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I'm Carolyn Parker: The Good, The Mad and The Beautiful

AJA Video Systems





carolyn parker

Acclaimed director Jonathan Demme will receive the Honorary Maverick Award at the 13th Annual Woodstock Film Festival. The award gala will take place on Saturday, Oct. 13, 9pm at Backstage Studio Productions in Kingston.

The veteran director, whose documentary I'm Carolyn Parker: The Good, The Mad and The Beautiful screened at last year's festival, is best known for his films Silence of the Lambs, Philadelphia, Rachel Getting Married, The Agrolnomist and Stop Making Sense.

During his 40 years of filmmaking, Jonathan Demme has had a profound impact on audiences with works so diverse it is astonishing that the same director envisioned and created them. He is known to some people for such narrative masterpieces as Silence of the Lambs, Melvin and Howard, Swing Shift, Something Wild, Swimming to Cambodia, Philadelphia, and Beloved. But he is equally recognized as a documentarian, giving voice to many unsung heroes and momentous issues with such films as Cousin Bobby, The Agronomist, Jimmy Carter Man from Plains, and I’m Carolyn Parker, which chronicled the life of Parker and her family as they rebuilt their lives after Hurricane Katrina devastated their community and home in the Lower Ninth Ward. His upcoming films, The House at Lovestrand and three New Orleans portrait documentaries continue Demme’s commitment to champion the unacknowledged.

Anyone who follows music undoubtedly knows Demme for his phenomenal feature-length music films, including Stop Making Sense (which got people up and dancing in the aisles of theaters), Storefront Hitchcock, Neil Young: Heart of Gold, The Neil Young Trunk Show, and most recently Enzo Avitabile Music Life, which chronicles the career of the incomparable Italian saxophonist, singer-songwriter who plays a fusion of world music and jazz that is mesmerizing.

To read more about Demme and purchase tickets to this year's Maverick Award Gala, go to our website!

quartet QUARTET directed by Dustin Hoffman
The directorial debut of Dustin Hoffman, Quartet is a comedy starring Maggie Smith, Billy Connolly, Michael Gambon and Pauline Collins. The film tells the story of Reggie (Courtenay), Wilf (Connolly) and Cissy (Collins) who reside in Beecham House, a home for retired opera singers. Each year they stage a concert to celebrate Verdi’s birthday, which also raises funds for the home. Reggie’s ex-wife Jean (Smith) arrives at the home and creates tension, playing the diva part but refusing to sing in the concert.
cuomo*Featuring special live performance by
Natalie Merchant!
DEAR GOVERNOR CUOMO... directed by Jon Bowermaster
World Premiere

On a rainy night in May, a unique coalition of musicians, scientists and activists gathered in Albany on the governor’s front door step, calling for a ban on hydraulic-fracturing. With the news that Governor Andrew Cuomo might lift the moratorium on fracking in New York any day, the event was assembled in less than a month. Only two rehearsals in twenty-four hours, and it was show time. The goal of the extremely varied participants, many of whom had never met before this night, was to explain in clear terms the threats of fracking and to motivate people to rise up against the practice using song. The cord that bound them all was that they were first and foremost New Yorkers. New Yorkers Against Fracking. Under the musical direction of Natalie Merchant, the event was filmed by Academy Award-winning documentarian Alex Gibney. The film features actors Mark Ruffalo and Melissa Leo, environmental biologist Sandra Steingraber and musicians ranging from Joan Osborne and Citizen Cope to Medeski Martin and Wood and The Felice Brothers. The film was written and directed by Jon Bowermaster.




Meanwhile, Rhinebeck and Rosendale will be kicking things off with three great films.

, a young woman, who has been taking care of her two younger siblings after having been abandoned by their parents, begins to fall in love with a man she met casually in a bar but struggles with issues of abandonment. Screens in Rhinebeck 10/11/2012 at 7:30PM

In CALIFRONIA SOLO directed by Marshall Lewy, former Britpop rock star Lachlan MacAldonich, in a sublime performance by Robert Carlyle, finds himself at this precipice as a once promising music career is now awash in booze and self- loathing. When you reach the top, is there anywhere to go but down? Screens in Rhinebeck 10/11/2012 at 8:15PM

Meanwhile the Hudson Valley Programmers Group will present a special screening of FRANCINE directed by Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky. Academy Award® winner Melissa Leo gives a fierce and restrained performance as Francine, a woman struggling to find her place in a downtrodden lakeside town after leaving behind a life in prison. Taking a series of jobs working with animals, Francine turns away others and instead seeks intimacy in the most unlikely of places. Gritty, elliptical, and voyeuristic, Francine is a portrait of a near-silent misfit and her fragile first steps in an unfamiliar world. FRANCINE screens at the Downing Film Center in Newburgh 10/10/2012 at 7:30PM and ROSENDALE Theatre 10/11/2012 at 6:30PM


VAMPS directed by Amy Heckerling
East Coast Premiere
“Clueless” director Amy Heckerling and star Alicia Silverstone reunite in “Vamps,” a cheeky, fresh comedy about two eternally young party girls navigating the dating world in the Big City. But even with lifetimes of dating experience behind them, the duo realizes they still have a lot to learn about love when Stacy (Krysten Ritter) unexpectedly falls for the son of a vampire hunter, and Goody (Silverstone) runs into the man of her dreams from decades earlier. The girls must decide if their chance at love is worth giving up their uncomplicated fabulously single lives forever.

casting by CASTING BY directed by Tom Donahue
How, in fact, do all those wonderful men, women and children we see on the screen actually get there? As we learn in Tom Donahue’s revealing new film, that’s the contribution of casting directors who trawl independent movies, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, college theater, and summer stock to come up with the new faces constantly demanded by the star-making machinery of the cinema. The film traces the evolution of the casting director beginning after WWII, citing the crucial role of the late Marion Dougherty, who moved from theater to television and eventually to Hollywood and who perhaps more than anyone else professionalized the field. Interviews with major casting directors, including Juliet Taylor, Lynn Stalmaster and Dougherty herself, and many of the actors they discovered (including Jeff Bridges, Robert Duvall, Clint Eastwood, and Al Pacino), give a rich sense of the work that goes on before the cameras start rolling.
*David Bromberg will perform several songs following the film.
DAVID BROMBERG UNSUNG TREASURE directed by Beth Toni Kruvant
Beth Kruvant's documentary follows the unique and powerful history of David Bromberg's career path, tracing the roller coaster of Bromberg's station as an American music legend of the 70s to the largest American violin collector, appraiser, and full-time violin luthier today. David Bromberg: Unsung Treasure contrasts Bromberg's innovative rise to musical fame with his passion for the delicate craft of violin-making, showing that one's career path is never predictable. Bromberg has combined the musical genres of blues, jazz, big band, gospel, rock, bluegrass and country throughout his musical career, collaborating with major names like Bob Dylan, George Harrison, and Jerry Garcia. Kruvant chronicles Bromberg's rise to fame, his struggle with a twenty-two year hiatus, current musical ventures and his recent efforts in pioneering the music and arts community in his new hometown of Wilmington, Delaware. —Chandra L. Knotts


DINNER AT THE NO-GO'S directed by Marco Antonio Orsini
World Premiere
Everyone knows you’re not supposed to discuss politics and religion at a dinner party. Marco Orsini’s film starts with an intriguing proposition: forget about that. Orsini and producer Biala Mekkaoui take us on an international tour through the State Department's Travel Advisory list, also known as the “No-Go list,” where they film dinner parties and discuss only politics and religion. Invited to the dinners are provocative thinkers, lawyers, investors, artists, religious leaders, politicians, and activists. The filmmakers engage their guests on vital issues and ideas in search of a deeper understanding of the Arab Spring, the 9/11 attacks, two American wars in the Middle East and other pressing concerns. What they find is a series of fascinating conversations steeped in history and rich with emotions, fears and dreams. Along the way they visit Lebanon, Jordan, and Israel before landing at a truly fascinating dinner in Atlanta, Georgia for an all too familiar American perspective.

krishna das

In 1970, Jeffrey Kagel was living every teenager’s dream. He was offered the chance to record with a rock band, the soon-to-be Blue Oyster Cult. Instead, he sold all of his possessions and moved from suburban Long Island, halfway across the world to India, where he studied under Neem Karoli Baba. In Jeremy Frindel’s beautiful feature film debut, Kagel searches for happiness and fulfillment, Jeffrey struggled over the years with depression and drug abuse. After the death of his mentor, Jeffrey turned to music to help get his life back on track. Emerging as Krishna Das, he became a world-renowned chant master and spiritual leader, helping to bring what he had learned to the West. Featuring interviews with Rick Rubin (Grammy-winning producer) and Ram Das (LSD icon Richard Alpert) among others. One Track Heart shows how one man’s spiritual awakening continues to transform the lives of people all over the world.

sessions THE SESSIONS directed by Ben Lewin with John Hawkes, Helen Hunt, William H. Macy
Based on the poignantly optimistic autobiographical writings of California–based journalist and poet Mark O’Brien, The Sessions tells the story of a man confined to an iron lung who is determined - at age 38 - to lose his virginity. With the help of his therapists and the guidance of his priest, he sets out to make his dream a reality.





This year's competition finalists come from all over, some having local roots, some from all corners of the US, and some from Europe and abroad. Don't miss these spectacular films at WFF 2012! See the full line-up of films in competition HERE.

CALIFORNIA SOLO directed by Marshall Lewy
ELECTRICK CHILDREN directed by Rebecca Thomas
EXIT ELENA directed by Nathan Silver
FIRST WINTER directed by Benjamin Dickinson
I AM NOT A HIPSTER directed by Destin Daniel Cretton
NOR'EASTER directed by Andrew Brotzman
SPARROWS DANCE directed by Noah Buschel

INFORMANT directed by Jamie Meltzer
THE MECHANICAL BRIDE directed by Alison de Fren
OMA & BELLA directed by Alexa Karolinski
SHEPARD AND DARK directed by Treva Wurmfeld
VIRGIN TALES directed by Mirjam Von Arx
WORDS OF WITNESS directed by Mai Iskander

*Awards are given out to Best Narrative, Best Documentary, The Haskell Wexler Award for Best Cinematography, Best Narrative Short, Best Student Short, Best Short Doc, Narrative Editing, Doc Editing, The Blue Sky Studios Animation Award, The Diane Seligman Awards and the Audience Awards


my heart



The Woodstock Film Festival's shorts program offers captivating and creative insight into the world of animation, activism and so much more.

A Winter Passing: A Winter Passing, Hatch, Under
(notes on) biology, The 1st Time Cee Cee Did Acid, Based on a True Stor, The Girland the Fox, Història d'Este, Junkyard, The Light That Died in My Arms, Made You Cringe, My Heart Belongs to You, Person Pinball, Rocks in my Pockets, Summer Bummer, Turning a Corner, Tuurngait
Eyes of a Child:
Curfew, The Glowing Hours, Lunch Date, The Maiden and the Princess
Foreign Affairs:
A Chjàna (The Plain), An Sooye Bonbast (Beyond Dead-end), Detras Del Espejo (Behind the Mirrors), Manila Running, Spaghetti für Zwei (Spaghetti for Two)
BFF, Happy Hour, The Hiccup, Laundry Day, Past Due
Hudson Valley Shorts:
Blood Country, Glory Days, My Pain is Worse than Your Pain, Persephone
Music Videos:
A House a Home - Alialujah Choir, Bird of Flames - Chrysta Bell and David Lynch, Borrando la Frontera (Erasing the Border), Breezeblocks - Δ (alt-j), Fjögur píanó - Sigur Rós, Gaga's Boy Toy- Tommy Be, Le Soleil Chante (The Sun Sings) - Ignatus, Living - Arrested Development, Miriam - Norah Jones, Over and Around The Clove - Trummors, Post-War Blues - Dan Mangan, untitled - killer mike featuring scar, Zoe
Short Docs:
Among Giants, The Bronzer, El Último Hielero (The Last Ice Merchant), Meet Kevin, Randy Parsons: American Luthier, Seamus
Teen Shorts:
Bookstore, Code Red, Getting Through, Hatred to Your Home, The Hidden, My License, The Symbol of Peace, Tyler
Screening With: Aunt Louisa, Free Expression, History of Virginity, King Point, Practice Change

  festival music news



What would the Woodstock Film Festival be without music? This year, in addition to the wide range of Focus on Music films screening, WFF will be presenting live performances, concerts and of course our BMI Music Discussion.

WED 10/10
• David Bromberg live after documentary David Bromberg Unsung Treasure Woodstock Playhouse 7:30pm
THUR 10/11
• Natalie Merchant live after documentary Dear Governor Cuomo... Woodstock Playhouse 6:30pm
• Simi Stone in Concert at Colony Cafe Woodstock 9pm
FRI 10/12
• Friday Night Filmmaker Party at SPAF with The Brandy Knights, Wine Teeth and Lindsey Webster 10pm
The Pass at Colony Cafe at 8:00pm
• Charles Bradley in concert at Bearsville Theater Woodstock 9:30pm
SAT 10/13
• Aaron Freeman aka Gene Ween in concert at Colony Cafe Woodstock 7:00 and 10pm
• Paul Green and his Band of Monkeys at Maverick Award Gala BSP, Kingston 9pm
SUN 10/14
• Jeremy Bernstein in concert at Colony Cafe Woodstock 9pm





Woodstock Film Festival's CAREER DAY takes place at Onteora High School Friday during the festival and presents students with a chance to talk to and brainstorm with industry professionals and filmmakers.

In addition to focusing on high schoolers, WFF would like to invite local elementary schools to a special discounted screening of the heartwarmimg film Once In A Lullaby: The PS 22 Chorus Documentary. The screening will take place at 11:30am Fri. 10/12 at the Woodstock Playhouse. Director Jonathan Kalafer will be in attendance for a Q&A afterwards.

If your school is interested, please contact the Box Office at 845-810-0131


The Woodstock Film Festival would like to send out a very special "thank you" to the towns of Kingston, Rosendale, Rhinebeck and Woodstock for their participation and help with the filming of our 2012 Olympic-style torch relay.

Thank you to BCDF for generously providing the production equipment, for WFF Music Coordinator Paul Green, "torch" bearers Melissa Leo, Michael Lang, Edward Crawfrod, Barbara Sicuranza, Jason Downs, Jesse Bongiorno and a HUGE thank you to the residents who showed up to line the streets and cheer our runners on.

Don't miss the completed trailer as it shows in rotation before each screening at this year's festival and also online. For trailer photos, visit our blog!




Detropia — Special Screenings beginning Sept. 6

Directed by Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing, WFF panelists and jurors

Detroit's story has encapsulated the iconic narrative of America over the last century— the Great Migration of African Americans escaping Jim Crow; the rise of manufacturing and the middle class; the love affair with automobiles; the flowering of the American dream; and now . . . the collapse of the economy and the fading American mythos. With its vivid, painterly palette and haunting score, DETROPIA sculpts a dreamlike collage of a grand city teetering on the brink of dissolution. These soulful pragmatists and stalwart philosophers strive to make ends meet and make sense of it all, refusing to abandon hope or resistance. Their grit and pluck embody the spirit of the Motor City as it struggles to survive postindustrial America and begins to envision a radically different future.

carolyn parker

I'm Carolyn Parker: The Good, The Mad and The Beautiful - Sept. 20

Official 2011 WFF Selection and directed by 2012 Maverick Award Honoree Johnathan Demme

Carolyn Parker was the last to leave her neighborhood when a mandatory evacuation order was decreed as Hurricane Katrina approached New Orleans in the summer of 2005. After the floodwaters subsided, Mrs. Parker was the first resident to return to her now flood-devastated community with what many thought was the “impossible dream” of bringing her ruined home back to life. Award-winning director Jonathan Demme creates an inspiring portrait of a woman who was raised in the segregated Lower 9th Ward, joined the front lines in the Civil Rights movement, worked for 30 years as a cook-turned-chef, and became one of the most outspoken voices in the fight for every New Orleanian’s right to return home after the devastation of the floods. That Carolyn faced these odds with unbridled wit, spirituality and an abiding sense of social justice borne of her life in New Orleans makes for a unique cinematic tale of personal triumph.

Premieres Thursday, Sept. 20 on PBS for their 'Point Of View' series.






The Woodstock Film Festival would like to welcome AJA Video Systems to our Silver Sponsors! We're extremely excited to be using the KiPro this year both for projection and capturing video footage at Panels and other events.

"The idea that we will be able to screen and edit footage immediately in Apple Pro Res 422 is very exciting," WFF co-founder Laurent Rejto stated. "Over the past 12 years, we've always had to wait days, if not months, for footage to be compressed or digitized for us. The fact the AJA makes compression instant is just incredible! The fact that we are also using the KiPro to screen select shorts programs makes this years technilogical bump even more amazing."

Since 1993, AJA Video has been a leading manufacturer of high-quality and cost-effective digital video interface, conversion and desktop solutions for professional broadcast and post-production. Based in Grass Valley, CA, the company has always possessed a vision and passion for leveraging its engineering expertise to set the pace for innovation in digital video technology. Introducing groundbreaking tools such as: converters to bridge varying formats, video capture and playback cards to flexibly connect software with a range of hardware, I/O products to support the latest interfaces and portable recording devices to facilitate new workflow paradigms in television and film, AJA has helped to evolve the market for professional desktop video production.

For details, visit AJA Video Systems
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