Monday, March 12, 2007

Memphis International Film Fest -- here's the plan

What can you expect to see this year? How about 58 films from 13 countries, and more than 40 filmmakers, cast & crew in attendance? With 3 days and 4 nights of shorts, documentaries, animated and feature films, you are sure to find something to please your cinematic palate. Opening Night (Mar. 22) takes place at Malco’s Paradiso with screenings Friday through Sunday (23-25) at Malco’s Studio On The Square.

The festival will showcase filmmakers from around the globe and right in our own backyard such as the Thursday Night Opening Night pairing of a Romanian Short film—A Very Small Trilogy of Loneliness from Romanian Director, Bogdan George Apetri (nominated for a Student Academy Award) and the Opening Night Feature—Oh, Mr. Faulkner, Do You Write? - John Maxwell's critically acclaimed one-man show based on the life of William Faulkner filmed before a live audience in Faulkner's home town of Oxford, Mississippi—a true departure from the typical opening night films, this film is NOT to be missed.

On Friday, members of the cast and crew of 2 blues-oriented documentaries will join the audience for Jook Joint Jam and Iron City Blues. Jook Joint Jam was filmed live on location at Ground Zero, owned by Morgan Freeman in Clarksdale, MS and includes interviews with Morgan Freeman and performances by George Thorogood and Eddie Shaw. Iron City Blues takes a look at the lawless town of Iron City, TN through the eyes of Bluesman Big Mike Griffin. Memphis Music takes center stage on Saturday night with a special tribute to Soul Man Isaac Hayes at 7 pm and our MIFF Awards Party that will shake your soul downtown at The Warehouse featuring Craig Schuster. Admisson to each of these events is $10 or free with a Festival Pass.

Special programming during the festival includes the International Masters Series. This year’s IMS films are: Todo sobre me madre (All About My Mother), Fleur du mail, La (The Flower of Evil), Espinazo del Diablo (The Devil’s Backbone), and Bu San (Goodbye, Dragon Inn). These films will be shown in their original 35 mm format – a true treat for the cinephile.

In addition to the films, the festival features special events, parties and workshops each day of the festival. Partnerships with SmartSound, Apple and Mania TV will provide 3 different workshops to help filmmakers on their path to success. SmartSound representative Richard Manfredi will be presenting the features and application uses of their computer program Sonicfire Pro 4. Presenters from the local Germantown Apple Store at Saddle Creek will be showing how Apple software can help you to create a master DVD to give your film that professional presentation touch. A panel discussion and Q&A session with various guests that utilize the internet for independent films will include topics such as Networking, Marketing, Distribution, and Broadcasting. Panelists include Chad Bardon - Content Manager for Mania TV (Internet Broadcasting Network), R.C. Knight – Executive Producer for Knight Entertainment (Internet Distribution) and Sarah Fleming – Live From Memphis (Internet Promotion & Marketing). Mania TV will also be taping and broadcasting from the festival at each day.

Individual screenings are $8.50 per person ($6.50 for matinees screenings) based on first come, first served seating with Festival Passholders receiving priority seating at all festival events – Opening Night tickets are $10 per person. Festival passes which allow priority seating to all film screenings and seminars and to the MIFF Awards Party are $30 in advance via the festival website or at the door for $35. A special discounted pass ($15) is available to students with valid ID. The festival is presented by the Memphis Film Forum, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of education, economic development, and cultural diversity through the cinema arts. MIFF 8 sponsors include Malco Theatres; FedEx; TCB Entertainment, the Memphis and Shelby County Film and Television Commission; The Tennessee Arts Commission & the Greater Memphis Arts Council; and the Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission, Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau, InBaselne, Howard Flynn Law Group, the Memphis Flyer and Avid Software. More information can be found on the Memphis Film Forum website at

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