2018 FIN Atlantic International Film Festival

A Sweet Release...

Posted: August 15, 2018

(Halifax, NS) – FIN Atlantic International Film Festival announced its full program today, featuring over 125 film screenings and a full slate of special events, to be presented over eight days in Halifax, September 13-20.

"Bingeing has become the term for spending countless hours watching television but truth be told - film festivals have always been the ‘binge’”, said Wayne Carter, Executive Director. “The best way to experience the magic of a film festival is specifically to buy a pass and spend an extended amount of time seeing films, documentaries and shorts that will surprise, enlighten and entertain you. So this is our invitation this year - binge on us! We are even going to make it easy with daily passes that are an excuse to skip work and all your responsibilities of the day and get lost in ideas and excitement. And this year we have excitement!”

The Opening Night Gala returns to the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium at the Dalhousie Arts Centre on Thursday, September 13 at 7 p.m. SPLINTERS, directed by celebrated Halifax filmmaker Thom Fitzgerald, has been selected as the Festival’s Opening Night Gala presentation. SPLINTERS tells the story of Belle as she returns to her parents’ apple orchard in Nova Scotia for her father’s funeral. Having caused her mother, Nancy, considerable consternation when she came out as a lesbian in her teens, Belle is now desperate to keep her secret two-year relationship with a man secret.

Humourous, honest and authentic, SPLINTERS features rising star Sofia Banzhaf (CLOSET MONSTER) as Belle – a young woman whose sexual identity is fluid – along with the celebrated Shelley Thompson (Trailer Park Boys) as Belle’s exacting and traditionalist mother Nancy. Based on the stage play by Lee-Anne Poole, the film features an entirely Atlantic Canadian cast, with Nova Scotia’s gorgeous Annapolis Valley providing the backdrop and creating a character all its own. 

 SPLINTERS' director Thom Fitzgerald has a long and storied history with FIN Atlantic International Film Festival. His 1997 film, THE HANGING GARDEN, won the Audience Award, the Best Canadian Film Award and Best Direction Award. His film THE WILD DOGS (2002) won Best Canadian Film and Best Direction, THE EVENT (2003) and 3 NEEDLES (2005) both won Best Direction prizes and his most recent film, CLOUDBURST (2011), won the Audience Award.
Following the Opening Night Gala film presentation is the FIN Atlantic International Film Festival’s Opening Night Celebration. With a reputation as one of Halifax’s ‘most anticipated parties of the year’, this red carpet event will take place at the The Discovery Centre on Thursday, September 13, starting at 9 p.m.

In addition to the Festival’s Opening and Closing Nights, this year’s Gala Presentations lineup will once again feature both 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. screenings. Featured in the 6:30 p.m. Gala Presentations are Atlantic Canadian productions: AN AUDIENCE OF CHAIRS from Newfoundland director Deanne FoleyHOPELESS ROMANTIC from a team of six female directors from both Newfoundland and Nova Scotia (Martine Blue, Stephanie Clattenburg, Deanne Foley, Latonia Hartery, Ruth Lawrence and Megan Wennberg); and LOVE, SCOTT (Laura Marie Wayne) which follows Scott Jones in the years after an assault left him paralyzed from the waist down. The 6:30 p.m. Gala Presentations program also includes the French comedy LE GRAND BAIN (SINK OR SWIM) by Gilles Lellouche and the moving and inspirational SHARKWATER EXTINCTION, which is late filmmaker and conservationist Rob Stewart’s last documentary.

Also included in the 6:30 p.m. Gala Presentations is the Reel East Coast Shorts Gala. Presented by CBC, the Reel East Coast Shorts Gala features nine short films on Sunday, September 16. The evening will feature works by an impressive cast of Atlantic Canadian filmmakers, including: John Pollack and Nance Ackerman (I AM TODAY); Tori Fleming (GREENESS); Steve Cochrane (SOME SATURDAYS); Arianna Martinez (LETTERS FROM THE DEAD); Harmony Wagner (OH KANATA); Shelley Thompson (DUCK DUCK GOOSE); Taylor Olson (GRACE); Tamara M Segura Gonzalez (C SHARP AND D SUSPENDED); and Jackie Torrens (BERNIE LANGILLE WANTS TO KNOW... WHO KILLED BERNIE LANGILLE?).

Featured in the 9:30 p.m. Gala Presentations is G. Patrick Condon’s INCREDIBLE VIOLENCE, a genre-bending debut feature from Newfoundland’s G. Patrick Condon. In addition, some of the year’s most anticipated films of the year will be presented, including LIFE ITSELF (Dan Fogelman)THE SISTERS BROTHERS (Jacques Audiard), and WHAT THEY HAD (Elizabeth Chomko).

Featuring the newest and most anticipated films of the year, moviegoers will want to be first in line to see the 2018 Special Presentations lineup, sponsored by Cineplex Events. Savour the sights and sounds of soon to be award-winning films: ANTHROPOCENE, third in the series also featuring Manufactured Landscapes and Watermark by Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky; ASSASINATION NATION, a thriller set in Salem, Massachusetts from Sam Levinson (Another Happy Day)CAPERNAUM, the Cannes Jury Prize winner from Nadine Labaki (Where Do We Go Now?)COLD WAR, the Cannes Best Director winner by Pawel Pawlikowski (Ida)COLETTE, directed by Wash Westmoreland (Still Alice) and starring Keira Knightley

THE GRIZZLIES, the debut feature of Miranda de Pencier based on an inspiring true story of a small Inuit community; HALLOWEEN PARTY, the latest from Halifax’s Jay Dahl (There Are Monsters) that will have you on the edge of your seat; THE HUMMINGBIRD PROJECT, from director Kim Nguyen (Two Lovers and a Bear) and featuring Jesse Eisenberg, Alexander Skarsgård and Salma HayekMATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A., an intimate portrait of the Sri Lankan artist and musician who continues to shatter conventions; MOUTHPIECE, from filmmaker Patricia Rozema (Into the Forest) who adapts the award-winning two-woman play by Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava; SHOPLIFTERS, the Cannes Palme d’Or winning film from director Hirokazu Kore-eda (Like Father, Like Son)THROUGH BLACK SPRUCE, from director Don McKellar (The Grand Seduction) and based on the Giller Award-winning novel; UNDER THE SILVER LAKE, from director David Robert Mitchell (It Follows) and starring Andrew Garfield (Breathe); and WOMAN AT WAR, an Icelandic tale of a one-woman-war against industry from director Benedikt Erlingsson.

In response to audience demand, this year’s festival is launching a new program and daring our audiences to see some of the most “on the edge” films of 2018. EXTREME features three cinema experiences from some of the most boundary-pushing directors currently working. Panos Cosmatos’ MANDY starring Nicolas Cage, cinema’s most notorious provocateur Lars von Trier’s THE HOUSE THAT JACK BUILT starring Matt Dillon, and stay tuned for an exciting third title announcement in the coming days.

FIN Atlantic International Film Festival is also proud to announce the presentation of three films in celebration of the Documentary Organization of Canada’s 35th Anniversary. Screenings of the following films will be presented during the Festival: THE LITTLE BLACK SCHOOL HOUSE (Sylvia Hamilton, 2007)THE MAN OF A THOUSAND SONGS (William D. MacGillivray, 2010); and MEN OF THE DEEPS (John Walker, 2003).

Atlantic Canadian feature films will also be screened as part of the Cinema 902 program. From Winter Light Productions, Cinema 902 is an initiative that shines a spotlight on innovative work being made by Atlantic Canadian filmmakers. The three latest Cinema 902 productions will be featured: ALIENS WITH KNIVES (Struan Sutherland, Nicole Steeves); CREEPY CRAWLING (Chelsea Comeau); and THE LAST DIVIDE (Dillon Garland). 

Rounding out this year’s complete program is a top-tier line up of features and documentaries from Canada and around the world. Viewers will delight in a wide range of films such as: THREE FACES (Jafar Panahi), 20th CIRCUIT SUSPECTS (Hesam Eslami), ANGELIQUE'S ISLE (Michelle Derosier), BAD REPUTATION (Kevin Kerslake), DEAD WOMEN WALKING (Hagar Ben-Asher), CARMINE STREET GUITARS (Ron Mann), DOGMAN (Matteo Garrone), LA CHANA (Lucija Stojevic), AN ELEPHANT SITTING STILL (Hu Bo), FINDING THE SECRET PATH (Justin Stephenson, Mike Downie), FIRECRACKERS (Jasmin Mozaffari), THE FRUIT MACHINE (Sarah Fodey), GIANT LITTLE ONES (Keith Behrman), LOVE, GILDA (Lisa Dapolito), LETO (Kirill Serebrennikov), MARIA BY CALLAS (Tom Volf), MIRAI (Mamoru Hosoda), THE NEW ROMANTIC (Carly Stone), NOTHING LIKE A DAME (Roger Michell), TRANSIT (Christian Petzold), RODENTS OF UNUSUAL SIZE (Chris Metzler, Jeff Springer, Quinn Costello), THE WILD PEAR TREE (Nuri Bilge Ceylan), THE WOMAN WHO LOVED GIRAFFES (Alison Reid), and YOU ARE HERE: A COME FROM AWAY STORY (Moze Mossanen).

Returning to the festival once again this year is the Restored! Program. Three international films that have recently undergone restoration efforts will be featured in 2018: BELLE DE JOUR (Luis Buñuel); GRAVE OF THE FIREFLIES rave of the Fireflies (Isao Takahata); and SOLARIS (Andrei Tarkovsky).

This year’s festival will once again include a series of Relaxed Screenings. In association with Autism Nova Scotia, these screenings will include adjusted lighting and sound for the audience, along with a designated quiet area that provides a welcoming atmosphere to the disability community.

Also included in this year’s lineup are the Short Film Programs, featuring both Canadian and international selections.

The 2018 Atlantic International Film Festival will host several one-of-a-kind special events and parties to celebrate the movies, the people and the city of Halifax. Returning is Festival Music House Atlantic, presented by Radio Starmaker Fund. This year’s line up includes Halifax’s own Ria Mae, one of Atlantic Canada’s hottest bands Port Cities and Cape Breton Celtic sensation COIG. The Festival will host the 38th Atlantic International Film Festival Awards Reception, honoring the amazing talents of Atlantic Canadian film industry professionals, presented in partnership with the Linda Joy Media Arts Society.

FIN Partners, a unique event focusing on film, television, and digital fiction projects from across Canada and around the world, will take place over September 13-15 as part of FIN Atlantic International Film Festival. Each year, top Canadian and international industry players (including producers, investors, sales agents, funding agencies, broadcasters and distributors) are selected to attend. Recognized as one of the world’s pre-eminent co-production markets and celebrating its 21st year, FIN Partners 2018 is shining the spotlight brightly on the United Kingdom, Ireland, and the USA. Offering close to 1,000 pre-scheduled 1-2-1 meetings, co-production focused round table sessions, cutting edge panels, visionary keynote speakers, screenings and receptions as well as the popular Nova Scotia Lobster Dinner By the Sea, FIN Partners delivers the best in Maritime hospitality and partnership opportunities.

This year, FIN Partners will welcome delegates from nearly 20 countries from as far as Ukraine, South Africa, Croatia, as well as delegations from Scotland and Ireland. Selected producers will attend with more than 80 creative and commercial projects in development, with the goal of moving their projects one step closer to production.

The 2018 FIN Partners program will include two panel discussions throughout the two-day market. Friday’s panel will look at the financing and distribution strategies tailored for projects that don’t fit the traditional mold. On Saturday, the panel will explore opportunities for producers to find their audiences, boost engagement, and to ultimately monetize and grow their indie fiction. The panel discussions are stacked with some of the entertainment industry’s most influential leaders who are equipped with the knowledge and experience necessary to lead spirited discussions which will pique our curiosity, infusing new energy into the conversations we have on the ground at FIN Partners.

Financed with the support of Presenting Partner, Telefilm Canada; Signature Partner, Bell Media & CTV; Platinum Partner: Nova Scotia Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage and Gold Partners: Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Canada Media Fund, Canadian Media Production Association and Super Channel, FIN Partners is a convergence of talent and innovation producing tangible results. For more information, visit: finpartners.ca

Tickets for screenings and special events along with ticket packages, group tickets and passes are on sale TODAY, August 15, at 1 p.m.

Tickets will be available online at finfestival.ca. Tickets will also be available at the Festival Box Office in Park Lane Mall (5657 Spring Garden Road) beginning Tuesday, September 5. For hours of operation, visit: finfestival.ca.

Tickets for the Opening Night Film go on sale TODAY, Wednesday, Aug. 15 at 1 p.m. and will be available through the Dalhousie Arts Centre Box Office (6101 University Ave.), by phone at 1-800-874-1669 and online at dal.ca/dept/arts-centre or finfestival.ca. Tickets for the Opening Night Party will be available at finfestival.ca or at the Festival Box Office.

"The key ingredient of everything we do here at FIN is always the incredible support we receive from our sponsors and audience and when you mix that with top-drawer efforts from our staff and volunteers you have the mixture for magic," added Carter. "We pride ourselves on producing events that are open and accessible to everyone.” 

About FIN Atlantic International Film Festival

FIN Atlantic International Film Festival is an eight-day celebration of film and media from around the world. It’s a festival that turns Halifax into an international mecca for the arts, abuzz with movie-lovers and filmmakers alike. Discover a variety of local, national and international films that explore all corners of life, culture, entertainment and the global human experience. A champion of local filmmakers, all of our film selections are chosen with our audience in mind and our special events are designed to bring our community together.

A not-for-profit organization, the Festival began as a tiny, grassroots operation in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 1981, relocating to Halifax the following year. Three decades later, FIN Atlantic International Film Festival has evolved into one of Canada’s premier film festivals. Whether for unabashed film-lovers, curious onlookers, or industry folks, the Festival offers an ocean of opportunities to engage through the celebration of film.

FIN Atlantic International Film Festival is now a year-round celebration, growing beyond our cornerstone event in September to include: FIN Kids, FIN Outdoor, FIN Campus, FIN Makers and FIN Partners.

Follow FIN Atlantic International Film Festival on:
Our website: finfestival.ca
Facebook: atlanticinternationalfilmfestival #FINAIFF #BingeOnUs
Twitter: @thefilmfest #FINAIFF #BingeOnUs 
Instagram: @thefilmfest #FINAIFF #BingeOnUs
YouTube: youtube.com

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