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2014 Camden International Film Festival and Points North Winners!

Posted September 30, 2014

The Camden International Film Festival announced the award winning films from its tenth edition, which marked the end of a four-day weekend that included the screening of over 70 films from dozens of countries, as well as the 6th Points North Documentary Forum. The festival hosted over 150 filmmakers and industry leaders, with filmmakers in attendance for almost every public screening and an increased number of passes sold, despite the beautiful autumnal Maine weather.

This year’s Harrell Award for Best Documentary Feature went to CIFF’s Opening Night film VIRUNGA directed by Orlando von Einsiedel, who attended the festival to present his film and went on to accept the award via Skype. The Jury, consisting of Susan Margolin (President, Docurama), Banker White (Filmmaker, THE GENIUS OF MARIAN) and Cecily Pingree (Filmmaker, BETTING THE FARM) awarded their Special Jury Mention to J.P. Sniadecki’s THE IRON MINISTRY which had its US Premiere at CIFF and continues on to play the New York Film Festival later this week.

Opening Night photo: Ben Krebs

This year’s Emerging Cinematic Vision Award sponsored by Vimeo went to APPROACHING THE ELEPHANT directed by Amanda Rose Wilder. Wilder, along with producer Caitlin Mae Burke and subject Alex Khost were in attendance to accept the award. The Jury, consisting of Gabriele Caroti (Director, BAMCinematek), Lyda Kuth (Executive Director, LEF Foundation) and Sam Morrill (Creative Relations Lead, Vimeo) awarded the Special Jury Mention to Jean-Francois Caissy’s GUIDELINES.

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In an unprecedented turn of events, Ann and Dick Costello, the sponsors of the Camden International Film Festival Audience Award took the stage to announce an increase from a $1,000 to a $2,500 cash reward for the recipient, in honor of the vibrancy of the emerging filmmakers they took in over the course of the weekend. Maine-made WILD HOME directed by Jack Schurman and co-directed by Robert Schurman received not only a standing ovation at their World Premiere screening but also received the 2014 Audience Award and increased cash prize. Filmmakers were in attendance to accept this award.

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In CIFF’s continued commitment to furthering the short form of documentaries, they announced the award recipients from two additional partnerships. The first was the Camden Cartel Award for Best Short sponsored by the Non-Fiction Cartel. Honorable Mention went to Luke Lorentzen’s SANTA CRUZ DEL ISLOTE and the Camden Cartel Award was given to Ciaran Cassidy’s THE LAST DAYS OF PETER BERGMANN.

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The second was a new partnership with Al Jazeera’s AJ+ channel who held their first ever AJ+ Pitch at CIFF, a Live Pitch offering five filmmakers the chance to pitch their short documentary concepts and works-in-progress to a panel of filmmakers and industry leaders for up to $10,000 cash and a commission from the AJ+ channel. The Jury included AJ+’s Jeff Seelbach, Tribeca Film Institute’s Ryan Harrington and filmmakers Margaret Brown and Rebecca Richman Cohen.

AJ+ Pitch

Finalists included Jillian Schlesinger (EMOTIONAL ROBOT), Sierra Pettengill (HALL OF THE EVENING STAR), Ben Kalina (PLAN C FOR CIVILIZATION), Jayisha Patel (POWER GIRLS) and Jon Bougher (THAILAND’S FLOATING CITIES). AJ+ commissioned three of these projects, awarding up to $10,000 each to Schlesinger’s EMOTIONAL ROBOT, Pettengill’s HALL OF THE EVENING STAR and Patel’s POWER GIRLS.

Cocktail Reception at Dowling Walsh Gallery

Last but not least, CIFF announced the winner of their expanded Points North Fellowship, with a day of training at Maine Media Workshop prior to the festival and the Pitch event to a panel of funders, broadcasters, on Saturday, September 27 at the Camden Opera House. 2014 documentary works-in-progress included Tony Gerber’s AMERICAN WARLORD, Adam Mazo and Ben Pender-Cudlip’s DAWNLAND, Amy Benson, Ramyata Limbu and Scott Squire’s THE GIRL WHO KNEW TOO MUCH, Pacho Velez’s THE REAGAN YEARS, Cassidy Friedman’s SOLEDAD, and Elisa Haradon and Gabriel Miller’s SWEETHEART DEAL. The 2014 Points North Pitch Award and Modulus Funishing Fund was granted to THE REAGAN YEARS, with director Pacho Velez and producer Sierra Pettengill receiving $1,000 cash prize from Documentary Educational Resources, three consultations with the Tribeca Film Institute and a post-production package from Modulus Studios worth approximately $10,000.

2014 Camden International Film Festival Films Announced!

Posted September 3, 2014

The Camden International Film Festival (CIFF) has announced its slate of feature and short films in their 10th festival taking place September 25– 28, 2014 throughout Camden, Rockport and Rockland, Maine.  CIFF will present over 60 features and short films from all across the globe and from our very own Maine, with filmmakers in attendance at nearly every screening.

Now entering its tenth year, the Camden International Film Festival presents a snapshot of the cultural landscape through the year’s best non-fiction storytelling. The festival is recognized as one of the top 12 documentary film festivals in the world, and one of the 12 best small town film festivals in the US. In addition to the festival’s expanded Points North Fellowship, a new partnership with Al Jazeera’s AJ+ to host the first AJ+ live pitch, CIFF announces the 2014 slate of films, which include Points North Pitch alum In Country and Mateo. In addition to the titles below, CIFF will screen the Cinema Eye Honors’ Nonfiction Short Film Finalists, whose titles will be announced from the festival later this month.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with this years festival program,” says Ben Fowlie, Founder and Executive Director of the Camden International Film Festival. “Over the past ten years we’ve had the opportunity to share a selection of films that highlight both the creativity and unique ways artists are using to tell stories, and the impact these stories can have on community. This year is no exception”.

2014 CAMDEN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL FEATURES:

A GOAT FOR A VOTE
Jeroen van Velzen | Netherlands | 2014

ACTRESS
Robert Greene | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER AND SUBJECT IN ATTENDANCE!

ALIVE INSIDE
Michael Rossato-Bennett | United States | 2014

APPROACHING THE ELEPHANT
Amanda Rose Wilder | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER AND SUBJECT IN ATTENDANCE!

ART AND CRAFT
Sam Cullman and Jennifer Grausman, co-directed by Mark Becker | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

BUGARACH
Sergi Cameron, Ventura Durall, Salvador Sunyer | Spain, Germany | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

DESERT HAZE
Sofie Benoot | Belgium, Netherlands | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

E-TEAM
Katy Chevigny and Ross Kauffman | United States | 2013
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE! 

FLORENCE, ARIZONA – Sneak Preview!
Andrea B. Scott | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

THE GREAT INVISIBLE
Margaret Brown | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

HAPPINESS
Thomas Balmes | France, Finland | 2013

HAPPY VALLEY
Amir Bar-Lev | United States | 2014

IN COUNTRY
Mike Attie, Meghan O’Hara | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE! POINTS NORTH PITCH ALUM! 

THE IRON MINISTRY
J.P. Sniadecki | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

GUIDELINES (LA MARCHE A SUIVRE)
Jean-François Caissy | Canada | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

THE LAST SEASON
Sara Dosa | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

MATEO
Aaron I. Naar | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE! POINTS NORTH PITCH ALUM!

MR. DYNAMITE: THE RISE OF JAMES BROWN
Alex Gibney | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

NE ME QUITTE PAS
Sabine Lubbe Bakker, Niels van Koevorden | Netherlands, Belgium | 2013

THE NOTORIOUS MR. BOUT
Tony Gerber, Maxim Pozdorovkin | Russia, United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

THE OVERNIGHTERS
Jesse Moss | United States | 2014

POINT AND SHOOT
Marshall Curry | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

RICH HILL
Tracy Droz Tragos, Andrew Droz Palermo | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

THE SEARCH FOR GENERAL TSO
Ian Cheney | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

SEEDS OF TIME
Sandy McLeod | United States | 2014

SILENCED
James Spione | United States | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

SONG FROM THE FOREST
Michael Obert | Germany | 2014

TOMORROW WE DISAPPEAR
Jimmy Goldblum, Adam Weber | United States | 2014

TWO RAGING GRANNIES
Havard Bustnes | Norway, Denmark, Italy | 2014

VIRUNGA
Orlando von Einsiedel | United Kingdom | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

WAITING FOR AUGUST
Teodora Ana Mihae | Belgium | 2014
FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE!

WALKING UNDER WATER
Eliza Kubarska | United Kingdom, Germany, Poland | 2014

WILD HOME
Jack Schurman, Robert Schurman | United States | 2014
FILMMAKERS IN ATTENDANCE! Dirigo Doc! Made in Maine!

 

2014 CAMDEN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL SHORT FILMS

3 ACRES IN DETROIT
Nora Mandray | United States, France | 2013

ADRIFT
Frederik Jan Depickere | Belgium, Columbia | 2013

THE ANIMATED LIFE OF A.R. WALLACE
Flora Lichtman, Sharon Shattuck | United States | 2013

BRIDGE TENDER
Hunter Snyder | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Made in Maine!

CATHEDRALS (KATHEDRALEN)
Konrad Kästner | Germany | 2013

CHANGING HANDS: Rocky Ridge Organic Dairy
Bridget Besaw | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Screens as part of GROWING LOCAL

CROOKED CANDY
Andrew Rodgers | United States | 2014

THE DOGWALKER (HUNDVAKTEN)
Caroline Ingvarsson | Sweden | 2014

FOUNDRY NIGHT SHIFT
Steven Bognar | United States | 2014

HACKED CIRCUIT
Deborah Stratman | United States | 2014

THE HERMIT
Lena Freidrich | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Made in Maine!

HOME
Thomas Gleeson | New Zealand | 2012

KATAH-DIN
Taylor Dunne | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Made in Maine!

THE LAST DAYS OF PETER BERGMANN
Ciaran Cassidy | Ireland | 2014

LAST REEL
Steven Bognar | United States | 2014

THE LION’S MOUTH OPENS
Lucy Walker | United States | 2014

THE MURDER BALLAD OF JAMES JONES
Jesse Kreitzer | United States | 2014

NO EXIT
David Redmon, Ashley Sabin | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Made in Maine!

NOTES ON BLINDNESS
Peter Middleton, James Spinney | United Kingdom, United States, Australia | 2014

ONE YEAR LEASE
Brian Bolster | United States | 2014

PARTY LINE
Alan Magee | United States | 2014

PHOEBE’S BIRTHDAY CHEESEBURGER
Will Lennon | United States | 2013

PIG NOT PORK: Farmers Gate Market
Bridget Besaw | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Screens as part of GROWING LOCAL

PINK HELMET POSSE
Benjamin Mullinkosson, Kristelle Laroche | United States | 2014

SANTA CRUZ DEL ISLOTE
Luke Lorentzen | United States | 2014

SEEDING A DREAM: Sheepscot General Store & Uncas Farm
Bridget Besaw | United States | 2014
Dirigo Short! Screens as part of GROWING LOCAL

TWENTY EIGHT FEET: LIFE ON A LITTLE WOODEN BOAT
Kevin A. Fraser | United States | 2013

UNLOCKING THE TRUTH
Luke Meyer | United States | 2013

VEGAS
Lukasz Konopa | United Kingdom | 2013

 

 

Call for Submissions for the first AJ+ Pitch at the Camden International Film Festival

Posted August 12, 2014

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The Camden International Film Festival (CIFF) announces their partnership with AJ+, the new digital platform from Al Jazeera Media Network that commissions original, innovative and engaging short documentaries from journalists and filmmakers around the world.  AJ+ in association with the Camden International Film Festival will select five independent filmmakers who will be given the chance to pitch their short documentary concepts and works-in-progress to a panel of filmmakers and industry leaders at this year’s CIFF. Based on the pitch, AJ+ will commission up to five projects at up to $10,000 per project. Submissions for this opportunity are now open through August 25, 2014 at midnight PST.

All selected filmmakers will be provided with an All Access pass to CIFF (September 25-28, 2014) and a stipend to support both travel and accommodations during the festival. This opportunity is for stories driven by strong characters, compelling voices, and unique insights into events and issues that may be local but resonate with our connected and globally-minded audience. Pieces must be current, but not necessarily driven by current affairs.

In the channel’s first-ever live pitch session, they are calling for original short film ideas and projects that look to the future. Apocalyptic images have haunted our timelines all summer. Now they are asking filmmakers for short documentary films that engage with one of the following questions:

  • What are the emergent cultural, political or technological trends that are shaping our lives in surprising ways?
  • How are individuals or communities responding to crises that threaten their future in unexpected ways?
  • What does ‘sustainability’ look like?

 

Pitches will be accepted from filmmakers of all nationalities. They may be drawn from feature-length documentary projects, although concepts that work as a standalone short film are preferred. Films that have already been completed or released online are not eligible for the pitch.

Following the success of last year’s The New York Times Op Docs live pitch at CIFF, the first of its kind in North America, the festival continues to cultivate new opportunities for documentary filmmakers in both feature and short content through their Points North Documentary Forum, which runs concurrently to the festival and recently expanded with their own Points North Fellowship, whose 2014 fellows will be announced September 2.

The fee for submission is $25 and the deadline is August 25, 2014 at 12 midnight PST.

http://camdenfilmfest.org/pointsnorth

For more information about Al Jazeera’s AJ+, please visit:

http://plus.aljazeera.com/

CIFF Announces Points North Fellowship

Posted April 28, 2014

The Points North Fellowship enhances and expands upon the well-established Points North Pitch, a unique opportunity to pitch documentary works-in-progress to an international delegation of funders, commissioning editors and producers before a live audience. Submissions are open until July 18, 2014. Filmmakers, send us your works-in-progress!

For more information, visit www.camdenfilmfest.org/pointsnorth

CIFF Aging in Maine Screening Tour

Posted February 24, 2014

Aging-In-Maine-Front

 

Camden International Film Festival launches the Aging in Maine Screening Tour, a new statewide program that brings screenings of award-winning documentary films and discussions to more than ten different communities between March and July 2014.

The tour is the second part of CIFF’s inaugural Engagement Summit: Aging in Maine, a unique program that connects Maine-based nonprofit leaders with documentary films and filmmakers to develop community-based social action campaigns designed to engage communities in a thoughtful inter-generational dialogue around the issues of aging and dementia-related illness.

During the 2013 festival, fourteen organizations from across Maine convened in Camden to identify a wide range of needs facing aging communities and the organizations that support them, as well as workshops on how to utilize the power of nonfiction storytelling to advance their advocacy goals. Participating nonprofits included the Aging Consultation Services, Aroostook Agency on Aging, the Bingham Program, Dirigo-Maine Geriatrics Society, Eastern Area Agency on Aging, Maine Gerontological Society, MaineHealth, Methodist Conference Home, Office of Aging and Disability Services, Pen Bay Healthcare, Seniors Plus, Spectrum Generations and the University of Maine Center on Aging. “The summit and screenings are proving to be a superb way in which to mobilize Maine’s aging services providers and help them share with the larger public poignant stories of both the joys and challenges associated with growing older,” said Len Kaye, Director of the University of Maine Center on Aging. “The beneficiaries will be Maine’s citizens who will leave the film screenings better informed of the issues, places to turn for help, and the emerging opportunities associated with Maine’s ranking as the oldest state in the nation.”

Films screened as part of the Aging in Maine tour will include CIFF’s 2013 Harrell Award for Best Documentary, The Genius of Marian, a selection of short films called Golden Shorts and other aging films including Age of Champions, First Cousin Once Removed and Last Dreams, which also received a Special Jury mention at last year’s festival.

AGING IN MAINE Screening Tour Schedule:

Tuesday, March 18th at 7pm - University of Maine at Orono

Screening: Golden Shorts
Q&A with Len Kaye, Director of the UMaine Center on Aging

Wednesday, March 19th at 7pm – Strand Theatre, Rockland
Screening: First Cousin Once Removed

Saturday, March 22nd at 3:30pm – Colonial Theatre, Belfast
Screening: The Genius of Marian

Sunday, March 23- Lincoln Theater, Damariscotta
Screenings: The Genius of Marian at 1:00pm / Golden Shorts at 3pm

Wednesday, April 2 at 6pm – Portland Museum of Art, Portland. FREE

Screening: The Genius of Marian

Q&A with filmmaker Banker White, Alzheimer’s Association Program Director, Bill Kirkpatrick, Dr. Laurel Coleman, Dr. Heidi Weirman and Kate Cole Falloon, a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor.
In partnership with the Portland Museum of Art, MaineHealth, Maine Medical Center’s Division of Geriatrics, Alzheimer’s Association – Maine Chapter, and Southern Maine Agency on Aging 

Sunday, April 6
– Frontier Cafe, Brunswick
Screening: The Genius of Marian at 2pm and Last Dreams at 5pm
In partnership with The Alzheimer’s Association – Maine Chapter. Q&A with Program Director, Bill Kirkpatrick.

Sunday, April 27 at 2:00pm
– The Grand, Ellsworth
In collaboration with Friends in Action Ellsworth
Screening: The Genius of Marian

 

Saturday May 10th at 1:30pm – Spectrum Generations Muskie Community Center, Waterville. FREE
In collaboration with Spectrum Generations
Screening: The Age of Champions

 

Tuesday, May 13th – Cross Insurance Center, Bangor. FREE
In collaboration with the Eastern Area Agency on Aging Annual Senior Expo

 

Wednesday, May 14th at 2pm – Maine Veteran Home’s Machias.
In collaboration with the Psychology & Community Studies Program at University of Maine Machias and Wild Blueberry Land, Columbia Falls, ME.
Screening: The Genius Of Marian

 

Saturday, May 17th at 9am – Strand Cinema, Skowhegan
In collaboration with the Redington-Fairview General Hospital and Somerset Senior Strong Committee.
Screening: The Genius Of Marian

 

Tuesday, May 20th at 10:15am – Northern Maine Community College, Presque Isle.
In collaboration with the Aroostook Area Agency on Aging “Aging Well, Living Well EXPO”
Screening: The Genius Of Marian

Saturday, May 24th at 6pm – Centre Theatre, Dover-Foxcroft.
In collaboration with the Piscataquis Regional YMCA and the Charlotte White Center’s Feel Good Piscataquis!, a community initiative to help people in Piscataquis County live healthier lives. 
Screening: Golden Shorts

Thursday, June 12th at 7pm
– Harborside Marina, Bar Harbor. FREE
Screening: The Genius Of Marian
In collaboration with the 24th Annual Maine Geriatrics Conference

 

Saturday, June 28th at 5:30pm – Cary Medical Center, Caribou
Screening: The Genius Of Marian

Thursday, July 10th at 8:30pm
– Camden Public Library Amphitheatre. FREE
Screening: TBD

Films screened during the Aging in Maine screening tour include:

THE GENIUS OF MARIAN
Directed by Banker White and Anna Fitch
Synopsis: The Genius of Marian is a visually rich, emotionally complex story about one family’s struggle to come to terms with the changes Alzheimer’s disease brings. After Pam White is diagnosed at age 61 with early onset Alzheimer’s, life begins to change, slowly but irrevocably, for Pam and everyone around her. Pam’s husband grapples with his changing role from primary partner to primary caregiver. Her adult children find ways to show their love and support while mourning the slow loss of their mother.

As she loses the ability to write, Pam’s eldest son, Banker, begins to record their conversations, allowing her to share memories of childhood and of her own mother, the renowned painter Marian Williams Steele who died of Alzheimer’s in 2001. The Genius of Marian paints a powerful contemporary portrait of the impact of Alzheimer’s disease, the power of art and the meaning of family.

 

LAST DREAMS
Directed by Estephan Wagner
Synopsis: LAST DREAMS follows three women during their last month of life. Through them we get an intimate and honest picture of what it means to be close to death – stories of solitude, reconciliation and love during the process of saying goodbye. We follow their relationship with doctors, nurses, priests and family members. We are present when they discuss their most intimate subjects, when they express their love for their family members and as they go through a fundamental and final transformation.

 Check out the trailer for LAST DREAMS here.

FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED
Directed by Alan Berliner
Synopsis: Synopsis: A distinguished poet, translator, critic and teacher, Edwin Honig wrote dozens of books and poems that attracted critical praise around the world. His seminal translations awakened English-speaking readers to previously overlooked literary giants, resulting in honorary knighthoods from the king of Spain and the president of Portugal.

In FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED, acclaimed documentary filmmaker Alan Berliner’s paints a deeply personal portrait of his “good friend, cousin and mentor” as Honig journeys through the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease and memory loss. A stark reminder of the profound role memory plays in everyone’s life, this moving essay on the fragility of being human.

 

AGE OF CHAMPIONS
Directed by Christopher Rufo
Synopsis: Age of Champions is the award-winning PBS documentary following five competitors who sprint, leap, and swim for gold at the National Senior Olympics. You’ll meet a 100-year-old tennis champion, 86-year-old pole vaulter, and rough-and-tumble basketball grandmothers as they triumph over the limitations of age.

The Washington Post called the film “infectiously inspiring” and theater audiences across the country have fallen in love with its light-hearted take on growing older. It’s a powerful story to share with the whole family and get inspired to be healthier, happier, and more active.

 

OLD PEOPLE DRIVING
Directed by Shaleece Haas
Synopsis: Old People Driving chronicles the adventures of 96-year-old Milton and 99-year-old Herbert as they confront the end of their driving years. The film follows Herbert as he takes his last drive, hands over his keys and comes to terms with the reality of life without a car. Milton, meanwhile, continues to drive every day and vows to do so until he feels he’s no longer safe on the road. Through their stories, and a review of the latest traffic safety research, the film dispels some of the myths about elderly drivers without shying away from the fact that many will outlive their ability to drive safely.

 

The Aging in Maine screening tour is sponsored by  Camden National Bank. Many screenings will be FREE and Open to the Public. Additional screenings will be announced as the tour continues.

Camden International Film Festival’s Engagement Summit: Aging in Maine program is presented in partnership with Working Films and the University of Maine Center on Aging, with generous support from the Fledgling Fund, the Pen Bay Healthcare Foundation, Camden National Bank, the Bingham Program and the Portland Museum of Art.

         
  

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September 25—28, 2014
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