AAFF Newsletter: March 2010

  • Full Line-Up Announced for 48th AAFF
  • Special Presentations at 48th AAFF
  • Michigan Theater
  • Independent Lens
  • Upcoming March Events

48th Ann Arbor Film Festival

The 48th Ann Arbor Film Festival, March 23 - 28th, presents 170 films from more than 20 countries over six days in downtown Ann Arbor, MI. This year's Festival includes 40 programs, more than a dozen premiere screenings, and filmmakers in attendance from around the world.

This year’s Opening Night Reception, Tuesday, March 23rd, takes place 6 - 8pm in the Grand Foyer of the historic Michigan Theater with light catering, open bar, live DJ and an electric atmosphere. The first screening of new films in competition starts at 8:15pm with the late Chick Strand's short film Angel Blue Sweet Wings, in honor of this influential artist. Other filmmakers screening work Opening Night include the U.S. premiere of Richard Kerr's de Mouvement, Vanessa Renwick's Portrait #3: House of Sound and Jack Cronin’s experimental documentary, Sleeping Bear, featuring the beauty of this famed Michigan landscape.

The AAFF is proud to host filmmakers in attendance to premiere their work, including London-based Luciano Zubillaga with Music for a Missing Film, acclaimed artist Robert Todd with Golden Hour and David Sherman with his feature documentary Wasteland Utopias. The AAFF also will welcome Matt McCormick, fresh off his U.S. premiere at SXSW, with his first feature narrative film Some Days Are Better Than Others starring James Mercer of the Shins and Carrie Brownstein of Sleater Kinney.

The Festival will world premiere new work from Peter Herwitz, now based in Ann Arbor, with a screening of his beautifully hand-painted silent film Gesturings, as part of the Friday night shorts program How the Darkness Doubled. The program also features renowned filmmaker Lewis Klahr’s cut-out animated film Wednesday Morning Two AM, which was recently awarded at the 2010 Rotterdam Film Festival. Irish-born filmmaker Duncan Campbell’s film Bernadette, a portrait of the Irish Socialist and political dissident Bernadette Devlin, is also featured in this striking and beautiful shorts program.

For full program details and advance tickets to the 48th Ann Arbor Film Festival visit our website.

Kenneth Anger, Flying Lotus, Naomi Uman, and Many More 

 The 48th Ann Arbor Film Festival will host avant-garde icon Kenneth Anger during multiple tribute screenings and a live on-stage interview Saturday, March 27th at the historic Michigan Theater. Anger will be joined by New York film critic Dennis Lim for a discussion of the filmmaker's life and work. An Evening With Kenneth Anger will bring audience members to a deeper understanding of Anger's ground-breaking, surrealist films and his major influence on 20th century cinema. One of his most well-known works, Scorpio Rising, screened at the Ann Arbor Film Festival in 1964 and will be shown as part of the Saturday evening tribute screening of newly restored 35mm prints from the UCLA archive. The 48th AAFF Kenneth Anger programs and appearance are presented with support from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

The Ann Arbor Film Festival also welcomes experimental hip-hop artist Flying Lotus to perform the world premiere of a live musical score for Harry Smith’s 1962 classic of cut-out animation, in a program titled Flying Lotus plays Heaven & Earth Magic
. Flying Lotus has been featured in The New Yorker and is currently working on a new album with Thom Yorke of the band Radiohead. Harry Smith’s Heaven and Earth Magic is a masterpiece of American avant-garde animation known for its use of cut-out techniques. Kenneth Anger referred to Smith as “the greatest living magician,” prior to his untimely death from cardiac arrest at the Chelsea hotel in 1991. Flying Lotus will perform his new score to Heaven and Earth Magic Friday, March 26th at 7pm in the Michigan Theater.

Ukrainian Time Machine features Naomi Uman's personal documentaries exploring life in a small Ukrainian village
. Formerly of Los Angeles, Uman has lived in the Ukraine since 2006 and will be in attendance at the festival. Her work has been exhibited internationally in festivals and museums including the Museum of Modern Art, Bilbao Guggenheim, Austria’s Viennale and the Sundance Film Festival.

Other special programs at the 48th AAFF include retrospective selections of the late Chick Strand presented by festival juror Irina Leimbacher, a free pubilc Penny W. Stamps artist talk and screening by
Matthias Müller, Benjamin Cook of London-based distributor LUX presenting a survey of recent artist-made films from Europe, a live "manual animation" performance by Daniel Barrow, Nicky Hamlyn presenting selections of his short experimental 16mm films, and a special presentation of work by Russian documentary filmmaker Pavel Medvedev.

For ticket information or to see the full program visit the 48th Ann Arbor Film Festival website.


A Fabulous 1920s Movie Palace and home of the AAFF

The historic Michigan Theater has been home to the Ann Arbor Film Festival for 30 years and serves as a primary reason that the Festival is cherished by so many attending filmmakers.

The beautifully restored 1,700 seat Main Auditorium hosts the renowned 1927 Barton Pipe Organ, one of the last of its kind, which is played prior to Main Auditorium screenings during the festival. Equipped with a state-of-the-art movie sound system, the Theater further enhances the audience’s festival experience. The same system is used in the Theater's more intimate Screening Room, which hosts the other half the festival’s programs. Serving as downtown Ann Arbor's brightest marquee and only art house cinema , the Michigan Theater is a vital venue for the arts and culture in Southeast Michigan , provid ing a mix of movies and live concerts 365 days of the year.

At 11:30pm to Detroit Public TV

The Ann Arbor Film Festival is proud to be working with DPTV and their series Independent Lens. Airing weekly on Detroit Public Television, the four-time Emmy Award-winning series Independent Lens is "like an independent film festival in your living room." Each episode introduces new documentaries and dramas made by independent thinkers: filmmakers who are taking creative risks, calling their own shots and finding untold stories in unexpected places. Check here for a list of upcoming films on Detroit Public Television- Channel 56.


The Ann Arbor Film Festival is proud to announce the first exhibition in collaboration with The Ann Arbor Art Center, featuring films, new-media and film-inspired works from a group of talented Michigan artists. The evening begins with a traditional art opening from 7 - 9pm, followed by music from DJ Geoff Perrin until 11pm. There's no cover and a cash bar will be open for beer and wine. Exhibiting Artists include: Heidi Kumao, Thylias Moss, Jacqueline Wood, Ted Kennedy, Michael Mosher and Gary Schwartz.  

WHEN: Friday, March 5, 2010 @ 7pm - 11pm
WHERE: Ann Arbor Art Center, 117 W. Liberty St. Ann Arbor, MI

AAFF Sneak Preview at the Chelsea Library
Curious about art-focused, independent and experimental cinema?
Please join us for a free public sneak preview of the 48th Ann Arbor Film Festival, featuring surprise short films from the upcoming festival (March 23 - 28, 2010).
WHEN: Saturday, March 6, 2010 @ 3 - 5pm

WHERE: Chelsea District Library, 221 S. Main St. Chelsea, MI

Monday Night Screening at eve
Our Last Screening Before the Festival
Eve Aronoff, owner of eve the restaurant, has kindly welcomed the AAFF into her elegant space for drinks, delicious popcorn and a screening of favorite short animated films from the one-and-only Don Hertzfeldt (featured at last year's AAFF). The evening will include a special sneak peak screening of an animated film from the 48th festival.

WHEN: Monday, Mach 8, 2010 @ 7 - 10pm
WHERE: eve, 415 N. Fifth St. Ann Arbor, MI

Public Lecture at the Ann Arbor District Library
"Bison Boys & Famous Monsters of Michigan: 1970s Super-8mm Films of Jimm Juback & Cary Loren" presented by Associate Professor Mike Mosher of Saginaw Valley State University.

WHEN: Friday, March 19, 2010 @ 7pm
WHERE: Ann Arbor District Library, 343 S. Fifth Ave. Ann Arbor, MI

Posted on March 01st, 2010