28 April 2008

Tribeca Kicks Into Full Gear

Today was a day to finally get a chance to meet the films and filmmakers at the festival. I started the morning at 9 AM catching a screening of the Golden Bear-winning film, Elite Squad, from Brazil. It takes a controversial look at the tactics of the police against the poor of Brazil's favelas. Compelling in so many ways, the opening 5 minutes of the film grabs you and never lets go. Afterwards, I worked hard to get the word out about the approaching "A Powerful Noise" premiere to industry folks. We got some interest from some of our targeted festivals and a couple of cable channels, so we hope this leads to great things in creating buzz and awareness for women's empowerment.

Then it was off to the the Japanese Fusion restaurant, MEGU. The food and company were wonderful. I got the opportunity to meet Vincent Coen and his wonderful wife, Bartelyne. Vincent made a short film, Heartbeats, which was a coming of age look at a young girl leaving the nest. This certainly hits home for me as a new father, and I look forward to seeing his shorts program over the weekend. It was great to discuss everyone's wonderful reception at the fest and to hear how responsive the audiences have been to the material. It was great to get an international feel for the fest as Vincent and Bartelyne came all the way from Belgium. And if you go to MEGU, please order the asparagus. :)

At 4:30 PM, we rushed the documentary feature, "This Is Not A Robbery," about JL Roundtree, the 92 year old bank robber. Wonderful execution of a film built around taped archival audio and video of JL in prison. The graphics and animation were inspired, and the interviews of people who knew JL were hysterically insightful. Everyone should get a chance to be introduced to JL's second wife/dancer, Juanita Adams. What a wild, hard to believe film.

The evening ended at the Tribeca's Producers' Reception. I got a chance to see Kristy and Dawn who made the wonderful doc feature, "Going On 13." This is a multi-layered women's story following girls growing up in the San Francisco Bay area from age 9-13. Fascinating film with a wonderful blending of these girl going through puberty and moving on to adolescence. Cannot wait to see it on a TV screen near me soon. Additionally, I learned of a short doc film, "Life For A Child," by Academy Award winner, Ed Lachman, about diabetes in Nepal. That will be a must see. And the producer's of "Have You Ever Heard About Vukovar" said their film looks at the Bosnian War through the eyes of a Croatian refugees. Seems to be many connections with "A Powerful Noise" with some of the other films in the festival.

Two days left until the premiere, and I finally saw the venue today. It is amazing! 390 seats and beautifully ornate architecture and design. It is a wonderful renovated art house theater and I cannot think of a better place to premiere a directorial debut. It is getting exciting and it is good to hear people begin to talk about our film. People at the parties were targeting our screenings, and we now have some nice articles at http://www.blackenterprises.com/ and http://www.thewashingtonpost.com/. It is starting to become "A Powerful Noise" !