Miami Dade College’s MDCulture Miami International Film Festival 31st Edition 3/7/14-3/16/14

Miami Dade College’s MDCulture Miami International Film Festival 31st Edition
March 7 – 16, 2014

Miami International Film Festival (MIFF), a program of Miami Dade College’s MDCulture, is proud to announce the films selected to screen during its 31st edition of the annual 10-day event. Premiering at this year’s Festival will be 93 feature films and 28 short films from 38 countries, participating in competition and non-competition categories.

“The programming team of Miami International Film Festival believes the selection of films showcased in the Festival this year is a reflection of our passion for film, and we hope that it will strengthen our community’s love and appreciation for the art of filmmaking,” said MIFF Executive Director Jaie Laplante.

“We’re very excited about bringing the 31st edition of MIFF to our community,” said Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón, MDC’s president. “A forerunner in Miami’s cultural scene, the Festival remains very fresh, creative and timely. It distinguishes itself from the world’s other major film festivals because of its heavy emphasis on education through its special screenings and seminars. I invite everyone to attend and enjoy its rich program.”

Friday, March 7, 2014
Olympia Theater at Gusman Center for the Performing Arts
CINEDWNTWN Opening Night Film presented by Miami Downtown Development Authority and Patron 3-D Opening Night Party
The Festival will open with the North American premiere of Elsa & Fred directed by Michael Radford. Radford previously attended MIFF in 2008. Oscar winners Shirley MacLaine and Christopher Plummer play the titular characters originated by China Zorrilla and Manuel Alexandre in this remake of the beloved 2008 release of the Argentine/Spanish film of the same name. Also in the cast are Oscar winner Marcia Gay Harden; as well as George Segal, Chris Noth, James Brolin, Wendell Pierce, Jaime Camil and Osvaldo Rios.
A “Patron 3-D” Gala Party at the Historic Alfred I. Dupont Building will unfold after the Opening Night screening of Elsa & Fred.

Saturday, March 15, 2014
CINEDWNTWN Awards Night Film presented by Miami Downtown Development Authority with Pyrat Gold: The Awards Night Rum Party
The Festival‘s annual Awards Night gala will culminate with the World premiere of Rob the Mob directed by Raymond De Felitta and starring Andy Garcia. De Felitta and Garcia previously collaborated on the 2010 hit film City Island, which also premiered at MIFF. Rob the Mob also stars Michael Pitt, Ray Romano, Burt Young, Griffin Dunne, Frank Whaley, Cathy Moriarty, Aida Turturro, Yul Vazquez and Nina Arianda.
Pyrat Gold: The Awards Night Rum Party will be hosted at the Historic Freedom Tower after the Awards Night screening of Rob the Mob. The Lexus Audience Awards for feature and documentary will be announced at this event.

Sunday, March 9, 2014
Career Achievement Tribute Award, presented by 88 RUE DU RHONE – presented to John Turturro
This year’s Career Achievement Tribute will be presented to actor and filmmaker John Turturro. Turturro, a double Cannes winner (as Best Actor for Barton Fink in 1992 and with the Camera d’Or as Best First Feature Film director in 1993 for Mac) will present his latest directorial achievement, Fading Gigolo, as part of the CINEDWNTWN presented by Miami Downtown Development Authority program. Fading Gigolo also stars Woody Allen, Sharon Stone and Sofia Vergara.
A “Career Achievement Tribute” Party in John Turturro’s honor, also sponsored by 88 RUE DU RHONE, will be hosted by Area 31 Restaurant in the stunning Epic Hotel after the screening.

Festival Competition Categories:
The Knight Competition, open to dramatic works from Latin America, Spain and Portugal, as well as Latino-themed works produced in the United States, will feature 10 films eligible to receive $40,000 in achievement recognition from the Festival, courtesy of James L. & John S. Knight Foundation. The 10 films competing in this category are:
All About The Feathers (Por las plumas) (Costa Rica, directed by Neto Villalobos) *US Premiere
Asteroid (Asteroide) (Mexico, directed by Marcelo Tobar) *World Premiere
Club Sandwich (Mexico, directed by Fernando Eimbcke)
The Man of the Crowd (O homem das multidões) (Brazil, directed by Marcelo Gomes and Cao Guimarães) *North American Premiere
Memories of the Desert (Romance policial) (Brazil / Chile, directed by Jorge Durán) *World Premiere
Natural Sciences (Ciencias naturales) (Argentina, directed by Matias Lucchesi) *North American Premiere
Séptimo (Spain / Argentina, directed by Patxi Amexcua) *North American Premiere
To Kill A Man (Matar un hombre) (Chile / France, directed by Alejandro Fernández Almendras)
We All Want What’s Best For Her (Tots volem el millor per a ella) (Spain, directed by Mar Coll) *North American Premiere
A Wolf at the Door (O lobo atrás da porta) (Brazil, directed by Fernando Coimbra)

Both All About The Feathers and The Man of the Crowd received support from MIFF’s industry development program Encuentros in previous Festival editions. Mar Coll (Three Days With The Family, MIFF 2010), Marcelo Gomes (I Travel Because I Have To, I Come Back Because I Love You, MIFF 2010) and Cao Guimarães (Accident, MIFF 2007) have previously competed in MIFF competition categories. Argentina’s Ricardo Darín, a popular MIFF star, appears in Séptimo.

Knight Documentary Competition, open to engaging and thought-provoking feature-length documentaries created by international filmmakers that examine social issues, diverse cultures, icons and inspiring people, will feature 10 films eligible to receive $10,000 in achievement recognition from the Festival, courtesy of James L. & John S. Knight Foundation. The 10 films competing in this category are:
The Art Rush (France, directed by Marianne Lamour) *North American Premiere
The Dog (USA, directed by Allison Berg and Frank Keraudren)
Europe in 8 Bits (Spain, directed by Javier Polo)
Finding Vivian Maier (USA, directed by Charlie Siskel and John Maloof)
Ivory Tower (USA, directed by Andrew Rossi)
Locations: Looking For Rusty James (Locaciones: buscando a Rusty James) (Chile, directed by Alberto Fuguet)
The Notorious Mr. Bout (USA / Russia, directed by Tony Gerber and Maxim Pozdorovkin)
The Overnighters (USA, directed by Jesse Moss)
Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon (USA, directed by Mike Myers)
Whitey: United States of America V. James J. Bulger (USA, directed by Joe Berlinger)

Joe Berlinger (Under African Skies, MIFF 2012) and Andrew Rossi (Page One: A Year Inside The New York Times, MIFF 2012) have previously competed in this category. Mike Myers is one of the world’s most popular entertainers (Austin Powers, Shrek, Wayne’s World), and Supermensch is his directorial debut. As previously announced, every film in this category will additionally be preceded by a world premiering 5-minute documentary directed by Bill Bilowit, each film from THE CHICAGO PROJECT X Fashion Outlets of Chicago series.

The Lexus Ibero-American Opera Prima Competition for first-time feature filmmakers emerging from Spain, Portugal and Latin America will feature four films eligible to receive $5,000 in achievement recognition from the Festival, courtesy of Lexus; and an additional $5,000 in achievement recognition for screenwriting from the Festival, courtesy of Jordan A. Ressler Foundation. The four films competing in this category are:
Here’s the Deal (Somos gente honrada) (Spain, directed by Alejandro Marzoa) *US Premiere
Mateo (Colombia / France, directed by Maria Gamboa) *World Premiere
Stockholm (Estocolmo) (Spain, directed by Rodrigo Sorogoyen) *US Premiere
We are Mari Pepa (Somos Mari Pepa) (Mexico, directed by Samuel Kishi Leopo)

Papi Shorts Competition presented by Macy’s will present 10 accomplished short films from around the globe, eligible to receive $1,000 in achievement recognition from the Festival, courtesy of Papi and Macy’s. The 10 films competing in this category are:
A Big Deal (特殊交易) (China, directed by Yoyo Yao) *US Premiere
Blue (USA, directed by Justin Malone) *World Premiere
Chub (USA, directed by Samuel Albis) *World Premiere
Flamingo (Venezuela, directed by Carl Zitelmann)
Grace (Graça) (Brazil, directed by Anna Clara Peltier) *North American Premiere
The Phone Call (United Kingdom, directed by Mat Kirkby)
Skin (France, directed by Cédric Prévost) *North American Premiere
Shirt Out, Game Over! (Switzerland, directed by Eric Paternot) *World Premiere
Unicorn (Unicornio) (Bolivia, directed by Rodrigo Bellott)
Xenos (United Kingdom / Greece / Denmark, directed by Mahdi Fleifel) *North American Premiere

Cédric Prévost previously won this category in 2012 with his short “Catharsis”. Mahdi Fleifel (A World Not Ours) was selected as one of MIFF’s 4 World Directors to Watch in 2013. Samuel Albis is a Miami-based filmmaker and “Chub” is additionally part of the Festival’s Florida Focus program. Current Oscar nominee Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine) stars in “The Phone Call”.

The Festival also unveils a number of films in non-competitive categories:

Cinedwntwn Galas Presented By Miami Downtown Development Authority
Brazilian Western (Brazil, directed by René Sampaio)
Deep City: Birth of the Miami Sound (USA, directed by Marlon Johnson, Dennis Scholl, and Chad Tingle)
The Devil’s Violinist (Der Teufelsgeiger) (Germany / Italy / Austria, directed by Bernard Rose) *North American premiere

Special Presentation: Work In Progress From Cuba
Filmmaker Bent-Jorgen Perlmutt (Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel) will attend the Festival for a “Work in Progress from Cuba” presentation. He will present clips from his forthcoming feature documentary Havana Motor Club, about Cuba’s top underground drag racers of classic American cars, and a quest to mount the first official car race since the Revolution’s ban on the sport. Perlmutt will discuss the issues and plans for shaping the final film.

Lee Brian Schrager’s Culinary Cinema presented by Plymouth Gin
Brasserie Romantique (Brasserie romantiek) (Belgium, directed by Joël Vanhoebrouck)
Final Recipe (Fa-i-neol re-si-pi) (Republic of Korea / Thailand, directed by Gina Kim)
Food for Love (Greece, directed by Marianna Economou), preceded by the short film “Impromptu” (Canada, directed by Bruce Alcock)
Jadoo (United Kingdom, directed by Amit Gupta)
Le Chef (Comme un chef) (France, directed by Daniel Cohen)

These titles join the preview to this program, the previously announced Soul of a Banquet (USA, directed by Wayne Wang), which screens on February 23rd at the New World Soundscape as part of Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival.

Florida Focus
Cherry Pop: The Story of the World’s Fanciest Cat (USA, directed by Kareem Tabsch)
Ectotherms (USA, directed by Monica Peña) *World Premiere
International Noise Conference 2013 (USA, directed by Ronnie Rivera)
Strike: The Greatest Bowling Story Ever Told (USA, directed by Joey Daoud)

Other Florida Focus films announced in other categories are the CINEDWNTWN title Deep City: Birth of the Miami Sound (USA, directed by Marlon Johnson, Dennis Scholl, and Chad Tingle) and the Papi Shorts Competition presented by Macy’s title “Chub” (USA, directed by Samuel Albis).

Coherence (USA, directed by James Ward Byrkit)
In Darkness We Fall (La cueva) (Spain, directed by Alfredo Montero) *North American Premiere
The Sacrament (USA, directed by Ti West)

These 3 films join Witching and Bitching (Las brujas de zugarramurdi) (Spain / France, directed by Álex de la Iglesia), previously announced in this category.
America the Beautiful
The Immigrant (USA, directed by James Gray)
Memphis (USA, directed by Tim Sutton)
War Story (USA, directed by Mark Jackson) *Stars Catherine Keener and Ben Kingsley
The Congress (Israel / Germany / Poland / Luxembourg / Belgium, directed by Ari Folman)
Wetlands (Feuchtgebiete) (Germany, directed by David F. Wnendt)

REEL Music
Serrat & Sabina: Two for the Road (Serrat y Sabina: el simbolo y el cuate) (Spain, directed by Francesc Relea) *North American Premiere

In addition, the Festival will soon announce 10 selected music videos that will compete in the MTV/TR3S Music Video Art Competition. The Festival is partnering with MTV and Tr3s to present the program and the videos will be reviewed by a panel of MTV Latin America judges.

Two films have been added to the Cinema 360° presented by Viendomovies program, joining those previously announced on January 14th. The two newly added films are:
Dom Hemingway (UK, directed by Richard Shepard) *Starring Jude Law and Demian Bichir
I’ll Follow You Down (Canada, directed by Richie Mehta) *Starring Haley Joel Osment and Gillian Anderson

I’ll Follow You Down is Richie Mehta’s second film in this year’s Festival. It joins the previously announced Siddharth.

Close-Ups on National Cinemas: China (presented By Byejoe), Germany and Mexico
This year, the Festival has created special CLOSE-UPS on national cinemas, China, Germany and Mexico. Each of these prolific film-producing nations is represented in a variety of the Festival’s programs.

Close-up on China presented by ByeJoe
American Dreams in China (中國合伙人) (China, directed by Peter Ho-Sun Chan)
Bends (Hong Kong / China, directed by Flora Lau)
Trap Street (Shuiyin Jie) (China, directed by Vivian Qu)
Web Junkie (Israel / USA, directed by Shosh Shlam & Hilla Medalia)

Close-up on Mexico (all titles previously announced as part of other Festival sections)
The Amazing Catfish (Los insólitos peces gato) (Mexico, directed by Claudia Sainte-Luce)
Asteroid (Asteroide) (Mexico, directed by Marcelo Tobar)
Club Sandwich (Mexico, directed by Fernando Eimbcke)
Heli (Mexico, directed by Amat Escalante)
La jaula de oro (Mexico, directed by Diego Quemada-Díez)
We Are Mari Pepa (Somos Mari Pepa) (Mexico, directed by Samuel Kishi Leopo)

Close-up on Germany (all titles previously announced as part of other Festival sections)
The Devil’s Violinist (Der teufelsgeiger) (Germany / Italy / Austria, directed by Bernard Rose)
Fack ju Göhte/Suck Me Shakespeer (Germany, directed by Boar Dagtekin)
Global Player (Global Player – Wo Wir Sind Isch Vorne) (Germany, directed by Hannes Stöhr)
Wetlands (Feuchtgebiete) (Germany, directed by David F. Wnendt)

A From The Vault special presentation in collaboration with Miami Beach Cinematheque this year will feature a 45th anniversary screening of John Schlesinger’s Oscar-winning classic, Midnight Cowboy. The screening will be preceded by the footage of the original screen tests that Jon Voigt made to win the role, presented by the late Schlesinger’s partner Michael Childers. Miami Beach Cinematheque will also present a photo exhibit of Childers work as part of a month-long tribute to Schlesinger.

The previously announced categories Cinema 360° presented by VIENDOMOVIES and Doc-You-Up are also part of the non-competition films slate at this year’s Festival. Cinema 360° presented by VIENDOMOVIES is one of the Festival’s most extensive categories this year with an array of films from around the world.

All of the above titles will be eligible for the Lexus Audience Awards (Feature & Documentary), as voted on by the public during the Festival. Lexus is the Official and Exclusive Automobile Sponsor of the 2014 Festival.

Other notables Highlights during the Festival week include:
Masterclass Seminars include:
“A Very Bright Future: The End of Movies As We Know Them,” presented by noted author and filmmaker Alberto Fuguet
“A Brief History of CGI presented by Spaz Williams” (Oscar nominee for The Mask) hosted by Kreative Kontent

KODAK/Pro8mm “Do A Shot Miami!” workshops are back by popular demand.
The coveted Lexus Audience Award is presented to the feature film and the documentary that receive the most votes from audience members. Prior to viewing eligible films, ballads are dispersed to audience members in order to cast their vote for their favorite film. The award was presented to two films at last year’s Festival, Gideon’s Army by Dawn Porter and 7 Boxes (7 cajas) by Juan Carlos Maneglia and Tana Schémbori.

Miami + Shanghai CinemaSlam is a competition which aims to discover, showcase, and celebrate the work of undergraduate and graduate students in Miami and Shanghai film schools. Florida participating schools include Barry University, Center of Cinematography, Arts & Television Florida International University, Miami Dade College, Miami International University, New World School of the Arts (University of Florida), St. Thomas University and the University of Miami. Shanghai schools include East China University, East China Normal University, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai Normal University, Shanghai Theatre Academy, and Shanghai University.

Miami ENCUENTROS presented by Moviecity: The purpose of this competition is to facilitate completion of feature films produced partially or entirely by Latin-American based production companies, or from US Hispanic filmmakers, that are currently in post-production and will not be completed by March 2014. Miami ENCUENTROS aims to propel these projects towards their eventual debuts on the international stage. MIFF ENCUENTROS and Moviecity will be awarding a pre-sale contract offer worth USD$ 35,000 to the winning project as selected by a jury of industry professionals. The program finalists will be announced in February.
ACE (Ateliers du Cinéma Européen) Co-Production Lab is a three-day workshop, supported by MEDIA and MIFF’s VeoMiami industry program, that will bring together over 30 European and Latin American film industry professionals to develop opportunities for artistic and financial cooperation between these territories. The project-based workshop will consist of case studies, pitching sessions, panels, one-on-one meetings and networking events. The program finalists will be announced in February.

MIFF’s screening venues are as unique as the films themselves, reflecting the communities MIFF serves through film. One of the theaters is a historic landmark, Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts which is a grand movie palace evoking the golden age of Hollywood, tailor-made for major red carpet events. The Festival will also screen films at the Paragon Grove, O Cinema, Regal South Beach Cinemas, Miami Beach Cinematheque and Coral Gables Art Cinema. Special event venues include Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College, The Historic Alfred I. Dupont Building, and New World Center.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public on Friday, February 14th. For membership opportunities or more information, please visit or call 305-237-FILM(3456). The Festival is the only major film festival event housed within a college or university.