Monday, December 26, 2011

Big Sky Offers International Pitch with Top Industry Reps


Big Sky Documentary Film Festival will host an International Pitch Session with top industry representatives including Diane Weyermann (Participant Media) Yance Ford (POV The American Documentary) and Lois Vossen (ITVS, Independent Lens).

The third annual Big Sky International Documentary Pitch Session will take place on February 23, 2012 as part of Big Sky Doc Shop (Feb 21-24), a five day non-fiction industry forum during the ninth annual film festival.

More about the Pitch:

Entry Fee: $25

Submission Deadline: January 6, 2012

Filmmakers have the opportunity to pitch their work-in-progress (WIP) documentaries to some of the top commissioning editors and funders for documentary film in North America. All documentary forms and all subjects are eligible to submit. Commissioning editors will critique and comment on each pitch. A maximum of 15 projects will be accepted to pitch in this session. Potential participants should submit a brief (250 words maximum) project summary and an additional one-paragraph project status report. A short (5 minutes maximum) sample reel of the work-in-progress may be submitted (via vimeo, youtube.com, blip.tv, etc.) in addition to the written application. Selected projects will have 20 minutes to pitch their project and show a short sample (if available) for the panel. Selected projects will be required to pay an additional $75 to participate, and will be notified of their acceptance by January 11, 2012.

Confirmed panelists include: Diane Weyermann (Executive Vice President, Documentary Films, Participant Media), Yance Ford (Series Producer, POV/The American Documentary), Lois Vossen (Independent Lens, Senior Series Producer & Vice President, ITVS) and Reva Goldberg (Communications and Fellowships Manager at Cinereach) Caroline Graham (Marketing Manager, The Documentary Channel).

Enter via Withoutabox.com


More about Doc Shop

February 20-24, 2012 at The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival

The Doc Shop is a new, industry-focused feature of the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. It offers documentary filmmakers opportunities for networking, discussion, and professional development. The DocShop schedule includes workshops, panels, a round table discussion, product demos, and the annual Big Sky Documentary Pitch session. These events deal with topics from funding to distribution, and everything in between. The Doc Shop brings filmmakers, industry decision-makers, and experts together in a dialogue about what matters most in the world of documentary film.

Confirmed participants at Doc Shop include: Diane Weyermann (Food, Inc.,An Inconvenient Truth) Yance Ford (POV, The American Documentary on PBS) Caroline Graham (The Documentary Channel) Lois Vossen (Independent Lens/ITVS) Richard Saiz (ITVS) Reva Goldberg (Cinereach Foundation) Marshall Curry (Racing Dreams, If A Tree Falls) Rebecca Richman-Cohen (War Don Don, Code of The West) Beth Harrington (Welcome To The Club: The Women of Rockabilly) Mike Woolf (A Man On A Mission) Ben Fowlie (Camden International Film Festival), Doug Whyte (The Hollywood Theater) Jeanie Finlay (Goth Cruise, Sound It Out) and Gita Saedi-Kiely (The New Americans).

Doc Shop passes - available for $50; good for all Doc Shop specific events, workshops, pitch sessions, and discussions. All-Access Industry Passes - available for $275; good for all Doc Shop events, festival screenings, festival parties, & special events.

For more Info contact Doc Shop Coordinator Noel Pederson at docshop (at) bigskyfilmfest.org

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Awards $10,000 Grant to Big Sky


Big Sky Documentary Film Festival has received a generous $10,000 grant from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences to support Special Programming at the 9th Annual Film Festival (February 17-26 in Missoula, MT), including filmmaker retrospectives and a unique music-themed side bar entitled Big Sky Mix Tape.

The Academy Foundation of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded $455,000 to 25 U.S. film festivals for the 2012 calendar year. "We are extremely grateful to The Academy for their support", said Big Sky Festival Director Mike Steinberg. "Without their generosity this sort of programming would simply not be possible."

Big Sky Mix Tape will feature new and historic work that conveys the depth and beauty of music in human life. From rockumentaries and tour films to profiles of renowned and unknown artists, the program will explore the limitlessness of music. The program will also include guest artists and live performances throughout the ten-day event.

The full slate of films and events, along with the Official Selections of the 9th Annual Big Sky Documentary Film Festival will be available in early January at bigskyfilmfest.org

Passes for the ten-day event are available for purchase now.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

OPEN CALL for International Documentary Pitch Session

The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival is hosting the second annual
Big Sky International Documentary Pitch Session on February 23, 2012.
The pitch will take place as part of Big Sky Doc Shop (Feb 21-24), a
four day non-fiction industry forum during the ninth annual film
festival.

Entry Fee: $25

Submission Deadline: January 6, 2012

Filmmakers have the opportunity to pitch their work-in-progress (WIP) documentaries to some of the top commissioning editors and funders for documentary film in North America. All documentary forms and all subjects are eligible to submit. Commissioning editors will critique and comment on each pitch. A maximum of 15 projects will be accepted to pitch in this session. Potential participants should submit a brief (250 words maximum) project summary and an additional one-paragraph project status report. A short (5 minutes maximum) sample reel of the work-in-progress may be submitted (via vimeo, youtube.com, blip.tv, etc.) in addition to the written application. Selected projects will have 20 minutes to pitch their project and show a short sample (if available) for the panel. Selected projects will be required to pay an additional $75 to participate, and will be notified of their acceptance by January 11, 2012.

Confirmed participants include: Diane Weyermann (Executive Vice President, Documentary Films, Participant Media), Yance Ford (Series Producer, POV/The American Documentary), and Reva Goldberg (Communications and Fellowships Manager at Cinereach).

Enter via Withoutabox.com

Thursday, October 13, 2011



There's less than ONE WEEK until the final deadline for entry into the 2012 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. This year's dates are as follows:

Final Deadline - Postmarked by October 17, 2011
Extended Deadline (withoutbox entry ONLY) October 31, 2011

The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, the premier venue for nonfiction film in the American West, is seeking submissions for its ninth annual event. From February 17-26, 2012 the festival will screen 100+ films, including world and U.S. premieres, classics, rare and experimental works on Montana's largest screen at the historic Wilma Theater in downtown Missoula, Montana. In addition to ten days of screenings, the event will feature many public and VIP events including panel discussions, pitch sessions, galas, receptions and networking round-tables.

Now in its ninth year, the event draws an annual audience of 12,000, including thousands of enthusiastic documentary fans, filmmakers, distributors, broadcasters and industry professionals. Held in the idyllic mountain town of Missoula, Montana, Big Sky has grown to become the largest cinema event in Montana, and a destination for documentary devotees from around the world.

The competition is open to non-fiction films and videos of all genres, subject matter, lengths and production dates. Awards and cash prizes will be given for Best Documentary Feature (over 50 minutes), Best Documentary Short (15-50 minutes), Best Mini-Doc (under 15 minutes) and best documentary about the American West (the Big Sky Award).

Finished films, rough cuts and works-in-progress are all accepted for this final deadline, provided that the completed film will be available for exhibition by February 17, 2012.

DVD (NTSC/PAL), VHS (NTSC/PAL), DVCAM (NTSC/PAL), HDV (NTSC), and miniDV (NTSC/PAL) accepted for preview.

Enter via Withoutabox.com at - http://www.withoutabox.com/login/3969

or download entry form in pdf format at - http://www.bigskyfilmfest.org/bsdff/festival/submissions

If you would like an entry form emailed to you in pdf format, send a request to .

For more information visit http://www.bigskyfilmfest.org

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Deadline Approaching for 2012 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival


It's coming up right around the corner... the deadline for entry into the 2012 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. This year's dates are as follows:


Regular Deadline - Postmarked by September 9, 2011
Final Deadline - Postmarked by October 17, 2011




The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, the premier venue for nonfiction film in the American West, is seeking submissions for its ninth annual event. From February 17-26, 2012 the festival will screen 100+ films, including world and U.S. premieres, classics, rare and experimental works on Montana's largest screen at the historic Wilma Theater in downtown Missoula, Montana. In addition to ten days of screenings, the event will feature many public and VIP events including panel discussions, pitch sessions, galas, receptions and networking round-tables.

Now in its ninth year, the event draws an annual audience of 12,000, including thousands of enthusiastic documentary fans, filmmakers, distributors, broadcasters and industry professionals. Held in the idyllic mountain town of Missoula, Montana, Big Sky has grown to become the largest cinema event in Montana, and a destination for documentary devotees from around the world.

The competition is open to non-fiction films and videos of all genres, subject matter, lengths and production dates. Awards and cash prizes will be given for Best Documentary Feature (over 50 minutes), Best Documentary Short (15-50 minutes), Best Mini-Doc (under 15 minutes) and best documentary about the American West (the Big Sky Award).

DVD (NTSC/PAL), VHS (NTSC/PAL), DVCAM (NTSC/PAL), HDV (NTSC), and miniDV (NTSC/PAL) accepted for preview.

Enter via Withoutabox.com at - http://www.withoutabox.com/login/3969

or download entry form in pdf format at - http://www.bigskyfilmfest.org/bsdff/festival/submissions

If you would like an entry form emailed to you in pdf format, send a request to .

For more information visit http://www.bigskyfilmfest.org

Thursday, June 2, 2011

2011 Big Sky Film Series Kicks Off Friday

When: June 3, 2011 - Screening at 8:30 p.m.

Where: Le Petit Outre, 129 South 4th Street, West, Missoula, Montana

Cost: Free Public Admission

The Big Sky Films Series kicks off this Friday with the first installment of the 2011 season, a collection of short films from this year's festival.

The program of films features some of the best short films to play during the 2011 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. Included in the program are Ian McCluskey's SUMMER SNAPSHOT, an artful film about skinny dipping; Mina Son's FINAL CHAPTER, about a Northern California undertaker; Sara Newen's COMFORT OF COLD about a 74 year-old man who swims daily i the San Francisco Bay; and the 2011 Big Sky Award winner TUNED IN by Kevin Gordon - a film that explores the mysterious world of natural radio signals.



The Big Sky Film Series is a periodic monthly screening series highlighting traditional and innovative nonfiction film and video. It is held the first Friday of the month as part of downtown Missoula, Montana's "Art Walk." All screenings are held in the Historic Wilma Theatre and are FREE and open to the public. The series is programmed by the staff of the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival.

For more information, visit www.bigskyfilm.org Call (406) 541-FILM or email director@bigskyfilmfest.org for sponsorship information.

The Big Sky Film Series is a program of the Big Sky Film Institute, a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. The mission of the Big Sky Film Institute is to celebrate and promote the art of nonfiction filmmaking, to establish Missoula as a center of documentary filmmaking, exhibition and criticism, and to encourage media literacy by fostering public understanding and appreciation of documentary film.


Big Sky Film Series Sponsors:

Big Sky Film Institute

HBO Documentary Films

The Historic Wilma Theatre

Le Petit Outre

Friday, May 13, 2011

Big Sky Documentary Film Festival Announces Call For Entries

Missoula, Montana - The Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, the premier venue for nonfiction film in the American West, is seeking submissions for its ninth annual event. From February 17-26, 2012 the festival will screen 100+ films, including world and U.S. premieres, classics, rare and experimental works on Montana's largest screen at the historic Wilma Theater in downtown Missoula, Montana. In addition to ten days of screenings, the event will feature many public and VIP events including panel discussions, pitch sessions, galas, receptions and networking round-tables.



Now in its ninth year, the event draws an annual audience of 12,000, including thousands of enthusiastic documentary fans, filmmakers, distributors, broadcasters and industry professionals. Held in the idyllic mountain town of Missoula, Montana, Big Sky has grown to become the largest cinema event in Montana, and a destination for documentary devotees from around the world.

The competition is open to non-fiction films and videos of all genres, subject matter, lengths and production dates. Awards and cash prizes will be given for Best Documentary Feature (over 50 minutes), Best Documentary Short (15-50 minutes), Best Mini-Doc (under 15 minutes) and best documentary about the American West (the Big Sky Award).

DVD (NTSC/PAL), VHS (NTSC/PAL), DVCAM (NTSC/PAL), HDV (NTSC), and miniDV (NTSC/PAL) accepted for preview.

Enter via Withoutabox.com or download entry form in pdf format.

If you would like an entry form emailed to you in pdf format, send a request to callforentries@bigskyfilmfest.org.

For more information visit www.bigskyfilmfest.org

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Huge Thank You

Between the Yo La Tengo concert, Brewfest, sponsorships, hard work, lovely filmmakers, great weather and other films and events throughout the festival, we've got a lot to be thankful for.

Thanks to:


...our FILMMAKERS
who continue to submit their works of art and passion to us each year.

...our VOLUNTEERS and INTERNS
whose donated hours allow us flexibility and fluidity throughout the festival.

...our AUDIENCE and the town of MISSOULA
who continues to come out and support us each year with their enthusiasm and their curiosity.

...our FESTIVAL STAFF
whose hard work throughout the year and throughout the festival has made the 8th annual Big Sky Documentary Film Festival another incredible success.

...the WILMA THEATRE
for letting us take over their beautiful space for 10 days each February.

...our SPONSORS
whose generosity made the fest possible.
HBO, Blue Cross Blue Shield, LEAW Family Foundation, Fact and Fiction, Humanities Montana, Silver Foundation, The Green Light, Lost Trail, Bob Wards, Poverello Center, Rocky Mountain School of Photography, The Artists Shop, Ear Candy Music, Hellgate Roller
Girls, Runners Edge, Farm to Family, Montana Museum of Art and Culture, Missoula Winery, Bernices Bakery, and Trail 103.3, HBO Documentary Films, Sony Electronics, The Documentary Channel, Montana Pubic Television, The Missoula Independent, Montana Public
Radio, Montana Film Office, International Documentary Association,
Morris & Helen Silver Foundation, ITVS, Docurama, KBGA, Northwestern, Energy, First Security Bank, Montana Arts Council, ITVS, Missoula Art Museum, Blossoms Bed & Breakfast, Doubletree Inn, The Mountain Valley Inn, Grant Creek Best Western and Campus Inn.

Special thanks to the McKays, our musicians, Jimmy Johns, UPS, USPS, the weather, FedEx, Taco Del Sol, McKenzie Pizza, Great Harvest, The Badlander, Statriot Designs, popcorn, iPhone, Hellgate Cyclery, Patrick Record, Tom Robertson, Subaru, hole punchers, Big Sky Brewing et beaucoup beaucoup plus!

Best Tweets of the Fest

As the festival winds down and the Awards Screenings begin, now may be a good time to share some of the best Tweets we've gotten over the past 10 days. From compliments to sheer excitement for our films, the following words are music to our ears. @bigskydoc

@greendoorphoto The Big Sky Film Festival is so inspiring and eye opening.

@MCADSustainDsgn Saw "Play Again" at the Big Sky Film Festival last night. Heartbreaking. My advice: see it, share it, go outside

@torbenb About to watch 'Granito' @BigSkyDoc. Great films all day!

@sonminat stanford representin' tonight at @BigSkyDoc!

@friendofdurutti sad to leave Missoula. I had a great time screening @theseaisharsh. Big sky knows how to treat filmmakers! Inspired.

@marcmoss great seeing *you*! Thnx 4 all the work you're doing!

@filmwitch Big Sky winner of Best Fest Award! Thanks n love 2 best, smartest, crew n all the great staff n volunteers

@WeStillLiveHere Many thanks to the organizers and audiences at @BigSkyDoc last weekend. Hope you enjoyed the film!

jeanlouisefinch Best time @BigSkyDoc great audience, conversation, generous filmmakers.

@topspinmovie can't believe we are missing the show! there arent enough sad faces to express our despair

@TonskiProducers Thanks @BigSkyDoc! What a ridiculous weekend...Strong programming, solid festival staff and an awesome @rolloutcowboy Montana premiere

@IcarusArts One of the best documentary festivals in the country is going on right now.

@bruensk How to Die in Oregon amazing! Wonderful programing with free admission bringing real story's to Missoula public discourse!

@bjwoodman Thanks for the hospitality! Big Sky Folks are the best!!!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stories About Writers

Our last shorts program of the festival features stories about writers, from Henry Miller to David Rubin and a young Ugandan boy to local Sheryl Noethe of the Missoula Writing Collaborative. This Writer's Block is sponsored by Fact & Fiction bookstore, the Morris and Helen Silver Foundation and Humanities Montana.

Writer's Block SHORTS PROGRAM plays at NOON on SUNDAY, February 20th.

HENRY MILLER: ASLEEP AND AWAKE features the then-81-year-old author sharing ideas about life, writing, sex, spirituality, nightmares and New York.

NOTES FROM A POET AND A ONE-EYED CAT is about the founding of the Missoula Writer's Collaborative and Sheryl Noethe's passtion to spread the love of writing to future generations.

RADIOGRAFIA DUN AUTOR DE TEBEOS journeys through the imagination of comic artist David Rubin as he is being filmed for a documentary.

UNEARTHING THE PEN tells the story of a young Ugandan boy's desire for education in the face of a 40-year-old curse on the written word.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chuck Workman Brings Knowledge of FIlm to Big Sky

Chuck Workman arrived at the Missoula Art Museum on Thursday night straight from the airport, ready to speak to a crowd about the short film he screened there--a montage of films whose directors are all members of the Directors Guild of America. BSDFF director Mike Steinberg described Workman's knowledge of film as "encyclopedic," a talent that has earned him an Academy Award and numerous Emmy nominations.


Friday afternoon Workman was a guest speaker to students at UM, talking through several movies clip by clip, discussing why directors make certain choices in terms of camera angles and aesthetics--poignant decisions that have made these moments the quintessential ones audiences cling to the most.


Big Sky is delighted to welcome 2011 retrospective artist, Chuck Workman for a guided tour of his cinematic and countercultural oeuvre. Workman who has been making films since 1967 has produced films for the Motion Picture Academy, the Motion Picture Association of America, CBS, Disney World, Turner Broadcasting, and PIECES OF SILVER for Eastman Kodak and the Director’s Guild of America. The six film program includes films about cinema, writing and the arts, and features his newest feature Visionaries and his Academy Award winning film Precious Images which was selected for the Library of Congress National Film Registry in 2009.

Six of Workman's films will play as part of the retrospective on Saturday.

PIECES OF SILVER plays with VISIONARIES at 1:40 in Wilma 2
THE SOURCE plays with WORDS at 4pm in Wilma 1
PRECIOUS IMAGES plays with SUPERSTAR: THE LIFE AND TIME OF ANDY WARHOL at 6:10 in Wilma 1.


Orangutans in the Morning

How could you not want to see this? Grab some breakfast then come see this endearing flick about our ancestors.

NENETTE, directed by

Born in the jungles of Borneo, Nénette is a 40-year-old orangutan — and the oldest (and most beloved) inhabitant at the Ménagerie du Jardin des Plantes in Paris. The latest film by legendary French documentarian Nicolas Philibert (TO BE AND TO HAVE), Nénette is a captivating study of an enigmatic animal and our relationship to her.

Screening - Wilma 2, Saturday February 19 @ 10:15 am Montana Premiere


MARWENCOL (a land made of dolls) Helps Victim Cope

MARWENCOL
Wilma 1, Friday February 18 @ 7:45pm

O
n April 8, 2000, Mark Hogancamp was attacked outside of a bar in Kingston, NY, by five men who beat him literally to death. Revived by paramedics, Mark had suffered brain damage and physical injuries so severe even his own mother didn’t recognize him. After nine days in a coma and 40 days in the hospital, Mark was discharged with little memory of his previous life. Unable to afford therapy, Mark decided to create his own.



In his backyard, he built Marwencol, a 1/6th scale World War II‐era town that he populated with dolls representing
his friends, family and even his attackers. He used the small dolls and props to redevelop his hand‐eye coordination, while he dealt with the psychic wounds from his attack through the town’s many battles and dramas. Shot over the course of four years, Jeff Malmberg’s documentary intertwines the dual realities of Mark Hogancamp to tell the whole story of Marwencol – a surprising tale of love, secrets, pain, and adventure.


Awards Announced, Screenings Too!

The judges of the 8th annual Big Sky Documentary Film Festival have announced this year's award winning films in the four competitive categories: Best Feature, Big Sky Award, Best Short Film and Best Mini Doc (under 15 minutes). The awards were announced Thursday evening at a ceremony at The Loft in downtown Missoula. The Feature Category winner will receive $1000, while the film in the other three categories will receive a cash prize of $500, courtesy of The Documentary Channel.

This year's jury included Andrew Catauro of POV, Michael Lumpkin of the International Documentary Association, Ian McCluskey from NW Documentary, Kate Pearson of the Documentary Channel, Tracy Rector of Longhouse Media, Oscar-winning filmmaker Chuck Workman and Paco de Onis & Pamela Yates of Skylight Pictures and GRANITO.

The Awards Screenings will take place in the Wilma Theatre February 19 and 20th.
The schedule for this weekend's Awards Screenings is as follows:

Saturday February 19 at 8:00pm
DREAMS AWAKE by Kevin Gordon & Rebekah Meredith- 7 mins
MICHAEL AND HIS DRAGON by Briar March - 6 mins
TUNED IN by Kevin Gordon- 5 mins
DARWIN by Nick Brandestini - 86 mins

Sunday February 20 at 8:00pm

BROKEN DOORS by Goro Toshima- 34 mins
THIS WAY OF LIFE by Thomas Burstyn - 85 mins
STEAM OF LIFE by Joonas Berghall & Mika Hotakainen - 81 mins

800+ Students From Area School Pack the Wilma

The Wilma is currently packed full of 800+ students from area middle and high schools for a FREE screening of PLAY AGAIN, a film about the lost art of going outside.

As part of our Educational Outreach program, this morning's show was organized by our coordinator Nicole Vanek who says that the fest is, "by nature, educational as well as entertaining and it only makes sense to have a partnership with the schools."

Among the schools participating today are Hellgate, Big Sky, Sentinel, Clark Fork and Sussex.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Festival Awards Announced!!!

People oohed and awwed And were rapt at the revelation of the festival winners at The Loft downtown.
After much deliberation, here are the awards...

Short Doc: Broken Doors, directed by Goro Toshima
Mini Doc: Dreams Awake, directed by Kevin Gordon & Rebekah Meredith
Artistic Vision: Michael and his Dragon, directed by Briar March
Feature: This Way of Life, directed by Thomas Burstyn
Feature Artistic Vision: Steam of Life, directed by Joonas Berghall & Mika Hotakainen
Big Sky Award: Tuned In, directed by Kevin Gordon
Big Sky Award Artistic Vision: Darwin, directed by Nick Brandestini

What could be better than getting 5 films for the price of one?

Our second to last Shorts Program plays tonight at 8pm and features a variety of films all revolving around Personal Views.

One of the featured films is MISSOULAQUATSI, a short essay about Missoula, MT. filmed on Super 8 that reveals itself in subtle and timeless ways through extensive use of grainy imagery, time-lapse photography and a futuristic jazz soundtrack. Filmmaker Andrew Smetanka will be in attendance.

Also featured is Tarkio Balloon by Torben Bernhard. The 5-minute film is about the death of his brother by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. It tracks Torben's drive from Utah to Tarkio, MO. and uses an interview by his mother as the soundtrack.


TONIGHT'S PROGRAM

Tarkio Balloon - 5 min
Yizkor (Remembrance) - 24 min
Irma - 12 min
Missoulaquatsi - 10 min
Rushland Ridge - 37 min

For All You Writers, Actors and Monologists Out There...

A couple months ago I heard this great piece on NPR about AND EVERYTHING IS GOING FINE, a film about Spalding Gray starring Spalding Gray and directed by Steven Soderbergh. It really gave me a glimpse into the life of this semi-elusive man who committed suicide in 2004 and intrigued me to the point of making it an ABSOLUTE necessity that I see this film.
It shows tonight, Thursday, at 9.45pm in Wilma 1.

An intimate portrait of master monologist Spalding Gray, as described by his most critical, irreverent and insightful biographer: Spalding Gray. Soderbergh has sifted through rare and revealing footage to construct a riveting final monologue. There are glimpses of Gray’s father, and of his son Forrest (who provides soaring music for the end credits), but mostly this is an inspired one-man show, a bittersweet display of Spalding’s playful and embattled intelligence, his gift for tracking universal truths by looking himself squarely in the eye.



AND EVERYTHING IS GOING FINE

BSDFF Receives Award from BSHS

Big Sky High School honored big Sky Film Festival this morning for our participation in their 10th annual Diversity Week. We've shown over 100 films and brought in 37 filmmakers over the past 6 years. Our collaboration with them has not only been great for us as part of our educational outreach program, but the students have been exposed to various films from different ways of life from all over the world via the documentary medium. Thanks, BSHS!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Join Us As We Get Face Planted

The Top Hat on Front Street is usually a good time, right?
Tonight, however, will be especially charming due to the band Butter playing for the festival-hosted party sponsored by Bayern Brewing and Lost Trail Powder Moutain. It begins at 8pm following the screening of LIKE A LION.
It is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

Wednesday Night Brings the Portrait of a Private Artist to Life

In DAVE BAILEY: FOUR BEAT TO THE BAR AND NO CHEATING, director Jérôme de Missolz has created an engaging portrait of a very private man who bared the soul of the swinging sixties and seventies with his photographs and films. Portraits of people like these are always fascinating, captivating and alluring, and this film is sure to be one of them.

From Vogue magazine fashion photographer to filmmaker, painter and sculptor, Bailey is the working-class Londoner who befriended the stars (Mick Jagger, Andy Warhol, Jack Nicholson, Roman Polanski), married his muses (Jean Shrimpton, Catherine Deneuve, Marie Helvin) and captures the spirit and elegance of his times with his refreshingly simple approach and razor-sharp eye.

He is also the man whose life and work inspired one of the cult movies of the sixties, Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blow-Up, and who has constantly travelled the globe either with the most beautiful models or chronicling the contemporary reality of Papua New Guinea, Brazil, Vietnam, Afghanistan and other countries with ground-breaking reportages. Above all, Bailey is a romantic with a delightful sense of humour approaching his 73rd year and showing no sign of slowing up
.

WEDNESDAY AT 7PM AT THE PIPESTONE AT 129 W FRONT STREET

WEDNESDAY WEDNESDAY WEDNESDAY

Today starts with a FREE screening of BAG IT at 12.30, with the director in attendance for a Q&A.
In this lively and comical look at one of the most important environmental issues of the day, Telluride, CO everyman Jeb Berrier makes a resolution to stop using plastic bags at the grocery store. Little does Berrier know that this simple decision will change his life completely. He concludes that our consumptive use of plastic has finally caught up to us, and looks at what we can do about it.
__________
Wednesday night's Shorts Program: Darkness and Light is composed of eight fabulous films, dealing with everything from life and illness to sleep deprivation and death. But six of these films have one thing in common: they were all made by students from the same MFA program at Stanford.

We talked to Jenni Nelson, Mina T. Son, Theo Rigby and Sara Newens who were here over the weekend watching films, eating milkshakes, meeting fellow filmmakers and telling us about the selective school which accepts only eight students a year for the rigorous two-year program in Documentary Film and Video.
When asked why they could only stay for the weekend and not take a day off, they responded, "These were our days off."

Mina (of TOPSPIN and THE FINAL CHAPTER) is in her second to last quarter in the two-year Documentary Film and Video program and is working on her final film--one of four (one being in 16mm b&w) all graduates are required to make in their two years as students. She raves about the program, despite its intensity.

"We are all making and will make films; that is what they're training us for."

The concentrations among the students vary, as some will go on to do commercial work while others stick to the artistic, more independent track. But they all get a lesson in the art of film festival strategy, which has proven successful, seeing as this year's programming has films from Stanford students of both present and past.

Shorts Program: Darkness and Light will show Wednesday night at 9.45pm in Wilma 1. NIGHT AWAKE, THE COMFORT OF COLD, THE FINAL CHAPTER, FIRELINE, INDELIBLE MARK, MICHAEL & HIS DRAGON are all Stanford student-made films.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tonight's the Night

Yo La Tengo is playing inside.

Reason #242 That Big Sky Film Fest is Great for the Community

We believe documentaries are so awesome that we bring directors of our films right to the
kids. We show the flick then do a discussion after, presenting students with topics and ideas they may not have been exposed to otherwise.

Starting Monday, directors will visit Big Sky, Sentinel, Willard and Hellgate High Schools. Kudos to our Education Director, Nicole Vanek, and thanks to the directors for taking the time to chat with young Missoulians.

Directors include Kathy Corley of THE TAO OF BLAKE, Mary Murphy of HEY BOO, Katherine Bruens of CORNER STORE and Theo Rigby of SIN PAIS.

Yo La Tengo and Underwater Urchins at the Wilma

I first saw Yo La Tengo (I've got it!) play THE SOUNDS OF SCIENCE 4 or 5 years ago in St. Louis at Webster University. I was unfamiliar with the band, only hearing about them at the local record shop and from my sister whose obsession was on the verge of, well, obsessive. I loved what I heard here and there, but it wasn't until this show that I was truly turned onto their unique and complex sound.

They played two shows that night, each one sold out, and I remember being squished in like a sardine looking up at a movie screen undulating with vivid images of starfish, seahorses, urchins and octopi while the trio played solidly below. I eventually fell asleep, being drawn into a sort of trance--the sheer volume and intensity of the music was just enough to lull me into a dream state.
A few years later I was asked to teach a middle school Oceanography class. Seeing as I knew next to nothing about Oceanography, I turned to the DVD of THE SOUNDS OF SCIENCE to help introduce the kids to the underwater world as well as some kick-ass tunes. They enjoyed the shrimp and jellyfish, sure, but the audio stimulation was what really stuck with them, as it did me.
Click on the Octopus for a sample of their tune.

Yo La Tengo plays TONIGHT (Tuesday) at 8pm at the Wilma.

There are still tickets available!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
BOX OFFICE AT THE WILMA OPEN AT NOON. $20 each, yo.
TICKETS
__________________
New Jersey’s legendary independent rock trio Yo La Tengo (Georgia Hubley, Ira Kaplan, and James McNew) bring a live performance of their ambient and altogether mesmerizing score for the rarely seen undersea documentary shorts by influential French avant-garde filmmaker Jean Painlevé. One of the first to plunge underwater with a movie camera, Painlevé’s films are hypnotic and surreal, capturing the strange beauty of the scientific world as surely as Bunuel and Man Ray. His evocative images are taken to a new level of dreaminess by Yo La Tengo’s free- form compositions.

The eight films in the program include:
Hyas and Stenorhynchus (Hyas et stenorinques ) 1927, 13 min.
Sea Urchins (Les Oursins ) 1954, 11 min.
How Some Jellyfish Are Born (Comment naissent des Méduses ) 1960, 14 min.
Liquid Crystals, (Cristaux liquides ) 1978, 6 min.
The Sea Horse (L’ Hippocampe) 1933, 13 min.
The Love Life of the Octopus (Amours de la pieuvre ) 1967, 13 min.
Shrimp Stories, (La Crevette), 1963, 13 min.
Acera or the Witches’ Dance, 1972, 12 min.

Sponsored by KBGA, The Montana Arts Council, First Security Bank and Northwest Energy

Regarding Your Yo La Tengo Tickets...

UPDATE: YO LA TENGO IS SOLD OUT!!!!!!!!


If you ordered online...YOU PICK UP YOUR TICKETS AT THE BOX OFFICE
Bring your ID to prove you are who you think you are.
BOX OFFICE OPENS AT NOON (12pm) TODAY.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Three for Bieber

After our last showing on Friday night, a few gentlemen came into the Wilma looking for tickets to a film.

"Three for Bieber," one of them said, leaning coolly on the counter.

You can imagine our confusion...that is, until we realized that a new Justin Bieber documentary was across town at another theatre.
Their mistake was pointed out to them and they went on their way in search of the newest installment to the Canadian 16-year-old's stardom: NEVER SAY NEVER in 3D.

The New York Times talks about it here.

Maybe next year for the Bieber doc...maybe next year...

Come Out and Show Some Love, Why Dontchya

Some may scoff at today's Hallmark holiday while others may revel in the squishy feeling it gives them inside, but for either extreme and for everyone in between, we're offering a handful of hardy (and hearty) docs today for you solo-goers and couples alike.

1) From teen romance to a decades-long marriage; newlyweds to a recent divorcee, and even a bachelor so frustrated in his search that he chooses to have children without a partner, LOVE, ETC. documents the intimate journeys of engaging characters aged 18-89 who reflect the city's diversity, and takes an honest look at life’s most challenging pursuit.

LOVE, ETC. Jill Andresevic, 2010, USA, 94 minutes, English Screening - Wilma 1,
Monday February 14 @ 6:00 pm Montana Premiere

2) In our Writers' Blocks strand is DOC, a portrait of the filmmaker's father, the legendary forgotten novelist, co-founder of The Paris Review, and counterculture icon Harold Louis “Doc” Humes. Doc’s friends and family—including Norman Mailer, George Plimpton, Timothy Leary, William Stryon, Peter Matthiessen, Paul Auster, and Jonas Mekas—weaving together a story of politics, literature, protest and mental illness, shedding light on an original mind as well as the cultural history of postwar America.

DOC Screening - Pipestone,
Monday February 14 @ 7:00 pm
Montana Premiere


But don't worry, the love's not over yet!

3) KATI WITH AN I is an intimate portrait of a teenage girl in Alabama about to graduate high school. With microscopic focus, the beautifully rendered film captures her moment-by-moment emotional transformation over three tumultuous days that leave her future in doubt. The movie explores the period in one’s life when the only constant is motion.

KATI WITH AN I, Robert Greene, 2010, USA, 85 minutes, English Screening - Wilma 1, Monday February 14 @ 8:00 pm Montana Premiere, Feature Competition

Also today is the Doc Challenge Showcase, a collection of films developed, produced and edited in five days by a group of people around the world. The result is a maddening process for them as well as a joy for the audience. Always a popular choice at Big Sky.

So come out and show your love, Missoula!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

PHOTOgraphy

Did you know we document all this jazz that goes on here at the fest?
Well, we do...thanks to Patrick Record.
A few weeks ago Record called up the Big Sky office wondering if we needed any help with our photography. OF COURSE, we said.

A Photojournalism student at UM who's worked in TV in LA for several years, Record is now working more with photography.
We're highly appreciative of all his hard work and availability to archive our events.


You find more of his stuff HERE.
And go to our Flickr page HERE.

He's a rapper. He's a cowboy. He's a rapping cowboy.

"This bow-legged, wrangler jean wearin’ cowboy struts onto the stage and announced that he was 'gonna do a little old school beat boxin’ tonight.'"
-Elizabeth Lawrence, Director of ROLL OUT, COWBOY

About 10 years ago, Elizabeth Lawrence saw North Dakota native Chris "Sandman" Sand perform his "mishmash of folk, hip-hop and country." She realized right away that he wasn't just some act but that he was a true artist, whose work was both poignant and intelligent.

"He had lots to say and the rhythm to prove it."

Sand says most of his songs emerge from a dissatisfaction with social policies or seeing people stand up against acts of injustice.

"I've always fought for the 'little guy,'" he says. "The 2011 political climate befuddles me, though. Part of the time I'm pissed and the other part I'm inspired."

What became of Sandman was a role as the "Rapping Cowboy," whose story includes quirky details, from his hometown of 120 people to buying a house for $1000 to most of his friends being senior citizens. Lawrence was convinced this was enough material from which to craft a
documentary that would be "dramatic and entertaining at the same time."

"I called Chris and asked if he’d like to participate in a documentary project about his life," Lawrence says. "He agreed. Destiny led me to Dunn Center, North Dakota three weeks later."

Roll Out Cowboy from Roll Out, Cowboy on Vimeo.


"Chris Sand's story is about one man's daily effort to make his voice heard. From Red States, to Blue States, from urban to rural, from the elderly to the youthful...ROLL OUT, COWBOY has something for everyone."

ROLL OUT, COWBOY screens SUNDAY Feb. 13th at 9.45pm with a Q&A and a live performance by Chris Sand.

@rolloutcowboy @rappingcowboy

Let Us Help You

We here at Big Sky Film Festival listen to our customers' requests.
You want cooler merch? We did it.
You want more parties? Done.
You ask for a quiz to match up your interests with the film topics and a little guidance to help you plan your week? YOU GOT IT, BABY.

Do you like Self-effacing self-portraits of monologists (Spalding Gray)?

Do you like Dramatic war documentaries in Danish, Farsi and English?

Do you like to eat the sun? Have you ever been a teenager?

Do you like Renaissance men with famous liaisons? You want Hollywood tragedy?

Have you ever been in love? Are you intrigued by Irish Psychiatric wards?

Do you want to learn how to love the gun? How about amazing short films?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

When Beauty Gets Brutal

Do you like "butt-kickin’ tights-wearing’ roller-skatin’"* ladies?

Then go see this movie TONIGHT @9.45pm.

Afterwards, join the sponsors of the film--Hellgate Rollergirls--at The Badlander in downtown Missoula for a rockin' good time.

"I am always attracted to true subcultures that act as a clan. Roller Derby is definitely that."
-Chip Mabry, Director


Documenting the Rose City Rollers in Portland, BRUTAL BEAUTY explores the recently revived contact sport of female Roller Derby, where two teams race around an indoor track trying to get ahead of the other using precision and teamwork, with a little shoving, grunting, jamming, blocking, pivoting and bruising along the way. Director Chip Mabry's interest in sports with an "amateur aesthetic" is what tuned him into the roller derby culture, as well as the unwavering commitment each of the these ladies has for the activity.

"All of them have full-time jobs and no income from the sport," he says, amazed at their dedication.

But along with fortitude there is also risk.

"I saw many broken tibs, fibs and ribs over the year of production. I was most surprised to see the exact level of anticipation from these women as the professional athletes I have covered."

Mabry got hooked up with the Rose City Rollers through friends he met while making a film about skateboarding and actually began the project feeling skeptical about the sport, as he thought it "more of a fad than a culture." But his opinion was soon changed once he spent hours upon hours with these brutal, yet beautiful, girls.

"These women made me a believer in a sport that I now think has a real future; they changed me more than I'd like to admit."





BRUTAL BEAUTY shows Saturday, February 12 at 9.45pm.
Party to follow at The Badlander--208 Ryman. The event is FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.




*Taken from the Hellgate Rollergirls' site

Why This Festival Rocks

There's something about opening night at Big Sky that gets me. Directors, editors, and producers are in town (we picked up 17 from the airport yesterday alone), the town is aflutter with film buzz, and the energy level all around is high, as each of the 200+ people involved with the fest have hit the ground running in preparation for 10 days of film, hard work and invaluable experiences. The intimacy of this festival, in addition to its glorious location in downtown Missoula, and the accessibility of the visiting filmmakers creates a vibe that's hard to find at any other film festival, albeit a documentary film festival.

The festival kicked off Friday night with a free screening of HOW TO DIE IN OREGON, sponsored by HBO Documentary Films. Festival Director Mike Steinberg noted that it's an incredible honor to have a free screening the first night of the film, especially in association with HBO, whose quality programming continues to inspire and awe audiences. "HBO makes it possible for us to start our event with a lot of energy. It's really a wonderful gift to this community."

Peter D Richardson, director of the film conducted a Q&A with the 800+ people who turned out Friday night at opening night of the fest. Editor Greg Snider was also in attendance. HOW TO DIE IN OREGON was recently chosen by Sundance as the winner of the Grand Jury Prize in documentary. And judging by the 800+ people who showed for this film at the Wilma, his success is surely not 0ver.

More pictures of the Opening Night at Big Sky Documentary Film Festival

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sundance Grand Jury Prize Film Screens FOR FREE Tonight! Crowd of 800+ Turns Out.

Making its Montana premiere in the festival's American Spectrum strand, HOW TO DIE IN OREGON tells the stories of terminally ill Oregonians as they decide whether to end their life under the state's Death with Dignity Act. What emerges is a complex, poignant, and deeply moving portrait of what it means to die at the time and circumstance of ones choosing. Just last month the film won the prestigious Grand Jury Prize in the U.S. Documentary Competition at Sundance Film Festival.


The free HBO screening marks the fifth year the cable network has sponsored an opening night film at Big Sky. "It's an amazingly generous sponsorship," says Festival Director, Mike Steinberg. "HBO makes it possible for us to start our event with a lot of energy. It's really a wonderful gift to this community."

HOW TO DIE IN OREGON screens Friday, February 11 at 6.30pm, Q&A with director Peter D. Richardson follows the FREE screening.

Watch Peter D Richardson accept his award at Sundance

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Double Feature Competition Films Deal with Native American Issues

"Why is there a holiday to an Indian-killing slave trader?"

This is one of the questions asked in COLUMBUS DAY LEGACY (Saturday, Feb 12 at 2pm), a film that explores quintessential American issues of the freedom of speech, ethnic pride, and the ownership of history against the backdrop of the ongoing Columbus Day Parade controversy in Denver, Colorado.



In attendance will be filmmaker Bennie Klain, a director of documentaries and short fictions. He is the founder of TricksterFilms, based in Austin, Texas. He is a fluent Navajo speaker, often incorporating the language into his work. We asked him a few questions about the film and his hopes for future projects.


BSD: Outside of being a Navajo speaker, what is your connection to the topic of COLUMBUS DAY LEGACY? What got you interested in the controversy in Denver?

BK: I had never heard about the Denver Columbus Day parade until September of 2006, when my producer Leighton C. Peterson was a visiting professor at Colorado College in Colorado Springs. After talking with several people about the conflicting politics involved, he approached me with the idea of shooting during the parade the in October. We knew there was a unique human story here, and we were onto something significant when both the Italian- and Native American communities passionately emphasized that the 2007 parade—signifying the 100th anniversary of the holiday in Colorado—was the one to capture, . We returned the following year with two film crews to simultaneously capture this passionate energy on both sides.
I decided that Columbus Day Legacy needed to begin by representing both sides of this conflict somewhat equally, a difficult undertaking as a Navajo filmmaker. What emerged as a result of this persistent vision is a contemporary digital portrait of two strong and proud ethnic communities, both fighting to preserve the memory of their prejudiced experiences as representatives of the original inhabitants and immigrant Americans. Both groups were historically far removed from any political elite or aristocracy. During editing, this formed the central conflict in Columbus Day Legacy as the United States grapples with everyday questions about rights, immigration, and identity in the 21st Century.

BSD: Where do you hope to see this film go? What are your intentions for it?

BK: I hope that COLUMBUS DAY LEGACY spurs people to find out more about the origins of the holiday and also to find out more about the Italian American experience, as well as to find out more about contemporary Native peoples and how history continues to resonate in the present day. Troy Lynn Yellowwood, one of the participants in our documentary says it best, "I think there's two sides to every story. I think that's where we need to start. Find out more than I can tell you. Learn on your own. All I can do is peak your interest and then you have to do the rest."

BSD: What is your next project?

BK: Roadman is an hour-long documentary that , explores the origins and complexity of the Native American Church (NAC) through the lens of practicing Navajo Roadmen, NAC’s spiritual leaders for Navajo peoples. Roadmen are akin to ‘reverends’ or ‘ministers’ in the Christian faith, authorized to teach and minister by conducting peyote ceremonies. In traditional Navajo views, they are considered ‘medicine men’ and healers. Roadman will give a human face to these Navajo NAC Roadmen as they travel to the peyote fields in Texas, deal with the Federal government, and protect their religions freedom from both Navajo and outside forces.

It tells the story of a contemporary journey that highlights the balance struck between traditional Native and western values, through the course of a unique road trip to gather peyote, a widely misunderstood plant/medicine used by Native Americans, a group still striving for full religious and political freedom. Roadman brings to life this seemingly contradictory religious practice, following the personal stories of NAC Roadmen in Navajoland as they apprentice, pray, and go about their daily lives.


COLUMBUS DAY LEGACY will be screened Saturday, Feb 12 at 2pm with

WE STILL LIVE HERE
by Anne Makepeace



Celebrated every Thanksgiving as “the Indians” who saved the Pilgrims, then largely forgotten, the Wampanoag of Southeastern Massachusetts, spurred on by their intrepid Wampanoag linguist and MacArthur honoree Jessie Littledoe Baird, are saying loud and clear, and in their Native tongue, “Âs Nutayuneân,” – We Still Live Here.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Pruitt-Igoe Myth: Where Race and Modernism Collide

Playing Saturday, Feb 12th at 4pm in Wilma 1

Following its highly-publicized destruction, the Pruitt-Igoe public housing complex became a widespread symbol of failure amongst architects, politicians and policy makers. THE PRUITT IGOE MYTH explores the social, economic and legislative issues that led to the decline of conventional public housing in America, and the city centers in which they resided, while tracing the personal and poignant narratives of several of the project’s residents.




We talked with director Chad Freidrichs and producer Brian Woodman about their motivation to make the film and why, decades after the subject's demise, it's still such a relevant and racially charged topic.


Big Sky Doc: Why did you want to focus on Pruitt-Igoe? What struck you about it as a topic worthy of an entire documentary?

Chad Freidrichs: Like many these days, I first heard the words “Pruitt-Igoe” in the same sentence as “Death of Modern Architecture.” The professor in an audio lecture was discussing
Pruitt-Igoe as the ultimate representative of the decline of the City of the Future envisioned by LeCorbusier and other Modernist architects and planners. This award-winning project that was supposed to change the city instead quickly transformed into a Modernist slum.

I like documentaries about really big ideas, and this was a big one for me: that beautiful
architecture with idealistic social goals ended up being worse than the conditions it
replaced largely because of its design. And considering the former site was only a couple
hours down the road from me, and in a city with which I’m pretty familiar, it seemed like
a very promising subject.

When I began my research, I came at the subject from this architectural point of
view. But I soon read an article by Katherine Bristol called “The Pruitt-Igoe Myth” in
which she argued that Pruitt-Igoe had been inflated as an architectural achievement, that
it had never won an architectural award (she’s right) and that its supposed significance
was being used by subsequent architects and theorists to not only attack Modernism,
but also to aggrandize architects’ ability to significantly change social conditions, for
better or worse. This article, and others like it, guided my subsequent research and the story that we told.


BSD:
What kind of challenges did you face with doing a documentary with a subject so racially charged?


CF:
Poverty and crime, the two markers most attributed to Pruitt-Igoe’s residents, often unfairly, are extraordinarily sensitive subjects, especially when race gets involved. Those were certainly conditions that existed in Pruitt-Igoe and deeply affected many of its residents; we don’t shy away from them, but we also wanted to tell another story.

If you want to tell a truthful story about Pruitt-Igoe, a story that presents life as it was
truly lived, you have to show the relative normality that prevailed. Most people in Pruitt-
Igoe lived lives free of crime. And yet, that’s not often pointed out. Many were poor, but
the focus often stops there. It usually doesn’t extend to the ingenuity and brave struggle
that the poverty engendered.

One strategy was simply to point out something that’s so mundane that it’s often
unreported: most people in Pruitt-Igoe were pretty much like people everywhere. And
I feel that simply saying that is refreshing and more truthful than the dominant image of
life in the projects that’s been presented in the past.

On the flip side, we tried to steer clear of a tendency to place all blame on racist suburban
whites for the decline of the inner city. Again, it’s there in the film; there was no way of
avoiding that issue entirely. But we also tried to show how the larger economics of home
ownership forced even well-meaning whites to abide by the dictates of segregation.
We try to put it all in context – so far as we are able in eighty minutes – to present the
complexity of life in Pruitt-Igoe, and life in the city, during those years. I think people are
ready for that.


BSD: Were you at all inspired by "Koyaanisqatsi?" Do you use it at all in the film? As a St.
Louisan, that's a huge part of Pruitt-Igoe to us--is that featured bit in the film.

Brian Woodman: We were all very aware of the film and Pruitt-Igoe’s important place in it. If you ask a lot of people, Pruitt-Igoe really is embodied in that implosion footage. It seemed pretty
difficult not to use that footage in a film about Pruitt-Igoe. However, our research led us
to an immense amount of material that added more to the Pruitt-Igoe story than just the
destruction, so the Koyaanisqatsi material plays only a small role.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

For all you filmgoers out there...

Thinking of holding court at the Wilma during the fest?
Well, we've got the schedule for YOU!

Sweet!

Check out our BLOCK SCHEDULE to see what's happening day by day,
minute by minute at Big Sky.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Film Schedule Released





Start planning your February 11th-20th NOW!

FILM SCHEDULE

Or download it PDF Style
____________________________

Friday, January 14, 2011

2011's Selections Announced, Yo La Tengo Headlines.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


January 14, 2011

Missoula, MT - Big Sky Documentary Film Festival has announced the
official selections for their eighth annual event to be held in
Missoula, Montana February 11-20, at the Historic Wilma Theatre. The
140 film program, culled from nearly 1000 entries from all over the
world will feature a live performance by indy rock band Yo La Tengo,
a free opening night screening of Peter D. Richardson's How To Die In
Oregon (sponsored by HBO Documentary Films), a retrospective of films
by venerable filmmaker Chuck Workman, and more than twenty-five
World, North American and US premiers of new non-fiction films.

The Festival will feature three venues this year--two screens at the
Wilma and a special screening room at the former Pipestone
Mountaineering store at 129 W. Front Street in downtown Missoula. In
every way, the festival continues to grow, said Festival Director,
Mike Steinberg. It's a clear reflection of the enormous support we
have from our community and our national and local sponsors.

Film info, passes and tickets for Yo La Tengo are available on the
festival website, bigskyfilmfest.org . Tickets for Yo La Tengo can
also be purchased at Ear Candy Music, 624 South Higgins Avenue.


The Official Selections for the 2011 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival:

OPENING NIGHT FILM
How to Die in Oregon (Director: Peter D. Richardson)
Free Screening sponsored by HBO Documentary Films


FEATURE FILM COMPETITION
Corner Store (Director: Katherine Bruens)
Feathered Cocaine (Director: rn Marino Arnarson & Thorkell S. Hardarson)
Granito (Director: Pamela Yates)
Holy Wars (Director: Stephen Marshall)
Kati With An I (Director: Robert Greene)
The Pruitt-Igoe Myth (Director: Chad Friedricks)
Steam of Life (Directors: Joonas Berghall, Mika Hotakainen)
Summer Pasture (Directors: Nelson Walker, Lynn True)
This Way of Life (Director: Thomas Burstyn)
Troubadours (Director: Morgan Neville)
The Two Escobars (Directors: Jeff Zimbalist, Michael Zimbalist)
We Still Live Here (Director: Anne Makepeace)


SHORT FILM COMPETITION
Albert's Winter (Director: Andreas Koefoed)
Broken Doors (Director: Goro Toshims)
Indelible Mark (Director: David Alvarado)
Sin Pais (Without Country), (Director: Theo Rigby)
This Chair Is Not Me (Director: Andy Taylor Smith)
Yizkor (Remembrance) (Director: Ruth Fertig)


MINI-DOC COMPETITION
Bye (Director: Anthony Morrison)
Dreams Awake (Directors: Kevin Gordon, Rebekah Meredith)
Bathing Micky (Director: Frida Kempff)
Mrs. Birks' Sunday Roast (Director: Kyoko Miyake)
Tarkio Balloon (Director: Torben Bernhard)
Top Spin (Directors: Sara Newens, Mina T. Son)


BIG SKY AWARD COMPETITION
Columbus Day Legacy (Director: Bennie Klain)
Darwin (Director: Nick Brandestini)
Hood to Coast (Directors: Christoph Baaden, Marcie Hume)
Play Again (Director: Tonje Hessen Schei)
Roll Out Cowboy (Director: Elizabeth Lawrence)
Tuned In (Director: Kevin Gordon)


YO LA TENGO Presents The Sounds Of Science
Hoboken's legendary Indie rock trio performs LIVE musical
accompaniment to the extraordinary underwater films of Jean Painleve


CHUCK WORKMAN RETROSPECTIVE
Words (1988)
Pieces of Silver (1989)
Precious Images (1989)
Superstar: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol (1990)
The Source (1999)
Visionaries (2010)


WRITERS BLOCKS - Films About Language & Literacy
And Everything Is Going Fine (Director: Steven Soderbergh)
The Art of Jihad (Director: Alaa Eldin el Dajani)
Chekov for Children (Director: Sasha Waters Freyer)
Doc (Director: Immy Humes)
Henry Miller: Asleep & Awake (Director: Tom Schiller)
Hey Boo: Harper Lee & To Kill A Mockingbird (Director: Mary Murphy)
In the Wake Of The Flood (Director: Ron Mann)
King in Milwaukee (Director: Nicole Brown)
Radiografia dun Autor de Tebeos (Director: Marcos Nine)
Richard Hugo: Kicking The Loose Gravel Home (Directors: Annick Smith,
Beth Chadwick Ferris)
Sayed Kashua: Forever Scared (Director: Dorit Zimbalist)
Scent of Strawberries (Director: Guy Natanel)
Unearthing the Pen (Director: Carol Salter)
William S Burroughs: A Man Within (Director: Yony Leyser)


INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTARY CHALLENGE The finalists from the 2010 film
contest.
Death Goes Green (Director: Gabe Franz)
Grounded By Reality (Director: Phoebe Brown & Elizabeth Strickler)
Hanging Out (Director: Ben Campbell & Veena Rao)
I SAW U (Director: Maile Martinez & Lane Stroud)
Legend: A Film About Greg Garing (Director: Emily Branham)
Life is but a dream... (Director: Kelly Saxberg)
Lynching, America's Nightmare (Director: Christian Appleby)
Old Radicals (Director: Matthew Leahy)
Oneironauts (Director: Dafni Kalafati & Kiriakos Stilianopoulos)
Tami Tushie's Toys (Director: Melody Gilbert)
The Four Dreams (Director: Chris Sinclair)
Walk Across America (Director: Jon Ward)


NATURAL FACTS - Films About Nature, Wildlife & the Environment
Bag It (Director: Suzan Beraza)
Broad Channel (Director: Sarah J. Christman)

Clover & Her Mob (Erin Belmont, April Johnson, Joe Johnson, Char Sawatzke Jones, Dave Jones, Michelle McConnaha)
The Comfort of Cold (Director: Sara Newens)
Corner Plot (Directors: Ian Cook, Andre Dahlman)
Fireline (Director: Sara Newens)
Learning To Love The Gun (Director: Joseph Matthews)
Nenette (Director: Nicolas Philibert)
On Coal River (Director: Francine Cavanaugh)
One Lucky Elephant (Director: Lisa Leeman)
Queen of the Sun (Directors: Taggart Siegel, Jon Betz)
Rushland Ridge (Director: Kyle Repka)
Sea Is a Harsh Mistress, The (Director: Jason Sussberg)
Second Nature (Director: Guy Leiberman)
Snake Fever (Director: Wendy Greene)

DUST-TO-DIGITAL PROGRAM with Lance Ledbetter
Desperate Man Blues (Director: Edward Gillan)
Dust To Digital Picture Show (Various Artists)
Ten Thousan Poiints Of Light (Director: George King)


SIGHTS & SOUNDS - Films About Art & Music
The Anatomy of Vince Guaraldi (Director: Andrew Thomas)
Black Dog Running (Director: Scott Ray Becker)
Black February (Director: Vipal Monga)
David Bailey, Four Beats to the Bar and No Cheating (Director: Jrme de Missolz)
Do It Again (Director: Robert Patton-Spruill)
Everyday Sunshine: The Story Of Fishbone (Directors: Lev Anderson,
Chris Metzler)
Ghost Noise (Director: Marcia Connolly)
Keep Dancing (Director: Greg Vander Veer)
Marwencol (Director: Jeff Malmberg)
Portrait to America (Director: Peter Kovacik)
Sacred Transformations (Director: Justine Nagan)
Sand Mountain (Director: Kathryn McCool)
The Secret to a Happy Ending: A Documentary About the DriveBy
Truckers (Director: Barr Weissman)
The Tao of Blake (Director: Kathy Corley)
Waste Land (Director: Lucy Walker)
A Weaverly Path (Director: Kenny Dalsheimer)


BIG SKY/BIG WORLD New Films from Around the Globe
Armadillo (Director: Janus Metz)
Bastards Of Utopia (Director: Maple Razsa)
Bye Bye Now (Director: Aideen O'Sullivan)
Cultures of Resistance (Director: Iara Lee)
Disappearance of McKinley Nolan (Director: Henry Corra)
Farewell (Director: Ditteke Mensink)
Into Eternity (Director: Michael Madsen)
If These Walls Could Talk (Director: Anna Rogers)
Keepers of the Art (Directors: Gabriela Weeks, Karen Sztajnberg)
Kings of Pastry (Directors: Chris Hegedus, D.A. Pennebaker)
Kinshasa Symphony (Director: Claus Wischmann)
Irma (Director: Charles Fairbanks)
My Playground (Director: Kaspar Astrup Schrder)
The Sound of Insects: Record of A Mummy (Director: Peter Liechti)
To Catch a Dollar: Muhammad Yunus Banks on America (Director: Gayle Ferraro)



AMERICAN SPECTRUM
Boxing Gym (Director: Frederick Wiseman)
Breaking & Entering (Director: Benjamin Fingerhut)
Brutal Beauty (Director: Chip Mabry)
Don't Bury Me in Trona (Directors: Vicky Wetherill, Jason Skriniar)
Eat the Sun (Director: Peter Sorcher)
Final Chapter, The (Director: Mina T. Son)
Food Stamped (Directors: Shira, Yoav Potash)
Git Along, Little Dogies (Director: Kate Lain)
Like a Lion (Directors: Shane Nelson, Eric Iberg)
Lines (Director: Joselito Seldera)
Lost Angels (Director: Thomas Napper)
Love, Etc. (Director: Jill Andresevic)
Michael & His Dragon (Director: Briar March)
Missoulaquatsi (Director: Andy Smetanka)
Night Awake (Director: Jenni Nelson)
Plasticity (Director: Ryan Malloy)
Quadrangle (Director: Amy Grappell)
Skydancer (Director: Katja Esson)
Summer Snapshot (Director: Ian McCluskey)
Two Worlds Inside Out (Directors: Moeko Crider, Dana Johnson)
Voyagers, The (Director: Penny Lane)
Wana Dubie's War (Directors: Jerod Welker, Andrew Sheeley)


Major Sponsors of Big Sky Documentary Film Festival:

HBO Documentary Films, Sony Electronics, The Documentary Channel,
Montana Pubic Television, The Missoula Independent, Montana Public
Radio, Montana Film Office, International Documentary Association,
Morris & Helen Silver Foundation, ITVS, Docurama, KBGA, Northwestern
Energy, First Security Bank, Montana Arts Council, ITVS, Missoula Art
Museum, Blossoms Bed & Breakfast, Doubletree Inn, The Mountain Valley
Inn, Grant Creek Best Western and Campus Inn.

LINKABLE PRESS RELEASE

Film Sponsors:

HBO, Blue Cross Blue Shield, LEAW Family Foundation, Fact and
Fiction, Humanities Montana, Silver Foundation, The Green Light, Lost
Trail, Bob Wards, Poverello Center, Rocky Mountain School of
Photography, The Artists Shop, Ear Candy Music, Hellgate Roller
Girls, Runners Edge, Farm to Family, Montana Museum of Art and
Culture, Missoula Winery, Bernices Bakery, and Trail 103.3.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011