The series trailer for Leimert Park is simply a delight! MACRO is the creative team behind ‘Fences’, ‘Mudbound’ and the digital series ‘Gente-fied’ and Homegrown Pictures who brought us ‘Dear White People’ and ‘Hustle and Flow’ I love that it’s telling the story of not only the friendship of black women but our love lives with a nice dose of humor. As an LA transplant watching the gentrification of predominated black and latino neighborhood from ‘afar’ in West Hollywood (experiencing its own explosion of expensive housing) this web series truly speaks to me. The new web series stars Ashley Blaine Featherson, Ashli Haynes, Asia’h Epperson, Wade Allain-Marcus, Frantz Latten, Ikenna Okoye and Brit Manor and is an official selection at The Sundance Festival 2018. Mel Jones is doing double duty as a first time director and creator of LEIMERT PARK with Kady Kamakatè and Davita Scarlett. The series is Executive Produced by Stephanie Allain, Charles King and Aaliyah Williams.
“I wanted to see images of black women being the objects of desire and seeking pleasure with no shame,” states director and co-creator Jones. “Leimert Park reflects the black women I know and love and I hope it inspires women everywhere to practice self-love and self-care and embrace their sexuality.” “I’ve been mentored by and partnered with Stephanie Allain at Homegrown Pictures for seven years and she encouraged me to create this show which was my authentic story to tell. Aaliyah Williams, who runs digital at MACRO, heard this story before it was even a script and championed the series and advocated for me as a first time director. I’m forever grateful to both of these incredibly supportive women. It will be a dream come true sharing “Leimert Park” with sisters throughout the nation, audiences at Sundance, and with all women.
LEIMERT PARK: Things get complicated when three best friends share a house in South LA’s Leimert Park. Despite being married, beats-maker Mickey hasn’t had an orgasm with her hubby in three months, Bridget mistakes sex for love while assisting a handsome visiting artist in residence, and Kendra secretly shoots videos of numerous sizzling sexual encounters, hoping this will finally break her into the art world.
I adore romcoms but always felt the true perfect match is when the woman gets to know herself and more importantly loves herself! I am so looking forward to moving to Leimert Park! So make sure you find this new series and share with friends.
Posted in culture, Dating Tagged with: Aaliyah Williams, Ashley Blaine Featherson, Ashli Haynes, Asia’h Epperson, BFF, Black Girl Magic, Brit Manor, Charles King, Comedy, Davita Scarlett, Dear White People, Fences, Frantz Latten, Gente-fied, Gentrification, HomegrownPictures, Hustle & Flow, Ikenna Okoye, Kady Kamakatè, Leimert Park, LeimertPark, leimertseries, Los Angeles, Mel Jones, Mudbound, Our Stories, Representation Matters, staymacro, Stephanie Allain, Sundance, Wade Allain-Marcus, Webseries, Yoni Eggs, YoniEggs
Looks like IFP Film Week is moving on up to the upper east side <snort> Brooklyn I mean!
IFP Film week is moving to Brooklyn after 37 years in Manhattan to be closer the the Made in NY Media Center by IFP headquarters. The film week will be in DUMBO to continue supporting the storytelling community from around the world. IFP will continue bing the only international co-production market for film, TV web-based and VR projects in the United States with over 150 projects from over 22 countries curated and pressed as scripts and works in progress each year.
The move to the new Brooklyn space will enable the event to have more public offerings and allow the event to focus on series, digital and VR content to satisfy the many platforms that have proliferated over the years as technology rushes to entertain.
“The film industry has changed,” says IFP Executive Director Joana Vicente, “Serialized stories are on the rise and film and television are taking cues from one another. New platforms for storytelling are bursting into the media landscape every year. IFP Film Week is a bold guide in this new frontier, harnessing the energy and ideas of an ever-evolving community that has grown beyond the simple concept of filmmaking.”
IFP moved to Brooklyn— home of creatives and technologists — in 2009 and founded the Made in NY Media Center in partnership with MOME and EDC in 2013. This year, they will expand public offerings, paying increased attention to the fast growing areas of web-based, episodic and interactive content. More than 30+ curated narrative and non-fiction web series, episodes, interactive and app based serialized works will be introduced to both the industry and general public at this year’s Film Week.
In the last year, IFP has started supporting series creators and web-based programming with its new Screen Forward Labs for serialized content, honored USA Network’s “Mr. Robot” and “Shugs & Fats” at this year’s IFP Gotham Awards, and given a $25,000 Calvin Klein “Live The Dream” grant to web series “195 Lewis.” Alumni projects have gone on to screen at the most recent Sundance, Rotterdam and Tribeca Film Festivals, as well as screening online to the masses. “Namaste, Bitches,” for example, has already gone onto premiere online to audiences in the six-figures within a three-month period.
With that in mind, this year’s programming will include a week of screenings, talks, meet ups, exhibitions, and events centered on cutting edge creative content for the big screen, the small screen, the Internet and beyond.
This will include:
- An expanded offering of projects selected in the IFP Project Forum, the premiere meetings driven forum connecting artists to industry. Featuring new work from both emerging and established artists in narrative and documentary feature films, the No Borders (narrative) and Spotlight on Documentary (non-fiction) programs will continue to do so but also accept serialized content for television, web and app-based platforms.
- Screen Forward Conference, a four-day program of how great projects can connect with audiences and stand out in a crowded marketplace.
- Public presentations of sneak previews of upcoming feature films, documentaries, web-based and television series for both industry and general audiences
- Both at the Made in NY Media Center and throughout DUMBO will be daily showcases of episodic and VR/AR content
- Expansion of the annual IFP Lab Showcases with the mission of introducing audiences to new discoveries in narrative and documentary feature film, as well as web series, television pilots, VR and app based series.
“IFP Film Week is the place where filmmakers, artists, and storytellers cross paths with people who help move their projects forward.” Says IFP Head of Programming Amy Dotson. “Creators get funding, advice, and opportunities. Industry insiders get to discover new talent. The public gets to screen cutting-edge work first. And Brooklyn is where it’s at.”
The 2016 IFP Independent Film Week will take place September 17 – 22, 2016. More information can be found at: http://www.ifp.org/programs/independent-film-week/ and applications are now live for the Project Forum.
Founded in 1979,The Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) champions the future of storytelling by connecting artists with essential resources at all stages from development to distribution. The organization fosters a vibrant and sustainable independent storytelling community through its year-round programs, which include IFP Film Week, IFP Labs, Filmmaker Magazine, the IFP Gotham Awards and the Made in NY Media Center by IFP, a new incubator space developed with the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment and EDC. IFP represents an ever-growing network of 10,000+ storytellers around the world and plays a key role in supporting over 350 narrative and documentary features, as well as new series, each year.
Posted in Business, festival, Film Tagged with: Brooklyn, content creators, Creators, DUMBO, EDC, Filmmaker Magazine, Filmmaking, IFFM, IFP, IFP Film Week, IFP Lab Showcase, IFP Labs, Independent Film Market, Independent Filmmaker Project, Made in NY Media Center, Manhattan, Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, New York City, No Borders, Rotterdam, Screen Forward Conference, Spotlight on Documentary, storytellers, Sundance, the IFP Gotham Awards, Tribeca Film Festivals, VR Content
The 2016 Indian Film Festival has a great selection of movies too man to see over just a few days so I have a couple on my must see list. If only I could be in two places at one time! One of the ones that jumped out at me was Beeba Boys. My eyes alighted on these handsome men in colorful suits and I was intrigued. I must admit I thought the film was going to be a Bollywood comedy full of cute guys and dancing but instead this movie is gangsta like REAL gangsters based on violent Sikh’s that lived in Vancouver they were part of a ruthless gang! This looks like the modern Scarface I didn’t know I wanted to see! Than Island City with the two men looking totally beat down spoke to me since life is hard and sometimes you just want to give up! This woman director has made a film with three stories that speak to the human condition and it looks like it should be interesting to watch each story. I’m very excited that they have Brahman Naman at the festival since I heard about the big splash the film made at Sundance and it looks hilarious! This sex crazed comedy brings to mind all of the movies I saw growing up (16 candles, American Pie) the always had me rolling in my seat. Aligarh rounds out my must see list as I see the hard path so many of my LGBT brothers and sisters face as they fight for equality in India and yes in America too! Equality for all no matter sexual orientation!
With driving bhangra beats, high fashion, profound treachery, shocking violence, guns and cocaine, internationally acclaimed director and IFFLA alum Deepa Mehta brings her bold, uncompromising vision to the world of organized crime. Loosely based on second and third generation Indo-Canadian gangs that came into notoriety in the 1990s, BEEBA BOYS follows the rich tradition of the gangster film but in a community and culture never before seen on screen.
Deepa Mehta is one of Canada’s most important film artists; her work is regularly celebrated on an international scale. Best known for her Elemental Trilogy (EARTH, FIRE, WATER), she received an Oscar nomination for WATER which premiered at IFFLA in 2006. Other well-known films include BOLLYWOOD/HOLLYWOOD, HEAVEN ON EARTH and the MIDNIGHT’S CHILDREN. Her work is daring, fearless, and provocative. This spirit is behind her latest film, BEEBA BOYS.
The sprawling city of Mumbai plays host to three stories in Ruchika Oberoi’s masterful feature debut. First there is an office worker who toils in his soulless corporation’s cubicle farm, and is specially selected by the company to have a day of “fun.” In the second tale, a wife and mother unexpectedly finds relief from her tyrannical husband’s control, and decides to treat her family to a new television set, where they find joy and solace in a popular soap. Finally, a woman resigned to a loveless future in an arranged marriage finds new hope when she receives love letters from an unknown source.
Oberoi brilliantly plays with genre as her film effortlessly shifts from absurdist comedy to escapist fantasy to realist drama (there’s even a tinge of science fiction). Though each character’s journey is markedly different, their goals are similar: to push back against the demands forced on them without any regard for their personal desires. The solutions each of them finds are not always happy, but they punctuate rich and complicated journeys that are sure to stay in the mind long after the credits roll. Oberoi’s unique vision won the Best Young Director Award of the Venice Days section at the 2015 Venice Film Festival.
Ruchika Oberoi is an alumnus of the Film and Television Institute of India. ISLAND CITY is her debut feature film. The film’s script participated in the NFDC Screenwriters’ Lab 2012, which was held in Venice alongside the Venice Film Festival, and at the Film Bazaar in Goa.
This year’s Sundance Film Festival heard non-stop buzz about director Q’s latest brazen cinematic provocation: a 1980s-set coming-of-age sex comedy. There’s much more on this film’s mind than young lust and sexual hijinks…but it does have plenty of that to spare!
When Bangalore University’s misfit quiz team wins a trip to the National Championships in Calcutta, the moment seems perfect to translate their new prestige into sexual conquest. Though the four young men – led by the titular Naman – possess book smarts and a formidable verbal wit, their skills in relating to the opposite sex are disastrous. Making matters worse, Naman has a preoccupation with the expectations of his caste, which throws a wrench into his every budding relationship. As the pointed one-liners fly and the carnal embarrassments pile up, Q’s direction pulsates with an unpredictable energy. His characters’ innermost desires manifest in vibrant animated sequences and unexpected musical interludes. It all adds up to an indelible portrait of young male libido that looks like a classic of the genre. What AMERICAN PIE did for homemade desserts, this film does for ceiling fans. And fish tanks. And refrigerators. And…
As any person paying attention to world news knows, the subject of gay rights in India has provoked heated debate in recent years. In 2009, the Delhi High Court struck down Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalized homosexual acts, only to see the law reinstated four years later by a Supreme Court decision. As protests over that unjust ruling rage on, Hansal Mehta’s timely new film arrives as a heartfelt but firm demand for the right to love.
Mehta and screenwriter Apurva Asrani find inspiration in the true story of Dr. Shrinivas Ramchandra Siras, a linguistics professor at Aligarh Muslim University who faced suspension and possible termination due to his sexual orientation. Though many supporters rally to Siras’ cause, including a dedicated journalist played with great panache by Rajkummar Rao, Mehta and lead actor Manoj Bajpayee paint a portrait of the doctor as a gentle man more concerned with the beauty life and love have to offer rather than tooth-and-nail fighting over rights that no courts should be able to deny. Siras’ story is a heartbreaking reminder of the human cost of injustice, and inspires one of the most vital films to come out of India in recent years.
Indian filmmaker, writer, actor and producer Hansal Mehta began his career in television with the series KHANA KHAZANA and later moved onto films such as JAYATE (1999) and DIL PE MAT LE YAAR (2000). He is best known for SHAHID, which won the 2013 National Film Award for Best Direction. His latest titles include CITY LIGHTS, and this year’s ALIGARH.
Posted in Los Angeles Tagged with: Aligarh, Arclight, BeeBa Boys, Brahman Naman, Comedy, Gangs, Hollywood, IFFLA, IFFLA2016, Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, Island City, LGBT, Mumbai, Scarface, Sundance, Vancouver
I am very excited about the upcoming the 14th Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) on April 6-10, 2016 at the Arclight Hollywood. I was not able to attend last year but was mesmerized by the closing night celebration. I walked past a stage with a band playing and people laughing and talking and I thought ‘Hey, what’s that and I want to go!’ I don’t plan to miss this year with 26 films showing the diversity of Indian cinema. I know most people have seen at least one Bollywood movie and think that’s all India’s films have to offer but it’s not all song and dance (I must admit I LOVE singing and dancing)! This year IFFLA has a selection of films that showcases groundbreaking Indian cinema.
ANGRY INDIAN GODDESSES When a successful but frustrated photographer, a wannabe Bollywood actress, a high-flying workaholic executive and mother, a struggling musician, a prudish princess and a housekeeper with a dark secret all gather together in a quaint Portuguese villa in Goa on the eve of the host’s wedding, no subject is off limits for this spirited group of women. Love, sex, careers, marriage, friendship, sexism and the benefits of a super hot next-door neighbor are all up for debate. But it is ultimately tragedy and the power of unity in the face of institutional misogyny that binds these women together forever in this joyful yet powerful dramedy from 2014 IFFLA Audience Award winning director Pan Nalin (FAITH CONNECTIONS).
They’ve curated 26 films that show the direction of Indian cinema that shows the laughter, tears and drama from the country. IFFLA will be welcoming films that have been in film festivals around the world including Cannes, Berlin, and Sundance.
Highlights include the festival opener, ANGRY INDIAN GODDESSES, which screened in the Special Presentations section of the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, and takes a refreshingly uncensored look at the issues facing women in contemporary Indian society while celebrating the uniqueness, talents, and flaws of each of its female characters. Festival closer, Anu Menon’s WAITING, is a poignant and stirring story that is as witty as it is heartrending. Veteran actor Naseeruddin Shah and the incomparable Kalki Koechlin reunite for the first time since they starred together in THAT GIRL IN YELLOW BOOTS, giving beautiful performances as two strangers who develop a deep connection in the hospital while their spouses lie in comas.
WAITING Young, outspoken, and impassioned Tara Deshpande receives tragic news: Her husband of only six weeks has slipped into a coma after a car accident. Despondent and desperate for answers in a situation where she has little control, Tara finds an unlikely friend in Shiv, a gentle and hopeful man who has become a regular in the hospital where his wife has been in a coma for over 8 months. They can relate to each other deeply, both isolated from other support and waiting for an optimistic outcome. However, as each reaches an important crossroads in caring for their spouses, Tara and Shiv realize that their fear of change is holding them back from making necessary decisions.
Posted in festival, Film, Los Angeles Tagged with: Angry Indian Goddesses, Anu Menon, Arclight, Bollywood, Cannes, Comedy, Coming of Age, contemporary indian society, drama, film, Hollywood, IFFLA, India, Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, international film festival, Kalki Koechlin, Los Angeles, Movies, Musical, Naseeruddin Shah, Sundance, Sunset, That girl in the yellow boots, Theater, Toronto International Film Festival, Waiting