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EXCLUSIVE: WME has inked filmmaker Heidi Ewing who recently directed, wrote and produced I Carry You With Me, which won this year’s Audience Award and Innovator Award in the NEXT! category at the Sundance Film Festival and was sold to Sony Pictures Classics and Stage 6 Films days into the festival.
Ewing was also nominated for an Oscar in the 2007 Feature Documentary category for Magnolia Pictures’ Jesus Camp. That doc followed the children who attend a Charismatic Christian summer camp outside Devils Lake, North Dakota, wishing that they’ll become the next Billy Graham.Christian Vásquez and Armando Espitia appear I Carry You With Me by Heidi Ewing. Sundance
Based on a true story, Ewing’s recent I Carry You With Me is an epic romance that follows two gay men from provincial Mexico as they chase the promise of social and economic freedoms in New York City. SPC will release the film theatrically in June.
Ewing also directed Roco films’ 2012 doc Detropia which followed the collapse of the U.S. manufacturing base in the city of Detroit, as well as the Netflix 2017 doc One of Us which penetrates the insular world of New York’s Hasidic community, focusing on three individuals who were driven to break away despite threats of retaliation. Ewing is also directing the upcoming limited docu-series Love Fraud at Showtime with her longtime directing collaborator and co-Oscar nominee Rachel Grady. The four-part series follows the search of Richard Scott Smith, who used the internet and his dubious charms to prey upon women looking for love. The story unravels in real time as Smith’s victims band together to seek sweet revenge.
WME has signed Ewing for representation in all areas. She continues to be represented by Victoria Cook at Frankfurt Kurnit.
The Tribeca Film Festival was supposed to run April 15 – 26 this year – but obviously, things have changed. The coronavirus caused the fest to postpone those dates, with alternative dates left up in the air. Now, it looks like Tribeca has found a solution: a virtual festival. Details are extremely slim at the moment, but Jane Rosenthal, the CEO of Tribeca Enterprises, made the announcement via social media.
Here’s some good news for your Monday morning. My friend Jane Rosenthal and her team – meeting by Zoom! – are planning to bring @Tribeca Film Fest to you virtually! She just sent me this video with more details. pic.twitter.com/NTtma2TYdu
— Rebecca Jarvis @RebeccaJarvis March 30, 2020
In the video above, Tribeca Enterprises CEO Jane Rosenthal says: “We’re going to be bringing you Tribeca Film Festival virtually very soon, so stay tuned for that announcement.” The wording there makes it clear that this isn’t the “official” announcement of the virtual fest yet – but now the news is out there. I’ve reached out to Tribeca for more info, and will update when I have it.
For now, though, we have to wonder exactly what this means. Is every film that was set to play the fest going to be available virtually? I have a hard time believing that, personally. But then again, things have changed drastically in the last few months, and we’re entering a strange new world for movies. Theaters across the globe have been shut down due to coronavirus, and there’s no real end in sight. Tribeca announced its postponement earlier this month, coming on the heels of the cancelation of SXSW. Since then, Cannes has also postponed their dates, and we’re all still unsure of what will be delayed or canceled next. Comic-Con? TIFF? The New York Film Festival? Fantastic Fest? Just how much longer will this go on?
All of this raises another question: will other festivals be following Tribeca’s lead here? Are we about to see a virtual Cannes? A virtual TIFF? Again, I have a hard time accepting that idea – not because I’m against it, but because it seems unlikely that filmmakers will agree to it. Part of the appeal of getting your movie into a festival is the thrill of being able to screen it to a packed audience, and then the buzz that follows with that. That’s just not the same as having your film available to screen online.
In the meantime, you can see a list of the Tribeca 2020 lineup here. Time will tell how many of these titles will be available via the virtual Tribeca Film Festival....
After an eight-year period of development, director Brandon Cronenberg returns with his sophomore feature Possessor, a seductive and macabre crime thriller that mixes body horror, near-future nihilism and noir elements to deliver a funky, freaky brew. In his Sundance review /Film’s Chris Evangelista called it “unrelentingly aggressive”, finding the film “special and exciting.” With an ensemble led by Andrea Riseborough, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Christopher Abbot, the film feels assured and audacious, settling in on a mood that’s both macabre and intoxicating.
Chris described Possessor as “unlike anything you’ve ever seen before”, but there are still echoes of what the David Cronenberg, Brandon’s father, has brought to the screen. I find that an entirely positive thing. In the best of ways, this feels like Brandon and his collaborators are making this space his own while being unafraid to echo the work of his father and others masters of the genre and generate direct comparison without ever feeling redundant, referential or reverential. Frankly, in many ways Possessor comes out ahead of some of the most celebrated of his father’s works, and that’s a remarkable thing indeed.
/Film spoke to Brandon following the film’s debut in Park City. We spoke about his process, the long gestation for this project, and what else this remarkable filmmaker has coming up for fans of his work.
The following has been edited for clarity and concision.
Congrats on Possessor – In the best possible way, it felt to me that you were leaning in to the expectations of what people hear when they hear the name “Cronenberg”. Can you talk about your own navigation of these burdens?
Everything I do in film, everything I’ve done so far has just been an honest expression of my own interests and creative impulses. I think that’s the only correct way to approach it because otherwise I wouldn’t be making a film honestly. I understand people will draw comparisons and it’s up to them to decide how interesting that is or isn’t from the outside. From my perspective, I’m just trying to do what is interesting to me and make films that I like.
Is it fair to say this one has more explicit references? It feels more tied to something like Existenz than either your shorts or Antiviral. Or is that just us as film critics trying to simplify things that shouldn’t be simplified?
I won’t tell you what you should or shouldn’t do as film critics! [Laughs] Certainly that’s not part of my process.
So, what is your process?
I usually start with an idea that I like, maybe it’s a character or it’s a scene. In this case, I was interested in a character who may or may not be an imposter in their own life and what that...
Not getting off the couch anytime soon? These days, that's a plus. As the era of self-quarantine and social distancing rages on, Netflix — the original home of the streaming binge — has bolstered its offerings with a number of standout features and readymade marathons.
Looking to killa lot of time? This month, Netflix is streaming all three “Matrix” films available on April 1andthe first four “Lethal Weapon” films also available on April 1, all the better to burn through a few hours and winnow down each franchise to your exact specifications yes, you can just watch the first “Matrix” if you so wish. A handful of solid rom-coms are also joining the platform, just in time for the rising demand for more escapism from “40 Days and 40 Nights” to “Just Friends,” both available on April 1, along with some truly terrifying apocalyptic offerings of all stripes we're talking both “Deep Impact” and“Killer Klowns from Outer Space,” also hitting on April 1.
But that's not all! In an appropriately packed month in the Netflix trenches, the streaming service is rolling out a number of top-notch movies that would delight at any time, but are welcome now more than ever. Here are the seven best movies new to Netflix for April 2020.Photo : Shutterstock 7. “The Girl with All the Gifts” Colm McCarthy, 2017
Prescient! When IndieWire's own Eric Kohn reviewed the film back at the Locarno Festival in 2016, it was a prime example of a smart twist on the zombie horror genre, bolstered by a strong turn from young star Sennia Nanua playing Melanie, the titular girl. Four years later, it's a vision of what life looks like after the seeming worst has happened.
As Kohn wrote in his review, the film “really does offer up a fleshed-out world rich with eerie implications, saving the biggest one for the memorable finale. As Melanie grows more confident in her understanding of the threat around her, she begins to take control in ways her human peers can't anticipate, and her defiance creates a complicated moral base for the story. Ultimately, 'The Girl With All the Gifts' suggests that the end of the world is relative.”
Available to stream April 1.