September 29 – October 13
The popular HBO Films Directors Dialogues and On Cinema series returns to the 50th New York Film Festival. This year's On Cinema features a conversation between two contemporary filmmakers and the Directors Dialogues pair a director with a journalist as they discuss the filmmaker’s career, views on their own approach to making movies as well as the current state of the art of filmmaking.
One is a master of suspense; the other a master of human behavior in all its frequent awkwardness and occasional nobility. Both are passionate cinephiles with a mutual respect and admiration for each other's work. Now, as they bring their new films to this year's NYFF, Brian De Palma (Passion) and Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) will share the stage for this expansive dialogue about their influences, filmmaking choices, and their own personal histories of cinema.
Arguably the major figure of post-revolutionary Iranian cinema, Abbas Kiarostami began making films in the 1970s as the head of a film unit operated by a cultural institute for the intellectual advancement of young people—work that established his great affinity for working with children and nonprofessional actors. His international breakthrough came in 1987 with Where Is the Friend’s Home?, the start of a stunning trilogy set in the northern Iranian village of Koker in which each film reflects back on the previous one through the self-reflexive prism of cinema. A master of playful Pirandellian narratives and at blurring the line between reality and fiction, Kiarostami has since gone on to win the Palme d’Or at Cannes (for 1997’s Taste of Cherry, the first Iranian film so honored) and to expand his artistic horizons with acclaimed work in the fields of photography and video art. As he comes to NYFF with his latest feature, the Japan-set Like Someone in Love, Kiarostami will discuss his remarkable career in conversation with author and past NYFF selection committee member Phillip Lopate.
Collectively, Ang Lee's 12 feature films to date have earned an extraordinary 8 Academy Awards (including Best Director for Brokeback Mountain) and 27 nominations, a tally surely to be increased by his film version of the Man Booker Prize-winning novel Life of Pi, the Opening Night Gala of the 50th NYFF. Lee will join The Hollywood Reporter’s Chief Film Critic and NYFF selection committee member Todd McCarthy for this wide-ranging discussion of his remarkable career.
After giving up on his dream of becoming a drummer in a rock band, David Chase got his break in movies in 1972, by writing the screenplay for a low-budget horror flick called Grave of the Vampire. But he would have to wait 40 years before making his feature directorial debut with this year’s NYFF Centerpiece Gala, the semi-autobiographical Not Fade Away. In between, Chase amassed a long and varied resumé as a TV writer-producer (including The Rockford Files, I’ll Fly Away and Northern Exposure) before creating a little pop-culture phenomenon called The Sopranos. A maverick American storyteller, Chase will discuss his small-screen and big-screen careers in conversation with Film Society Associate Program Director and NYFF selection committee member Scott Foundas.
From his breakthrough early features Used Cars and I Wanna Hold Your Hand through the blockbuster Back to the Future trilogy, the groundbreaking Who Framed Roger Rabbit and the Oscar-winning Forrest Gump, Robert Zemeckis has spent four decades setting a gold standard for Hollywood filmmaking excellence with a body of work as notable for its unforgettable characters as for its breathtaking technological innovations. On the occasion of his latest film, Flight, selected as this year’s Closing Night NYFF Gala, we are pleased to welcome Zemeckis for this career-spanning conversation moderated by Film Society Program Director and NYFF Selection Committee Chair Richard Peña.