MIAMI, February 14, 2007 –The 2007 Miami International Film Festival (MIFF), presented by Miami Dade College (MDC), will open its doors to some of the most respected and influential names in global cinema as they come to participate in MIFF’s upcoming program, full of special events and a special Career Achievement Tribute to Luc Besson.
This year, the Miami International Film Festival honors world-renowned filmmaker Luc Besson with its fifth annual Career Achievement Tribute. With critically praised films such as Nikita and Léon, as well cult favorites such as The Fifth Element, Luc Besson’s career has become synonymous with contemporary French cinema. Following the Career Achievement Tribute, MIFF is proud to present the East coast premiere of Besson’s recent film Angel-A.
The Miami International Film Festival has also just announced the jurors who will judge the various competition categories in this year’s festival. “The Miami International Film Festival would be incomplete without the experts and enthusiasts who comprise our jury,” says Festival Director Nicole Guillemet. “They are committed to the films as if these were their own projects, displaying a passion for international cinema rivaled only by this year’s tributee, Luc Besson.” Three $25,000 prizes sponsored by the John S. and James L. Night Foundation will be awarded in each of the competition categories: Dramatic Features-World Cinema Competition, Dramatic Features-Ibero-American Cinema Competition and Documentary Features-World & Ibero American Cinema Competition.
Dramatic Features – World Cinema Competition
Raoul Peck (Writer, Director, and Producer, L’Affaire Villemin, Lumumba)
Christine Vachon (Co-Founder, Killer Films/Producer, Boys Don’t Cry, Far from Heaven, Hedwig & the Angry Inch)
Bernardo Zupnik (Producer / President, Distribution Company of Argentina S. A.)
Dramatic Features –Ibero- American Cinema Competition
Howard Feinstein (Professor / Writer / Programmer, Sarajevo Film Festival)
Bertha Navarro (Producer, Pan’s Labyrinth, I Murder Seriously, Loco Fever)
Jim Stark (Producer, Coffee and Cigarettes / Co-writer, Factotum)
Documentary Features –World & Ibero American Competition
Cynthia Lopez (Vice President, American Documentary P.O.V.)
Mike Maggiore (Programmer, Film Forum)
Rob Williams (Acquisitions Executive, Red Envelope Entertainment)
FIPRESCI (International Film Critics Association)
Sheila Johnston (Journalist, The Independent)
Peter Keough (Film Editor, Boston Phoenix)
Josefina Sartora (Critic, Cineismo)
Among the many special programs at the Miami International Film Festival that will connect guests with the various jurors and filmmakers, the Big Picture program will continue to highlight films that tackle world issues and the human struggle for life and dignity. Award Winning British director Nick Broomfield’s Ghosts, based on the shocking true story of a group of Chinese illegal immigrants who were drowned while picking cockles in a British seaside town, will serve as the centerpiece of this year’s topic, Modern Slavery. The program includes thought-provoking panel discussions; engaging filmmakers, international experts and the audience.
Nick Broomfield studied law at Cardiff University and film at the National Film and Television School (NFTS). At NFTS, he met partner Joan Churchill, with whom he has collaborated on several films, including Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer. Among Broomfield’s other films are Kurt & Courtney and Biggie and Tupac. He is the recipient of the, Sundance first prize, British Academy Award, Prix Italia, Hague Peace Prize and Amnesty International Doen Award.
To complement its commitment to tackling social issues, MIFF is featuring winning, student-produced short films on “Being Homeless” meant to educate the community and engage youth to show compassion toward people who are homeless. The contest was created by the Miami Coalition for the Homeless in conjunction with Miami-Dade County Public Schools.
In addition, more than 300 filmmakers, directors, producers, distributors, and industry executives will attend MIFF again this year to actively participate in screenings, panels and sales meetings. Among those attending the 2007 Miami International Film Festival are Viggo Mortensen, Luc Besson, Rie Rasmussen, Tammy Blanchard, Eduardo Veràstegui, Michael Barker, Paul Verhoeven, Carice van Houten, Steven Raphael, Quim Gutiérrez, Daniel Sánchez,Veronica Sanchez, Selton Mello, Mark Fergus, Luis Bellagamba, Antonio Cuadri, Catalina Sandino, Bruce Weber, Triston Ulloa, Carles Bosch, Issaka Sawadogo, Francis Veber, Gonzalo Justiniano, Loris Omedes, Andre Ristum, Veronica Cura, Megan Hammitt, Ugo Sorrentino, Elba McAllister, Ira Deutchman, Mike Plante, Frances Negron, Benjamin O'Dell, Steve Solot, Mike Goodrige, Rene Rodriguez, Daniel Katz, Nancy Abraham, Ted Hope, Julie Goldman, Caroline Libresco, Ryan Werner, Nancy Gerstman, Jason Resnick, and Matt Brodlie.
Screenings will take place at six venues throughout the city: The Gusman Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami, Regal South Beach Cinema in South Beach, Tower Theater in Little Havana, Sunrise Intracoastal Cinema in North Miami Beach, The Bill Cosford Cinema at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, and The Colony Theatre in Miami Beach
The Miami International Film Festival gratefully acknowledges the support it receives from its sponsors, including its Producing Sponsors, City of Miami, Miami-Dade County, American Airlines, The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald. Premiere Sponsors include America Filmworks, Comcast, del Rivero Messianu DDB, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, Regal Cinemas, University of Miami and Venevision International. Principal Sponsors are 2150 Editorial, ABC Management Services and The Historic Alfred I. DuPont Building, AméricaEconomía, CBS4 and MY33, Clear Channel Radio, Diario Las Americas, Eastman Kodak Entertainment Imaging, Entertainment Partners, FedEx Express, Florida Power & Light, Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, Heineken, Hertz Radio, Jaman, Lava Studio, Magna-Tech Electronic Company, Miami Parking Authority and Gusman Center for the Performing Arts, Movado, Premiere Magazine, Selecta Magazine, Shore Club, Sunrise Intracoastal Cinema, Telefutura 69, Terra Group, Univision 23, Univision Radio, Vanidades, Wachovia and Warren Henry Automobiles. The Festival’s Supporting Sponsors include Astoria Communications, Blue Capital Management, BMI, Books & Books, Carlton Fields, Catalina Hotel and Beach Club, Cineworks Digital Studios, Inc., Consulado de México en Miami, Continental New Art Digital, Cultural Services Department of the French Embassy in the U.S., Digital Devoid, Dorchester Hotel, El Argentino, FilmFinders, The Garner Foundation, Inc., Hotel Victor ICAA, Lion Video, Manhattan Transfer, Miami Downtown Development Authority, Miami New Times, Midtown Video, Personal Music, Pinnacle Housing, Raleigh Hotel, River Oyster Bar, SAGIndie, SocialMiami.com, TownHouse Hotel, Universal Casting, Univision Online, View Premium, LLC, 88.9 FM Serious Jazz (WDNA), WLRN Public Radio and Television, and WPBT TV-Channel 2.
The 2007 Miami International Film Festival is sponsored in part with the support of the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts; the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners the Miami-Dade Mayor’s Office of Film and Entertainment; the City of Miami Mayor’s Office of Film and Cultural Affairs; the Governor’s Office of Film and Entertainment; Miami-Dade Transit; the City of Miami Beach, the Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority; the City of Miami Beach Cultural Arts Program; Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the Miami Coalition for the Homeless, the Alvah H. and Wyline P. Chapman Foundation, Inc., and Florida International University – Latin American and Caribbean Center.
The Miami International Film Festival to be held March 2-11, 2007, brings the best of world cinema to South Florida and plays a leading role in maintaining and further enriching its film culture. MIFF uses the unique geographical and cultural position of Miami to be a premiere venue for the exhibition of international and US films, with a special focus on Ibero-American cinema.
· More than 67,000 people attended the Festival in 2006
· In addition, more than 300 filmmakers, producers, talent, and industry representatives from around the world attended the 2006 Festival to introduce their work to Miami audiences and industry professionals
· The 2006 Festival held more than 250 screenings, including features, shorts, Outreach and press
During the last four years, the Festival has presented films from more than 60 countries, including 200 East Coast, U.S. and World Premieres, scores of Oscar winners and nominees, and many international prizewinners. Tickets go on sale to Members Feb. 2, 2007 and to the General Public Feb. 16, 2007.
Miami Dade College has a long and rich history of involvement in the cultural arts, providing South Florida with a vast array of artistic and literary offerings including The Miami Book Fair International, the Cultura del Lobo performing arts series, The Cuban Cinema Series, and the School of Entertainment and Design Technology in addition to the Miami International Film Festival. MDC is the largest institution of higher education in the country and is nationally recognized for many of its academic and cultural programs. With an enrollment of more than 163,000 students, MDC is the nation’s top producer of associate of arts and associate of science degrees. The college’s eight campuses and outreach centers offer more than 200 distinct degree programs including baccalaureate degrees in education and public safety management.
For more information contact the Miami International Film Festival at (305) 237-3456 or visit www.miamifilmfestival.com. For more information on Miami Dade College, please visit www.mdc.edu.