WOODSTOCK FILM FESTIVAL
APRIL NEWSLETTER

"Thank you so much for having us at the festival. It was so much fun! It was an honor to be a part of it.We had a fantastic time. All your people were so cool and the vibe of the whole festival was inclusive, unpretentious, loving and supportive! It was the best." -Kevin Tent, Crash Pad



APRIL 28

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Click Here to Purchase Tickets

Special screening of AMAZING GRACE, with live musical introduction by Simi Stone.

A co-presentation with Upstate Films.

Directed by Alan Elliott and Sydney Pollack

A special screening of AMAZING GRACE, a documentary presenting Aretha Franklin with choir at the New Bethel Baptist Church in Watts, Los Angeles in January 1972. Aretha Franklin recorded her live album “Amazing Grace” over two nights in 1972. The footage in the concert documentary of the same name shows the transcendent process.

“It doesn’t matter how much time you’ve spent with “Amazing Grace” the album. No suitable preparation exists for the experience of witnessing its recording...Everybody deserves to have the revelation it offers — and the emotional exercise. Everybody deserves to have Aretha Franklin take them to the moon.” - The New York Times

Courtesy of Neon


May 11

Join the Woodstock FIlm Festival and Actors & Writers for
FEEDING MRS. MOSKOWITZ
A Staged Screenplay Reading at Kleinert James Center for the Arts
Click Here to Get Tickets

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FEEDING MRS. MOSKOWITZ

Screenplay by Barbara Pokras and Fran Pokras Yariv, Based on the novella by Barbara Pokras

Directed by Shelley Wyant, and featuring cast from Actors & Writers, including Lori Wilner, Dannah Chaifetz, Mikhail Horowitz, Joe White, Mark St Germain, Katherine Burger, Davis Hall, Mary Gallagher, Nina Shengold and Brian Macready.

FEEDING MRS. MOSKOWITZ tells the story of the remarkable Golde Moskowitz, an elderly Russian widow living alone with her memories. In Golde’s world, “signs” are everywhere, the dead converse with the living, and dreams are real. Natalie Holtzman, a thirty-six-year-old graphic artist longing for connection, fills her world with work and her commitment-wary boyfriend, Artie. One sweltering summer morning, Golde decides to do some grocery shopping. Natalie, on her way to work, quite literally “runs into” her, and the lives of both women are forever changed. Gracefully poignant, FEEDING MRS. MOSKOWITZ explores the world of two women at different stages of their lives with deft humor and heart-warming detail.

Barbara Pokras is an Emmy award-winning film editor and a member of American Cinema Editors, Inc., Motion Picture Editors Guild and New York Women in Film and Television. She was an adjunct professor in the Cinema Department of the University of Southern California (1995-1997) and is a graduate of that university. Barbara and husband Bob Malkin of the iconic Soho gallery, ThinkBig! and ThinkBig! A Tiny House Resort, live in Upstate New York, with their rescue dogs, Noodle and O”Henry.

Fran Pokras Yariv grew up in Fairfield, Connecticut, received her B.A. in creative writing and M.A. in education at Syracuse University. She is the author of the novels Leaving, The Hallowing, Last Exit, and Safe Haven and was awarded a Writers Guild of America, East, Foundation Fellowship in screenwriting. She and her husband, Dr. Amnon Yariv, professor of applied physics and electrical engineering at Caltech, live in Pasadena, California.

We wish to acknowledge James Hardy, producer, Bob Hope Enterprises and Alhambra Pictures, who believed in the book, commissioned the screenplay and thoughtfully guided us through numerous revisions. Thank you, Jim!

Actors & Writers is a professional theater ensemble that performs old and new plays in the Hudson Valley area including Odd Fellows in Olivebridge, Maverick Concert Hall in Woodstock, Unison Arts in New Paltz, and ASK in Kingston Rondout.

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MAY 22
7th Annual Taste of Woodstock

The Woodstock Film Festival is holding the 7th Annual Taste of Woodstock on May 22nd, 2019 at 6pm. Join us and celebrate the culinary diversity and delicacies that the region has to offer.

Click here to Purchase Tickets

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Woodstock Film Festival and Hudson Valley Film Commission. The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, 501c3 organization with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music, and art-related activities that promote artists, culture, inspired learning, and diversity. The Hudson Valley Film Commission creates sustainable economic development year round by attracting and supporting film, video, and media production.

MAY 30

Handpainted poster for BAD BLACK

Handpainted poster for BAD BLACK

Join us for BAD BLACK at Upstate Films in Woodstock, on May 30 at 9:15 pm for a screening of the Wakaliwood action comedy sensation. Click Here for Tickets

Out of the Kampala’s ghetto in Uganda comes a no budget action comedy like no other.

"Welcome to Wakaliwood, Uganda: home of “DA BEST OF DA BEST MOVIES!” and the vanguards of DIY commando cinema. Under the guidance of writer/producer/director Nabwana Isaac Godfrey Geoffrey (IGG) and with producer/star Alan Ssali Hofmanis as the mild-mannered doctor, trained in the art of ass-kicking commando vengeance by a no-nonsense ghetto kid named Wesley Snipes (!), this crack crew of self-taught filmmakers and martial arts aficionados bring us these delirious action-packed stories that converge in this exuberant DIY extravaganza from the home of “da best of da best movies”: WAKALIWOOD, UGANDA!!! Despite props, computers and gear all being built from scrap parts (including a full-size Huey helicopter!) and the ludicrously cheap but infectiously endearing CG explosions/muzzle-flashes, Wakaliwood cinema’s reckless abandon manages to inspire more heart, grit and soul than a thousand Hollywood blockbusters.

Former Woodstock Film Festival’s volunteer and the film’s producer/star Alan Ssali Hofmanis will be in attendance, with costumes and paraphernalia in hand for the audience! Courtesy of AGFA (American Genre Film Archive)

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Special Event in collaboration with Radio Kingston: Diverse Voices in Film & Media.

The panel will feature a diverse group of filmmakers and artists who are engaged in telling important and marginalized stories that do not always get wide public attention, and / or shed a light onto a world not often seen on screen. 

PANELISTS:

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Lisa Cortés - Academy Award®–nominated Producer whose credits include PRECIOUS; THE WOODSMAN; and SHADOWBOXER. Her work with trailblazing companies such as Rush Artist Management, Def Jam Records, and Lee Daniels Entertainment has been distinguished by her commitment to empowering inclusive voices, and giving light to challenging visionary stories. 

Through her production company, Cortés Films she produced innovative features, documentaries and short films. Her recent film The Apollo is the opening night film of the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival and THE REMIX: HIP HOP X FASHION is premiering at Tribeca. Cortés is a Member of the Producers branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and serves on the Boards of the Film Society of Lincoln Center; ITVS; Yaddo and the Trajal Harrell Dance Company. 

Yoruba Richen - Award winning documentary filmmaker whose work has been featured on PBS, New York Times Op Doc, Frontline Digital, New York Magazine’s website -The Cut, The Atlantic and Field of Vision. Her latest film THE GREEN BOOK: GUIDE TO FREEDOM was broadcast on the Smithsonian Channel. Yoruba is director of the documentary program at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism.

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Roger Ross Williams - The first African American director to win an Academy Award, Williams directed GOD LOVES UGANDA, LIFE ANIMATED, THE APOLLO, as well as the interactive project TRAVELLING WHILE BLACK. Williams serves on the Board of Governors for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences and is chair of the diversity committee of the Documentary Branch.

MODERATOR:

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Lacey Schwartz Delgado- Award-winning producer/ writer/ director/ outreach strategist who draws on her interdisciplinary background to create compelling stories that span documentary and fiction. She is co-founder of Truth Aid, a multimedia production company that specializes in stories about telling truths that are difficult to discuss. Schwartz Delgado directed, produced and co-wrote the critically acclaimed documentary “LITTLE WHITE LIE,” and also executive produced the award-winning narrative film “DIFRET”. A native of Woodstock, NY and resident of Rhinebeck, NY, Schwartz Delgado has a BA from Georgetown University and a JD from Harvard University.

JUNE 14

Outdoor Screening Powered by Solar Energy
Co-Presentation with Oscillation Transia.

Oscillation Transia Film Festival is a non-profit traveling event, exploring the intersection of solar energy application and environmental awareness through the art of film. Oscillation Transia is screening works in outdoor and rural areas around the U.S. Films will be exploring both fictional and non-fictional themes of movement, nomadic living, adventure and the natural world. Take the family to an outdoor screening, powered by solar energy.

JULY 8 - 26

The Woodstock Film Festival Summer Youth Film Lab returns. Under the leadership of Meira Blaustein, Woodstock Film Festival Co-Founder / Executive Director, and program director Megan Sperry, the film lab will run July 8 - 26, 2019, at the Center for Creative Education in mid-town Kingston, NY.

The 2nd Annual Woodstock Film Festival Summer Youth Film Lab was made possible with support from an anonymous donor. Click HERE to sign up. Space is limited.


The Woodstock Film Festival helps to nurture and launch many award-winning filmmakers. Along with it’s year-round programming and special events, the festival continually works to expand awareness of the power of film and storytelling tools with up-and-coming filmmakers, helping them develop and produce their own innovative work. Here we are fortunate enough to highlight some of our alumni in their next big steps.

 
Meera Gandhi with Giving Back Award recipient Mark Ruffalo at the 2011 Woodstock Film Festival Maverick Award recipient. Photo: David Morris Cunningham

Meera Gandhi with Giving Back Award recipient Mark Ruffalo at the 2011 Woodstock Film Festival Maverick Award recipient. Photo: David Morris Cunningham

Advisory Board member Joe Berlinger's EXTREMELY WICKED SHOCKINGLY EVIL AND VILE, starring Zac Efron, premieres on Netflix on May 3.

Mark Ruffalo, recipient of the Giving Back Award at the 2011 Woodstock Film Festival, has returned to the Hudson Valley for the HBO mini series I KNOW THIS MUCH TO BE TRUE, also starring Melissa Leo, Kathryn Hahn and Rosie O'Donnell. The film, based on the novel, explores mental illness.

On location with I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE. Photo: Julian Rodriguez

On location with I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE. Photo: Julian Rodriguez

Director of DREAMING OF A VETTER WORLD, Bonnie Hawthorne, has a screening in Lawrence Kansas with David Vetter, Fred Kirschenmann, Kelly Kindscher, and Bonnie attending the Q&A.

Friend and festival alum, Blair Breard, has begun production on the new Netflix film THE HALF OF IT, directed by Alice Wu.

Ron Mann’s CARMINE STREET GUITARS which screened in last year’s festival opens at Film Forum and elsewhere this week. Once the center of the New York bohemia, Greenwich Village is now home to lux restaurants, and buzzer door clothing stores catering to the nouveau riche. But one shop in the heart of the Village remains resilient to the encroaching gentrification: Carmine Street Guitars. There, custom guitar maker Rick Kelly and his young apprentice Cindy Hulej, build handcrafted guitars out of reclaimed wood from old hotels, bars, churches and other local buildings. Nothing looks or sounds quite like a Rick Kelly guitar, which is the reason they are embraced by the likes of Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, Patti Smith, Jim Jarmusch, just to name a few. Featuring a cast of prominent musicians and artists, and some virtuoso performances, the film captures five days in the life of one shop in the heart of Greenwich Village that remains resilient to the all-too-quickly vanishing way of life. This film is dedicated to Jonathan Demme. For tickets and more info, visit www.carminestreetguitarsfilm.com

LITTLE WOODS played at last year’s festival and is open in theaters now. "A powerful examination of the family ties that bind, how mistakes can be forgiven when it comes to blood, and the desperate lengths family will go to better the lives of each other...A filmmaking triumph." For more information visit www.littlewoodsmovie.com

Terry Kinney, Kate Tsang, and Isil Bagdadi at 2014 WFF. Photo: Silvia Forni

Terry Kinney, Kate Tsang, and Isil Bagdadi at 2014 WFF. Photo: Silvia Forni

Kate Tsang, the 2014 winner of the Woodstock Film Festival Best Student Short Award for her film SO YOU’VE  GROWN ATTACHED, won the top award for $1-million, at this year’s AT&T Presents: Untold Stories. The program is in collaboration with Tribeca and champions inclusive and diverse filmmaking. After the committee deliberated, Tsang’s film, MARVELOUS AND THE BLACK HOLE came out on top.


 
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The 20th Annual Woodstock Film Festival is now open for film submissions. The regular deadline is May 9, and additional late deadlines to follow.

Across a range of juried competitive categories, the Woodstock Film Festival offers prizes including the Gigantic Pictures Feature Narrative Award ($5,000), Best Short Narrative ($2,000), Best Student Short Award ($1,000), the Films We Like Best Documentary Award ($1,000), the Carpe Diem Andretta Award ($1,000) and the Haskell Wexler Cinematography Award (sponsored by Panavision). Jury members comprised of distributors, producers, actors and directors present the awards in person at the Maverick Awards Gala. Annually, the festival also doles out honorary awards to some of the biggest names in the film business, including: Matthew Heineman (Cartel Land, A Private War) in 2018, presented by Alex Gibney and Molly Thompson, Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan) in 2014, presented by Natalie Portman and Jennifer Connelly, and award-winning producer David Linde (Spotlight) in 2015, presented by two-time Academy Award winning writer/director Alejandro G. Iñárritu (The Revenant, Birdman).

 
 

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Help us reach and celebrate our 20TH ANNIVERSARY milestone in 2019 and beyond by making a tax deductible donation. Your contribution will make a tremendous positive impact on the programming that we bring year-round and during the film festival. The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, 501 (C)(3) organization with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music, and art-related activities that promote artists, culture, inspired learning, and diversity.


THANK YOU NEWSLETTER ADVERTISERS!

We would like to also extend a thank you to advertisers who support our monthly newsletters including Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Deborah Medenbach, Cabinet DesignersColdwell Banker, Euphoria Estates, Laurel Ridge, Sunflower Cafe, Ulster Savings Bank, Woodstock Film Studios, and The Villa at Saugerties