BTB spoke with filmmaker David Weissman about his documentary We Were Here, which airs Thursday, June 14 on Independent Lens.
We Were Here documents the arrival in San Francisco of what was then called the “Gay Plague” in the early 1980s. It illuminates the profound personal and community issues raised by the AIDS epidemic, as well as the broad political and social upheavals it unleashed. Be sure to watch We Were Here, Thursday on Independent Lens.
More Americans have been lost to AIDS than in all the U.S. wars since 1900. The pandemic has killed 22 million people worldwide. But few know about the existence of the National AIDS Memorial, a seven-acre grove hidden in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. The Grove chronicles this garden’s transformation from a neglected eyesore to landscaped sanctuary to national memorial. The film shows how a community in crisis found healing and remembrance, and how the seeds of a few visionary environmentalists blossomed into something larger than they could have imagined.
ITVS Broadcast and Distribution Manager Kate Sullivan Green sat down with The Grove filmmakers Tom Shepard and Andy Abrahams Wilson to discuss the film, which begins airing nationwide on December 1 (World AIDS Day) on the WORLD Channel. Watch the film’s trailer and read the complete filmmaker interview after the jump. Continue reading →
Isaac Solotaroff and the inspiration for his film Wham! Bam! Islam!, Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, were on hand for a special San Francisco sneak preview screening of the documentary last week.
The film screened before an audience of 130 at the Delancey Street Screening Room, where ITVS hosted a reception and post-screening discussion. Dr. Al-Mutawa explained his motivation for creating THE 99 comic book series based on the 99 attributes of Allah — “to provide Muslim children around the world with new superheroes.”
He also discussed his struggles to get distribution in the U.S. for an animated television series based on THE 99 due to pressure from a few press outlets.
Solotaroff, who lived in San Francisco for 10 years, acknowledged many of his filmmaking mentors in the audience and his experiences telling this story as a non-Muslim.
The Blunder Years is an evening of live performance and video where Bay Area filmmakers, writers, musicians, and actors show/perform pieces influenced by the television and movies of their teenage years. The event is scheduled for the evening of August 12 at Z-Space in San Francisco. All donations will go towards BAVC’s The Factory — an advanced video production collective for motivated teenagers in the Oakland Bay Area.
Cinema Speakeasy and Friends with Benefits invites you to participate in The Blunder Years — an evening inspired by the pop-culture forces of our youth, to celebrate and benefit today’s youth. This is a live variety showcase in which each participant pays homage to the iconic movie or TV show of their teen years in the form of a reading, a live sketch performance, a musical interpretation, a comedy routine, or a short-film screening, to name just a few examples. The night’s performances will be punctuated by a cocktail hour, a house-band, and a DJ. Continue reading →
ITVS celebrated 20 years of support for independent filmmakers and documentaries last Friday in downtown San Francisco. Nearly 300 staff and filmmakers were on hand to celebrate public media’s independent voice. Enjoy photos from the event below and thanks to all for a wonderful evening!
Nearly 300 filmmakers, staff, board members, and friends rallied at 111 Minna on Friday, July 15 to celebrate ITVS's 20th Anniversary. — Photo by Tommy Lau
Journey of the Bonesetter’s Daughter, a film by Monica Lam, David Petersen, and Fawn Ring, follows the creation of the San Francisco Opera’s celebrated production of The Bonesetter’s Daughter, based on Amy Tan’s bestselling novel of the same name. An ambitious, cross-cultural tour de force that brings together artists from China and the U.S., the opera tells a deeply moving story about the difficult but unbreakable bond between mothers and daughters, inspired by Tan’s own family history.
The documentary American Teacher screened before a crowd of educators Tuesday night at the San Francisco International Film Festival.
Tuesday night was National Teacher Appreciation Day, and at the San Francisco Film Festival it was a teacher love fest. And rightly so. After a tough year of budget cuts and political controversy, educators deserve a break. The San Francisco Film Society’s Schools at the Festival program celebrated its 20th anniversary by giving local teachers the VIP treatment. Continue reading →
Kelly Duane de la Vega and Katie Galloway’s documentary picked up two Golden Gate awards at this year’s San Francisco International Film Festival.
Better This Worldwon two Golden Gate Awards at the 54th annual San Francisco International Film Festival, taking the prizes for Best Documentary Feature and Best Bay Area Documentary Feature.
The doc follows two boyhood friends from Midland, Texas — David McKay and Bradley Crowder — who fall under the sway of a charismatic revolutionary 10 years their senior. At the volatile 2008 Republican Convention the “Texas Two” cross a line that radically changes their lives. The result: eight homemade bombs, multiple domestic terrorism charges, and a high-stakes entrapment defense hinging on the actions of a controversial FBI informant.
The 54th San Francisco International Film Festival runs April 21 through May 5. ITVS’ Better this Worldis among the competition for Best Documentary Feature.
America’s longest-running film festival gets underway Thursday in San Francisco. Bay Area residents interested in navigating through the 188 films from 48 countries on display — should visit this nifty feature from the Bay Area Citizen to help find what’s right for them.
ITVS is well represented this year at SFIFF with the doc Better this World competing for Best Documentary Feature. The doc, which is headed to P.O.V.this fall, tells the story of two childhood friends from Midland, Texas who fall under the sway of a charismatic revolutionary.
Just this past weekend, Directors Katie Galloway and Kelly Duane de la Vega’s film picked up top honors with the Documentary Jury Prize at the 2011 Sarasota Film Festival.
In addition to San Francisco, Better this World will be playing multiple festivals over the next month in Minneapolis, Boston, Toronto, and Baltimore.