NewFest In Partnership with Outfest and the Film Society of Lincoln Center announce lineup for the 25th Anniversary of NewFest, the New York LGBT Film Festival
September 6th-11th, 2013
Opening Night: Stacie Passon's Concussion
Closing Night: Chris Mason Johnson's Test
James Franco, Travis Mathews, Rose Troche, Stacie Passon, Malgoska Szumowska among those set to show their latest work at Film Society of Lincoln Center
New York, NY (August 13, 2013) — The 25th annual NewFest, New York's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Film Festival will run from Friday, September 6th through Wednesday, September 11th, with a lineup of 15 narrative features, 4 documentaries, 31 shorts and other special events. For the third time in NewFest's history, the festival is in partnership with the Film Society of Lincoln Center and screenings and panels will take place at Manhattan's film mecca, the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater and the JCC in Manhattan.
Dennis Lim, Film Society of Lincoln Center's Director of Cinematheque Programming, said, “The Film Society is delighted to welcome back NewFest and to continue our collaboration with Outfest. LGBT cinema has come a long way since this storied festival's first edition, but as this year's program suggests, it is no less vital today, and perhaps more diverse than ever.”
“There's a lot to celebrate this year,” says Steve Mendelsohn, Co-Chair of NewFest’s Board of Directors. “It's our 25th anniversary, and the recent Supreme Court victory over DOMA has everybody excited. The world has changed since 1987 and we are proud that NewFest has played a role in bringing so many important stories to audiences for a quarter of a century.”
LA-based LGBT media arts organization Outfest programmed and will help run this year's event. Outfest and NewFest will form an official national organization next year.
Kicking off the festival is the New York premiere of Stacie Passon's debut feature Concussion, produced by Rose Troche and starring Robin Weigert, Maggie Siff and Johnathan Tchaikovsky. A Sundance Film Festival favorite, Concussion explores a suburban lesbian's erotic reawakening from happy housewife to high-class call girl. Closing the event will be the New York Premiere of Chris Mason Johnson’s acclaimed Test, winner of the Grand Jury Prize For Outstanding U.S. Narrative and Outstanding Screenwriting at 2013 Outfest Los Angeles. Set in the gay Mecca of San Francisco in the 80’s, Test portrays this uniquely exciting and harrowing era as young Frankie (real-life dancer Scott Marlowe) navigates his role in a modern dance company and his evolving relationship with fellow dancer Todd (the hunky Matthew Risch).
“This year’s line-up represents the maturity of LGBT storytelling with films like Concussion and Pit Stop that depict sophisticated relationships in unique settings,” said Kirsten Schaffer, Executive Director of Outfest. “as well as a strong International slate and a handful of films that push boundaries in form and content.”
James Franco is involved in two productions. He co-directed Interior. Leather Bar. with Travis Mathews, in which the two reimagine the 40 minutes of censored footage from the controversial 1980 S&M thriller Cruising, directed by William Friedkin. Franco also produced Kink, a documentary directed by Christina Voros about five San Francisco-based BDSM workers who are employed at the kink.com studios.
A handpicked selection of some of the best international LGBT films will also be shown, including the 2013 Teddy Award winner for Best Feature In the Name Of…, directed by Malgoska Szumowska and the US premiere of You and the Night, the libidinous 2013 Cannes debut from M83 bandmate Yann Gonzalez, who Variety proclaimed “may be the next Almodovar or Ozon”.
NewFest is sponsored by HBO.
Tickets on sale now to members of NewFest and the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Tickets will go on sale to the General Public on Wednesday, August 21 at Noon. Tickets are $13; $8 for members of NewFest and the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Special prices apply to the Opening and Closing Night screenings. Visit www.FilmLinc.com for complete information.
Complete Lineup (in alphabetical order)
Screenings will take place at The Film Society of Lincoln Center's Walter Reade Theater. 165 W.65th St, New York, NY 10023 (between Broadway and Amsterdam) and the JCC in Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave. at 76th Street, New York, NY 10023 (between Broadway and Amsterdam)
Dir/Scr: Stacie Passon, 2012, USA, 97 min.
From executive producer Rose Troche and writer-director Stacie Passon, this funny, sexy and compelling mix of Belle de Jour and The Stepford Wives follows suburban lesbian housewife Abby (Robin Weigert, “Deadwood”, The Sessions) through an erotic epiphany after suffering a head injury. In the immediate aftermath, she questions whether her picture-perfect family life is enough and decides to revive her career and renovate a loft in New York City. But the space quickly transforms itself into a convenient location for an unexpected sexual reawakening. CONCUSSION had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year.
Looking back as moving forward, this selection of recent works and telling discoveries assembles a queer menagerie of experimentalists and pop icons, like Pet Shop Boys, Lil’ Kim and Kristen (“call me KStew”) Stewart. From flickering Super 8 and scratched 16mm to grainy VHS, HD video and plasma monitors, the cutting edge never felt so queerly expanded.
Dir: Stephan Lacant, Scr: Stephan Lacant, Karsten Dahlem, 2013, Germany, subtitled, 100 min.
In his gripping and erotic feature debut, German director Stephan Lacant chronicles the pleasures and pitfalls of a tumultuous love affair between police officer Marc (Hanno Koffler, Summer Storm) and his training partner, Kay. At first Marc brushes off his attraction to his colleague as a fluke, but his feelings become evident the more time he spends away from his pregnant girlfriend Bettina, inside motel rooms and in remote corners of the forest with Kay. Free Fall, which had its world premiere at the 2013 Berlin International Film Festival, explores the excitement of forbidden love as well as the consequences of secrecy and repression.
Dir: Gary Entin, Scr: Edmund Entin, 2012, USA, 83 min.
Russell (Cameron Deane Stewart, Pitch Perfect) is your average closeted high school teen looking for love. Enter Kevin (Justin Deeley, “90210”), the school’s hunkiest football jock. Things get complicated when both Kevin and Russell do things they don’t want to in order to hide who they are. Russell seeks advice from the Geography Club, actually a secret GSA filled with a hilarious collection of misfits. As the closet grows harder to maintain, Russell has to decide whether or not to come out – even if it means losing Kevin. Smart, assured and stylish, with supporting performances by Ana Gasteyer (“SNL”), Alex Newell (“Glee”), Scott Bakula and Nikki Blonsky (Hairspray), the debut feature from the Entin twins represents a big (and very hot) step forward in the gay-teen comedy genre.
GETTING GO: THE GO DOC PROJECT
Dir/Scr: Cory Krueckeberg, 2013, USA, 91 min.
College boy Doc (Tanner Cohen, Were the World Mine) is obsessed with a well-known NYC go-go boy (Matthew Camp). He befriends his hunky crush with the intention of shooting a documentary about what it’s like to live in his skin. But as they grow closer, flirtation blurs the line between subject and filmmaker until a steamy night together solidifies deeper feelings. Cory Krueckeberg’s explicit directorial debut explores the thrill and danger of getting exactly what you wished for.
Q-RATING – Explicit Sexuality
HOT GUYS WITH GUNS
Dir/Scr: Doug Spearman, 2013, USA, 110 min.
Handsome, reckless Pip gets drugged and robbed at an orgy. Danny, his sexy but sensible ex-boyfriend, is an actor taking a private investigator class—he’s up for a part on a cop show. There’s still a strong sexual and emotional tension between them that builds as they investigate a series of robberies and murders at the sex parties of rich and powerful gay men. With the help of Jimmy, a seen-it-all PI, they play a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a ruthless killer, finding plenty of laughs along the way. In his debut feature, writer-director Doug Spearman, a 2009 Outfest Screenwriting Lab fellow for the Hot Guys With Guns screenplay, deftly balances action (both kinds) and witty comedy.
INTERIOR. LEATHER BAR.
Dir: Travis Mathews, James Franco, Scr: Travis Mathews, 2012, USA, 60 min.
To avoid an X rating, 40 minutes of footage was cut from the controversial 1980 gay slasher movie Cruising. In a provocative reimagining of this censored material, directors Travis Mathews (I Want Your Love) and James Franco create an explicit and steamy documentary film-within-a-film about gay sex and masculinity. As the straight lead Val prepares to assume the Al Pacino position, he is forced to confront his own sexual boundaries and discomforts, which flare as he pushes deeper into this iconic gay interior. The film had its world premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.
Q-RATING – Explicit Sexuality
IN THE NAME OF…
Dir: Malgoska Szumowska, Scr: Malgoska Szumowska, Michal Englert, 2013, Poland, subtitled, 102 min.
Father Adam is the talk of the small Polish town he’s assigned to. Handsome, strong and unfazed by a violent group of local teens, he’s idolized and occasionally hit on by local men and women alike. It’s only when the brooding and beautiful Lukasz, an orphan and accused arsonist, falls into his arms one hot summer day, that Father Adam feels the sudden pang of repressed desire. Soon his feelings of lust give way to love, setting off suspicion within the tight-knit, conservative community. Shot in glowing, golden sunlight and set within the sprawling fields and forests of Poland, Malgoska Szumowska’s sumptuous drama (2013 Teddy Award winner for Best Feature Film) teems with sensuality and tension.
Dir: Christina Voros, Scr: Christina Voros, Ian Olds, 2012, USA, 79 min.
KINK takes us into the painful but oh-so-pleasurable world of five San Francisco–based BDSM workers as they choke, spank and scream their way through just another day at the kink.com studios. Produced by James Franco and directed with frank allure by Christina Voros, the film not only humanizes the bondage and sadomasochism industry, it also uncovers a professional world in ways the uninitiated would never expect. So strap in (or strap on!) and enjoy this wild and surprisingly sweet dungeon-based feature, which had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year.
Q-RATING – Explicit Sexual Content
THE LAST MATCH
Dir: Antonio Hens, Scr: Abel González Melo, Antonio Hens, 2012, Cuba, subtitled, 94 min.
Reinier works as a callboy in order to support his wife and child, but he ends up gambling most of his money away. Sex with men is strictly business until he befriends a cute soccer player named Yosvani, who works for his girlfriend’s father, a corrupt debt collector. When Reinier’s gambling habit gets him in serious trouble, Yosvani tries to convince Reinier to run away with him. Set in the bustling streets of Cuba, The Last Match offers a visceral romance ripe with unexpected turns and dangerous temptations.
Dir/Scr: Mark Thiedeman, 2013, USA, 73 min.
For two small-town teenagers in love, this is that one last summer they will spend together before going their separate ways. Baseball star Luke knows that the intelligent Jonah will go off to college in the fall, and over the course of the next few months these boyfriends will lose themselves in nature, bicycle rides and each other while they still can. With echoes of Terrence Malick, writer-director Mark Thiedeman offers up a debut feature that balances haunting beauty with adolescent passion.
LOVE ME NOT
Dir: Gilitte Leung, Scr: Gilitte Leung, Hedy Yau, 2012, China, subtitled, 92 min.
Aggie might be in love with her roommate Dennis. They’ve been friends since primary school and have lived in the same Hong Kong flat for years. But here’s the rub: Aggie’s a lesbian and Dennis is gay. The two have never been interested in the opposite sex. But love is complicated in Gilitte Leung’s dazzling Chinese romance, especially when Dennis gets wind of how Aggie feels. Suddenly, a loving relationship doesn’t look so bad, even if Dennis’ friends think he’s losing his mind.
MOHAMMED TO MAYA
Dir: Jeff Roy; 2012, USA, 74 min.
Maya, a successful transgender Muslim woman, has not yet undergone the sexual reassignment surgery that her family has told her they will not accept. When she decides to journey to Thailand to take the final step, Maya will have to deal with both the physical effects of the surgery and her conflict over her own devout beliefs on her path to achieving the freedom to be who she truly is. Director Jeff Roy’s accomplished debut documentary follows Maya on her inspiring, uplifting and surprisingly funny journey.
THE MOST FUN I’VE EVER HAD WITH MY PANTS ON
Dir/Scr: Drew Denny, 2012, USA, 95 min.
Free-spirited young lesbian Andy (writer-director Drew Denny) and her reserved childhood friend Liv (Sarah Hagan, “Freaks and Geeks”) are traveling across the Southwest to disperse Andy’s father’s ashes. Starting out building campfires, drinking, snuggling and reminiscing about the good old days, tensions arise as the trip progresses, forcing them to examine the core of their relationship. Are they friends or something more? Denny’s autobiographical comedy about connection, the open road and, yes, how to have fun with your pants on, is a joyride of sweet twists and turns.
OUT IN THE DARK
Dir: Michael Mayer, Scr: Michael Mayer, Yael Shafrir, 2012, Israel/Palestine/USA, subtitled, 96 min
Nimr (Nicholas Jacob), a handsome Palestinian psychology student, is in the closet at home. But while in Tel Aviv taking a class he meets Roy (Michael Aloni), a dashing Israeli attorney, and quickly falls in love. But Israeli security strips Nimr of his visa, trying to blackmail him into becoming an informant, and when his brother finds out he’s gay, Nimr is thrown out of his family home. Nimr and Roy are left to fight desperately against ruthless enemies for the chance to be together.
Dir: Yen Tan; Scr: Yen Tan, David Lowery, 2013, USA, 80 min.
The modest lives of two rugged Texans intertwine in Yen Tan’s refreshingly grounded, quietly sexy Pit Stop. A 2009 Outfest Screenwriting Lab project that blossomed into a 2013 Sundance darling, Tan’s yarn moves through a blue-collar town and observes how a handsome contractor named Gabe (Bill Heck), spends time with his ex-wife Shannon (Amy Seimetz, Upstream Color) and their daughter. Across town, Ernesto (Marcus DeAnda) ignores his flagging relationship with a much younger man and sits vigil at the bedside of an ailing ex. When Ernesto and Gabe meet unexpectedly one day at a local gas station, a connection forms that has the potential to alter both of their lives for good. In his touching follow-up to CIAO, writer-director Yen Tan provides an evocative glimpse into the everyday lives of two Southern men seeking love and affection over aching solitude. As far from the beaten path as its protagonists, this dreamy feature is a different kind of love story with depth, clarity and no shortage of sexual tension. Heck and DeAnda were both awarded Grand Jury Award for Best Actor at 2013 Outfest Los Angeles.
THE RUGBY PLAYER
Dir: Scott Gracheff , 2013, USA, 90 min.
On this 12th anniversary of 9/11, we present Scott Gracheff’s documentary, which pays tribute to one of the gay heroes of that day – Mark Bingham. We know the story of Bingham’s heroism on flight United 93, and we know about the international Bingham Cup rugby tournament that honors him, but this film introduces us to the man behind the legend. Featuring extensive interviews with Bingham’s mother, friends, family and classmates, the film gives us a richer view of Bingham, from his teen metal-head period to his rambunctious college years through coming out and embracing the world with enthusiasm before his tragic demise.
Dir/Scr: Chris Mason Johnson, 2013, USA, 90 min.
This sexy, funny, poignant new film from Chris Mason Johnson (The New Twenty) won two 2013 Outfest Los Angeles Grand Jury Prizes for its portrayal of a Frankie (Scott Marlowe), a sexy young dancer in 1985 San Francisco, enjoying big city life and the erotic freedom that comes with it. But when he’s not onstage performing (in a series of stunning dance sequences) or bringing new friends up to his apartment, Frankie debates whether or not he should take the brand-new HIV test. Mixing unforgettable characters, sharp writing and dazzling choreography, this exuberant period piece calls to mind Parting Glances and other classics of queer cinema.
Dir: Marta Cunningham, 2013, USA, 83 min.
When an eighth grade boy is shot twice at point-blank range by his Valentine crush, many, including the jurors, are quick to blame the victim rather than the aggressor. With a remarkable degree of clarity, Marta Cunningham's riveting documentary investigates the roots of LGBT discrimination and bullying as well as the inherent legal flaws that keep true justice from being served.
WHO’S AFRAID OF VAGINA WOLF?
Dir: Anna Margarita Albelo, Scr: Anna Margarita Albelo, Michael Urban, 2013, USA, 83 min.
In this eccentric all-female comedy, charismatic filmmaker Anna faces a midlife crisis. She’s just turned 40, has neither job nor girlfriend, and lives in her friend’s garage. For the past few years, she’s had no goals and no idea how to get what she wants. Just when she’s about to throw in the towel, she meets the enchanting Katia (Janina Gavankar, “The L Word,” “True Blood”) who becomes her muse and sets her on a path of self-discovery, creativity and redemption. Vagina Wolf also stars Guinevere Turner (GO FISH) and Carrie Preston (“True Blood,” “The Good Wife”). Turner won Grand Jury Award for Best Actress at 2013 Outfest Los Angeles.
YOU AND THE NIGHT (LES RECONTRES D’APRE´S MINUIT)
Dir/Scr: Yann Gonzalez, 2013, France, 91 min.
A mysterious young couple and their horny transvestite maid throw an orgy and invite four strange participants: “Slut”, “Stud”, “Teen” and “Star”. As the pansexual soirée progresses, the guests’ private lives (and private parts) emerge via bawdy flashbacks and naughty John Hughes-ian monologues. If you’ve been yearning for a dark and outrageous French sex romp since Francois Ozon went respectable, or love Almodovar, Cocteau, and Araki, director Yann Gonzalez’s edgy, sensuous and surprisingly poetic Cannes debut will fulfill your every desire. Featuring an alluring score by M83 and starring Niels Schneider (Xavier Dolan's Heartbeats), Alain Fabien Delon (son of the legendary actor), and Beatrice Dalle as “The Commissioner”, this is one party you won’t want to miss!
Q-RATING – Explicit Sexuality
NewFest also features three LGBT shorts programs – two at Film Society and one at JCC – along with a showcase of queer experimental film and video:
NewFest shorts programs provide a humorous, incisive and downright sexy look into stories of queer identity, love and misadventures from all across the globe.
NewFest shorts programs provide a humorous, incisive and downright sexy look into stories of queer identity, love and misadventures from all across the globe.
NewFest shorts programs provide a humorous, incisive and downright sexy look into stories of queer Jewish identity, love and misadventures from all across the globe.
NewFest is dedicated to bringing together filmmakers and audiences to build a community that passionately supports giving visibility and voice to a wide range of representations of the LGBT experience. We are committed to nurturing emerging LGBT and allied filmmakers. We support those artists who are willing to take risks in telling the stories that fully reflect the diversity and complexity of our lives. And with our newly formed partnership with Outfest, we will become the first national LGBT media arts organization – extending our reach to an even wider audience. For more information, visit NewFest.org.
Founded by UCLA students in 1982, Outfest is the leading organization that promotes equality by creating, sharing and protecting LGBT stories on the screen. Outfest builds community by connecting diverse populations to discover, discuss and celebrate stories of LGBT lives. For over three decades, Outfest has showcased thousands of films from around the world to audiences of nearly a million, educated and mentored hundreds of emerging filmmakers and protected more than 20,000 LGBT films and videos. For more information, visit outfest.org.
About Film Society of Lincoln Center
Founded in 1969 to celebrate American and international cinema, the Film Society of Lincoln Center works to recognize established and emerging filmmakers, support important new work, and to enhance the awareness, accessibility and understanding of the moving image. Film Society produces the renowned New York Film Festival, a curated selection of the year's most significant new film work, and presents or collaborates on other annual New York City festivals including Dance on Camera, Film Comment Selects, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, LatinBeat, New Directors/New Films, NewFest, New York African Film Festival, New York Asian Film Festival, New York Jewish Film Festival, Open Roads: New Italian Cinema, Rendez-vous With French Cinema, and Spanish Cinema Now. In addition to publishing the award-winning Film Comment Magazine, Film Society recognizes an artist's unique achievement in film with the prestigious “Chaplin Award.” The Film Society's state-of-the-art Walter Reade Theater and the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, located at Lincoln Center, provide a home for year round programs and the New York City film community.
The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from Royal Bank of Canada, Jaeger-LeCoultre, American Airlines, The New York Times, Stonehenge Partners, Stella Artois, illy café, the Kobal Collection, Trump International Hotel & Tower New York, the National Endowment for the Arts and New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit www.filmlinc.com and follow @filmlinc on Twitter.
For Media specific inquiries, please contact:
John Wildman, (212) 875-5419
David Ninh, (212) 875-5423