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Editor's Note

“It’s exciting – it really feels like something new is happening,” a twenty-something friend of mine, a budding writer-director, said to me this past week when the subject of Cannes came up. He didn’t go, but, for him, the picture of director Laurent Cantet standing on stage with the young non-professional cast of his Palme d’Or winning The Class said it all. With Stateside news covering the Soderbergh, the Eastwood, and the Indiana Jones premiere, he was thrilled to see the jury embracing the unpretentious and small-scale human drama of Cantet’s work over the more heavily promoted entries. Added to that he noticed the inclusion in Director’s Fortnight of Joshua Safdie’s The Pleasure of Being Robbed and, in Un Certain Regard, Antonio Campos’s After School – both features by young filmmakers who made it to the festival world’s top honor the first time out.

As I sit working on a suite of articles for the next issue musing on the question, “Is Indie Film Broken?”, it’s useful to remember that while the business models may be screwed young filmmakers are still breaking through with challenging new work. Next issue we’ll have 25 of such newcomers with our annual “25 New Faces” edition and, to temper the optimism, that aforementioned gloom-and-doom piece which I will hope will find some way of navigating through today’s depressing business environment to find a few rays of sunlight.

One more thing: if you aren’t a subscriber to Filmmaker, now might be a good time to become one. In addition to receiving our next issue – that “25 New Faces” edition – you’ll also receive (if you order now, operators are standing by) a DVD masterclass comprised of John Sayles’s speaking about making your first feature. It was filmed at last year’s IFP Filmmaker Conference, and Sayles is more than generous with the information he imparts. Visit our subscription page and sign up for one year and we’ll send the DVD to you before you receive your first issue.


Scott Macaulay

After gaining attention when it premiered at Sundance ‘06, Jody Hill's directorial debut about a wise-ass Tae Kwon Do strip mall instructor who catches his wife cheating is finally getting a theatrical run, thanks to Will Ferrell and Adam McKay, who took the film under their wing. Future star Danny McBride gives a comedic tour-de-force performance as instructor Fred Simmons who embarks on a pitiful yet hilarious downward spiral that includes hitting on his students and fighting kids to get over his pain. To get you warmed up, check out McBride's appearance on "Late Night With Conan O'Brien" as Fred Simmons.


On a completely different note, director Tom Kalin returns to feature films 16 years after making the award-winning Swoon with a true-crime story. Starring Julianne Moore, this twisted melodrama follows her character, Barbara, who marries the heir to the Bakelite plastics fortune and then falls into a twisted love affair with her son Tony (Eddie Redmayne), leading to tragedy for all involved. Lisa Y. Garibay interviewed Kalin and screenwriter Howard A. Rodman for our Spring issue.


This week on the blog, Scott Macaulay comments on the passing of Sidney Pollack (pictured left), listens to the Econ podcast about free pricing models for film and music, and posts the winners of the 61st Cannes.

To read more posts from our blog, click here.


IFP is proud to sponsor New York State's "I Love New York" Short Film Competition, which launches today. The competition invites filmmakers to produce their take on the iconic "I LOVE NY" campaign and depict what they love about the State in a 60-second short film. Filmmakers will be able to submit their short films between June 1 and July 15. The winning film will air during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, on IFC, and on JetBlue's in-flight entertainment system. Other prizes include Sony HD video equipment, New York weekend getaways and more. For more information, visit


By Nick Dawson

Stuart Gordon's Stuck is based on the shocking true story of a care assistant from a senior citizen's home who, while drunk and on Ecstasy, hits a homeless man with her car, breaking his legs – and leaving him lodged firmly in her windshield. Rather than calling the police, she returned home, left her car in the garage and regularly visited the injured man to check on his waning condition. Here, the names of principal characters – played by Mena Suvari and Stephen Rea – have been changed, but much of what is presented is true to the real-life events. Gordon and screenwriter John Strysik try to imagine the otherwise kind-hearted Brandi’s (Suvari) motives for not helping Tom (Rea), the man she hit. read more

Festival Deadlines

Urbanworld Film Festival
Submission Deadline: May 31
Festival Dates: Sept. 10-14

Austin Film Festival Screenplay Competition
Submission Deadline: June 1
Festival Dates: Oct. 16-23

San Diego Film Festival
Submission Deadline: June 2
Festival Dates: Sept. 25-28

Woodstock Film Festival
Submission Deadline: June 2 (Early)
Festival Dates: Oct. 1-5

Raindance Film Festival
Submission Deadline: June 6
Festival Dates: Oct. 1-12

AFI Fest
Submission Deadline: June 13, July 21 (Final)
Festival Dates: Oct. 30-Nov. 9

Mill Valley Film Festival
Submission Deadline: June 16
Festival Dates: Oct. 2-12

Indie Memphis Film Festival
Submission Deadline: June 16, July 15 (Final)
Festival Dates: Oct. 9-16

Find more festival deadlines here.


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