VQFF Opens August 15

The 31st Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF) opens this Thursday, August 15th at the Vancouver Playhouse with the Canadian Premiere of Leon Le’s Song Lang (Vietnam/U.S.A.), Le’s first feature is set in the richly imagined and dilapidated streets of 1990’s Saigon. Song Lang is a tribute to the golden age of c?i l??ng (a form of modern Vietnamese folk opera), a queer romance and gangster film that stars Vietnamese popstar, Isaac.

VQFF’s Closing Gala Film is the Canadian Premiere of a positive, feel-good LGBTQ comedy from Italy, An Almost Ordinary Summer (Italy) by Simone Godano. The film pays homage to the entertaining romantic comedies of Nancy Meyers, about two aging patriarchs who bring their two very different families together on vacation to announce their engagement. 

An Almost Ordinary Summer

In between, VQFF welcomes more than 100 films from 27 countries, plus a series of Festival Spotlights including Coming Into Our Own: Youth Spotlight, Queer Kinship, A Higher Power, and projecting brilliance: a two-spirit showcase. 

Curated by Artistic Director, Anoushka Ratnarajah, VQFF is Vancouver’s second largest film festival and the largest queer arts event in Western Canada.  Presented by Out On Screen, the Festival runs August 15-25, 2019 at various venues throughout the city, for more information and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.ca

VQFF Opening Gala coming August 9th

The 2018 Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF) kicks off on Thursday August 9th with a 7:00pm screening of Yen Tan’s critically-observed period piece, 1985, at the Vancouver Playhouse.

1985
photo: dutch rall

Director Tan’s fifth feature black & white film, 1985 follows Adrian, a closeted young man returning to his Texas hometown for Christmas during the first wave of the AIDS crisis. Burdened with an unspeakable tragedy in New York, Adrian reconnects with his brother and estranged childhood friend, as he struggles to divulge his dire circumstances to his religious parents. Under Tan’s emotional and poignant direction, 1985’s characters bring tension and a strained tenderness into every scene, creating a haunting elegy for a generation of gay men. 1985 stars Cory Michael Smith (Gotham), Michael Chiklis (The Commish), Virginia Madsen (Designated Survivor), Jamie Chung (The Gifted). Director Yen Tan will be in attendance, at the VQFF Opening Gala to introduce his film, as well as at the repeat screening August 10.

Following the opening screening the Festival really gets going with the Opening Gala Party, taking place under the stars at the šx???ex?n Xwtl’a7shn Plaza (QET Plaza). Attendees are encouraged to dress in black and white finery as an homage to Yen Tan’s stylistic choice for 1985, and will be treated to performances by contortionist Vixen Von Flex and dance troupe Coven, with beats from East Van DJs Body Party.

VQFF, Vancouver’s second largest film festival and the largest queer arts event in Western Canada runs August 9-19 at various venues throughout the city.  More than 70 films from 15 countries are featured at this year’s 30th anniversary Festival, along with 11 visiting filmmakers including guests from India, Philippines, United States, as well as numerous local directors and performing artists, in addition to parties and talkback sessions. The Vancouver Queer Film Festival is presented by Out On Screen, for more information and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.ca

Ensemble Theatre Company 2018 Summer Festival

The Ensemble Theatre Company has announced the trio of dramas in the 6th Annual Summer Repertory Festival.  Taking the stage at the Jericho Arts Centre, Ensemble has programmed a dramatic trio of thrilling, entertaining, and challenging plays. 

Aaron Sorkin’s military courtroom drama A Few Good Men, Martin McDonagh’s tragic-comedy The Beauty Queen of Leenane and Dark Road, the first play from Scottish crime writer Ian Rankin, are brought to life by the Ensemble Theatre’s talented group of actors, directors, and designers.

This selection of three highly entertaining plays from three celebrated writers showcases the humour, intricacies, and depths of the darker recesses of our lives. As Tariq Leslie, Artistic Director of the Ensemble Theatre Company explains: “To me, theatre is a means of generating empathy. It gives us a window to understanding each other a little more – our different and diverse hopes, aspirations, dreams, and fears. Join us for our 6th Annual Festival, and for the journeys that A Few Good MenThe Beauty Queen of Leenane, and Dark Road will take you on.”

6th Annual Summer Repertory Festival features:

Dark Road, by Ian Rankin and Mark Thomson
Directed by Chris Lam 

Featuring Alysson Hall, Paul Herbert, Lindsay Nelson, Christine Reinfort, Anthony Santiago, David Wallace, and Rebecca Walters 

Preview Performance July 9
Opening Night 7:30pm July 12
Special Sunday Brunch Reading 11:30am July 22
Matinée 2:00pm July 22
Closing Night 7:30pm August 16

A Few Good Men, by Aaron Sorkin
Directed by Alan Brodie and Tariq Leslie

Featuring Zac Scott, Alexis Kellum-Creer, Yurij Kis, Sean Anthony, James Gill, Alysson Hall, Marc LeBlanc, David Wallace, Francis Winter

Preview Performance July 10
Opening Night 7:30 July 13
Special Sunday Brunch Reading 11:30am July 29
Matinée 2pm July 29
Closing Night 7:30 August 17

The Beauty Queen of Leenane, by Martin McDonagh
Directed by Kathleen Duborg

Featuring Tanja Dixon-Warren, Ashley O’Connell, Kristen Slenning, Francis Winter 

Preview Performance July 8
Opening Night 7:30pm July 14
Special Sunday Brunch Reading 11:30am August 5,
Matinée 2pm August 5
Closing Night 7:30pm August 15

Ensemble Theatre Company’s 6th Annual Summer Repertory Festival, runs July 8 to August 17, at Jericho Art Centre. Single show tickets and Festival Passes are on sale now at ensembletheatrecompany.ca

Vancouver Queer Film Festival starts August 10, 2017

Vancouver Queer Film Festival (VQFF), the city’s second largest film fest gets under way in one week.  Running August 10 to 20, 2017, VQFF brings 11 days of award winning films, talkbacks, performances and parties.

I Dream In Another Language

The Festival opens at the Vancouver Playhouse with the 2017 Sundance Award-winning film, I Dream in Another Language (Sueño en Otro Idioma). Following the screening the Festival’s Opening Gala Party, a celebration under the stars at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza.

The VQFF Artist in Residence for 2017 is the prolific and multi-talented Vivek Shraya. The filmmaker, visual artist, musician, and author will spend the Festival’s opening weekend with audiences at events featuring a breadth of work from her diverse portfolio.

VQFF Artistic Directors Amber Dawn & Anoushka Ratnarajah

“We’re thrilled to be bringing audiences and artists together for once in a lifetime connections at our Festival,” said Artistic Directors Anoushka Ratnarajah and Amber Dawn. “The caliber of talent and diverse perspectives of our visiting and local filmmakers are sure to challenge and delight our highly intelligent and invested audiences. We look forward to the time we will share together.”

 


Some of the artists in attendance at VQFF include;

Taxi Stories

– Doris Yeung, writer, director and executive producer of Taxi Stories, the most ambitious film of the Festival, filmed in three countries and featuring a mostly non-actor cast.
– Philippines filmmaker Samantha Lee, whose film, Maybe Tomorrow (Baka Bukas), won the Audience Choice Award at the Cinema One Originals Festival in Manila.
– New York City poet and author, t’ai freedom ford, whose work is featured in The Revival: Women and the Word.
– Pakistani-Canadian film and television actress, writer and producer, Fawzia Mirza, for the screening of Signature Move.
– Emerging filmmaker Francis Luta, will speak with audiences after his film Project Gelb.
– Award-winning writer, playwright, performer and filmmaker, Steen Starr, whose short documentary Older than What? tells the story of twelve queer and trans elders responding to ten questions about aging, visibility, and social change.

One of the festival’s fan favourite events, The Coast is Queer, an evening dedicated to local talent, will screen on Friday, August 18 at the York Theatre. Featuring nine stellar short films from some of BC’s most standout emerging and established filmmakers, our annual local programming covers documentaries, romance, fantasy, and drama.

Handsome Devil

The Festival closes August 20th at the Vancouver Playhouse with the Closing Gala screening of 2016 Dublin Film Critics Circle Award winner Handsome Devil by Irish director John Butler.  Following the  screening the annual Closing Party at The Junction wraps another VQFF.

For full Vancouver Queer Film Festival line-up and tickets visit queerfilmfestival.com

Maple Ridge Festival of BC Film Releases 2017 Line-up

The inaugural Maple Ridge Festival of BC Film is set to take place at The ACT Arts Centre in Maple Ridge from Friday, March 17 to Sunday, March 19, 2017.

“Just as The ACT Arts Centre’s ‘ACT Presents’ performance series is designed to introduce new Canadian and BC talent to our audiences, the ‘Festival of BC Film’ has been created to bring more attention and access to the work of BC filmmakers,” says Executive and Artistic Director, Lindy Sisson.

John Wittmayer, owner of The Ridge Film Studios states, “This festival aims to raise the profile of films made in British Columbia, and supporting the awareness of the amazing talent that this province has to offer is truly something to be proud of.”

The Festival runs from Friday, March 17 to Sunday March 19, 2017 and features the following six shorts and six feature films over the course of three days;

FRIDAY, MARCH 17 at 8:00pm

Feature Film: Numb
Director: Jason R. Goode

Short: Anxious Oswald Greene
Director: Marshall Axani

SATURDAY, MARCH 18 at 5:00pm

Feature Film: Fractured Land
Directors: Damien Gillis & Fiona Rayher

Short: Counter Act
Directors: Heath Affolter, Jon Affolter, Nathan Affolter, & Thomas Affolter

SATURDAY, MARCH 18 at 7:30pm

Feature Film: Black Fly
Director: Jason Borque

Short: The Timekeeper
Director: Scott Weber

SUNDAY, MARCH 19 at 2:00pm

Feature Film: The Wingman
Director: Jim Garrison

 

 

Short: I Wanna Date U
Director: Lisa Ovies

SUNDAY, MARCH 19 at 5:00pm

Feature Film: Lawrence and Holloman
Director: Matthew Kowalchuk

Short: Monster
Director: Deborah Burns

SUNDAY, MARCH 19 at 7:30pm

Feature Film: Into the Forest
Director: Patricia Rozema

Short: Bedbugs: A Musical Love Story
Director: Matthew Kowalchuk

Tickets for the Maple Ridge Festival of BC Film start at $11 for single films.  Tickets, trailers and details are available on the Festival website

VIFF 2016 – Vancouver International Film Festival

viff16

It’s time to get studying and make your picks for the flicks you want to catch during the Vancouver Film Festival (VIFF), running September 29 – October 14, 2016.

VIFF 2016 debuts a restructured format for the 35th annual festival. The new format “expands the frame” turning VIFF from just a series of screenings into a multi-experiential stream that includes great cinema from around the world combined with companion talks and events.  This “Film+” model gives the filmmakers the opportunity to interact with their audiences and the audience a chance to discover, discuss and connect more in-depth with the creators through a series of workshops, talks, music, conversations and more.

Many of the featured films come straight from playing at TIFF like; Nate Parker’s “The Birth Of A Nation”, Jim Jarmusch’s “Gimme Danger” & “Paterson”,  Pedro Almodóvar’s “Julieta”, Bruce McDonald’s “Weirdos” and many more. There’s too many films and events to mention.
In addition to world-class cinema, some of the creators coming to VIFF include; recent Emmy winner Tatiana Maslany, UnREAL creator Marti Noxon, Van Helsing & Continuum producer Simon Barry Davis, Better Call Saul writer Gordon Smith.  More industry-focused and public events take place throughout the 2 week festival, centred on the new VIFF Hub.

VIFF 2016 – the 35th Annual Vancouver Film Festival runs September 29 – October 14, 2016 in venues all around Vancouver.  Festival memberships and passes are on sale online at viff.org

Vancouver Queer Film Festival 2015

VQFFLogoFullColourHorizontalNext week, get out and find some great films, on August 13th, Vancouver’s second largest film festival gets underway. The Vancouver Queer Film Festival brings films from around the world for 11 days of movies and events happening all around the city.  In addition to celebrating the best in independent queer cinema the VQFF aims to stimulate conversation and community through through the plethora of performances, panels and workshops.

Now in its 27th year, this year the VQFF shines a spotlight on Canada, Latin America, DIY Gender and Queer youth.  There’s too many films and events to list but some of the highlights of the Festival include Opening Film Eisenstein in Guanajuato from acclaimed directors Peter Greenaway, which is followed by the Opening Gala at Robson Square.  In The Turn is the Youth Gala celebrating sport of roller derby at Woodwards Atrium, while South Korean director July Jung’s A Girl At My Door is the Centrepiece film and Jung also hosts a chance of a lifetime filmmaking workshop.  The Closing Gala, following the film Game Face, is always a great time and wraps up the festival with a bang.

Tickets for the Vancouver Queer Film Festival are now on sale online at queerfilmfestival.ca/tickets or in person at Little Sisters Bookstore, Black Dog Video or at the door (based on availability)