A group of very lucky Russian filmmakers will have the double opportunity of impressing North American audiences and industry professionals via a unique program sponsored by CEC ArtsLink. The not-for-profit organization has partnered with the Sundance Film Festival to co-host a group of four independent Russian filmmakers in the US from January 20 to February 2. Their award-winning short films will have a North American premiere screening in New York. The filmmakers will then continue on to Park City, Utah for a program of industry networking events at the Sundance Film Festival.
The filmmakers’ US visit is part of the Open World Cultural Leaders Program, whose aim is to promote cross-cultural understanding through professional exchange. While in New York City and at Sundance, the filmmakers will attend industry events, meet with their US counterparts, and participate in a range of cultural activities.
CEC ArtsLink (www.cecartslink.org) creates constructive relationships in the arts between the United States and Eastern and Central Europe, Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus. The program, titled New Russian Voices, will screen on Thursday, January 21 at the Tribeca Cinemas, a downtown arthouse theater that is part of the Tribeca Enterprises empire and one of the venues used during the Tribeca Film Festival.
The program includes:
The Boss (2009, 20 mins, dir. Yuri Bykov) A couple of desperate burglars break into the summer house of a federal security service chief. The tables are quickly turned as they find out what it’s like to cross a man accustomed to unlimited power. Best Short Film, 2009 Kinotavr Film Festival (Sochi); Official Selection, Interfest 25th International Short Film Festival (Berlin).
Boulevard (2008, 7 mins, dir. Alisa Khmelnitskaya) A chance conversation of two women on a boulevard bench pits the romantic optimism and innocence of one against the cynicism and experience of the other, leaving them both transformed. Special Jury Prize, 2008 Beginning (“Nachalo”) Student Film Festival (St. Petersburg); Official Selection, Short Film Competition, 2008 Kinotavr Film Festival (Sochi).
Mom (2009, 21 mins, dir. Ilya Kazankov) Two Naval Academy cadets sneak out into the city to make a very important phone call, setting off a chain of comical and touching adventures. Official Selection, 2009 Vilnius Film Shorts International Festival.
The Gust of Wind (2009, 23 min, dir. Ekaterina Telegina) There are some days that, like a gust of wind, will suddenly upend your entire life – for better or worse. Special mention for excellence in cinematography, 2009 Kinotavr Film Festival (Sochi); People’s Choice Award and special jury mention, ARTkino Russian Festival of Art Films; Official Selection, Interfest 25th International Short Film Festival (Berlin) and the 2009 Russian Film Festival in London.