, but creates more problems when the religion accidentally takes off. (Comedy)
Gareth Jones written by Andrea Serdaru-Barbul, produced by Mikkel Kastberg.
Based on real events that chronicle the eponymous investigative journalist as he travels deep into the Soviet Union in the 1930’s to uncover an international conspiracy. His life-or-death journey inspires George Orwell’s “Animal Farm.” (Dramatic Thriller)
The Gloaming written and directed by Philip Aceto, produced by Michael Sellers.
When a Lost Boy of Sudan threatens a lonely janitor’s job security, the janitor’s struggle to keep what little he has takes a dangerous turn. (Drama)
High Bridge Hill written and directed by Nick Paley, produced by Matthew Petock and Dawn Kim. As his family breaks apart, a boy unwittingly poisons his brother with LSD, casting them both into a transformative isolation that sparks a spiritual awakening. (Coming of Age)
I Was a Simple Man written and directed by Christopher Yogi, produced by Sarah Kim. The ghosts of Masao’s past haunt the countryside in this tale of a Hawai‘i family facing the death of their eldest. (Drama)
Last Black Man In San Francisco written by Joseph Talbot and Jimmie Fails, directed by Joseph Talbot, produced by Rolla Selbak and Yeelen Cohen. A young man with a big dream (and a quirky best friend) searches for home in the changing city that seems to have left him behind. (Coming of Age)
Little Africa written and directed by Curtis Adair, produced by Matthew Smaglik and Briana Farpart. During the historical massacre known as the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921, a biracial cop secretly passing as white protects his black mother while concealing his true identity. (Historical Fiction)
Marcel written and directed by David Soll, produced by Jared Goldman.
Equal parts technology satire and psychotherapy drama; Ordinary People meets Robocop, but funny. (Sci-Fi)
Resurrection written and directed by Andrew Semans. Sometimes all it takes to be a truly great mother is to stalk and kill an older gentleman in Manhattan. (Thriller)
The Salt of the Earth written and directed by Margherita Arco. When dutiful Zacharias agrees to help his manipulative brother save the family farm, he puts his career, his marriage and his family on the line. (Drama)
The Short History of the Long Road written and directed by Ani Simon-Kennedy, produced by Ani Simon-Kennedy and Cailin Yatsko. When Nola loses her father and has nothing left but the van they lived in, she takes off on a journey of self-discovery. (Drama)
Some Kind Of Miracle written by Arun Narayanan. In a small town in Maryland, a determined scientist sets out to disprove his twelve-year-old daughter’s apparent immaculate conception. (Dark Comedy)
To Dust written by Shawn Snyder and Jason Begue, directed by Shawn Snyder. A Hasidic cantor, distraught by his wife’s death, struggles to find religious solace, while secretly obsessing over her body’s decay. (Dark Comedy)
Tumorhead written and directed by Lara Gallagher. When Jean’s older sister Mae condemns the neighborhood bully to death–and she actually dies–Jean becomes convinced Mae’s brain tumor has given her superpowers. (Coming of Age)
Women Who Kill written and directed by Ingrid Jungermann, produced by Alex Scharfman. Commitment phobic Morgan and her live-in ex-girlfriend Jean, locally famous true crime podcasters, suspect Morgan’s new love interest is a murderer. (Dark Comedy)
Independent Filmmaker Labs
A yearlong mentorship program supporting 20 U.S. first-features in post-production through completion, marketing and distribution.
Boone directed by Christopher LaMarca, produced by Laurie Collyer and Katrina Taylor, and executive produced by Julia Nottingham /Pulse Films. Boone explores the unsentimental journey of three young goat farmers and the gritty, complex reality of living off the land.
Decade of Fire directed by Gretchen Hildebran; written by Vivian Vazquez, Julia Allen, and Gretchen Hildebran; and produced by Gretchen Hildebran, Vivian Vazquez, Julia Allen, Rachel Antell, Jennifer Petrucelli, and Steve Amarante. The dream, destruction and rebirth of the South Bronx.
Distant Constellation/ Uzak Evren directed and written by Shevaun Mizrahi and produced by Shelly Grizim and Deniz Buga. Eroticism, art, and haunting shadows of genocide are reminisced in a retirement home in Istanbul as the world outside swiftly changes.
Kivalina directed and produced by Gina Abatemarco. A cinematic and observational portrait of life in the modern Arctic at an unprecedented time of cultural and environmental change.
Memories of a Penitent Heart directed by Cecilia Aldarondo and produced by Patricia Benabe. Twenty-five years after Miguel died of AIDS, his niece tracks down his gay lover and cracks open a Pandora’s box of unresolved family drama.
The Nine directed and written by Katy Grannan and produced by Katy Grannan and Marc Smolowitz. The Nine depicts a fallen Neverland where ruined lives exist in parallel with the sublime, and the lines blur between the fantasy of one woman’s imagination and the brutal reality she cannot escape.
Raising Bertie directed by Margaret Byrne, produced by Margaret Byrne and Ian Kibbe, and executive produced by Gordon Quinn and Justine Nagan. In rural Bertie County, North Carolina, three young black men come of age in a community that America has left behind.
The Road from Hainan directed and produced by Nanfu Wang; written by Nanfu Wang, Peter Lucas, and Mark Monroe; and executive produced by Andy Cohen. The Road from Hainan is a film about women in China who dare to stage public protests and what happens to them afterwards.
Supergirl directed by Jessie Auritt and produced by Jessie Auritt and Carmen Osterlye. Naomi Kutin seems like a typical 11-year-old Orthodox Jewish girl; watching her lift almost three times her body weight tells a different story.
Swing Low (working title) directed by Javid Soriano and produced by Javid Soriano, Lily Chen, and Zac Stuart-Pontier. A world-class opera singer, now homeless in San Francisco, embarks on a musical journey into the brightest and darkest regions of his life.
Albion: Rise of the Danaan written by Castille Landon, Ryan O’Nan, Sarah Scougal, directed by Castille Landon, produced by Dori Sperko and Ryan O’Nan, executive produced by Debra Messing and Jennifer Morrison. A modern-day fairytale about a young girl who is transported to the mystical world of Albion where she must save an entire race of people. (Fantasy)
The Arbalest written and directed by Adam Pinney, produced by Alex Orr.
The inventor of the world’s greatest toy reflects on his obsession with a woman who hates him and how that led to his latest creation. (Dark Comedy)
Bokeh written and directed by Geoffrey Orthwein and Andrew Sullivan, produced by Doug Daulton, Kent Genzlinger, and Brienne Lermitte. On vacation in Iceland, a young American couple wakes up to discover everyone has disappeared. Their struggles lead them to reconsider everything they know. (Drama)
Donald Cried written by Kris Avedisian, Jesse Wakeman, and Kyle Espeleta, directed by Kris Avedisian, produced by Sam Fleischner and Kyle Martin. Coming home has never been less fun. (Comedy)
Hunky Dory written by Michael Curtis Johnson and Tomas Pais, directed by Michael Curtis Johnson, produced by Michael Curtis Johnson and Bernie Stern.
A dive bar drag queen’s life takes a dramatic turn when his ex-wife unexpectedly drops their 11-year-old son off with him for the week. (Drama)
Icaros: a vision written by Leonor Caraballo, Abou Farman, and Matteo Norzi, directed by Leonor Caraballo and Matteo Norzi, produced by Abou Farman and Adella Ladjevardi. An American woman with breast cancer travels to the Amazon in search of a miracle. Ayahuasca teaches her to let go of fear. (Drama)
Katie Says Goodbye written and directed by Wayne Roberts, produced by Wayne Roberts, Eric Schultz, Carlo Sirtori, Kimberly Parker, and Jacob Wasserman. A kindhearted seventeen-year-old in the American Southwest turns to prostitution to fulfill her dream of a new life in San Francisco. (Drama)
Live Cargo written by Logan Sandler and Thymaya Payne, directed by Logan Sandler, produced by René Bastian, Lauren Brady, Randy Hearst-Harris, Thymaya Payne, and Tina Preschitz. A young couple mourning the death of their baby retreat to a tiny Bahamian island where they become entangled in a turf war between a dangerous human trafficker, an aging island patriarch, and an obsessive homeless youth. (Drama)
Lupe Under the Sun directed by Rodrigo Reyes, produced by Su Kim.
After a lifetime working in the California fields, Lupe finds himself old, lonely, and struggling to reconnect to the past he left behind. (Based on a True Story)
Seeds written by Owen Long and Steven Weisman, produced by Anthony Ambrosino, Chris Haney, and Owen Long, executive produced by Younny Long. A story of monsters and temptation. (Horror)
No Borders International Co-Production Market
45 projects have at least 20% financing in place, as well as some cast and/or principal attachments.
American Fable directed by Anne Hamilton, produced by Kishori Rajan. When 11-year-old Gitty discovers her father is holding a wealthy man captive on their remote farm, she dives into a dangerous series of events to find out why. (Dramatic Thriller)
Animal Race written and directed by Ernesto Solis, produced and executive produced by Vania Catani, Vinicio Espinosa and Matheus Peçanha. In the midst of a futuristic and destroyed Rio de Janeiro. Mano is in the middle of a violent game where his life is bet in a dehumanizing race. (Fantasy)
Archive written by Jonathan Minard and Scott Rashap, directed by Jonathan Minard. Two lovers end a relationship lived entirely online. A hundred years later, an archaeologist searches the ruins of the internet for clues of its collapse. (Drama)
The Bastard written, directed and produced by Judy Naidoo. A racial misfit’s only way of finding a place to belong in apartheid South Africa is to murder President Verwoerd, the architect of racial segregation. (Based on a True Story)
Clown is Down written and directed by Esra Saydam, produced by Esra Saydam, Isilay Yanbas and Nisan Dag, and executive produced by Esen Blake. Following the murder of On the night of the general elections, three characters at the edge of self-destruction guide us through the lives that go unnoticed in a big city. (Mystery/Crime Thriller)
Cold November written and directed by Karl Jacob, and produced by Karl Jacob and Jessica Bergren. 12-year-old Florence follows her path to womanhood through choosing to embrace the many faces of death. (Coming of Age)
The Contestant written by Carlos Osuna and Juan Mauricio Ruiz, directed by Carlos Osuna, produced and executive produced by Juan Mauricio Ruiz. In 2011, a brand of seasonings decided to give away 2,000 pressure cookers all over Colombia; shy Cristobal lined up to claim one and and unwillingly becomes the leader of a riot.
Cranley Gardens written and directed by Rafael Kapelinski, produced by Merlin Merton. A young estate agent is challenged with selling one of London’s most notorious serial killer’s old flat. (Thriller)
The Current Love of My Life written and directed by Talya Lavie, produced by Eitan Mansuri. A young Israeli musician tries to make it in New York City with no visa, no money and no friends. Perhaps God can help? (Comedy)
Darker Than Blue written and directed by Matt Ruskin, produced by Atilla Yucer. When Colin Warner was wrongfully convicted of murder, his best friend Carl King devoted his life to proving his innocence. (Based on a True Story)
Dearly Beloved written by Lodi Matsetela and Makgano Mamabolo, directed by Lodi Matsetela, produced by Makgano Mamabolo. A young girl grows from being a precocious baby-dyke to a woman shirking all names attempting to box her. Her story is told in chapters marked by the various lovers she has – a type of love violently resented by the world around her. (Drama)
Dolores written and directed by Mary Angelica Molina, produced by Drew Houpt and Sarah Babineau. A restless teenager becomes obsessed with a mysterious Colombian woman who exploits his desire and lures him into her plot for revenge. (Drama)
Dolores written and directed by Gonzalo Tobal, executive produced by Santiago Gallelli and Benjamin Domenech. Young and beautiful Dolores faces a trial in which she’s accused of having murdered her best friend. While his family, friends, and lawyers struggle with her case, she starts acting weird. (Drama)
El Hijo del Pueblo (The Son of People) directed by Adolfo Franco, produced by Adolfo Franco and Vidal Cantu. The must successful and beloved singer/songwriter of Mexico’s history wants to live–and die–as his people do. (Based on a True Story)
Entangled written by Doug Taylor, directed by Michael Mackenzie, produced and executive produced by Bev Bliss and Juliette Hagopian. Four brilliant university students are forced to confront themselves in terrifying ways when their quantum physics experiments become entangled with the unexpected forces of nature. (Sci-Fi)
Ethel written by Yon Motskin, directed by Sophie Barthes, produced by Neda Armian and Anil Baral. Based on the true story of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg and the “crime of the century”, a family is torn apart when a young couple is accused of stealing the secret to the atomic bomb. (Drama)
Farewell Tour written and directed by Sean Hackett, produced by Justin Begnaud, Sean Hackett, Frederick Thornton, M Elizabeth Hughes and Frederick Thornton. Sentimental 16 year old Noah searches Kansas City for his AWOL mother. (Coming of Age)
First Match written and directed by Olivia Newman, produced by Veronica Nickel and Chanelle Elaine. Hardened by years in foster care, a teenage girl from Brooklyn’s Brownsville neighborhood decides that joining the all-boys high school wrestling team is the only way back to her estranged father. (Drama)
The Fits written by Saela Davis, Lisa Kjerulff and Anna Rose Holmer, directed by Anna Rose Holmer, produced by Lisa Kjerulff and Anna Rose Holmer. (Coming of Age) The Fits is a psychological portrait of 11-year-old Toni—a tomboy assimilating to a tight-knit dance team in Cincinnati’s West End. When a mysterious outbreak of fainting spells plagues the team, Toni’s desire for acceptance is twisted.
Freeland written and directed by Mario Furlani and Kate McLean, produced by Laura Heberton. In the last season of black-market marijuana growing on a remote, failed commune, a mother and a daughter must reconcile their differences in order to survive in an increasingly inhospitable world. (Drama)
Game Bird directed by Nayra Ilic. Andrés is dying. Frank is murderer. In between the San Cristóbal’s hill foliage, they will find a friendship that will slowly trap them both in a dangerous liaison. (Dramatic Thriller)
Hamarat Apartment written and directed by Hüseyin Karabey, produced by Su Baloglu and Hüseyin Karabey. In 1970’s Turkey, a group of young, leftist students kidnap the Israeli Consul General in Istanbul to save their friends in jail during a military coup. (Based on a True Story)
In Between directed by Maysaloun Hamud, produced by Shlomi Elkabetz. Three women–three Palestinian citizens of Israel–share an apartment in Tel Aviv. As they walk the tightrope between hometown tradition and big city abandon, the price that freedom exacts intertwines their fates. (Drama)
In the Strange Pursuit of Laura Durand written and directed by Dimitris Bavellas, produced by Lina Yannopoulou and Nikos Moutselos. Antonis and Christos are struggling to survive in modern day Athens. They are united by their common love interest for Laura Durand, a porn star of the 1990’s who disappeared mysteriously (Comedy)
Late To Die Young written and directed by Dominga Sotomayor, produced by Dominga Sotomayor and Joséphine Schroeder, executive produced by Joséphine Schroeder. In an isolated community far from the city, three children face a forest fire that threatens their sense of belonging and their lives. (Coming of Age)
Lean on Pete written and directed by Andrew Haigh, produced by Tristan Goligher. Tragic events leave Charley Thompson homeless. His only comforts become his friendship with a failing racehorse named Lean on Pete. In desperate circumstances, Charley will head east, hoping to find his aunt who once lived a thousand miles away in Wyoming. (Drama)
Loudmouth directed by Amman Abbasi, produced by Steven Reneau. A boy comes to terms with his brother’s death while navigating the joys and dangers of life in rural Arkansas. (Drama)
More Than Rice written by Kaleena Kiff and Aaron Au, directed by Aaron Au, produced by Dylan Collingwood and Aaron Au, executive produced by Robert Mitchell. A stunningly beautiful teenager is imprisoned in a brothel where she discovers she can save her friends but must sacrifice something she’ll never get back. (Drama)
Nancy written and directed by Christina Choe, produced by Mayuran Tiruchelvam, Jonathan Duffy, Kelly Williams and Gerry Kim. Nancy, a 35-year old serial imposter, lives at home with her abusive mother. She catfishes a lover online, triggering a series of tragic consequences. (Drama)
On the Way to Paradise written by Collin Oliphant, directed by Sara Blecher, produced by Imraan Jeeva. The story of a young man who tries to save his family when his father’s money laundering scheme goes awry, at the cost of his soul. (Drama)
Over the Eaves written and directed by Brent Green, produced by Matt Parkerm, Alex Pitz and Alexandra Pitz. When a boy inventor’s boldest creation alters life forever, the townspeople struggle to understand whether he’s harmed them or shown them what they’ve been missing. (Animation)
Petrol Head written by Rochelle Bright, directed by Mark Albiston, produced by Richard Fletcher, Sara Murphy and Paul Davis. As violent unrest sweeps the country, 13 year old Charlie stages her own riot in a desperate attempt to save her dysfunctional family. (Coming of Age)
Public-Schooled written by Josh Epstein, directed and executive produced by Kyle Rideout, produced by Adam Folk and Josh Epstein. Socially awkward Liam has been home-schooled his whole life. When he falls in love with a popular one-legged girl, he abandons his mother’s suffocating love and enrolls in public school, entering a world of sex, drugs and social studies. (Coming of Age)
The Rainbow written and directed by Shona Urvashi, produced by Raman Lamba. Amer, 17, kills the girl he loves. In prison, he meets psychotherapist Damini. She must decide: Should he be tried as an adult or juvenile? (Drama)
Rogue written and directed by Mark Kindred, produced by Reinaldo Marcus Green. An ex-cop-gone-rogue wages unconventional warfare on the institutional forces that wronged him. Inspired by true events. (Mystery/Crime Thriller)
Santa and Delfín written and directed by Carlos Lechuga, produced by Claudia Calvino. A love story between a revolutionary peasant girl and a homosexual writer whom she must watch over for three consecutive days. (Drama)
Short Cut written by Letisha Singh, directed by Norman Maake, produced by David Max-Brown, Kethiwe Ngcobo and Zikethiwe Ngcobo. In a country driven by greed, a father who is about to harvest his dream has to give up everything to rescue his missing son. (Thriller)
Sorry to Bother You written and directed by Boots Riley, produced by Kelly Williams, Jonathan Duffy and George Rush. A Black telemarketer discovers a magical key to business success, propelling him into a macabre universe where he is selected to lead a species of genetically manipulated horse-people. (Drama)
The Space Between written and directed by Philiane Phang, produced by Angela C. Lee. An aspiring body builder devotes her life to turning ‘pro’ when an unexpected relationship with a muscle worship client leads to her undoing. (Drama)
Summer written and directed by Saschka Unseld, produced by Kyle Ranson-Walsh. When the demons of a single mother come to life she has to face her past or she will lose not just herself but also her son. (Drama)
The Swan written and directed by Claire Oakley, produced by Emily Morgan. David’s wife starts to behave strangely after a swan crashes into her car and their marriage is put to the test. (Drama)
The Veils written by Spencer Wright, directed by Jake West, produced by Crawford Anderson-Dillon. An ambitious American realtor purchases an Irish castle and finds herself pitted against terrifying supernatural forces that culminate in madness and murder. (Horror)
Through and Through written and directed by Eleanor Burke and Ron Eyal, produced by Lucas Joaquin and Gavin Humphries. A seedy one-night stand evolves into an affair, unsettling the isolated life a devoted husband has made for himself caring for his stroke-afflicted wife. (Drama)
Too Much of Nothing written and directed by Lawrence Levine, produced by Pierce Varous and Sophia Takal. Finding himself deeply in debt to a local criminal, a radical left-wing rocker must enlist the help of his mistress’s wealthy Republican husband in order to avoid destruction. (Comedy)
Yamaha 300 directed by Jorge Michel Grau, produced by Mayra Espinosa Castro. Animal and Cananis have been waiting for many long hours on a small boat on the open sea waiting for the plane that will throw them cocaine. Soon, loneliness, fear and suspicious will make them discover the worst of each other. (Drama)
Spotlight on Documentaries
50 documentary features ranging from an early financing stage to those nearing completion
93Queen directed by Paula Eiselt and produced by Heidi Reinberg and Adam Bolt. 93Queen is a film about women’s empowerment in Hasidic Brooklyn–a neighborhood where you’d least expect to find it.
Amor Puro y Duro (Love Hard and Pure) directed by Catherine Gund and produced by Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi. Amor Puro y Duro (re)discovers the legacy of iconic chanteuse and sexual outlaw Chavela Vargas through the eyes of gender-bending singer Nacha Mendez.
Belly of the Beast directed and written by Erika Cohn, produced by Erika Cohn and Christen Marquez, and executive produced by Geralyn Dreyfous and Mark Lipson. The significance of Belly of the Beast lies in the banality of the evil it exposes, intimately chronicling the journey of women fighting reproductive injustice in their communities.
A Blind Eye directed by Kirsten Johnson and produced by Kirsten Johnson and Marilyn Ness. After decades shooting top documentaries, cinematographer Kirsten Johnson creates a visually radical memoir investigating how she’s shot and what it might mean to those filmed.
Canary in a Coal Mine directed by Jennifer Brea; produced by Jennifer Brea, Lindsey Dryden, and Patricia Gillespie; and executive produced by Deborah Hoffmann. A bedridden filmmaker confronts the most devastating disease your doctor has never (really) heard of.
Cradle of Champions directed by Bartle Bull, produced by Maiken Baird, and executive produced by Donald Rosenfeld. Dreams, heartbreak, and redemption in the kaleidoscope of 2015 urban America: the four-month saga of the New York Golden Gloves, the world’s largest and oldest boxing tournament.
Did It! From Yippie to Yuppie: Jerry Rubin, An American Revolutionary directed by Paul Lovelace and Jessica Wolfson and produced by Paul Lovelace, Jessica Wolfson, and Pat Thomas. Did It! is an exploration of 1960’s activist Jerry Rubin. A radical, yogi, social networking pioneer, capitalist: his remarkable story is one of constant reinvention.
Exit Music directed and produced by Cameron Bargerstock and executive produced by Peter Gilbert. With months to live, a young artist’s choice to die on his own terms transforms a family and reflects changing perceptions of dying in America.
Free From What directed by Babak Khoshnoud and David Fine and produced by Lucas Ochoa, Julia Nottingham, and Thomas Benski. A group of exiled Iranian musicians living in Brooklyn attempt to piece their lives back together after a mysterious murder-suicide crushes their dreams and aspirations.
Getting Personal directed and written by Doug Block and produced by Lori Cheatle and Doug Block. Known for his own collection of intensely personal docs, filmmaker Doug Block takes viewers on a revelatory and entertaining first-person tour of personal documentary filmmaking.
Greywater directed by Jeff Unay and produced by Jeff Unay, Ariel Sultan and James Orara. Joe, a long-time cage fighter, sets his sights on Clayton, a young title-holder. Joe’s pursuit comes to a head as his life outside the cage begins to unravel.
The Holly directed by Julian Rubinstein, produced by Dylan Nelson and Clay Haskell, and executive produced by Tia Lessin. A historic Denver community becomes the center of a violent gang war following the arrest of the city’s most prominent anti-gang activist.
Holy Cow directed by Imam Hasanov and produced by Veronika Janatková and Andra Popescu. Tapdyg´s big dream is to buy a German cow and bring it to his village in Azerbaijan. But in order to achieve this he will not only need money but also the approval of his conservative community.
Justice for Jennifer (working title) directed by PJ Raval and produced by Sara Giustini and Marty Syjuco. LGBTQ activists in the Philippines confront U.S. imperialism, demanding a fair trial following the murder of a local transgender woman by a U.S. Marine.
The Kids directed by Hamilton Harris and produced by Caroline Rothstein, Hamilton Harris, Peter Bici, and Jessica Forsyth. The Kids is an unprecedented, all-access documentary about the real-life story of the kids who inspired the 1995 cult classic film Kids.
Larry Flynt for President directed by Nadia Szold, produced by Nadia Szold and Mark Lipson, and executive produced by Jonathan Gray and Julie Goldman. In 1983, battle wounded from an assassination attempt on his life and locked up in prison, Larry Flynt announces that he will run for President from his golden wheelchair.
Last Call directed by Lana Wilson and executive produced by Mike Lerner and Lilly Hartley. A remarkable Buddhist priest helps desperate people rediscover the will to live. But when he faces a crisis of his own, can he live by the same advice he gives out.
Last Resort directed by Landon Van Soest and Jeremy Levine; produced by Jeremy Levine, Brad Rayford, and Nicholas Weissman, and executive produced by Jeff Truesdell. Last Resort presents a timely portrait of a North St. Louis teenager as she struggles towards graduation at the country’s only court-supervised public high school.
Life after Dad directed by Lucy Cohen and produced by Julia Nottingham. Life after Dad is a film about memory, identity, and growing up as seven siblings strive to understand a traumatic childhood event.
Like a Girl directed by Danny Turken, produced by Nicole London, and executive produced by Sam Pollard and W. Wilder Knight. Like a Girl chronicles three female soccer players in South Africa who risk their lives for the sport they love.
Liyana directed by Aaron Kopp and Amanda Kopp and produced by Aaron Kopp, Amanda Kopp, and Daniel Junge. A talented group of orphaned children in Swaziland confront past trauma as they create a fictional heroine and send her on a dangerous quest.
Mama Icha’s House directed by Oscar Molina, written by Diana Ospina, produced by Andrew Bateman and Aggie Ebrahimi Bazaz, and executive produced by Juan Pablo Tamayo. Longing for the sun and soil of her Caribbean homeland, 93-year-old Mama Icha chooses to repatriate in Colombia after three decades of living abroad in the United States.
Mossad: Blood and Silence directed by Amit Goren, written by Amir Oren, and produced by Ina Fichman and Laurence Uebersfeld. Who controls Mossad and its activities? Is Israel’s first line of defense, its vaunted covert action agency, still relevant? Alert for war, blind to peace?
Nae Pasaran directed and written by Felipe Bustos Sierra and produced by Felipe Bustos Sierra and Rebecca Day. Nae Pasaran shows how Scottish factory workers paralyzed the air force of one of the world’s most repressive modern dictatorships–Pinochet’s Chile–only to discover their impact 40 years later.
The New Missionaries directed and written by Yoav Shamir and produced by Tanya Aizikovich and Steven Markovitz. The extraordinary story of Rael, the leader of the largest UFO religion, and his attempts to expand into Africa; preaching free love and total pacifism.
Northwest Passage directed and written by Adam Baran and executive produced by P. David Ebersole, Todd Hughes, and Jonathan Caouette. An abused adolescent boy uses the cult TV series Twin Peaks, which was filmed in his town, to deal with his tumultuous childhood.
¡No Soy Puta! (I am not a whore) directed by Suzan Beraza, produced by Erika Morillo and Michelle Maughan, and executive produced by Abigail Disney and Gini Reticker. Two sex workers—one Haitian, one Dominican—struggle to survive as racial tension and violence erupt between the nations of the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
Obsolescence directed by Antonio Tibaldi and Alex Lora and produced by Antonio Tibaldi and Enrica Capra. For two Brooklyn twin brothers who are hoarders, getting their house cleaned by a professional crew becomes a journey into memory, loss and hope.
Once I Was: The Hal Ashby Story directed by Amy Scott and produced by Christine Beebe, Jonathan Lynch, and Brian Morrow. Once I Was is a provocative examination of the life and work of director Hal Ashby within the changing landscape of American cinema.
The Oslo Diaries directed and written by Mor Loushy and Daniel Sivan and produced by Hilla Medalia. The Oslo Diaries is a political thriller based in the backstage of the Oslo Accords. Personal diaries of Israeli & Palestinian participants provide new insights into why the peace process failed and why both sides remain embroiled in the longest ongoing conflict of our times.
Overland directed and produced by Elisabeth Haviland James and Revere La Noue and executive produced by Christopher Behlau. A global adventure yields rare access inside lives of five brothers, traditional Arabian falconers, as they navigate remote landscapes and bond with magnificent hunting birds.
The Path directed by Senain Kheshgi, produced by Annie Hanlon, and executive produced by Jonathon Ker. The former barber to the prime minister of Pakistan aids women and children who have escaped from sexual trafficking, slavery, and threats of “honor killing.” People from around the country flock to him to help, and he has singlehandedly rescued over 8,000 people.
People’s Republic of Desires directed by Hao Wu, produced by Hao Wu and
Sara Terry, and executive produced by Jean Tsien. Three youths seek to transform their lives in China’s virtual entertainment world, but find the same promises and perils online as in their real lives.
Real Boy directed and produced by Shaleece Haas and executive produced by Charlotte Lagarde. A transgender teenager embarks on a journey to find his voice — as a musician, a friend, a son, and a man.
Roll Red Roll directed by Nancy Schwartzman, produced by Steven Lake and Jessica Devaney, and executive produced by Jennifer Fox. The story of a football town divided, Roll Red Roll is an immersive thriller investigating rape culture in small-town America.
Rules To Live By directed by Hope Litoff and produced by Beth Levison. She’s beautiful, talented, artistic, sexually magnetic, successful, rich, loved… and can’t stand to be alive.
So Young, So Pretty, So White directed by Terence Nance and Chanelle Pearson and produced by Chanelle Pearson. So Young, So Pretty, So White is a window into the world of skin bleaching, unveiling what drives men and women to lighten their skin and the complex factors that make it difficult to stop.
Southwest of Salem: The Story of the San Antonio Four directed by Deborah Esquenazi, produced by Deborah Esquenazi and Sam Tabet, and executive produced by Sam Tabet. Southwest of Salem excavates the nightmarish persecution of Elizabeth Ramirez, Cassandra Rivera, Kristie Mayhugh, and Anna Vasquez–four Latina lesbians wrongfully convicted of gang-raping two little girls during the “Satanic sexual abuse panic” of the 1980s and ’90s in San Antonio, Texas.
Swim Team directed and written by Lara Stolman and produced by Lara Stolman and Shanna Belott. Three autistic boys coming of age struggle with limited support and services, but find hope for their futures through a transformative community swim team.
A Time to Stir directed by Paul Cronin and produced by Todd Wider and Jedd Wider. The story of student protest at Columbia University, New York, in 1968.
To the Amazon directed, written, produced and executive produced by Nicolas Van Hemelryck and Clare Weiskopf. A reflection on parenthood, responsibility, and freedom, this is the intimate journey of a filmmaker to understand her mother’s unique, exotic, and adventurous past.
Tower directed and written by Keith Maitland; produced by Keith Maitland, Megan Gilbride, and Susan Thomson; and executive produced by Luke Wilson, Steve Eckelman, and Pamela Colloff. An animated and action-packed look at America’s first mass school shooting, when the worst in one man brought out the best in so many others.
TrueLoveLies directed by Guy Nattiv and Adi Barash, written by Guy Nattiv, and produced by Adi Barash and Ruthie Shatz. In Virginia, spirituality and religion run deep. A hunt for the remains of a Holocaust survivor opens a Pandora’s box of past and present secrets.
Two Tales of Whales directed and produced by Megumi Sasaki. A 21st-century look at the controversy over dolphin and whale hunting. Is it possible to preserve a local tradition that conflicts with global standards?
The Ultra-Terrestrials / Os Ultra-Terrestres Meredith Zielke, written by Yoni Goldstein, and produced by Sebastian Alvarez and Zoe Sua Cho. Os Ultra-Terrestres (working title) is a film about the architects of utopian cities in Brazil’s remote tropical wilderness.
The Unafraid directed and produced by Heather Courtney and Anayansi Prado. Young. American. Undocumented. The Unafraid is the story of four friends fighting for their right to higher education in their home state of Georgia.
Waiting for the Drop directed by Alexei Barrionuevo, produced by Julie La’Bassiere, and executive produced by Carlos Barrionuevo and Nick Barrionuevo. Spinning electronic dance music, DJs rose from obscurity to superstardom and became a symbol of the best and worst of the Millennial generation.
Weed the People directed and written by Abby Epstein, produced by Sol Tryon and Giancarlo Canavesio, and executive produced by Ricki Lake. You give your kid WHAT? Weed the People shows real life stories of families risking everything to save their children’s lives.
When God Sleeps (working title) directed and written by Till Schauder and produced by Till Schauder and Sara Nodjoumi. When God Sleeps depicts the journey of Iranian musician Shahin Najafi who is forced into hiding after hard-line clerics offer a $100,000 reward for his murder.
Zoey and the Helicopter directed and written by Matt Yoka and produced by Matt Yoka and Erin Lee Carr. Bob Tur revolutionized the news industry from the Los Angeles sky. Intimate interviews and rare access to his unparalleled aerial archive illustrate history unfolding and a complex personal journey.
RBC’S Emerging Storytellers
Web Storytellers Spotlight
195 Lewis written by Chanelle Pearson, Rae Leone Allen, and Jade Foster, directed by Chanelle Pearson, produced by Terence Nance. 195 Lewis follows a diverse group of young women as they navigate the realities of being black and queer in New York City. (Drama)
Eat Our Feelings, Season Two written by Sasha Winters and Emma Jane Gonzalez, executive produced by Doug Anderson. Eat Our Feelings follows the ups and downs—and all the awkwardness in between—of Sasha and Emma, best friends who take to the kitchen to work out their real life problems. (Comedy)
EON written and directed by Emily Carmichael, produced by Krista Parris and Adam Spielberg. Science fiction characters in psychotherapy, seven years after a big sci-fi adventure, re-adjusting to regular life in futuristic Brooklyn. (Sci-Fi)
Monogamish written by Aubrey Saverino, directed by Andrew Dahl, produced by Deidre Works, executive produced by Aubrey Saverino and Eric Pargac. Anna’s thoughts on relationships are rocked when she covers New York’s underground sex scene. The story might save her career–but what about her marriage? (Comedy)
The Singularity written by Charles Spano and Claire Carré, directed by Claire Carré. Strange anomalies in a mountain town lead residents to discover that they are pawns trapped in a game. (Sci-Fi)