New York, NY – June 13, 2012 – TROPFEST, the world’s largest short film festival, announced today that Rose Byrne (X Men: First Class, 28 Weeks Later), Judah Friedlander (30 Rock), Jennifer Westfeldt (Friends with Kids, Kissing Jessica Stein), producer Ted Hope (Dark Horse, 21 Grams, Adventureland), and renowned film critic and Associate Director of Programming at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, Scott Foundas will serve on the judging panel for Tropfest New York, which will take place in Bryant Park on Saturday, June 23. Other jurors will be announced soon, with Hugh Jackman hosting the festivities.
Tropfest also unveiled the eight finalists for the short film competition, which have been chosen from hundreds of submissions by a pre-selection panel led by Tropfest founder and acclaimed director, John Polson (Hide & Seek, Tenderness). Each of the films in the competition is less than seven minutes long, was produced specifically for the event, and will have its premiere at Tropfest New York. They also must include the Tropfest Signature Item (TSI), ‘BAGEL,’ a fitting tribute to NYC culture.
The finalists include three films directed by New Yorkers including Alexander Poe, a relative of Edgar Allan Poe, whose film “The Break-Up Tour” features performances by Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter), Caitlin Fitzgerald (It’s Complicated, Newlyweds), and Noah Bean (Damages, Nikita). Bronx native Victor Bruno, who now resides in Westchester County with his family, returned to the Bronx to film “Thanks Dad,” and Michael Neithardt who lives with his wife and co-producer Vanessa in Manhattan, shot his film “I’m Happy” throughout Barcelona and Southern Spain, Southern France, and childhood hometown, Plainview, Long Island. The other finalists come from Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, California, and Oregon. Budgets for the films range from $1.59, the price of the two bagels featured in Matt Hulse’s “Elvis: The Lonely Hunter of Circle Beach,” to $5,000 for “Thanks Dad.”
The eight finalist films will be screened – along with eight ‘Best Of Tropfest’ films – for thousands of festival-goers at Bryant Park in New York and the esteemed panel of celebrity and industry judges will select an overall winner and leaders in select categories, watching the films LIVE for the first time alongside the event spectators. The Grand Prize winner will be announced at the close of the evening and will take home The Motion Picture Association First Prize of $20,000 cash and a week of meetings with film producers, studio executives, agents, and managers designed to help propel their filmmaking career to new heights. Along with The Motion Picture Association, Tropfest is supported by Citi, JetBlue, Tourism Australia, Thompson Hotels, Starz Cinema, WNYC, News 4 New York and The Village Voice.
The festival will also feature musical performances by internationally renowned Alexi Murdoch, Doveman, and local Brooklyn indie-rockers Milagres.
The Tropfest New York Finalists Are:
I’m Happy directed by Michael Neithardt (New York, USA)
Elvis: The Lonely Hunter of Circle Beach directed by Matt Hulse (Bristol, UK)
Killer Bagels From Outer Space directed by Jacinda Klouwens (Auckland, NZ)
Elevator directed by Jennifer Ross (Melbourne, AUS)
The Break-Up Tour directed by Alexander Poe (New York, USA)
Emptys directed by Joshua Leake (Oregon, USA)
Thanks Dad directed by Victor Bruno (New York, USA)
Mingo directed by Romy Randev (California, USA)
The ‘Best of Films’ Are:
Boo directed by Rupert Reid
Lucky directed by Nash Edgerton
Photo Booth directed by Michael Noonan
Animal Beatbox directed by Damon Gameau
The Unspoken directed by Jason van Genderen
Bargain directed by Rachel Givney
Free to Be Me directed by Bassett Dickson and Trent Holmes
Uncle Jonny directed by Mark Constable
Tropfest New York Schedule for Saturday, June 23rd
3:00 PM – Gates open, Yah Supreme and DJ Concerned Perform
5:00 PM – Milagres Set
6:00 PM – Alexi Murdoch/Doveman Set
6:30 PM – ‘Black Carpet’ Arrivals
8:00 PM – Eight ‘Best of Tropfest’ films followed by the New York Short Film Competition with a live panel of Judges
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