The RiverRun International Film Festival will host its 19th annual Festival March 30 – April 9, 2017. This year RiverRun will screen 151 films, including 69 features and 82 shorts from more than 40 countries.
“Our 2017 RiverRun International Film Festival features a diverse collection of over 150 films from across the globe,” said RiverRun executive director, Rob Davis. “Each of these films is reflective of our mission to engage our audiences in an exploration of new and divergent cultures and perspectives through the art of film.”
“RiverRun truly believes in not only preserving the cinematic experience by bringing unique, independent films that would rarely be seen on the big screen to our city, but also, even more, in highlighting diverse viewpoints to open lines of communication throughout our community. With a record number of submissions yet again this year, Program Coordinator, Christopher Holmes, and I worked tirelessly to curate our Festival to include a wealth of under-represented countries, individuals and stories you won’t see anywhere else,” said RiverRun Program Manager, Mary Dossinger. “We believe in pushing boundaries, highlighting new cinematic forms and providing a platform for filmmakers to connect directly with their audiences and have important conversations about our world and the human experience.”
RiverRun will kick off Opening Night with two films on Thursday, March 30. The first film is LOST IN PARIS, a lighthearted French film from the directorial team behind RiverRun favorites “Rumba” and “The Fairy,” Dominique Abel, and Fiona Gordon. When librarian Fiona receives a troubling letter from her 93-year-old Aunt in Paris, she rushes to France and finds that her aunt has disappeared. Once in Paris, Fiona runs into a genial tramp who insinuates himself into her life. The film also features a delightful performance from the late, great Emmanuelle Riva.
The second opening night film is THE PULITZER AT 100, a documentary directed by Kirk Simon, which was produced in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of the award’s inception, and examines the history of the prize through riveting stories of the artists that have received the prestigious honor, and features Helen Mirren, Natalie Portman, Live Schreiber, John Lithgow and Yara Shahidi.
The Festival will close on April 9 with THE LOST CITY OF Z, directed by James Gray. This spellbinding work tells the incredible true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam), who journeys into the Amazon at the dawn of the 20th century and discovers evidence of a previously unknown, advanced civilization. An epically scaled tale of courage and passion, the film also features Robert Pattison and Sienna Miller. In between, the Festival will feature a wide variety of features, documentaries, shorts and animation in competition programs, as well as many films in non-competition sections.
Included in the non-competition lineup this year is a six-screening Spotlight: Cuba on Screen, featuring films highlighting the cinema of a nation only recently accessible once again to our American consciousness. This Spotlight will afford audiences an opportunity to better understand the artistic achievements of a nation censored from us for so long behind literal and figurative blockades, including I AM CUBA, LUCIA, MEMORIES OF UNDERDEVELOPMENT, SANTA AND ANDRES, VAMPIRES IN HAVANA and a screening of Cuban shorts.