Rhode Island International Film Festival Turns 18

Celebrating Film, Arts and Culture in the Ocean State

On August 5, 2014, Flickers kicks-off its 18th annual Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF) in Providence, RI. Out of the 7,000-plus film festivals worldwide, RIIFF is widely recognized as a credentialed, industry-friendly launch pad for the work of exceptional emerging talent. This confluence of art and commerce brought together world-class celebrities, award-winning filmmakers, new talent and audience members in record numbers last year.

RETROSPECTIVE: a new film starring Charles Dance as a war photographer
RETROSPECTIVE: A wartime photographer takes the last photograph of his career in Palestine and later uses it to save his own life.

The 18th Annual Flickers: Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF), welcomes stellar filmmaking talents from all over the world to beautiful Providence, RI—one of America’s oldest and most beloved cities. For nearly two decades, RIIFF has embraced its visitors with the sort of warm-hearted, independent spirit that fosters long-lasting friendships, sparks exciting creative projects, and inspires guests to return again and again. It’s little wonder that the Bureau of International Information Programs at the U.S. Department of State recently selected RIIFF as one of the “Top 10 Festivals in the United States” to spur international tourism.

Last year, RIIFF welcomed more than 300 filmmakers, producers, cast, and crew to the Festival. Now it’s gearing up to be even bigger and better than ever, maintaining its reputation as the largest and most visible film festival in New England. Over 200 feature length, documentary and short films – from over 60 countries including China, Italy, Lithuania, Iran, Bosnia, Norway and South Africa, and 36 states in the US – will be screened throughout the six-day Festival period at locations throughout the state of Rhode Island. Films have been selected from a record entry base of 5,400 submissions.

GIRL POWER: Starring Jason Flemyng, Dakota Richards, Alice Lowe & Laura Patch
GIRL POWER: Starring Jason Flemyng, Dakota Richards, Alice Lowe & Laura Patch

With a slew of unique offerings—including the RI Film Forum, ScriptBiz, The Future Filmmaking Symposium, Extended Filmmaking and Animation workshops for kids, and a closing night block party —RIIFF ensures each of its participating visitors is treated to an enriching and inspiring festival experience.

WORKSHOPS AND SPECIAL PROGRAMMING:

A number of events that RIIFF will hold during the week are targeted toward helping novice and professional filmmakers improve and refine their skills. One of these events includes the annual RI Film Forum, to be held on Thursday, August 7th, in collaboration with the RI Film & Television Office and the Harrington School of Communication.

The ScriptBiz™ Screenplay Pitch Seminar returns to RIIFF this year spotlighting this year’s Grand Prize Screenplay Competition winner “Growing Things,” written by Jenna Sullivan and Quentin James, Marshfield, MA. The director of the program is former ScriptBiz winner, William Torgerson, Assistant Professor, Institute for Writing Studies, St. John’s University.

Australian filmmaker Sophia Turkiewicz uncovers the truth behind her mother's wartime escape from a Siberian gulag, leaving Sophia to confront her own capacity for forgiveness.
Australian filmmaker Sophia Turkiewicz uncovers the truth behind her mother’s wartime escape from a Siberian gulag, leaving Sophia to confront her own capacity for forgiveness.

A Providence Walking Tour will be offered to expose attendees to the beauty and potential of the Ocean State’s capital city as a significant location for film production. With the new film by the legendary Woody Allen shooting in Providence this summer, this event could become a backlot tour.

Interactive networking events will be held nightly during the span of the six-day festival including a block party in downtown Providence which last year drew over 1,200 participants. A first this year: the Festival will partner with Waterfire, AS220’s Foo Fest and Opera Providence, making the week of the Festival an unparalleled Celebration of Film, Arts and Culture.

HOMOPHONIA: Starring Albert M. Chan
HOMOPHONIA: Starring Albert M. Chan

RIIFF is one of 19 Festivals in the world that is an Academy Award qualifier in both the Short and Documentary Short categories. With vanguard programming that seeks to showcase new voices in independent filmmaking from across the globe, RIIFF serves as a platform to launch careers. Seven films that have premiered at RIIFF have won Academy Awards, and another 33 have been nominated, while many have gained distribution with the likes of HBO, Showtime, and IFC. A wide range of competitive categories offer entrants and audience members a veritable buffet of great stories, surprises, and narrative formats.

the transgender documentary: PASSING ELLENVILLE
the transgender documentary: PASSING ELLENVILLE

MORE ABOUT THE FESTIVAL

RIIFF encourages all entrants and exhibiting filmmakers to attend the Festival, and offers allaccess passes, reduced rates on area hotels, inns and B&B’s, plus the option to stay free of charge with community hosts. RIIFF grants over $50,000 worth in prizes to winning filmmakers, including software, scholarships, consulting, and production services.

RIIFF offers a variety of prestigious awards to some of the most talented artists in (and soon to be) the business. The festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award has been bestowed upon Oscar-nominated actors Seymour Cassel and Cicely Tyson, Academy Awardwinning actor Ernest Borgnine, and acclaimed actor of stage and screen, Paul Sorvino. The festival’s Crystal Image Award for Excellence, introduced to honor emerging artist, has been awarded to talents including Zach Braff, Danny Trejo, Joan Gruffudd, Michael Showalter, composer Klaus Badelt, and children’s book author Sandra Boynton.

Advance ticket sales for screenings and special events are available www.RIFilmFest.org. Advance student, group, and senior discounts are also available. To purchase tickets or obtain more information about any aspect of RIIFF, call 401 861-4445; or write RIIFF, One Avenue of the Arts, Providence, RI 02903; email: info@film-festival.org.

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