Bahamas International Film Festival Opens Tomorrow
Inaugural festival opens with prestigious international premiere of Steven Soderbergh´s eagerly awaited OCEAN´S TWELVE.
Nassau, Bahamas – The Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) is thrilled to announce a prestigious international premiere for its Opening Night Gala of the first annual Festival. BIFF will kick off its inaugural event on Thursday, December 9 with Steven Soderbergh's eagerly awaited OCEAN'S TWELVE starring Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones, George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia, Bernie Mac, Don Cheadle, Peter Fonda, Casey Affleck, and Scott Caan. The Opening Gala will take place at the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort and Casino.
Secured by Festival Consulting Group, the film is a major coup for the inaugural Festival which will feature 75 films from 24 countries (see Film Section highlights below). Steven Soderbergh was discovered on the film festival circuit and his career has blossomed to great success. Executive Director, Leslie Vanderpool states “It's an honor for both the Festival and the nation to have an opportunity to present an international premiere by such a distinguished filmmaker.'
The Festival is also pleased to feature a series of Awards which will be presented at the Closing Night Gala. BIFF will present awards to the winners of the Spirit of Freedom and New Visions competitions. The Freedom Jury includes Jean Roy (former Director of the International Critics Week in Cannes); Michael Goodridge (Film Editor of Screen International; and Sydney Levine (President of Film Finders). The New Visions Jury, who will be selecting the Modern Maverick Award, will include Ted Hope (Producer); Chris Gore (author/producer); and Steven Beer (Entertainment Lawyer). Quintessential “maverick' Roger Corman will be on hand to receive an Honorary Maverick Award and will present the first Modern Maverick Award to the winner. There will be an additional prize in the New Visions category, the Torchlight Screenwriting Award, given to the writer of the best screenplay in the section. Audience Awards will also be given in the Feature and Documentary categories.
Highlights from the Film Sections
SPIRIT OF FREEDOM
20 FINGERS (20 Angosht) by Mania Akbari, IRAN
A film in several episodes exploring the issues of men and women within the confines of tradition and family in Iran.
BROTHER TO BROTHER by Rodney Evans, USA
Using the powerful legacy of the Harlem Renaissance as its inspiration, BROTHER TO BROTHER is a stirring and captivating contemporary tale about a young, gay Black artist struggling to find his place in the world.
CAMPFIRE (Medurat Hashevet) by Joseph Cedar, ISRAEL
An original perspective on settlement culture, CAMPFIRE explores the pragmatic and the personal motivations at the heart of the political movement in Israel.
HATLEY HIGH by Phil Price, CANADA
Tommy Linklater is an eighteen-year old magician. The magic he performs is often minor - re-directing croquet balls, making cards appear in closed purses - it is always genuine; he actually does the impossible.
LIVING 'TIL THE END by Amanda Goodwin, USA
Told by a psychic of his imminent death on his next birthday, Jack lives out the year as a hopeless agoraphobic, until he meets a young woman who slowly coaxes him out of his self imposed bondage.
LOVE ME IF YOU DARE (Jeux d'enfants) by Yann Samuell, FRANCE
As adults, best friends Julien and Sophie continue the odd game they started as children -- a fearless competition to outdo one another with daring and outrageous stunts. While they often act out to relieve one another's pain, their game might be a way to avoid the fact that they are truly meant for one another.
MEAN CREEK by Jacob Aaron Estes, USA
When shy Sam confesses to his protective older brother Rocky that he is getting pummeled daily by the towering school bully George, they plan the perfect payback. After having second thoughts, Sam wants to call the whole thing off, but the plot is already in motion and spinning tragically out of control.
THE STORY OF THE WEEPING CAMEL by Byambasuren Davaa, Luigi Falorni, Documentary/Narrative, GERMANY/MONGOLIA
Springtime in the Gobi Desert, South Mongolia: A family of nomadic shepherds assists the births of their camel herd. One of the camels has an excruciatingly difficult delivery but, with help from the family, out comes a rare white colt. When all hope for the colt seems to have vanished, the nomads two young boys journey through the desert, to a backwater town in search of a musician who is their only hope for saving the colt's life.
THE FUTURE OF FOOD by Deborah Koons, Documentary, USA
An in-depth investigation into the disturbing truth behind the unlabeled, patented, genetically engineered foods that have quietly filled grocery store shelves for the past decade.
HEAD IN THE CLOUDS by John Duigan, CANADA/UNITED KINGDOM
Is a sweeping romantic drama set in 1930's England, Paris, and Spain. Gilda Bessé shares her Paris apartment with an Irish schoolteacher, Guy Malyon, and Mia, a refugee from Spain. As the world drifts toward war, Gilda defiantly pursues her hedonistic lifestyle and her burgeoning career as a photographer. But Guy and Mia feel impelled to join the fight against fascism, and the three friends are separated - seemingly forever
MONDOVINO by Jonathan Nossiter, Documentary, FRANCE/USA
A film set in Bordeaux and the Napa Valley about winemaking and the business of wine, exploring the “McDonalds-ization' of the industry.
UNDERTOW by David Gordon Green, USA
The Munns, father John and sons Chris and Tim, recede to the woods of rural Georgia. Their life together is forever changed with the arrival of Uncle Deel, though the tragedy that follows forces troubled Chris to become a man.
THE AGRONOMIST by Jonathan Demme, Documentary, USA
An important film by Academy Award-winning director Jonathan Demme, profiling Haitian radio journalist and human rights activist, Jean Dominique. Includes historical footage of Haiti's vivid and tumultuous past and incorporating footage shot before his assassination on April 3, 2000.
CHATTEL HOUSE by Gladstone Yearwood, Documentary, BARBADOS
The film uses Caribbean vernacular architecture to chronicle development and change in Barbadian cultural history, in which Barbadians tell their own story using their voices and visions.
Cinema in Paradise
The inaugural Bahamas International Film Festival will craft a genuine cultural experience for its guests by showcasing the nation's many tropical charms, mixing international cinema with paradise. The Bahamas International Film Festival (December 9-12, 2004) is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing the local community and International visitors with a diverse presentation of films from around the world. In addition to offering films that might not otherwise be released theatrically in the Bahamas, BIFF will provide a unique cultural experience, educational programs, and forums for exploring the future of cinema. Founding sponsors for the 2004 Bahamas International Film Festival are the Island of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort. Airline partners include British Airways and US Airways.
Please visit www.bintlfilmfest.com for details.