POPPY JASPER INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES LINEUP FOR ITS 2021 VIRTUAL EDITION
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – The Poppy Jasper International Film Festival (PJIFF) announced today its full film lineup for its 2021 virtual edition. The festival will run from Wednesday, April 7 through Tuesday, April 20, 2021.
This year’s Gala celebration will take place on Friday, April 9th with keynote speakerDrew Massey, actor and puppeteer for the Jim Henson Company, known for his work on The Muppets and most recently on The Happytime Murders. Massey also has a new series coming out on Nickelodeon called “The Barbarian and the Troll” set to premiere on April 2nd. The night will also include greetings from this year’s filmmakers from around the world as well as the premiere of the song “Believe” written by GRAMMY Award winner and President of Paramount Worldwide Publishing and Music Randy Spendlove and GRAMMY Award winner Polo Jones. The night will also include a poetry reading by January Handl.
The complete PJIFF line-up includes features from across the globe including Austria’s Return of the Thumb (Die Rückkehr des Daumens)from director Flo Convey, Iran’s One Night in Tehranfrom director Farhad Najafi, and Germany’s Brian Auger -Life on Tour from director Michael Maschke. The international shorts program will include Rena Dumont’s Hapless Hans(Germany), Florence Bouvy’sTill the End of the World(Netherlands), Jhosimar Vasquez’s The Scorpion’s Tale(USA), and Garth Jennings’sMadame(UK).
The festival will also feature panel discussions including a special panel presentation with Jerry Martinez from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, who worked on the Perseverance Mars Landing, to discuss the use of camera techniques in storytelling. PJIFF has also partnered with the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) to host a Women’s Day on Friday, April 9th which will include a panel discussion on Women in Film with Jennifer McCabe, director and chief curator at SMoCA, Kavery Kaul, award-winning documentary filmmaker, Debbe Goldstein, owner and art rep at Art Rep DG, Rucha Chitnis, award-winning documentary filmmaker and fellow at the International Women’s Media Foundation, and Consuelo Flores, Former Director, Policy Strategy and Analysis, EEO and Diversity at SAG AFTRA. The panel will be moderatedby Kulvinder Arora, former Professor of Women’s Studies at the University of Illinois, Chicago and president of Literary Legacies.
Consistent with PJIFF’s mission of supporting independent filmmakers and its local community, the festival will also include Student Day (Wednesday, April 7th) showcasing student films from across the world, Local Day (Thursday, April 8th) highlighting the work of local filmmakers, and the previously announced China Day (Saturday, April 10) and Mexico Day (Sunday, April 11). The festival will close with Community Achievement Awards on Tuesday, April 20th celebrating leaders who have made an impact on the local community.
“PJIFF is committed to supporting diverse perspectives and new independent voices in cinema and we are proud to say that this year is no different,” said Festival Director Mattie Scariot, “We are excited to showcase these unique and inspiring films.”
45 Days in Harvar (45 Días enJarbar) – A plastic artist creates a studio in a maximum-security prison. Fifteen inmates learn about paper production, clay modeling, sculpting, and painting. Through this artistic interaction, they share their personal experiences of how they became involved with drug trafficking. Director Cesar Aréchiga. Mexico
A Concerned Citizen – Civics in Action – Activist Dr. Riki Ott works to curb pollution and to reform laws on campaign finance and contributions. Others have followed her example. Director Bo Boudart. USA
Beloved – From dawn to dusk, 82-year-old Firouzeh takes care of her beloved cows in the mountains of Northern Iran, with no access to electricity, gas, or phone. Director YaserTalebi. Iran
Brian Auger – Life on Tour – Brian Auger, master of the Hammond organ, has played with Rod Stewart, Jimi Hendrix, Paul McCartney, Zucchero … and in his 80s is still on tour. Director Michael Maschke. Germany.
Cabarete – A teenage village kite surfer convinces his idol to train him but is torn between city nightlife pleasures and pursuing his athletic ambitions.Director Ivan Bordas. Dominican Republic.
Falter – At the start of a post-human era, to give his monotonous life a new meaning, Falter decides to share it with an android. Directors Harriet Maria Meining and Peter Meining. Germany.
Full Gas – A new teen in town arrives shortly before a Motocross championship. He is bullied and threatened but finds a mentor to help him prepare for the race. Director Kobi Machat. Israel.
Go with Your Gut – The filmmakers traveled with seven entrepreneurs for two years through five countries and twenty cities to record their life, struggle and entrepreneurship. Audiences voluntarily organized over 50 screenings of this inspirational film in different cities in China. It also created a new model for the exhibition of documentaries in China – the social film. Director Qiurong Shi and Xian Hu. China.
How I Live – The hardships of cancer treatment and obstacles to accessing care plague children and their families in Guatemala, El Salvador, Myanmar and Egypt. Director Meghan Shea. United States.
The Little Death (La Petite Mort) – Women of various ages, experiences, and sexual preferences talk frankly about orgasms, driven to break taboos that still weigh on female sexuality. Director Annie Gisler. Switzerland.
One Night in Tehran – Like big cities around the world, Tehran has its night life. A woman looking for happiness gets into a night cab, unaware of how her life will change. Director Farhad Najafi. Iran.
Return of the Thumb (Die Rückkehr des Daumens) – A worn-down thumb wrestling coach has one last chance to win the Austrian championship with a new fighter. But the competition is fierce! Director Flo Convey. Austria
The Sower (El Sembrador) – Bartolomé, a teacher in a school in the mountains of Chiapas in Mexico, knows that pedagogy is not based on textbooks and cannot fit behind the four walls of a classroom. A true sower of knowledge creates a model of education based on curiosity and love for the outside world. Director Melissa Elizondo Moreno. Mexico
Unnamed Junior – Two law cases take place simultaneously in a small backward city of China: the wife of Youwang Cao, a township entrepreneur, was poisoned, and worker Bin Zhou disappeared. The two cases seem to be inextricably linked. Worker, boss, murderer, and kidnapper tell a story in which the man who tries to frame others becomes accused himself. Director Dongxu Guo. China
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