FEATURE: Global Migration–More Than The Birds

HofburgFounder and Board Chair Susan Weeks Coulter traveled to Vienna this past week to take part in the UNAOC panel on media and intercultural dialogue…

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NEWS: Global Lens 2013 @ MoMA!

Global Lens 2013: Change the Way You See the World

Our tenth anniversary opens with China’s Sixth Generation, Sebastián Silva, the biggest film you’ve ever seen from Brazil (literally), and a host of Global Lens alumnus.…

It’s our tenth year and we’re kicking off Global Lens 2013, January 10th-26th, with ten films at the Museum of Modern Art! It’s going to be some celebration…

BEIJING FLICKERS will open the series on January 10th with a week-run at MoMA and director Zhang Yuan and actor Li Xinjun in attendance, to launch the festivities (a must see: Zhang is the acclaimed director of Beijing Bastards, and part of the gritty Sixth Generation ethos—who in the ‘90s, pushed Chinese filmmaking out of an overly-romanticized lens into the alter-reality of its edgy, urban psyche).

Also in New York for the GL13 opening: Suman Ghosh for the North American premiere of SHYAMAL UNCLE TURNS OFF THE LIGHTS, on January 11th. This film is something to indeed be experienced with the director, as he runs his fingers through the tangled hair of Kolkata’s bureaucracy; an inspired and insightful work that carries a subtle charm, similar to another Global Lens standout.

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SEEN & HEARD: Cannes You Believe It?

GFI Founder and Board Chair Susan Weeks Coulter works the red carpet at the 65th Cannes Film Festival, rain or shine…

Q'ing up at Cannes

You had to have been there! In Cannes, I mean. The two days of torrential rain and wind plus another two days of intermittent showers (those are the ones that start again the minute you put your umbrella down) could either be described as the weather or the stuff of festival legend.

Were you actually THERE in 2012 when the red carpet was so soggy that the actresses squished their way up the red carpet?

Umbrella sales were brisk along the Croisette, and I invested in three over the course of my six days in Cannes. The first, a royal blue mini, was ripped inside out. The second, a larger, sturdier, and black model with a handsome wooden handle made it six blocks to dinner—someone in the restaurant had no shame and stole MY new umbrella, leaving in its place their own spoke-torn model. The third was a success, as I strategically selected maroon with a cream border coloration, distinctive enough so that it might deter another theft. And then, thankfully, the sun came out and everyone’s temperament improved exponentially.

The

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NEWS: The Global Film Initiative Appoints Three New Members to Board of Directors

New appointments add depth in international relations, fundraising and business development as Initiative enters tenth year

San Francisco, CAFebruary 16, 2012 - The Global Film Initiative announced today the appointment of Michelle van Gilder, Theda Jackson-Mau and Matthew Tollin to its Board of Directors.

The new appointees join the current ten-member Board in advising the Initiative on ongoing programs and strategic initiatives, including a dynamic multi-channel expansion of the Global Lens distribution platform, and domestic and international exhibition partnerships that promote the Initiative’s global philanthropic mission.

New appointments to the Global Film Initiative Board of Directors:

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Meet & Frite

GFI Founder and Board Chair Susan Weeks Coulter recounts the sights, sounds (and tastes) of the 41st International Film Festival Rotterdam

Susan with the famous GFI bag–and frites!–in hand at IFFR 2012

The 9-hours-ahead time change left me with the very worst jet-lag—I found myself laying wide awake in my hotel room at 3am, humming “We Shall Overcome” in hopes that perhaps by the third verse, I might doze off.

But the quiet time did allow for a period of reflection about Holland, the Rotterdam International Film Festival, Hubert Bals Fund, and of course, the Dutch people. For those of you new to The Global Film Initiative, it was actually the Hubert Bals people who jump-started our organization back in 2003.

Noah Cowan and I had been wrestling with not only the idea of what we wanted to do in showcasing film from emerging countries/film industries, but we were perplexed at how to structure such an organization. Noah met up with Simon Field who was, at the time, heading up the Hubert Bals efforts, and explained what we wanted to do in the U.S. With Simon’s encouragement, open-mindedness, and welcome, the Global Film Initiative had found an organization “structure” that we felt

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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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“Basquing” in the Ambiance of Donostia

Reliving the days and nights of the San Sebastián International Film Festival

Pintxos

San Francisco -> Paris -> Bilbao -> San Sebastián is a trip that takes about 15 hours, if everything goes smoothly. Unfortunately, if the first leg is delayed for any reason (it was) just add another 6 hours in the airport waiting room and make that trek a 21-hour marathon!

San Sebastián, a.k.a. Donostia, is a mid-sized human-scale city on the Basque Coast of Spain; a “beach town” with two pristine semi-circular beaches (playas) divided by the Urumea River that snakes its way through town, dividing the old city from the new.

Cocktails, San Sebastian style

Drinking white wine and eating pintxos (peen-choz) for lunch seems to be an inalienable worker’s right. Evening time (8pm-onward) brings the red wine and tapas that are often balanced on the top of a wine glass. Admittedly, I am not a “foodie” but I ate and drank more than my fair share of these terrific little concoctions.

Overall, a pretty city, terrific food, and a well-organized festival!

Susan Weeks Coulter attended the 59th San Sebastián International Film Festival (Cinema in Motion and Films in Progress),

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WEEK IN REVIEW: Saving Birds and Soaking it up in San Sebastian

We’re gearing up for the busiest season of the year here at GFI, with final decisions being made for the Global Lens 2012 lineup, grant applications under review and continuing DVD releases and Global Lens screenings.

In the midst of all this, it seems that each day brings more great news, important events and unexpected surprises. Here’s what we’ve been up to lately, and what’s in store for the near future:

GFI messenger bag

"Look for the yellow bag!" (Our calling card at festivals)

WHEN IN SPAIN: GFI Founder and Board Chair Susan Weeks Coulter traveled to the San Sebastián International Film Festival, where she met with filmmakers from around the world, saw a few unreleased and extremely impressive new projects, and made some new friends—most memorably after missing the last bus and getting stranded in the rain!

Gaston Kabore

Gaston Kabore

A VISIT TO REMEMBER: We’re very excited about Gaston Kabore’s visit during the Mill Valley Film Festival (Oct. 6-16)! The festival features a tribute to the Burkinabe filmmaker and GFI Film Board member, as well as a screening of Kabore’s Buud Yam

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Noah Cowan and the Genesis of GFI

On the eve of 9/11′s tenth anniversary, GFI’s co-founder recalls the impetus, purpose and passion behind the Initiative

Noah Cowan, co-founder of the Global Film Initiative

It is my enormous pleasure to add my voice to the growing tributes to the Global Film Initiative this year and its vital work on behalf of developing world filmmakers and audiences across North America. I would also like to offer my profound congratulations to Susan Weeks Coulter for her unstinting belief in and support of this very special and unique project; a project which could not be closer to my own heart.

It is most humbling to witness an idea, hatched by Susan and me, that has, over the years, inspired so many people. It all started over a cup of tea in China, as so many worthy things do these days…

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