GLOBAL LENS 2012: Meet the Directors

A long-haired rocker seeking acceptance, an adult returning to the beaches of her childhood and an artist looking for the meaning in monotony are just a few of the minds behind this year’s series…

From left: Gustavo Pizzi (CRAFT, Brazil) and Tolga Karacelik (TOLL BOOTH, Turkey) at the Global Lens 2012 premiere in New York

Every person has a voice. Every voice tells a story. Every story reveals a world.

The Global Lens series trailer opens with these 15 words, and they really do sum up why we’re here. We work with film, but more importantly, we work with people. And by using film to give life to their stories, these people have become the living, breathing embodiment of Global Lens.

With this in mind, we’d like to introduce you to the brilliant filmmakers behind the Global Lens 2012 series, and let them explain the concept, creation & message of their work for themselves.

Sharing these stories is what we’re all about, and the reason why, after all these years, the words of the Global Lens trailer still ring true.

Ladies and gentlemen, here they are, the directors of Global Lens 2012!

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NOW PLAYING: Fat, Short, Bald Man from Colombia and Nine Other Global Lens 2012 Films You Don’t Want to Miss!

¿Habla Español? Click here to watch the NY1 TV interview with director Carlos Osuna!

GLOBAL LENS 2012: Click on the map to find a screening near you!

The story: The prospects for a lonely middle-aged notary unexpectedly change after he joins a self-improvement group and his charismatic new boss—and strangely affable doppelgänger—takes an interest in his life.

First-time Colombian director Carlos Osuna’s charming rotoscope feature is now screening at locations across the U.S. and Canada, and is also available for booking in festivals or theaters, along with nine other award-winning and critically acclaimed films from the new Global Lens 2012 series!

Click here to see where these films are playing, or email us at bookings@globalfilm.org to schedule films today!

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Oday Rasheed on the Making of QARANTINA and Remaking Baghdad in Today’s Iraq

Rob Avila and Iraqi director Oday Rasheed discuss the genesis of inspiration against a backdrop of war, politics and filmmaking

Iraqi director Oday Rasheed talks to Rob Avila during the premiere of Global Lens 2012 at MoMA

Oday Rasheed is one of only a small handful of filmmakers working and producing in Iraq today. His first feature, Underexposure (2005), captured the immediate aftermath of the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in a fictional documentary-style story about a Baghdad filmmaker trying to make sense of the tumult of this period. Soon after its debut, Rasheed left the growing sectarian violence in Baghdad for Berlin, where he immersed himself in film studies, gravitating to the works of Andrei Tarkovsky, among others, and eventually developed the script for his second feature, Qarantina. He returned to Baghdad in 2008 to make the film, which was completed in 2010.

Qarantina is one of ten awarding-winning films featured in the Global Lens 2012 series, premiering this January at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Oday was able to attend his Global Lens screening in New York as part of a short U.S. tour that includes multiple screenings at MoMA, and a presentation of the film at the Council on Foreign Relations on January 25th, and also at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service on January 30th.

Recently, during the premiere of Global Lens

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SUPPORT: Art as Diplomacy

How film can be just as good as a handshake when it comes to crossing borders and building relationships

WATCH: Global Lens 2012 director Oday Rasheed speaks with Deb Amos of NPR about QARANTINA and living and working in Baghdad

Ever since our founding, the phrase ‘promoting cross-cultural understanding through cinema’ has echoed with every presentation of Global Lens we sponsor, every grant we award, and every educational screening we host. Our belief is that film, especially world cinema, has the ability to transcend politics and lines of conflict, exposing us to new cultures and new ways of thinking, allowing for better communication as a global society.

It’s a spectacular concept, and hardly the first of its kind—over the centuries, art and literature have always had the same power. However, when it comes to film, for as simple as it sounds, until audiences see this process in action, the phrase rings a bit theoretical, and idealistic. In fact, in a world where the majority of people consider film a form of entertainment, saying it is anything other than that is a hard sell—unless of course we “sell” it within a context other than entertainment.

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WORLD CINEMA WEEK 2012: Bring New and Award-winning World Cinema to Your Campus or Public Library this Spring!

 

WORLD CINEMA WEEK 2012 CHANGE THE WAY YOU SEE THE WORLD Sign up today to bring Global Lens films to your high school, college, university or public library—March 27th application deadline!

In celebration of World Cinema Week 2012 (April 16-20, 2012), the Global Film Initiative (GFI) is offering you an exclusive opportunity to bring award-winning films from the Global Lens film series to your campus or public library this spring!

Global Lens is a critically acclaimed showcase of narrative feature film from Africa, Asia, Central & Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, and is available for screening at schools and public libraries during World Cinema Week (WCW).

All high schools, colleges, universities and public libraries are eligible to participate in this offer, and signing up is easy (and free for all high schools!):

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NEW ON DVD: Adrift and My Tehran For Sale!

Lust, Longing and Chuyen’s ADRIFT and Granaz Moussavi’s Controversial MY TEHRAN FOR SALE to release on DVD January 31st

We’re pleased to announce the DVD release of two new films from the Global Lens film series, featuring a charged performance by Vietnamese actress Hai Yen and Moussavi’s “hit and run” chronicle of Tehran’s underground art scene:

 

Adrift DVD CoverADRIFT (CHOI VOI), dir. Bui Thac Chuyen, Vietnam, 2009, 110 minutes, Vietnamese, with subtitles in English

A young wife, ignored by her immature spouse, is caught in a love triangle between her best friend and a handsome stranger during a languorous summer in Hanoi. FIPRESCI Prize, Venice International Film Festival; Official Selection of the International Film Festival Rotterdam (Bright Future).

A subtle, melancholy exploration of erotic angst and uncomfortable awakening…Adrift evokes a culture whose puritanical restraints have begun to loosen, allowing dangerous sparks to fly. Once desire has been unleashed, smugly settling for less is no longer a comfortable option.“ -The New York Times

Beautiful, and tightly focused on the emotional, romantic, and sexual lives of men and women in Hanoi….This is new Vietnamese cinema.” -diaCRITICS

 

My Tehran For Sale DVD CoverMY TEHRAN FOR SALE, dir. Granaz Moussavi, Iran, 2009, 95 minutes, Farsi and English, with subtitles in English

An

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FESTIVALS & AWARDS: Rotterdam, Berlin, Dubai and more!

Global Lens films and GFI grant recipients hit the ground running in 2012 with premieres and awards at festivals around the world!

INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ROTTERDAM (January 25-February 5, 2012):

Several Global Lens directors and GFI grantees will screen their films and new projects at the International Film Festival Rotterdam—host of one of the largest film markets in the world and a prime place for GFI-related films to intersect! This year’s festival includes:

TIGER AWARDS COMPETITION: The world premiere of 2011 GFI grant recipient VOICE OF MY FATHER (dir. Orhan Eskiköy and Ozgur Doğan, Turkey). BRIGHT FUTURE SECTION: The Dutch premieres of Global Lens film GREY MATTER (dir. Kivu Ruhorahoza, Rwanda), of 2010 GFI grant recipient BEAUTY (dir. Oliver Hermanus, South Africa) and of 2011 GFI grant recipient ON THE EDGE (dir. Leïla Kilani, Morocco). Kivu Ruhorahoza will also be participating in CineMart with his new project, JOMO, through the BOOST! initiative! SPECTRUM SECTION: Premieres of new films by Global Lens directors Cláudio Assis (MANGO YELLOW, Brazil) and Garin Nugroho (OF LOVE AND EGGS and OPERA JAWA, Indonesia), as well as by Raya Martin, director of 2008 GFI grant recipient INDEPENDENCIA

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Global Lens 2012 @ MoMA and Beyond!

This year’s launch in New York set our universe in motion thanks to a host of filmmakers, friends and more than a little help from MoMA and a one-man army…

Angelica in the Stars

Angelica Dongallo, Acquisitions & Granting Dynamo, kicks-off Global Lens 2012 amongst the stars

 

What can we say–it was spectacular. And for as much as we’d really like to tell you about the launch of Global Lens 2012 in New York, pictures do the job so much better. The stars were out and in alignment, and the year began with a big bang, cosmic kismet and maybe even a few good parties–see for yourself!

Next stop: everywhere. Global Lens 2012 will be playing all across the U.S. and Canada, from Palm Springs to Boston, Latin Wave in Houston and Vue d’Afrique in Montreal–check our calendar!

A special thanks to Jytte Jensen, Curator, and Clay Farland, at the MoMA Department of Film; Consul General M. Levent Bilgen, Consul Ismet Erikan and the Turkish Consulate General of New York; Robert Avila; Gary Ponzo; Gianfranco Sorrentino and our friends at Gattopardo; Carlos Gutierrez; Tom Vick at the Smithsonian Institution; Engin “One-Man Army” Yeniduniya; and Global Lens 2012 directors Bujar Alimani, Tolga Karacelik, Carlos Osuna, Gustavo Pizzi, and Oday Rasheed–none of this would’ve been possible without you.

 

 

 

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OPEN MIC: Made in Brazil

GFI intern Julianne Quimby talks about CRAFT, THE TENANTS and why there’s more to Brazil than samba and sandy beaches

Julianne in Copacabana

After returning from a year spent studying language and culture abroad in Brazil, I was frequently asked a question I found surprisingly challenging: “How was your trip?” Brazil is a diverse country characterized by complex intersections of history, politics, and religion and therefore not easily summarized. In addition, I found my descriptions clashed with the misconceptions of Brazil listeners already held. Americans—and global audiences in general—only have access to Brazilian culture through select avenues. Sensationalized news stories reporting on Rio’s violent crime, “The Girl from Ipanema,” national soccer victories, and the occasional film that’s lucky enough to make it to our shores leave Americans with a clichéd and misinformed perception of what Brazilian society is actually like. My brief experience in Brazil was enough to make it painfully obvious that Americans’ experiences with Brazilian culture through popular music and film aren’t painting a satisfactory picture of the country and its people.

However, while working at GFI, I’ve had the opportunity to watch CRAFT and THE TENANTS, two Brazilian productions from the Global Lens film series (2012 and 2011, respectively). Not only do these films display original storylines and distinctive cinematographic styles (setting them apart from other independent

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