Alexandria Film Festival Announces Lineup for 9th Annual Festival

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MercyStreetPosterwSawbone

Festival Welcomes PBS’ MERCY STREET
Cast Members, International and Local Filmmakers,
And Wide Variety of Short and Feature Length Films on November 5-8, 2015.

The Alexandria Film Festival announced its 62 featured films for the ninth annual festival, to be held November 5-8, 2015 at AMC Hoffman 22 Theatre and Beatley Central Library in Alexandria, Virginia. The festival opens Thursday, November 5, 2015 with the Alexandria premiere of MERCY STREET, PBS’s new civil war drama historically based in Alexandria, Virginia. The festival will host a Q&A with MERCY STREET stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Mary Phinney), Hannah James (Emma Green), Tara Summers (Anne Hastings), and executive producers David W. Zucker and Lisa Wolfinger. Local Alexandria producer and Alexandria Film Festival award winning filmmaker Joe Cantwell will moderate a Q&A following the screening.

Details on the festival after the jump…

Festival highlights include a holiday movie showcase on Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. at AMC Hoffman Theatre with a special advanced screening of the soon-to-be Christmas hit LOVE THE COOPERS, starring Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Ed Helms, Diane Keaton, Jake Lacy, Anthony Mackie, Amanda Seyfried, June Squibb, Marisa Tomei and Olivia Wilde. The showcase will begin with short film MERRY XMAS, starring Dick Van Dyke and Valerie Harper. MERRY XMAS Filmmaker Adam Rackoff will engage audiences with a Q&A following the screening.

This year’s festival also includes a multitude of political documentaries, including a work-in-progress screening of political talk radio documentary THE BRAINWASHING OF MY DAD on Saturday, November 7 at 7:00 PM at AMC Hoffman Theatre. Filmmaker Jen Senko and producer Adam Rakoff will be available for an audience Q&A following the screening. The festival will host the premiere of political advertising documentary I APPROVE THIS MESSAGE on Saturday, November 7 as part of a film showcase happening at 4:00 p.m. at AMC Hoffman Theatre. Local D.C. filmmaker Jesse Strauss will greet audiences for a Q&A following the screening. A DAY’S WORK examines the safety of the temporary staffing industry at 12:00 PM on Friday, November 6 at Beatley Central Library. YEMENIETTES follows three women from Yemen trying to break the barriers of their traditional society as a part of the International Film Showcase at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 7 at AMC Hoffman Theatre.

16 international films will grace the screen this year, including films from Sweden, China, the United Kingdom, Aruba, Australia, Lithuania, Lebanon, Venezuela, Yemen, Vietnam and India. REBIRTH filmmaker Alireza

Sadreddini from the United Kingdom plans to attend and perform an audience Q&A at 2:30 PM at Beatley Central Library on Saturday, November 7.

Films coming from within the greater Washington, D.C. metropolitan area include SHRINES, CHERRY BLOSSOM, FREAK THE LANGUAGE, ARLINGTON PASSAGES, LANDSCAPE OF POWER: FREEDOM AND SLAVERY IN THE DISMAL SWAMP and THE ART OF RICHARD THOMPSON. Local filmmakers Jesse Strauss of I APPROVE THIS MESSAGE, Nguyễn Đình Anh of UNCLE & SON, Josh Peterson of FOREST BORN and Karen Reedy of LES FALAISES will be present at the festival with their films.

The festival is proud to feature two LGBTQ films this year. UNCLE & SON will be shown at AMC Hoffman Theatre at 1:00 p.m. as part of the International Film Showcase. THE DAVID DANCE will be shown Sunday, November 8 at 4:00 p.m. as a part of a film showcase. Both filmmakers will be in attendance at the festival for Q&As after their screenings.

The Alexandria Film Festival has a strong history of environmental films that continues this year with THE BONOBO CONNECTION, with filmmaker Irene Magafan in attendance, FREE FLIGHT and FROM AUSTRALIA WITH LOV3.

The first-ever Kid’s Cinema Showcase will begin at 10:00 AM on Saturday, November 7 at AMC Hoffman Theatre. Animated films THE IMPORTANCE OF LIOS and HILL OF THE HAPERSNOKS lead the screening, followed by a nature feature length ON THE WING about saving bald eagles. In addition to the Kid’s Cinema Showcase, many films provide an educational opportunity for teachers and their students, including THE ART OF RICHARD THOMPSON, OFFSET: SEEING BEAUTY THROUGH A BRAIN INJURY, LANDSCAPE OF POWER: FREEDOM AND SLAVERY IN THE DISMAL SWAMP, SHRINES, THE SOFT SHELL CRAB AND THE METAL CLAW and ARLINGTON PASSAGES.

The festival pays tribute to Sydney-Chanele Dawkins, award-winning feature filmmaker, film curator, film festival producer and a theater/film critic and arts writer who passed away on July 8, 2015, at age 47, after a battle with Breast Cancer. She served as an impassioned advocate for the Arts as Chair of the Alexandria Commission for the Arts in Alexandria, VA. Her successful first film, MODERN LOVE IS AUTOMATIC will be shown at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 7, at AMC Hoffman Theatre. The Alexandria Film Festival remembers Dawkins for her the past work as a part of the Alexandria Film Festival committee.

A series of short films round out the festival. Notable shorts include ZERO, a sci-film short by YouTube Your Film Festival winner David Victori with executive producer support from Ridley Scott and Michael Fassbender, THE SCHOOLBOY, I AM REVA, THREE LADY TAILORS, BEFORE WE LOSE, KEEPSAKE and BIRTHDAY.

This year’s festival is an intimate four-day celebration of high-quality short and feature length films, documentaries, filmmaker panels, and arts presentations highlighting the talents of local, national, and international filmmakers. All films shown at Beatley Central Library are free and open to the public. Tickets for films shown at AMC Hoffman 22 Theatre on Saturday, November 7 and Sunday, November 8 are available for purchase at this link. The all-access pass to the festival is $45.00 and is available for purchase online until Saturday, November 7, 2015. The all-access pass is $50.00 at the door. Tickets to individual screenings are $12.00 online prior to the festival, and $15.00 at the door. For more information, please visit this link.

For more information on the above films and for the full schedule, please see a chronological listing below. Please note the program is subject to change and such updates can be found on this link and on the festival’s Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

The Alexandria Film Festival would like to thank the following sponsors for making the ninth-annual festival possible: PBS, Hilton, Virginia Film Office, The Highwood Theater, City of Alexandria, Alexandria Commission for the Arts, Sugar Shack Donuts, Chamowitz and Chamowitz Attorneys, Franconia Family Medicine, Alexandria Colonial Tours, Alexandria Hyundai, Carlyle House, Alexandria Times, Cheesetique, Burke and Herbert, Alexandria Toyota, AMC Hoffman Theater, Let’s Meat on the Avenue, Natures Nibbles, Residence Inn Marriott, Rocklands Barbecue and Grilling Company, Yves Bistro, Alexandria Gazette Packet, Hermitage Senior Living, Eisenhower Partnership, Ted’s Montana Grill, Delias Mediterranean Grill, San Antonio Bar and Grill, Port City Brewing Company, Wilson Grand Communications and First Media Services.

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