AFI FEST 2007 presented by Audi: AFI Los Angeles International Film Festival announces eight films that will screen at this year’s Festival (November 1-11) including World Premieres of two documentaries, PUBLIC ENEMY: WELCOME TO THE TERRORDOME and 1000 JOURNALS, as well as the US Premieres of THE TRACEY FRAGMENTS and WITH YOUR PERMISSION.
PUBLIC ENEMY: WELCOME TO THE TERRORDOME takes a look at the 20 year history of the influential hip hop group, Public Enemy and their impact musically, socially and politically, as well as giving rare insight into the personalities that make up the group. PUBLIC ENEMY includes interviews with Tom Morello (Audioslave, Rage Against the Machine) and Henry Rollins, among others. PUBLIC ENEMY is directed by Robert Patton-Spruill.
1000 JOURNALS takes a look at the social/art project initiated by “Someguy” in San Francisco, who sent a thousand journals out into the world, with 25 of them eventually being returned after receiving writings and art and other contributions within from people in 35 different countries. 1000 JOURNALS is directed by Andrea Kreuzhage.
Making its US Premiere at AFI FEST this year is the Canadian drama, THE TRACEY FRAGMENTS. Directed by Bruce McDonald, the film features a startling and innovative visual design, with Ellen Page starring as a teenager and social outcast wandering the streets of Winnipeg searching for her lost younger brother.
Also making its US Premiere will be WITH YOUR PERMISSION. The entry out of Denmark was directed by Paprika Steen, who was named one of the NEW FACES IN EUROPEAN CINEMA at AFI FEST two years ago. WITH YOUR PERMISSION follows the antics of an opera-obsessed cafeteria manager who infuriates those around him with his increasingly difficult behavior.
AFI FEST also announces eleven films currently playing at the Toronto International Film Festival that will screen for Los Angeles audiences for the first time at AFI FEST in November, after scoring critical debuts at festivals including Cannes, New York, Berlin and Beijing.
“We are delighted to bring to Los Angeles audiences these films, which includes work from talented emerging filmmakers, alongside terrific new films from veteran creative artists such as Hou Hsiao-hsien, Julian Schnabel and Lee Chang-dong,” said Rose Kuo, AFI FEST Artistic Director
Those films include:
4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS, 2 DAYS (Romania)
Director: Cristian Mungiu
The Palme d’Or winner at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, the drama follows the harrowing choices two young women must make when one of them seeks an illegal abortion in 1987 Romania.
THE BAND’S VISIT (Israel)
Director: Eran Kolirin
The film follows a brass band comprised of members of the Egyptian police force as they make the trip to play at the inaugural ceremony of an Israeli arts center only to become lost and stranded along the way.
THE COUNTERFEITERS (Austria/Germany)
Director: Stefan Ruzowitzky
Taking place in 1936, the film details the true story of the largest counterfeiting operation in history, set up by the Nazis which utilized Jewish prisoners who were bankers, printers and professional forgers before their imprisonment.
Director: Gael Garcia Bernal
Bernal makes his feature film directing debut with the story of a social class war being played out during a party hosted by a privileged young man concerned about his university schooling prospects.
THE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERFLY (USA/France)
Director: Julian Schnabel
Film follows the true-life story of Elle France editor Jean-Dominique Bauby, who, in 1995 at the age of 43, suffered a stroke that paralyzed his entire body except for his left eye. Using that eye, he blinked out his memoir.
FLIGHT OF THE RED BALLOON (Taiwan/France)
Director: Hao Hsiao-hsien
An overwhelmed mother (played by Juliette Binoche), enlists the aid of a babysitter to help her care for her two children. Soon her little boy and the baby-sitter find they inhabit the same imaginary world, in which they are followed through their adventures by a strange red balloon.
Director: Etgar Keret, Shira Gefen
The winner of the Camera d’Or for Best First Feature, the film features a series of overlapping encounters and intertwining relationships revolving around a couple’s wedding preparations, the effort of an actress to find a caregiver for her aging mother and the arrival of a mysterious child.
Director: Jason Reitman
The film stars Ellen Page as a girl, who, when faced with an unplanned pregnancy makes an unusual and bizarre decision regarding her unborn child. The cast includes Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman, Michael Cera and Allison Janney.
Directors: Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Parranoud
An animated feature with voice work by Catherine Deneuve, among others, PERSEPOLIS is the poignant story of a precocious and outspoken young Iranian girl who comes of age during the Islamic Revolution.
THE SAVAGES (USA)
Director: Tamara Jenkins
A drama focusing on a sister and brother (played by Laura Linney and Philip Seymour Hoffman) who face the realities of familial responsibility as they begin to care for their ailing father.
SECRET SUNSHINE (Korea)
Director: Lee Chang-dong
The film follows the travails of a woman, played by Jeon Do-yeon (in a performance which gained her the Best Actress award at this year’s Cannes Film Festival) who relocates with her son to the hometown of her husband after he dies tragically in a car accident. Her sense of welcome in the new town quickly leaves after tragedy strikes once again.