Work Stuff: Ottawa’s Latin American Film Festival is Almost Here

This week at work, the majority of my efforts went towards preparing for the press conference for the Latin American Film Festival. Held at the Embassy of Cuba, the event was a success, as we garnered media coverage from multiple Ottawa media outlets.

Here’s the press release I drafted up, some photos of the event and some of the coverage we got in the local media.

CFI Launches 17th annual Festival of Latin American Cinema

OTTAWA (March 15, 2013)‚ €œ The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) is proud to present the 17th annual‚ Latin American Film Festival, running on select dates from‚ March 21st to April 7th. The 2013 edition of the Festival features 16 films from 15 Latin American nations. All films are Ottawa premieres and all are presented in their original language with English subtitles.

Award-winning films being screened for the first time in Ottawa include:‚ O Palhaƒ§o‚ (The Clown), a comedy-drama starring and directed by Selton Mello, which was Brazil’s entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at this year’s Academy Awards,‚ Infancia Clandestina‚ (Clandestine Childhood), an Argentinian film set in that country’s troubled 1970s, and 7 Cajas (7 Boxes), a Paraguayan movie which has been screened at festivals around the world including the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

“The 17th edition of our Latin American Film Festival is one of the strongest ever, says CFI Executive Director‚ Tom McSorley, who founded the Festival in 1997. “It features several multiple award-winners, and has a range and diversity of tones €œ comedy, satire, drama, tragedy‚  €œ‚  that makes a festival experience so rich and unique. We are also thrilled to have two filmmakers attending the Festival to present their work:‚ Andrea Martinez Crowther, from Mexico, and Julio‚ Ponce Palmieri, from Guatemala.

Each screening will take place at the Auditorium at 395 Wellington Street in Ottawa. Tickets are $12 for the general public and $8 for CFI members, seniors, and students. CFI members are also eligible to purchase Five-Film Passports for $35. All tickets can be purchased on-site each night of the Festival starting on March 21st, including advance tickets for all films. Visit‚ www.cfi-icf.ca‚ for complete listings.

For 17 years, the CFI has brought the Latin American Film Festival to Ottawa as part of its dedication to filmmakers worldwide, giving Canadian audiences ongoing opportunities to celebrate the art of film. The Latin American Film Festival is presented in collaboration with the‚ Group of Latin American Ambassadors‚ in Ottawa (GRULA).

The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) was incorporated in 1935 as a federally-chartered, non- governmental, non-profit cultural organization. It is the oldest film institution in Canada and the second oldest film institute in the world. More information can be found online at‚ www.cfi-icf.ca.

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Coverage

Press Release: Francophone Cinema of the World Comes to Ottawa

OTTAWA (February 28, 2013) РFilms from across the French-speaking world are coming to Ottawa at the 11th annual DiverCinĩ Рles ĩcrans de la Francophonie du monde film festival running from March 8th to March 17th.

Organized by the Embassy of France to Canada and the Department of Canadian Heritage, in partnership with the Canadian Film Institute and the ByTowne Cinema, this year’s festival will feature eleven first-release films from Africa (Algeria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Senegal), Asia (Vietnam), Europe (Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Romania and Switzerland), the Middle East (Egypt and Qatar) and Canada.

Award-winning films from the past year are being screened for the first time in Ottawa, including: La Pirogue, a Senegalese entry, which competed in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, Rebelle, a Canadian film that competed in the Best Foreign Language Film category at this year’s Oscars and L’enfant d’en haut, which received a special mention from the jury at the 2012 Berlin Film Festival.

A special Canadian Short Film Program, featuring a diverse body of French-Canadian works is also scheduled for Tuesday, March 12th at Club Saw. This special program is being offered free of charge. This year’s festival also includes English subtitles in the majority of the films while also catering to a young audience with family friendly screenings.

“Francophone cinema explores contemporary issues in French-speaking societies around the globe in thought provoking ways, says Canadian Film Institute Director Tom McSorley. “We’re excited to be bringing eleven of this year’s most captivating releases to Ottawa.

“The DiverCinƒ© festival offers us once more an opportunity to pay homage to the talent and the creativity of filmmakers in Canada and in the other countries of the Francophonie, says French Ambassador Philippe Zeller. For the 11th year in a row, Canadian Heritage and the Embassy of France have come together around DiverCinƒ© to celebrate the cultural diversity of all the French-speaking countries of the world through cinema.

With the help of its media partners, TV5 and Radio-Canada, DiverCinƒ© aims to express the identities, imaginings and cultures of the French-speaking world in all its diversity. Its programming gives prominence to films selected for major international festivals and gives Canadian audiences an opportunity to see first-rate movies created by filmmakers from a variety of the world’s French-speaking countries that are rarely screened in Canada.

For complete details visit www.divercine.com and visit our Facebook page for interactive content, trailers and updates at http://www.facebook.com/DiverCineFestival.


Download the Festival’s electronic press kit:
http://www.cfi-icf.ca/media/guides/divercine_2013_brochure.pdf

 

Press Release – Bright Nights: The Baltic-Nordic Film Fest Celebrates Winter On The Big Screen

CANADIAN FILM INSTITUTE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

OTTAWA (February 6th, 2013) €œ The Canadian Film Institute (CFI), in collaboration with the Embassies of the Baltic and Nordic nations, is proud to present the 3rd annual Bright Nights: The Baltic-Nordic Film Festival running on select dates from February 8th through March 1st.

Featuring some of the world’s most exciting contemporary cinema, this year’s Festival features entries from eight Baltic and Nordic nations (Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden), presented in their original languages with English subtitles. All films will be Ottawa premieres.

Each screening will take place at the Auditorium at 395 Wellington Street in Ottawa. Tickets are $12 for the general public and $8 for members, seniors, and students. All tickets can be purchased on-site each night of the Festival starting on February 8th. A festival pass to all eight screenings is also available for $40. Visit www.cfi-icf.ca for complete listings.

Screening Schedule:

  • February 8th: Simon and the Oaks (Sweden), 7pm

  • February 15th: Soundbreaker (Finland), 7pm and INUK (Denmark), 9pm*

  • February 22nd: Mama Gƒ³gƒ³ (Iceland), 7pm and Mushrooming (Estonia), 9pm

  • February 28th: Monsieur Taurins (Latvia), 7pm and Low Lights (Lithuania), 9pm

  • March 1st: King Curling (Norway), 7pm.**

*On February 15th, the Danish director of INUK, Mike Magidson will be in attendance to introduce and discuss his film with the audience.

**On March 1st, Bright Nights is encouraging local curlers to attend the screening of King Curling by offering a $2 discount to those who come dressed in their curling team jackets or uniforms.

The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) was incorporated in 1935 as a federally-chartered, non-governmental, non-profit cultural organization. It is the oldest film institution in Canada and the second oldest film institute in the world. More information can be found online at www.cfi-icf.ca.

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Ottawa: Select City to Participate in Worldwide Launch Party of Sigur Rƒ³s: Valtari Film Experiment

Press release I wrote for an upcoming event featuring Icelandic rock band, Sigur Rƒ³s.

CANADIAN FILM INSTITUTE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

‚ Ottawa chosen as select city to participate in worldwide launch party of Sigur Rƒ³s: Valtari Film Experiment

‚ OTTAWA (November 29, 2012) €œ The Canadian Film Institute (CFI), is pleased to announce that Ottawa will be one of several select cities participating in the worldwide launch party of Sigur Rƒ³s’ latest release, The Valtari Film Experiment on Saturday, December 8th.

The internationally renowned music sensation’s latest album, Valtari, includes a visual element to go along with the Icelandic band’s signature sound. The group gave a dozen filmmakers a modest budget and asked them to create whatever came to mind as they listened to songs from the band’s new album.

This exclusive world premiere program will present the official videos along with added materials. Among the participating filmmakers are Ramin Bahrani (Chop Shop, Goodbye Solo, At Any Cost), Alma Har’el (Bombay Beach), and John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Shortbus).

Ottawa will be one of several select cities to participate in this worldwide launch on the weekend of December 7th-9th and local Sigur Rƒ³s fans will have a chance to win big. ¨¨At the Ottawa screening, to be held in the Auditorium at 395 Wellington street, fans will be given a unique URL where they can enter to win a deluxe Sigur Rƒ³s Valtari special gift package. One winner will be selected per continent.

Sigur Rƒ³s was formed in 1994 in Reykjavƒ­k, Iceland. The group’s music has been featured in Hollywood films such as Vanilla Sky (2001) and 127 Hours (2010). They also tour extensively, performing at renowned festivals around the world including, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza and Montreal’s Osheaga festival.

Following the event, the CFI will be throwing a party of its own, by hosting a reception in the foyer at 395 Wellington Street to celebrate the end of its 2012 programming.

‚ The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) was incorporated in 1935 as a federally-chartered, non-governmental, non-profit cultural organization. It is the oldest film institution in Canada and the second oldest film institute in the world. More information can be found online at http://www.cfi-icf.ca.

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Keeping Busy at the European Union Film Festival

Work is extra busy right now as we’re in the midst of our last major film fest of the year, the European Union Film Festival.

Now in its 27th year, the EUFF is probably Ottawa’s most prestigious film fest of the year. 26 EU embassies get on board, as we screen a film each country every night. Oftentimes, the embassies hold small receptions afterwards, which include an open bar and some food.

It’s a lot of fun, but it also keeps me pretty busy. ‚ As the festival’s Media Relations person, my duties include:

  • Writing Press Releases and Media Alerts promoting festival events
  • Making sure our Social Media Channels are up to date every day
  • Being on-site to greet and facilitate media members
  • Acting as a festival spokesperson for the Festival when our Executive Director is unavailable

I was also able to shoot some video of the opening night gala, you can see it below, this should give you a better idea of what the festival is all about.


In addition, I’ve also been able to catch a few terrific movies that otherwise I’d never have even heard about.

Small Crime

A fun little movie, set on a picturesque Greek Island, about a police officer who tries to solve the mysterious death of the town drunk.


The 1000 Euro Generation

A funny comedy that explores how young Italians are coping through the economic recession in Europe

Fear of Falling


A moving drama that depicts how the onset of dementia in a parent can send one’s life into a tailspin.

The EUFF wraps up December 2nd. Visit the CFI website to see complete listings.