The Next Reel International Film Festival 2005
by Jason Stephens
Tisch School of the Arts/New York University
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The Next Reel International Film Festival at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts is the only international student film festival in the United States. During the weeklong festival, nearly 100 of the best student films from around the world are screened. These young filmmakers compete for almost $15,000 in cash prizes and awards.
With a new name and revamped look, the organizers of Next Reel International Film Festival, a biannual showcase of international cinema, announced today it will present 111 films from 25 countries, including Argentina, Australia, China, Cuba, Czech Republic, England, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Israel, Korea, Romania, and South Africa. One of the largest festivals of its kind, the seven-day program of narrative, documentary, and experimental works runs September 25- October 1, 2005 at the IFC Center, 323 Sixth Ave at West 3rd Street and Tisch School of the Arts, 721 Broadway.
Formerly known as the NYU International Student Film Festival, Next Reel organizers renamed the festival to reflect the evolution of the program and the ingenuity of the next generation of international filmmakers showcased in this seventh edition.
Other new initiatives for the upcoming festival include partnerships with the IFC Center and the Tribeca Film Festival. The IFC Center will host the Opening Night special presentation of KEANE, directed by NYU alumnus Lodge Kerrigan. In addition, the IFC Center is organizing an upcoming series of shorts from this year’s Next Reel festival to play before feature programs at the Center. The Tribeca Film Festival is organizing a panel discussion with noted industry representatives and film producers on how to use a short film as a springboard to a career in the film industry. Titled “Next Steps: Using your Short Film to Achieve your Career Goals,” the panel will guide emerging filmmakers in the how-to’s of making it in the film business, whether that is getting your first feature off the ground, doing commercial/music video work, or breaking into the studio system.
“This year marks exciting new changes for the festival,” said Tisch School of the Arts Vice Dean Pari Shirazi. “The festival’s new look, and the partnerships with IFC Film Center and Tribeca, will bring much deserved attention to Next Reel’s diverse line-up of films from emerging filmmakers around the world.”
Next Reel is also proud to announce that acclaimed directors Todd Solondz (PALINDROMES, WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE) and David Lynch (MULHOLLAND DRIVE) will host talks and screenings about their films and creative process. Solondz will be present for a screening of his most recent feature film, the critically acclaimed PALINDROMES, to be followed by a question-and-answer period with the director.
David Lynch will present his talk “Filmmaking and Consciousness through Transcendental Meditation,” a fascinating look at the relation between creativity, brain function, and the guiding role played by meditation, and an insider’s view into the creative process of one of the most highly regarded filmmakers today. Lynch will be accompanied by Dr. John Hagelin, a unified field physicist featured in the recent film WHAT THE BLEEP DO WE KNOW?, and Dr. Fred Travis, a neuroscientist. This talk is a collaboration with the David Lynch Foundation for Consciousness-Based Education and World Peace.
Other panels and workshops scheduled for Next Reel include an editing workshop with NYU/Tisch alumnus and master editor Jay Rabinowitz (BROKEN FLOWERS, 8 MILE, REQUIEM FOR A DREAM), discussing the tough choices that sometimes need to be made when putting together a scene.
Also scheduled is a panel discussion on “Making Your First Feature” with NYU film alumni sharing their experiences as directors and producers working on their first feature-length projects, as well as a Screenwriting Workshop that will provide a how-to guide for writing for the screen.
Founded in 1993, the festival is a biannual event that is curated by a team of NYU faculty. Next Reel is the international counterpart to the NYU/Tisch School of the Arts First Run Festival and is presented alternately between New York City and Florence, Italy. Many of the exhibited films will go on to screen at premiere international film festivals, including Cannes, Toronto, Venice, and Berlin.
The Next Reel International Film Festival is generously sponsored by Kodak, Virgin Megastore, Filmmaker Magazine, Starbucks Coffee, Village Voice and Roots.
For more program information about Next Reel, please visit our website at http://www.nextreel.org. Ticket information: General admission $5; Students with ID $3; Tisch Students Free.
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Jason Stephens is a writer and filmmaker.
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