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Industry News – November 2009

3 Nov , 2009  

Written by Alexandria Lima | Posted by:

Boston College students mark anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, “Killer” film festivals all month long, LEF Foundation Moving Image Fund grants $20,000 to local filmmakers and more… A report of news & happenings in the local industry for November 2009.

This Month

Documentarians looking to discuss selections from Eyes on the Prize, a 14-hour documentary exploring the American Civil Rights movement, can do so November 9 and 16 at Images Cinema in Williamstown, Mass. Special guests Judy Richardson (film producer) and Charles Cobb, Jr. (activist) will introduce and discuss the series. Did we mention it was free?

Learn more about “The American Jewish Experience” through a course taught by four Brandeis University faculty at the Vilna Shul in Boston. The co-founder and executive director of The National Center for Jewish Film is sure to have some insight into Jewish-American film you can’t get anywhere else. Visit Hebrew College’s website to register for the class.

Fans of The Godfather and its cinematography will have the chance to question the man behind it at the The Harvard Film Archive November 20 and 21. Gordon Willis will appear in person, just days after receiving an honorary Oscar for his work. Watch his works, including Woody Allen’s Manhattan and Herbert Ross’ Pennies from Heaven, and engage Willis in conversation for a mere $12. Visit for show time information.

Boston College student filmmakers mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall with a new documentary screening on campus November 4. Writing on the Wall: Remembering the Berlin Wall will be shown at 7 p.m. at 140 Commonwealth Ave (Fulton Hall), free and open to the public. The film is part of the German Embassy’s Freedom Without Walls campaign commemorating the idea that peaceful change is possible. BC is one of 30 or so schools to be a part of the campaign. Visit for detailed information.

The film festival season keeps chugging along with the Boston Jewish Film Festival running November 4-15. Celebrate what it means to be Jewish not only in the U.S., but around the world with films based everywhere from Israel to Latin America. Like any film fest, get your share of panel discussions and visits from directors and actors by visiting the festival’s website for tickets. Screenings sellout quickly, so make sure to order online as soon as possible.

The Berkshire International Film Festival may be over and gearing up for next year’s celebration in June, but it doesn’t mean festivities tied to the festival are done. Catch a special screening of The Yes Men Fix the World at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington, Mass. Watch as the anti-corporate pranksters run amuck November 20, and then stick around for a Q&A with the directors, writers, producers and troublemakers Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno. Click here to purchase tickets.

For those of us that didn’t get enough gore after Halloween festivities, be sure to catch 2009’s Killer Film Fest November 6-8 at the Orpheum Theater in Foxboro, Mass. This festival claims to be New England’s newest horror/thriller festival and will feature five feature films, including The Sleeping Deep which took Best Horror Script at the Rhode Island International Film Festival. For a complete schedule of events and to purchase festival tickets, visit

The 11th annual EROS (Encouraging Respect of all Sexualities) Film Festival will be held November 4-8 at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn. A schedule is available at the festival’s website, as well as descriptions of each film screening.

You still have time to catch up with worldwide independent film at the Hartford International Film Festival November 5-8. The festival’s filmmaker panels are slated to cover film as an art form and making a documentary. Additional information is available at the film festival’s website.

Calling all green filmmakers: Bunker Hill Community College will be hosting an evening of film screenings, a part of the ART GONE GREEN exhibit running November 9–December 4 at the BHCC Art Gallery.

Explore New Bedford and the “artistic environment of the SouthCoast” at the AHA! (Art, History and Architecture) festival November 12 from 5 to 9 p.m. There may not be much that is film related this month, but keep an eye on this monthly program, funded in part by the Mass Cultural Council’s John and Abigail Adams Arts Program, The Island Foundation and other sponsors. If anything else, it could serve as a potential place to market your latest project or make connections with other local artists.

Held Over

Last month, the LEF Foundation Moving Image Fund granted local independent documentary filmmakers with $20,000 to put towards their projects currently in pre-production stages. “Finding development support for projects in this early stage of production is rare,” LEF Executive Director Lyda Kuth said in a press release. “We are proud that LEF makes funding at this stage a priority to help New England documentary filmmakers get their projects off the ground.” The four grantees included Kavita Pillay, a member of a Boston-area documentary group, Connect the Docs (read our profile here). Find out how to enter your own project at the foundation’s website.

The Rhode Island International Horror Film Festival wrapped up last month after screening 37 films from all across the globe. Festival organizers announced the winners of the screenplay competition, with Randi Barnes of Los Angeles, Cali taking the grand prize with his piece “Haunted House Sitter.” Proceeds from the festival were dedicated to the Patricia Neal Scholarship Fund to help college students interested in film arts.

The Camden International Film Festival announced its award-winning films last month at the fest’s closing night ceremony. The Harrell Award for Best Documentary went to Because We Were Born, which follows two boys in the poor northeast of Brazil who hang out at a service station and listen to stories from various travelers. The award for Best Newcomer to Nonfiction went to Patrick Shen for The Philosopher Kings, an interesting take on prestigious colleges and universities through the eyes of custodians. For more information on the festival and films, visit