News

Whew! What a Fest! Thank you!

This year’s celebration of independent film has been fun, therapeutic and unconventional. We relish in creating community around creativity and the human desire to connect.

We are thrilled to share that over the course of the 2020 BendFilm Festival we connected our fabulous indie filmmakers with audiences from 43 states and 37 countries!

Here is a note from BendFilm Executive Director, Todd Looby:

I want to thank each and every one who contributed in some way to this amazing Festival and organization over the past month. I will remember this Festival as my favorite of the seven I have had the pleasure and honor of leading.

Of course this is not the type of Festival we wanted to host and there are certainly more fun and engaging ways of celebrating the transformative art form of film and its makers. However, what I personally witnessed in the generous support we receive from donors and sponsors, the backing from our Board of Directors, the hard work of our staff and volunteers, the engagement from audiences watching at home and at the drive-in, and especially, commitment from all of the filmmakers who dared continue and even double-down on using this unique art form to push us forward is simply remarkable.

This Festival is special mostly because the personal rewards for taking part are not obvious and may never be realized, yet we all did it anyway. We did it because we simply do not accept that the headlines reflect the world we know exists and that the best of humanity is hopeful, underrepresented, and optimistic about where we can and should be. The BendFilm Festival has always displayed glimpses of the future: young filmmakers who will go on to become household names, styles of filmmaking that will be co-opted by the mainstream and stories of characters that will dominate future headlines. The 2020 Festival, however, showed us that there is a large contingent of artists and audiences, though perhaps quieted and working in the margins, are ready, willing and excited to lead us all to a better place.

If you are reading this and have not had the opportunity to enjoy the Festival as much as you wanted to, I implore you research the award-winners and Google the films that will be playing at other virtual festivals you can watch from anywhere. I ask that you revisit a film from this Festival that is sticking with you by hearing from the filmmakers in our wonderful Q&As.

Watch the live pitches from future filmmakers vying for a $7,500 production grant in order to witness the powerful draw of storytelling and giving voice to the unheard. What we all do with our time in this democracy of ideas, art forms, points of view, media options, etc is a vote for our future and I do hope you continue to join us in voting for things like the BendFilm Festival.

Thank you once again for all of your support and your participation!

Sincerely,
Todd Looby

 

2020 BendFilm Festival Award Winners

BendFilm Awards Statue

BendFilm Announces Short and Feature Film Awards for BendFilm Festival 2020

27 Films Awarded Including ‘Warrior Women’ Which Won $5,000 for Best In Show

 

Bend, OR – BendFilm announced today 27 films and filmmakers awarded jury prizes and more than $12,000 at the 2020 BendFilm Festival. BendFilm will present encore screenings of the award-winning titles in the Virtual Festival Cinema immediately following the Awards Ceremony through Sunday, October 25. The full hour-long Ceremony is available to stream online for free anytime.

The (indie) Women of the Year award in honor of Pamela Hulse Andrews was presented virtually to director Anna Boden. (Half Nelson, Captain Marvel, Mrs. America).  BendFilm celebrated her illustrious career with deep indie film roots, her episodic work in television and her diverse experience in the Marvel franchise. Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck and Andrew Bujalski were celebrated as First Features Honorees during the Festival for their authentic filmmaking styles and impact on the independent film world.

Erik Jambor, Head Of Festival Programming, BendFilm, said, “This year’s celebration of independent film has been fun, therapeutic and unconventional. We relish in creating community around creativity and the human desire to connect.  Thank you for all those who helped make our 17th anniversary truly remarkable.”

Jurors for the Festival include:  Film Critic, Carlos Aguilar; Distributor, Samah Ali; Actress, Amber Benson; Film Programmer, Drea Clark; Film Critic, Tim Cogshell; Director, Patrick Creadon; Producer, Fennel Doremus; Director, Chris Eyre; Director, Skye Fitzgerald; Director, Lara Jean Gallagher; Producer, Peter Gilbert; Director, LaRonn Katchia; Animator, Kent Osborne; Director, Sergio Rapu; Director, Haroula Rose; Director, Eric Slade; Director, Frederick Thornton; Director, Isaac Trimble; and Producer, Aaron Woolfolk.

The 2020 BendFilm Festival Award recipients are:

Best of Show 
Warrior Women directed by Christina D. King and Elizabeth A. Castle
The story of mothers and daughters fighting for indigenous rights in the American Indian Movement of the 1970s.

Best Directing 
Sapelo directed by Nick Brandestini
A journey within a unique American island to tell the story of its matriarchal griot, Cornelia Walker Bailey, and her adopted sons, coming-of-age in the last remaining enclave of the Saltwater Geechee people.

Best Narrative Feature 
Freeland directed by Mario Furlon, Kate McLean
An aging pot farmer suddenly finds her world shattered as she races to bring in what could be her final harvest, fighting against the threat of eviction as the impact of the legalization of the cannabis industry rapidly destroys her idyllic way of life.

Best Cinematography:
Woman Of the Photographs directed by Takeshi Kushida
Cinematographer Yu Oishi
A misogynist photographer discovers the joy of loving a woman by using his photographic retouching skills to help her with her self-identity and self-esteem.

Best Documentary Feature 
Sapelo directed by Nick Brandestini
A journey within a unique American island to tell the story of its matriarchal griot, Cornelia Walker Bailey, and her adopted sons, coming-of-age in the last remaining enclave of the Saltwater Geechee people.

Best Editing
Revival directed by Josefina Rotman Lyons
Editor Will Kitchings
A meditation on aging, dance, and community, the film follows four legendary older choreographers as they strive to create dances with New York City seniors.

Best Indigenous Feature 
Cholitas directed by Jaime Murciego and Pablo Iraburu
Five Bolivian indigenous women are involved in a unique expedition. As a symbol of liberation and empowerment, they propose to climb the highest mountain in America, The Aconcagua.

Best Outdoor Environmental Feature 
The Falconer directed by Annie Kaempfer
Rodney Stotts is on a mission to build a sanctuary for injured birds of prey. A falconer guided by the healing power of nature, Rodney becomes the unlikely hero of a new environmental movement in his stressed Washington DC community.

Special Jury Award for Environmental Insight:
Wolves Return directed by Thomas Horat
The wolf polarizes and fascinates. 150 years after the wolf was wiped out of Central Europe, it is inexorably conquering its place.

Special Jury Award for Documentary Cinematography:
Sapelo
directed by Nick Brandestini
Cinematography by Nick Brandestini
A journey within a unique American island to tell the story of its matriarchal griot, Cornelia Walker Bailey, and her adopted sons, coming-of-age in the last remaining enclave of the Saltwater Geechee people.

Special Jury Award For Documentary Debut
Finding Yingying directed by Jiayan “Jenny” Shi
A Chinese family travels to the U.S. for the first time to look for their daughter, an international student who vanished from a university campus.

Special Jury Award for Ensemble Cast:
Materna directed by David Gutnik
A closely observed psychological portrait of four women, whose lives are bound together by an incident on the New York City subway. Cast: Kate Lyn Sheil, Lindsay Burdge, Jade Eshete, Rory Culkin, Michael Chernus, Sturgill Simpson, Assol Abdullina.

Best Indigenous Short
Blackwater directed by Boise Esquerra
Years of reckless alcoholism, a country music star finally hits rock bottom and is court-ordered into wellness therapy with an offbeat group of misfits on her hometown reservation.

Special Jury Award For Storytelling 
Kama’āina (Child of the Land) directed by Kimi Howl Lee
A queer sixteen-year-old girl, Mahina, resides in the predominantly Native Hawaiʻian neighborhood of Wai’anae, Oahu. After suffering abuse from her stepfather, Mahina must navigate life on the streets, until she eventually finds refuge at the Pu’uhonua o Wai’anae – Hawaiʻi’s largest organized homeless encampment.

Special Jury Award For Original Concept
Looking Glass directed by Ginew Benton (Ojibway)
After his father was murdered Benjamin Looking Glass II, a young Native American man, builds a time machine using modern science and ancient knowledge to prevent his fathers murder and ultimately discovers his true purpose in creation.

Best Narrative Short 
A Woman directed by Tahmina Rafaella
A young, modern mother struggles to find her place in Baku, Azerbaijan, a culture simultaneously Muslim and secular, progressive as it is traditional, and like her at a crossroads of seeming contradictions. Navigating the trappings of both conventional and modern female roles, she straddles the space between choice and responsibility where in the course of one day she can be a mother, a daughter, a wife, and still be herself.

Special Jury Award for Directing 
Thank you For Patiently Waiting directed by Max Marklund & Anders Jacobsson
Josef is involved in a car accident that throws him into a roller coaster of memories, large and small. He remembers his severely depressed father in a Santa suit, the angry neighbor shouting during a wild house party, his mother’s unconditional love, and the New Year’s Eve that ended in romance and vomit. Why all these memories appear, and what they mean, he won’t know until the end.

Special Jury Award for Outstanding Performance 
Friends Like That directed by Francesca de Fusco
In the immediate aftermath of a break up, Maia seeks solace from her best ex, Alex. After spending the night, crafts get made and things get weird.

Best Documentary Short
A Head Shorter directed by Sasha Sivan Bortnik
Narrated by Naftali Deutsch, A HEAD SHORTER begins in the spring of 1944 when Naftali and his entire family are forced to leave their home in Kimyat, a village in the Carpatho-Ukraine region, and sent to Auschwitz. The film takes us through Naftali’s journey as a 12 year old boy in the Holocaust and how he survived multiple concentration camps.

Special Jury Award for Directing
80 DEGREES NORTH directed by Brandon Holmes
A group of international artists explore the Arctic island chain of Svalbard. Set against dramatic natural backdrops, the artists share their hopes, fears, and insights on encountering an environment undergoing radical change.

Special Jury Award for Micro Story
River Looters directed by Rebecca Hynes
Three river surfers turned obsessed free divers hunting for lost belongings in the Deschutes River. When not on a quest to reunite people with their lost belongings, they dive for trash. The most water logged and shreddy good samaritans in Oregon.

Best Animated Short 
A Head Shorter directed by Sasha Sivan Bortnik
Animation by Soul Proprietor Studios
Narrated by Naftali Deutsch, A HEAD SHORTER begins in the spring of 1944 when Naftali and his entire family are forced to leave their home in Kimyat, a village in the Carpatho-Ukraine region, and sent to Auschwitz. The film takes us through Naftali’s journey as a 12 year old boy in the Holocaust and how he survived multiple concentration camps.

Best Student Short 
Furthest From directed by Kyung Sok Kim
In 1999, Novato, California, an 8-year-old girl named Jessie is enjoying what little time she has left with her best friend, Lucas. The two of them have difficulty conveying it, but they’re both aware as to what is about to happen. The trailer park they live in will be closed, and the whole community will be forced to evacuate, as a result of the MTBE water contamination. For Jessie, this means facing an unwanted change and learning to say goodbye to that which tethers her to her little pink trailer.

Special Jury Award for Student Documentary:
Volunteer directed by Allonzo Armijo
92-year-old Howard Henry chooses to stay busy and avoid aging by going to work every day.

Special Jury award for Filmmaker to Watch:
Ellie Wen, director of The Missfits
An all-girls robotics team based in San Francisco is taking on the male-dominated field of engineering. They are determined to show other girls how fun and rewarding STEM can be, one robot at a time. The documentary follows The Missfits as they confront growing pains, build their robot, and travel to competitions. The diverse team is made up of twenty girls from high schools around the Bay Area ranging in age from fifteen to eighteen and coming from a variety of backgrounds. On their own, they are outsiders, misfits. But together, on the team, they build each other up and learn to embrace their own identities.

Special Jury Award For Micro Doc
Present Imperfect directed by Kyle Stebbins
Nature isn’t perfect, but that’s exactly what makes it perfect. When we embrace flaws, we create even more beauty. That’s what woodturner Bill Karow believes, and what drives him in his craft: to reshape people’s opinions about the things they perceive as worthless, and to find joy in that process.

Best Of the Northwest 
For the Love of Barb directed by Will Cuddy and Zach Feiner,
A deceased lover leaves behind a bit of romance for a ferocious meeting between her suitors.

The Katie Merritt Audience Awards:

The Katie Merritt Audience Award, Narrative Feature
AMERICAN REJECT

The Katie Merritt Audience Award, Documentary Feature
CHOLITAS

The Katie Merritt Audience Award, Narrative Short
IMAGINE SYMPHONY LIVE

The Katie Merritt Audience Award, Documentary Short
GIANTS

The Katie Merritt Audience Award, Local Focus
THE PURSE: A DREAM IN TWO ACTS

###

About BendFilm:
BendFilm hosts an annual independent film festival, year-round film exhibitions and programs, and is the proud owner of the Tin Pan Theater – a boutique arthouse cinema located in downtown Bend’s Tin Pan Alley. The organization is designed to support and nourish filmmakers and enrich the cultural life of Central Oregon while also providing an economic benefit to the region. Celebrating its 17th year, BendFilm is proud to bring diverse voices and visions to the Bend community. The BendFilm Festival runs every October in Bend, Oregon. Make plans to join us October 8-25, 2020 for virtual and drive-in cinema, virtual filmmaker conversations and more. Bend is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, beer lovers and stunning natural scenery. BendFilm is made possible by a dedicated crew of volunteers and generous donors, members and sponsors. For more information, call (541) 388-3378 or visit www.bendfilm.org. Connect with BendFilm on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

BendFilm Festival Digest 

With more than 100 films to stream from home or see at the Drive-In, the 2020 BendFilm Festival has something for everyone.  Check out these groups/themes of films to help you find the stories that interest you:


Oregon Connections

  • The Dark Divide
  • The Younger and the Last of the Vengeants
  • I Will Make You Mine
  • With Spirit
  • Samuel Boardman: The Father of Oregon State Parks
  • Local Focus Shorts
  • The Last Blockbuster

Films To Watch In An Election Year:

  • After Selma
  • Can you Hear Us Now
  • Personhood

Outdoor/Environmental 

  • The Falconer
  • Samuel Boardman: The Father of Oregon State Parks
  • A Moment In The Sun
  • Spawning Grounds
  • Wolves Return
  • With Spirit
  • Cholitas

Los Hermanos / The Brothers – Aldo and Ilmar Gavilan play at Jarvis Hall, Napa

Music

  • Los Hermanos / The Brothers
  • This Is Tim: A Musical Life
  • Billie
  • It’s Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story
  • American Reject
  • Jimmy Carter Rock and Roll President
  • Chuck Berry

Comedies / Lighthearted

  • Dead
  • The Dark Divide
  • Golden Arm
  • The Last Blockbuster
  • The Planters
  • The Younger and the Last of the Vengeants
  • American Reject
  • Full Realized Humans – (adult comedy, “R” equivalent for language and sexual themes and content)
  • I Will Make You Mine
  • Milkwater – (adult comedy, “R” equivalent for language and sexual themes and content)
  • Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story
  • Playing For Keeps: The Upside of Downtime
  • Revival
  • This is Tim: A Musical Life

Diverse Representation / Global Stories

  • Cholitas
  • The Falconer
  • Indigenous Shorts Program
  • Sisterhood Media Short Film Distribution convo
  • BIPOC filmmaker panel
  • I Will Make You Mine
  • Ahead of the Curve
  • Milkwater
  • After Selma
  • Warrior Women
  • Spawning Grounds
  • Narrative Foreign Language Shorts

 

2020 BendFilm Festival Jury

BendFilm Announces The Jury For 17th Annual BendFilm Festival

 

Filmmakers, Industry Executives, Actors, and Media Members To Give Out $12,500 in Prizes Throughout the 17th Annual BendFilm Festival

 

Bend, OR – BendFilm, Central Oregon’s premier and internationally celebrated Film Festival, has announced 18 artists, journalists, executives and cultural leaders who will award $12,500 in cash prizes –  including $5,000 cash for “Best of Show” to short and feature films during the 17th annual BendFilm Festival. 

 

Jurors will announce the awards in a ceremony on Saturday October 12. Select jurors will also help with Festival events including panels, guided discussions and the Future Filmmakers program for student storytellers.

CARLOS AGUILAR
Narrative Features Jury
Originally from Mexico City, Carlos Aguilar was chosen as one of 6 young film critics to partake in the first Roger Ebert Fellowship organized by RogerEbert.com, the Sundance Institute, and Indiewire in 2014. His work has appeared in prestigious publications such as Los Angeles Times, Variety, The New York Times, The Wrap, Indiewire, Vulture, RogerEbert.com, The Daily Beast, MovieMaker Magazine, Remezcla, Filmmaker Magazine, Slate, Bustle, Americas Quarterly, among others. Carlos is a member of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA).

DREA CLARK
Narrative Features Jury
Drea Clark is a longtime film festival programmer, currently at Geena Davis’ Bentonville Film Festival and Sundance, and previously with Slamdance and LA Film Fest, where she served as Senior Programmer.  As a producer, Drea has released three independent features. Mo Perkins’ THE LAST TIME YOU HAD FUN, Mike Ott’s LAKE LOS ANGELES, and Amber Sealey’s NO LIGHT AND NO LAND ANYWHERE, executive produced by Miranda July. She’s also produced numerous shorts, music videos, web series, and a pilot for FX titled WE’RE GOOD THANKS. She is currently Producer-in-Residence at Film Independent. Drea co-hosts Who Shot Ya, a movie podcast that’s not just straight white guys, on Maximum Fun, and Ticklish Business, a podcast devoted to honoring and deconstructing classic cinema.

LARA JEAN GALLAGHER
Narrative Features Jury
Lara Jean Gallagher is a writer and director originally from rural Pennsylvania. She earned her Directing MFA from Columbia University and was named one of IFP’s 2015 Emerging Storytellers. Her award-winning shorts and music videos have screened at SXSW, Palm Springs Shortfest, Mill Valley, Portland International, and online via Pitchfork, Spin, Rolling Stone, and NPR, among others. Her debut feature film, CLEMENTINE, premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival and was made with the support of the Venice Biennale College-Cinema, the Sundance Institute, Film Independent, and IFP. CLEMENTINE won awards for Best Cinematography and Best Narrative Feature at the 2019 BendFilm Festival and had its virtual theatrical release in May 2020 by Oscilloscope Laboratories. Most recently, Lara’s coming-of-age horror script, RED MOTHER was awarded the Westridge Grant from the San Francisco Film Society.

TIM COGSHELL
Documentary Features Jury
Tim Cogshell is a veteran film critic with over 30 years of experience working for national print, broadcast, and internet media concerns, including; NPR, KNBC Los Angeles, Spectrum News 1, FOX 11 News, Box Office Magazine and The Wrap among others.  Tim is a regular on KPCC’s FilmWeek with Larry Mantle, and co-host of the CineGods podcast.

PETER GILBERT
Documentary Features Jury
Peter Gilbert served as the Director of Photography for the award-winning film Hoop Dreams.  Peter Gilbert has had a distinguished career in producing, directing, and photographing documentaries, feature films, commercials, and music videos. In 2004, he Produced and Directed, With All Deliberate Speed, the first work in the new series “Discovery Docs,” for the Discovery Network. The nationally released film portrays the drama of the monumental Brown V. Board Supreme Court decision that helped change the racial fabric of our country in 1954. The film has performances by Jeffery Wright, Mekhi Phifer, Larenz Tate, Joe Morton, and Alicia Keys. With All Deliberate Speed was nominated for a Prime Time Emmy for Distinguished Work in Non- Fiction Film.

FENELL DOREMUS
Documentary Features Jury
Fenell Doremus is an award-winning producer based in Chicago. Most recently, she produced COOKED: SURVIVAL BY ZIP CODE (BendFilm 2019), which was broadcast nationally on PBS’ Independent Lens (2020). Prior to that, she co-produced the Academy Award-nominated and Emmy Award-winning, ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL (2017).  Other past credits include coordinating producers on RINGSIDE (Motto Pictures 2020) and THE CALLING (The Kindling Group 2010); producer/director/editor on A YEAR ON TEEN STREET (2005) a WTTW-Kartemquin co-production and segment producer/co-editor of THE NEW AMERICANS (2004), broadcast nationally on PBS’ Independent Lens. Fenell has a long association with Kartemquin Films, as staff producer 1994-2002 and currently serves on the board. She is an active member of the Documentary Producers Alliance and is currently Co-Rep of Regional Midwest/Co-Chair of the Regional Committee.

PATRICK CREADON
Outdoor/Environmental Features Jury
Patrick Creadon’s feature projects have been screened at film festivals all over the country, including Sundance, Tribeca, and Slamdance. His directorial debut WORDPLAY, premiered at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and went on to become the second-highest-grossing documentary of 2006. Other films include I.O.U.S.A. (2008), IF YOU BUILD IT (2014), ALL WORK ALL PLAY (2015), and an installment about Notre Dame football for ESPN’s award-winning documentary series “30 for 30” (2016). His critically acclaimed documentary, HESBURGH (2018), about the legendary long-time president of the University of Notre Dame, will see its theatrical release in 2019. His latest film, SKI BUM: THE WARREN MILLER STORY (BendFilm 2019), had its World Premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival.

SERGIO RAPU
Outdoor/Environmental Features Jury
Native Rapanui (Easter Island) filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu has spent the last 15 years shooting and producing documentaries that have aired on History Channel, Travel, National Geographic, and PBS. His latest feature film, EATING UP EASTER (BendFilm 2019), focuses on the social and environmental issues plaguing his island home due to a booming tourism industry. The award-winning film was broadcast on ARTE in France and Germany and PBS’s Independent Lens in the US while continuing a robust impact campaign to engage communities on topics of waste reduction and environmental conservation. Through his work, Sergio aims to show the diversity of life through thought-provoking media to inspire resolutions to social, economic, and environmental conflicts.

FREDERICK THORNTON
Outdoor/Environmental Features Jury
Frederick Thornton is a Spirit Award-nominated and Gotham Award-winning African American filmmaker. Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Frederick cites growing up watching his father make home videos and his mother writing short stories as his inspiration for wanting to be a filmmaker. Thornton is a fellow of IFP Film Week as well as Project Involve and the Producing Lab for Film Independent. Frederick is a graduate of Chapman University, where he completed a BA in Psychology. His latest produced film, GO BACK TO CHINA, premiered at SXSW in 2019 and features Anna Akana in the lead role.

CHRIS EYRE
Indigenous Films Jury
Chris Eyre directed the highly-acclaimed feature Smoke Signals, which won both the Audience Award and Filmmakers Trophy at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival. His other films include Skins, Skinwalkers, A Thief of Time, Hideaway, and Edge of America, which garnered him the prestigious DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement from the Director’s Guild of America.

LARONN KATCHIA
Indigenous Films Jury
LaRonn Katchia is a 27 year-old Warm Springs/Wasco/Paiute tribal member of the Warm Springs Indian Reservation and is currently pursuing a filmmaking career in Portland. His love and passion for film resides from the influence of the commonly mistreated portrayal of Native Americans in Hollywood films today. His mission is to change the Native stereotypes of film and get it right this time by showcasing the Native American perspective in film and creating original stories filmed by Native directors.

ISAAC TRIMBLE
Indigenous Films Jury
Isaac Trimble is a well known Native American flute artist and film producer based in the Pacific Northwest. Isaac’s dedication to community and artistry has led him to receive a lifetime achievement award for music and many film recognitions. In 2017, Isaac produced Missing Indigenous, winner of that year’s Portland 48hour Film Festival, highlighting the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. The film went on to premiere at Filmapalooza in Paris, France. Currently Isaac is pursuing a graduate degree program in film while working on short films and preparing for his first feature film.

KENT OSBORNE
Narrative Shorts Jury and Student Animated Shorts Jury
Kent Osborne is a 20-year veteran of animated television, most notably “Spongebob Squarepants” and “Adventure Time.” Kent has also appeared in numerous independent films including UNCLE KENT and UNCLE KENT 2.

HAROULA ROSE
Narrative Shorts Jury
Haroula Rose is a filmmaker and musician.  Her debut ONCE UPON A RIVER (BendFilm 2019), was called “one of the most anticipated films” by FILMMAKER, winning 19 awards at 40 festivals worldwide and is being released in October by Film Movement.  Her pilot LOST & FOUND had its world premiere at Tribeca, and was “not to be missed,” according to the New York Times.  She is currently shooting a documentary and developing her second fiction feature film as writer and director. Rose’s work has been supported by a Fulbright Fellowship in Madrid, Nantucket Screenwriters Colony, WarnerMedia, Warner Brothers Directing Workshop, and Tribeca All Access.  She received her BA and MA from the University of Chicago and attended USC’s MFA program. Rose’s short films include AS THEY SLEPT, WEDDING DRESS, NO LOVE SONG, and BABY CRAZY.  As a producer she has worked on films such as FRUITVALE STATION, THE FEAR OF THIRTEEN, HEAVEN ADORES YOU, SAINT FRANCES as well as many others. Rose’s songs can be heard in many films, series, theater productions and commercials.  She has toured internationally and released two LPs, two EPs, remixes, and compositions through Thirty Tigers in Nashville and her label Little Bliss Records.  Her third LP and EP are both being released fall 2020.

AARON WOOLFOLK
Narrative Shorts Jury and Student Animated Shorts Jury
Aaron Woolfolk wrote, directed, and produced the award-winning T-Joy Co./Toei Company, Ltd. feature film The Harimaya Bridge. He also co-wrote the Ovation Award-nominated play Bronzeville. He was a Walt Disney Studios/ABC Entertainment Writing Fellow. Most recently, he wrote and directed the science fiction stories Family Line and Renaissance Man and the ghost story There’s Something Going On With Sam for the podcast anthology series Earbud Theater. Aaron’s first film Rage! won a Directors Guild of America award, and his subsequent shorts Eki (The Station) and Kuroi Hitsuji (Black Sheep), and Nico’s Sampaguita won several awards and screened internationally. Aaron’s work has been invited to screen at The Smithsonian Institution, the Toronto International Film Festival, Japan Society, and other prestigious showcases. He is currently in development on film projects in the United States and Japan. Aaron was born and raised in Oakland, California. He graduated with degrees in both Ethnic Studies and Rhetoric from the University of California at Berkeley, and with an MFA in Film from Columbia University.

SAMAH ALI
Documentary Shorts Jury
Samah Ali is a distributor and film programmer hailing from Toronto, Canada. A lover of documentaries and virtual reality, her primary interests lie in short films, ethnic futurisms, and international stories. She programs for Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, DOC NYC, and Black Femme Supremacy Film Festival, serves on the Nantucket Film Festival screening committee, and previously programmed for the Toronto International Film Festival. Samah is also the founder of Sisterhood Media, a production and distribution company streaming films about community and identity on Sisterhood Media TV. You can interact with her on Twitter @sistersamah.

SKYE FITZGERALD
Documentary Shorts Jury
Skye Fitzgerald is currently directing a trilogy of films on the global refugee crisis. The first, 50 FEET FROM SYRIA, focused on doctors working on the Syrian border and was voted onto the Oscar® shortlist.  The second, LIFEBOAT, documents Search and Rescue operations off the coast of Libya and was nominated for an Academy Award® and national Emmy® award. The third, HUNGER WARD, is in the final stages of post-production. As a Fulbright Research Scholar he directed the film BOMBHUNTERS and has worked with the Sundance Institute, the U.S. Institute of Peace, the State Department, the Paul Robeson Fund and Mountainfilm. As a Director of Photography, Skye lenses work for major clients including Dateline, VICE, Mercy Corps, CNN, the Discovery, Travel, History and Animal Planet Channels. He was recently inducted as an honorary member into SAMS (Syrian American Medical Society) for his work with Syrian refugees and named a Distinguished Alumnus at his alma mater EOU for documentary work. Skye is a member of the Documentary Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Find his work at SpinFilm.org.

ERIC SLADE
Documentary Shorts Jury
Eric Slade is a producer at Oregon Public Broadcasting in Portland. His most recent film, ROTHKO: PICTURES MUST BE MIRACULOUS (BendFilm 2019) premiered on the PBS series American Masters. Eric’s feature documentaries BIG JOY and HOPE ALONG THE WIND screened at festivals around the world, including SXSW and Tribeca, winning multiple awards. He spent five years working on the top-rated PBS shows “History Detectives” and “Great Lodges of the National Parks.” His films have received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, ITVS, the California Council for the Humanities and dozens of others.

AMBER BENSON
Student Animated Shorts Jury
Amber Benson is the author of both the Death’s Daughter and The Witches of Echo Park urban fantasy series for Penguin, and the middlegrade book Among The Ghosts for Simon and Schuster. Behind the camera, she co-directed the Slamdance feature film DRONES and (co-wrote) and directed the BBC animated series “The Ghosts of Albion.” In her previous incarnation as an actor, she spent three years as Tara Maclay on the cult television series “Buffy The Vampire Slayer.”

Festival awards will be announced at the 17th annual BendFilm Festival award show on Oct 23 at 7 pm PT. 

Films With A Limited Festival Run

The BendFilm Festival program features more than 100 streaming titles and 12 drive-in screenings. As you plan your viewing adventures October 8 – 25, keep your eye out for the 3 ways films are presented during the Festival:

  • FULL FESTIVAL RUN: Many films are available to stream from October 8 – 25 at your leisure.  You can browse the program here and select virtual tickets now: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020
  • DRIVE-IN: Drive-in screenings are scheduled tickets are available for purchase now: https://bendfilm2020.eventive.org/schedule
  • LIMITED RUN: Some films have a limited window and will only play for a few days during the Festival or they have a cap on the number of tickets that can be sold.  Those films are listed below. Check out the titles below and reserve your tickets now before they fill up!

FOR a visual lay out, check the BendFilm Schedule GRID


AHEAD OF THE CURVE
# of Days Available to start watching: 7
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/15/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
AHEAD OF THE CURVE is the story of one of the most influential women in lesbian history you’ve never heard of and the impact her work continues to have today. Growing up, Franco Stevens never saw any representation of queer women—she didn’t even know it was possible for a woman to be gay. When she realized she was a lesbian, it changed the course of her life.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/427595503

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f63676ce8771a008c8ff501


BLACK CONFLUX
# of Days Available to start watching: 7
Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/22/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
The seemingly separate lives of an anxious, disillusioned teen girl and a troubled, alienated man converge fatefully in this haunting exploration of womanhood, isolation and toxic masculinity, set in 1980s Newfoundland.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 300

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/381193337/1b210be1db

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f59416068d91a003752dfce


CHOLITAS
# of Days Available to start watching: Full Festival
Available: October 8 – 25

Synopsis:
Five Bolivian indigenous women are involved in a unique expedition. As a symbol of liberation and empowerment, they propose to climb the highest mountain in America.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/365946448

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f597329bd9ade0053a098e9


FILM ABOUT A FATHER WHO
# of Days Available to start watching: 7

Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/15/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
Between 1984 and 2019, filmmaker Lynne Sachs shot FILM ABOUT A FATHER WHO,  a documentary portrait of her father, a bohemian businessman who sometimes chose to reveal less than was really there.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/375901685

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f59690690b60d0029620a85


FINDING YINGYING

# of Days Available to start watching: 7

Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/22/2020 11:45 PM

 

Synopsis:
A Chinese family travels to the U.S. for the first time to look for their daughter, an international student who vanished from a university campus.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f596a607ea92a00793a3a2d


Freeland

FREELAND
# of Days Available to start watching: 7
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/15/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
An aging pot farmer suddenly finds her world shattered as she races to bring in what could be her final harvest, fighting against the threat of eviction as the impact of the legalization of the cannabis industry rapidly destroys her idyllic way of life.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/364222921

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f5945d1a6e9f3009400639c


Fully Realized Humans

FULLY REALIZED HUMANS
# of Days Available to start watching: 3

Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/18/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
A month before the birth of their first child, Jackie and Elliot embark on a madcap mission of self-discovery in an attempt to eradicate the inherited dysfunction of their own upbringings.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 400

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f594f2b90b60d002961ec81


Aldo and Ilmar Gavilan play at Jarvis Hall, Napa

LOS HERMANOS/THE BROTHERS
# of Days Available to start watching: 3
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/11/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
Separated by geopolitics, united by music, two Cuban brothers long to collaborate.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 300

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/285056105

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f596c1a90b60d0029620e40


MATERNA
# of Days Available to start watching: 3

Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/11/2020 11:45 PM 

Synopsis:
A closely observed psychological portrait of four women, whose lives are bound together by an incident on the New York City subway.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f5a3794db2eac00928d78ce


THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JOHNNY CARSON — Pictured: (l-r) Bandleader Doc Severinsen, host Johnny Carson — (Photo by: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

NEVER TOO LATE: THE DOC SEVERINSEN STORY
# of Days Available to start watching: Full Festival

Available: Oct 8 – 25

Synopsis:
Master trumpeter Doc Severinsen defies nature after 30 years on television as he tours and performs into his nineties.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/399995725

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f603cf32e56f400758a486f


OUR OWN
# of Days Available to start watching: 3
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/11/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
A teenage girl in a small town in Quebec sets off a local scandal when she gets pregnant.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f594b5ba6e9f3009400697b


PERSONHOOD
# of Days Available to start watching: 3

Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/18/2020 11:45 PM

 

Synopsis:
PERSONHOOD explores the criminalization of pregnant women as seen through the eyes of a young mother swept up in dangerous new laws.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 500

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/435226603

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f596d9a7ea92a00793a3d7f


ROTTEN EARS
# of Days Available to start watching: 3

Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/18/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
A young couple face their deepest fears under the supervision of an unconventional therapist whose healing plan gets out of control.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/410331662

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f594cb63aed39006f3775a9


SAPELO
# of Days Available to start watching: 2
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/11/2020 12:45 PM

Synopsis:
Sapelo is a documentary that journeys within a unique American island to tell the story of its matriarchal griot, Cornelia Walker Bailey, and her adopted sons coming of age in the last remaining enclave of the Saltwater Geechee people.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/393117370

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f59704fdb2eac00928cfc31


THE FALCONER
# of Days Available to start watching: 3
Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/18/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
Rodney Stotts is on a mission to build a sanctuary for injured birds of prey. A falconer guided by the healing power of nature, Rodney becomes the unlikely hero of a new environmental movement in his stressed Washington DC community.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 250

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/300842760

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f46cb8164c25100457601b2


WARRIOR WOMEN
# of Days Available to start watching: 3
Available: 10/16/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/18/2020 11:45 PM

Synopsis:
The story of mothers and daughters fighting for indigenous rights in the American Indian Movement of the 1970s.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLIZIsSvM74

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f59728b24bebb003ece0f2f


WOMAN OF THE PHOTOGRAPHS
# of Days Available to start watching: 7
Available: 10/9/2020 8:00 AM Thru 10/15/2020 11:45 PM 

Synopsis:
A misogynist photographer discovers the joy of loving a woman by using his photographic retouching skills to help her with her self-identity and self-esteem.

Total # of Views (Tickets) Available: 1000

Trailer: https://youtu.be/RuTPlvBXCmM

Tickets: https://watch.eventive.org/bendfilm2020/play/5f594defccfa1f0045b7218f

 

Spotlight and Drive-In Films For BendFilm 2020

BendFilm Announces Spotlight, Local Focus Features and Drive-in Screenings For the 17th Annual BendFilm Festival Set To Run October 8 – 25, 2020

‘Coming Clean’ By Two-Time Sundance Award Winning Director Ondi Timoner Selected at Closing Night Film

Bend, OR – BendFilm announced 17 new films to the lineup for the 17th annual BendFilm Festival running virtually and at drive-in screenings October 8 – 25, 2020.  The films are available to browse in the BendFilm Drive-In Schedule and the Virtual Festival Cinema.  BendFilm announced previously the films in competition, Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck as First Features Honorees, and an open call for a womxn BIPOC Filmmaker Grant.

 

Erik Jambor, BendFilm Head of Festival Programming, said, “Drive-in screenings are a perfect addition to this year’s Festival and we are thrilled to present a wide variety of crowd-pleasers, documentaries, comedies and late-night favorites to watch with your friends out under the stars.  The line up as a whole showcases a diverse set of stories that will spark conversation and provide audiences a much needed opportunity to connect, explore and escape.”  

 

 

CLOSING NIGHT FILM: 

Coming Clean (USA) | directed by Ondi Timoner 
An examination of America’s opioid crisis through the eyes of the recovering addicts and political leaders on the frontlines. Closing Night Film

 

CIRCA 1968: Rock and roll musician Chuck Berry does the splits as he plays his Gibson hollowbody electric guitar in circa 1968. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

OPENING NIGHT FILM(S) AND PARTY: 
Celebrate the opening night of our reimagined and most unconventional festival yet live at the
BendFilm Drive-In or choose between selections in the Virtual Festival Cinema available to stream from home. Whether you watch this new rock ‘n’ roll documentary in your car at the drive-in or tune in from the couch, make plans to dance in your living room starting at 10 pm PST when DJ G Money spins up some smooth grooves at our Opening Night After Party!

 

Chuck Berry (USA) | directed by Jon Brewer
Central Oregon Premiere
Chuck Berry, the absolute instigator of Rock ‘n’ Roll, is truly revealed with exclusive access to his family, friends, famous fans and music icons he inspired, including John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, and Keith Richards. Opening Night Film

 


LOCAL FOCUS FEATURE:

The film in this category was written and directed by Eliab Rice who is a Central Oregon Community College student and Prineville resident. He began filming at the age of 18 with his friends in Prineville and surrounding Central Oregon locations. 

The Younger and the Last of the Vengeants (USA) | directed by Eliab Rice
World Premiere
A group of aspiring wizards try to save their town from an inter-dimensional vampire. 

 

SPOTLIGHT FEATURE FILMS: 

After Selma (USA) | directed by Loki Mulholland
Northwest Premiere
A dive into the history of voter suppression and the need for us to challenge it in order to preserve our democracy and equality for all.

Ahead of the Curve (USA) | directed by Jen Rainin
Oregon Premiere
A look at the power of lesbian visibility and community from the early ‘90s to the present day through the story of Franco Stevens’s founding of Curve, the best-selling lesbian magazine.

American Reject (USA) | directed by Marlo Hunter
Oregon Premiere
The most recent reject from America’s hottest singing competition, Pop Star Now!, is sent back to her hometown to move back in with her mother and the simple life she left behind. 

I Will Make You Mine (USA) | directed by Lynn Chen
Northwest Premiere
Three women wrestle with life’s difficulties while confronting their past relationships with the same man.

Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story (USA) | directed by Kevin S. Bright & Jeff Consiglio
Northwest Premiere
After three decades as the colorful bandleader on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, master trumpeter Doc Severinsen defies nature with a relentless schedule of touring, teaching and performing into his nineties. 

Playing For Keeps (USA) | directed by James Redford

Northwest Premiere
An examination of the importance of play and downtime for all of us – children, adults, seniors, and animals.

DRIVE-IN FILMS: 

Billie (USA) | directed by James Erskine

Oregon Premiere
Crafted from extraordinary unheard interviews, and restoring key performances into color for the first time, BILLIE is the story of the singer who changed the face of American music, and the journalist who died trying to tell it.

 

Collective (Romania) | directed by dir. Alexander Nanau

Central Oregon Premiere

A crack team of investigators at the Romanian newspaper Gazeta Sporturilor try to uncover a vast health-care fraud that enriched moguls and politicians and led to the deaths of innocent citizens.

 

The Donut King (USA) | directed by Alice Gu
Oregon Premiere

The rags to riches story of a refugee escaping Cambodia, arriving in America in 1975, and building an unlikely multi-million dollar empire baking America’s favorite pastry: the donut.

 

Chuck Berry (USA) | directed by Jon Brewer
Central Oregon Premiere
Chuck Berry, the absolute instigator of Rock ‘n’ Roll, is truly revealed with exclusive access to his family, friends, famous fans and music icons he inspired, including John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, and Keith Richards. Closing Night Film

 

Dead (New Zealand) | directed by Hayden J. Weal
Oregon Premiere
A critical ghost cop and a directionless stoner battle their differences while working together to solve a mystery that will save lives… and deaths.

 

Golden Arm (USA) | directed by Maureen Bharoocha
West Coast Premiere
A wimpy baker gets roped into the world of ladies arm wrestling by her truck-driving best friend.

 

Jimmy Carter: Rock ‘n’ Roll President (USA) | directed by Mary Wharton

Oregon Premiere
The mostly forgotten story of how Jimmy Carter, a lover of all types of music, forged a tight bond with musicians Willie Nelson, the Allman Brothers, Bob Dylan, and others. Low on campaign funds and lacking in name recognition, Carter relied on support from these artists to give him a crucial boost in the Democratic primaries.

 

The Planters (USA) | directed by Alexandra Kotcheff & Hannah Leder
Oregon Premiere
Awkward telemarketer Martha Plant lives a lonely existence burying treasure and eating split pea soup. When she takes in a vagrant with multiple personalities, she discovers having three friends in one may be more than she can handle.

 

Some Kind of Heaven (USA) | directed by Lance Oppenheim  

Oregon Premiere
Behind the gates of a palm tree-lined fantasyland, four residents of America’s largest retirement community, The Villages, FL, strive to find solace and meaning.

 

The Younger and the Last of the Vengeants (USA) directed by Eliab Rice
World Premiere
In this LOCAL FOCUS feature, a group of aspiring wizards tries to save their town from an inter-dimensional vampire.

 

 

About BendFilm:
BendFilm hosts an annual independent film festival, year-round film exhibitions and programs, and is the proud owner of the Tin Pan Theater – a boutique arthouse cinema located in downtown Bend’s Tin Pan Alley. The organization is designed to support and nourish filmmakers and enrich the cultural life of Central Oregon while also providing an economic benefit to the region. Celebrating its 17th year, BendFilm is proud to bring diverse voices and visions to the Bend community. The BendFilm Festival runs every October in Bend, Oregon. Make plans to join us October 8-25, 2020 for virtual and drive-in cinema, virtual filmmaker conversations and more. Bend is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, beer lovers and stunning natural scenery. BendFilm is made possible by a dedicated crew of volunteers and generous donors, members and sponsors. For more information, call (541) 388-3378 or visit www.bendfilm.org. Connect with BendFilm on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Feature Films In Competition for BendFilm 2020

17th Annual BendFilm Festival Set To Run October 8 – 25, 2020

BendFilm Will Present More Than 100 Independent Films Available to Stream, Drive-In Screenings and Virtual Filmmaker Discussions  

 

Bend, OR – BendFilm announced 26 feature films selected to screen in competition at the 17th annual BendFilm Festival running October 8 – 25, 2020.  BendFilm will continue its filmmaker-focused efforts to award over $12,000 in prizes directly to independent filmmakers in these competition categories including $5,000 for Best Of Show. 

 

The films are available to browse in the BendFilm virtual Festival cinema now. Passes are on sale now and individual tickets for drive-ins and virtual screenings go on sale September 25 when the schedule is live. 

 

BendFilm, which has been a mainstay on Movie Maker Magazine’s Top 25 Coolest Festivals in the World and Top Festivals Worth The Entry Fee will present a reimagined format with virtual screenings, drive-in movies, remote filmmaker conversations, virtual mentor sessions, virtual happy hours and film discussions among attendees. While the Festival will look different from past years, BendFilm continues to believe strongly in the power of film to entertain, foster connection, build empathy and spark crucial conversations. 

 

Todd Looby, Director of BendFilm, said, “This year’s festival will focus on connection given where we are at this moment in time. While the Festival will look different this year, we will now have the opportunity to grow our community far beyond the boundaries of Central Oregon where we invite people all over the world to celebrate these films and brave filmmakers.  We look forward to growing and strengthening our community through our drive-ins and virtual platform next month.”

 

Erik Jambor, BendFilm Head Programmer, said, “This year’s lineup showcases insightful, entertaining and remarkable stories that are bound to surprise audiences.  I look forward to connecting this year’s class of filmmakers with audiences through virtual Q&A sessions to discuss ideas, cultivate creativity and consider different points of view.”

 

Previously announced, First Feature honorees include Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck, and Andrew Bujalski who will share their filmmaking journeys with festival audiences. Submissions are now open for a grant offering $7,500 to a BIPOC filmmaker which will be given out after a live pitch at the Festival. 

 

 

COMPETITION FILMS SELECTED TO SCREEN IN BENDFILM 2020: 

Freeland

NARRATIVE FEATURES COMPETITION

 

Black Conflux (Canada) | directed by Nicole Dorsey 

Northwest Premiere 

The seemingly separate lives of an anxious, disillusioned teen girl and a troubled, alienated man converge fatefully in this haunting exploration of womanhood, isolation and toxic masculinity, set in 1980s Newfoundland.

 

Freeland (USA) | directed by Mario Furlon, Kate McLean 

Northwest Premiere

An aging pot farmer suddenly finds her world shattered as she races to bring in what could be her final harvest, fighting against the threat of eviction as the impact of the legalization of the cannabis industry rapidly destroys her idyllic way of life.

 

Fully Realized Humans (USA)  | directed by Joshua Leonard 

Northwest Premiere

A month before the birth of their first child, Jackie and Elliot embark on a madcap mission of self-discovery in an attempt to eradicate the inherited dysfunction of their own upbringings.

 

Materna (USA) | directed by David Gutnik

West Coast Premiere

A closely observed psychological portrait of four women, whose lives are bound together by an incident on the New York City subway.

 

Milkwater (USA) | directed by Morgan Ingari
Northwest Premiere
Milo rashly decides to become a surrogate and egg donor for an older gay man she meets in a bar.

 

Our Own (Canada) | directed by Jeanne Leblanc
Oregon Premiere
A teenage girl in a small town in Quebec sets off a local scandal when she gets pregnant.

 

Rotten Ears (Poland) | directed by Piotr Dylewski
Northwest Premiere

A young couple face their deepest fears under the supervision of an unconventional therapist whose healing plan gets out of control.

 

Woman of the Photographs (Japan) | directed by Takeshi Kushida
Northwest Premiere
A misogynist photographer discovers the joy of loving a woman by using his photographic retouching skills to help her with her self-identity and self-esteem.

 

Revival

DOCUMENTARY FEATURES COMPETITION

 

Can You Hear Us Now? (USA) | directed by Jim Cricchi
West Coast Premiere
CAN YOU HEAR US NOW? unravels the ways that years of one-party rule have reshaped democracy in Wisconsin, a state long known for its progressive history.

 

Feather and Pine (USA) | directed by Michael James Beck and Star Rosencrans
Oregon Premiere
A Northern California logging community transitions to a new generation in the wake of The Great Recession.

 

Film About a Father Who (USA) | directed by Lynne Sachs
West Coast Premiere
From 1984 and 2019, filmmaker Lynne Sachs shot 8mm and 16mm film, videotape and digital images of her father, a bon vivant and pioneering businessman from Park City, Utah. FILM ABOUT A FATHER WHO is her attempt to understand the web that connects a child to her parent and a sister to her siblings. 

 

Finding Yingying (USA) | directed by Jiayan “Jenny” Shi
Oregon Premiere
A Chinese family travels to the U.S. for the first time to look for their daughter, an international student who vanished from a university campus.

 

Los Hermanos/The Brothers (USA) | directed by Marcia Jarmel and Ken Schneider
Oregon Premiere
Separated by geopolitics, united by music, two Cuban brothers long to collaborate. Tracking their parallel lives, LOS HERMANOS/THE BROTHERS is a nuanced, intensely moving view of nations long estranged, through the lens of music and family.  

 

Personhood (USA) | directed by Jo Ardinger
Oregon Premiere
PERSONHOOD explores the criminalization of pregnant women as seen through the eyes of a young mother swept up in dangerous new laws.

 

Revival (USA) | directed by Josefina Rotman Lyons
Central Oregon Premiere
A meditation on aging, dance, and community, the film follows four legendary older choreographers as they strive to create dances with New York City seniors.

 

Sapelo (Switzerland) | directed by Nick Brandestini
West Coast Premiere

A journey within a unique American island to tell the story of its matriarchal griot, Cornelia Walker Bailey, and her adopted sons, coming-of-age in the last remaining enclave of the Saltwater Geechee people.

 

Somewhere With No Bridges (USA) | directed by Charles Frank

West Coast Premiere

Twenty years after a beloved local fisherman goes missing off the shores of Martha’s Vineyard, a distant cousin locates his kind, indelible spirit in the stories of family, friends, and the sweeping sea which has defined their lives. 

 

This is Tim: A Musical Life (USA) | directed by Tiffany Ellis
Central Oregon Premiere

The artistic journey of Oregon Music Hall of Fame guitarist Tim Ellis and his choices when faced with every artist’s dilemma: a life on the road, on stage and in the spotlight; or a life at home, raising a young and growing family. 

 

Cholitas

INDIGENOUS FEATURES COMPETITION

 

Cholitas (Spain) | directed by Jaime Murciego and Pablo Iraburu
Northwest Premiere
Five Bolivian indigenous women are involved in a unique expedition. As a symbol of liberation and empowerment, they propose to climb the highest mountain in America, The Aconcagua.

 

Spawning Grounds (USA) | directed by Nils Cowan 

Oregon Premiere

 In an effort to save a rare Native salmon, a community of scientists, landowners, elected officials and Tribal leaders bands together around science and Indigenous knowledge.

 

Warrior Women (USA) | directed by Christina D. King and Elizabeth A. Castle
The story of mothers and daughters fighting for indigenous rights in the American Indian Movement of the 1970s.

 

Falconer

OUTDOOR / ENVIRONMENTAL FEATURES COMPETITION

 

The Falconer (USA) | directed by Annie Kaempfer
Oregon Premiere
Rodney Stotts is on a mission to build a sanctuary for injured birds of prey. A falconer guided by the healing power of nature, Rodney becomes the unlikely hero of a new environmental movement in his stressed Washington DC community.

 

A Moment in the Sun (USA) | directed by Leslie Ortabasi and Oktay Ortabasi
US Premiere
The epic journey of the solar tandem bicycle and the solar pioneers who raced it.

 

Samuel Herbert Boardman, The Father of Oregon State Parks (USA) | directed by Kevin Clark
World Premiere

Through strength of will and perseverance, Samuel Herbert Boardman built one of the best state park systems in the country as the first superintendent of state parks in Oregon.

 

Spawning Grounds (USA) | directed by Nils Cowan 

Oregon Premiere

In an effort to save a rare Native salmon, a community of scientists, landowners, elected officials and Tribal leaders band together around science and Indigenous knowledge.

 

With Spirit (USA) | directed by Scott Almendinger McGrath 

Festival Premiere
After experiencing loss, new mother and accomplished endurance athlete Chelsey Magness races through grief at the edge of the world.

 

Wolves Return (Switzerland) | directed by Thomas Horat 

US Premiere

The wolf polarizes and fascinates. 150 years after the wolf was wiped out of Central Europe, it is inexorably conquering its place. 

 

New and Encore Screenings at the Pop Up Drive-In

2020 BendFilm Pop Up Drive In photo captured by Charlie Thiel

Diverse & Eclectic Drive-In LineUp Includes an Encore Screening of ‘The Last Blockbuster’ and a local premiere of the Oregon-shot ‘The Dark Divide’ by Tom Putnam

Tickets are On Sale Now at BendTicket.com

Bend, OR – BendFilm announced today a new lineup full of creative ways to see films outside in the comfort of a car. Films in the lineup celebrate throwback classics, the natural world, Black lives, and more. The Tin Pan Alley outdoor film screening will also continue through September on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. In addition to the in-person screenings, BendFilm will continue to offer virtual rentals of new release films through the Tin Pan Theater.  New titles are listed each week at TinPanTheater.com

 

Todd Looby, BendFilm Executive Director, said, “We truly didn’t know that people would respond to the drive-in in the way they are. It is so inspiring to see the desire for people to come together in a safe way. We are in a time filled with a lot of uncertainty and anxiety and we need each other to get through it and work for the change that’s needed. We hope these additional screenings provide a release and can help us in some way work for a way forward.”

 

While the screenings are outdoors, BendFilm kindly requests that all guests continue to practice responsible physical distancing and stay in or next to your car during the film.  Please wear a mask if you need to exit your seat or car.

 

2020 BendFilm Pop-Up Drive-In Movies:

Come celebrate summer with your friends at a safe physical distance and enjoy films uniquely suited for outdoor viewing from the comforts of your car at the BendFilm Pop-Up Drive-In.  The drive-in is hosted at the corner of Shevlin-Hixon and Columbia near the Deschutes Brewery Warehouse. Gates will open at 6:30 PM and films will start just after dusk or roughly 8:00 PM.  Tickets can be purchased on BendTicket.com.

 

RAD directed by Hal Needham

Friday, September 4 

RAD is the story of a bicycle-motocrosser (Bill Allen) as he tries to enter a corrupt promoter’s nationally televised cash-prize race.  Hal Brett Needham was a legendary American stuntman, film director, actor and writer. He worked as a stunt performer on more than 30 films, eventually earning the status as Hollywood’s highest paid stuntman. In his biography, he boasted that he “broke 56 bones, my back twice, punctured a lung and knocked out a few teeth.” Best known for his frequent collaborations with actor Burt Reynolds, such as Smokey and the Bandit, Hooper, The Cannonball Run and Stroker Ace, Hal branched out beyond stunt performing. He moved on to direct films that involved action, risk, and fast cars. In 2012, Needham was awarded a Governor’s Award by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, where he was introduced by Quentin Tarantino. While accepting his trophy, he told the audience, “You know, you’re looking at the luckiest man alive. And lucky to be alive.” 

 

The Muppet Movie (1979) directed by James Frawley

Saturday, September 5 

After Kermit the Frog decides to pursue a movie career, he starts his cross-country trip from Florida to California. Along the way, he meets and befriends Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, Gonzo and rock musicians Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. When Kermit is offered a job by Doc Hopper (Charles Durning) to advertise the fried frog legs at his restaurant chain, Kermit turns Hopper down. However, Hopper refuses to relent and pursues Kermit and his companions to a final showdown.

 

The Last Blockbuster directed by Taylor Morden and Zeke Kamm

Friday, September 11 

The Last Blockbuster is a feature length documentary film about the rise and fall of Blockbuster video and how one small town store managed to outlast a corporate giant.  

Come see the film that celebrates Bend’s most recent claim to fame and our wonderful neighbor, Sandi Harding, who is the heart behind it all!

 

I Am Not Your Negro directed by Raoul Peck

Saturday, September 12

Writer James Baldwin tells the story of race in modern America with his unfinished novel, Remember This House.
Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, James Baldwin, Martin Luther King

 

The Dark Divide directed by Tom Putnam

Thursday, September 17

Based on the story of renowned butterfly expert Robert Pyle (David Cross) who embarked on a life-changing trek through one of America’s most important unprotected wildlands in the summer of 1995.
Cast: Debra Messing, David Cross, David Koechner

John Lewis: Good Trouble directed by Raoul Peck

Friday, September 18

The film explores the Georgia representative’s 60-plus years of social activism and legislative action on civil rights, voting rights, gun control, health care reform, and immigration. Director: Dawn Porter | Cast: Bill Clinton, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Hillary Clinton and others.

Proceeds from this screening go to support The Father’s Group. Please bring a backpack to the screening to donate to a student in need and support the Father’s Group’s efforts to help underserved children succeed in school. 

The Father’s Group was founded to build a strong community, implement cultural change, provide educational leadership, and assist families to overcome barriers. Their goal is to teach our children how to become productive citizens and a better society as a whole. Learn more: https://www.facebook.com/TheFathersGroup

 

The 2020 BendFilm Pop-Up Drive-In Series is presented in collaboration with Lay It Out Events,  Presenting Sponsor Director’s Mortgage, Hydroflask, Combined Communications, Garner Group, Home Systems Solutions, Peak Transportation, Sounds Fast, Subaru of Bend and Top Shelf Medicine.

First Feature Honorees for 17th Annual BendFilm Festival

 

Honorees Include Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck, and Andrew Bujalski Who Showcase A Wide Range of Styles & Career Paths   

Expanded Festival Dates: 17th Annual BendFilm Festival Set To Run October 8 – 25, 2020

BendFilm announced today the artists selected to share their experience and help mentor emerging filmmakers breaking into the industry as part of BendFilm’s First Features during the 17th annual BendFilm Festival. Honorees include: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck, and Andrew Bujalski. BendFilm will host the 17th annual BendFilm Festival with a reimagined format with a longer virtual viewing window, drive-in screenings and more chances to celebrate the power of independent film.

Erik Jambor, Head of Festival Programming, BendFilm, said, “From mumblecore to Marvel movies, this class of First Feature honorees is innovative and distinct. With the expanded First Features program we are excited to showcase a wide range of career paths.  We are thrilled to recognize their contributions to independent film and learn more about how they have each paved their own filmmaking journey.”

First Feature Honorees:

Directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck pose for a portrait for Captain Marvel in Beverly Hills, California , U.S. February 22, 2019. REUTERS/Kyle Grillot

Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden:

Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden recently co-wrote and directed CAPTAIN MARVEL. Anna Boden has strong roots in independent film and is the first woman to helm a live-action film that grossed over 1 billion dollars.

In 2006, Fleck and Boden wrote, produced, directed, and edited the feature film HALF NELSON starring Ryan Gosling, who received his first Academy Award® nomination and Spirit Award win for his performance. The film also won Movie of the Year at the AFI Awards, received Spirit Award nominations for Best Screenplay, Director, and Feature Film, and Fleck won Best Director at several regional festivals and critics group awards including the Gotham Awards, Boston Society of Film Critics’, New York Film Critics Circle and the Philadelphia Film Festival.

 

Directing credits also include SUGAR (Movie of the Year at the AFI Awards), IT’S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY and MISSISSIPPI GRIND. In television, Fleck and Boden have directed episodes of HBO’s ROOM 104 and LOOKING, as well as Showtime’s BILLIONS and THE AFFAIR. They most recently directed 4 episodes of MRS. AMERICA starring Cate Blanchett for FX on Hulu.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, said, “We are looking forward to joining the 17th annual BendFilm Festival this year! In these unpredictable, topsy-turvy times, it’s comforting to know there is a thriving community of artists, activists, and storytellers out there taking risks and telling the truth. We are thrilled to share our filmmaking journey with this community and hopefully inspire one another as we march forward into the unknown.”

 

Andrew Bujalski:

Andrew Bujalski wrote, directed and acted in Funny Ha Ha (2002) and Mutual Appreciation (2003) In 2006, he appeared as an actor and contributed to the screenplay of the Joe Swanberg film Hannah Takes the Stairs. Beeswax and Computer Chess, Bujalski’s third and fourth independent films, were filmed in Austin, where the director lives now. Beeswax was released in the summer of 2009. While making Beeswax, Bujalski wrote a screenplay adaptation of Benjamin Kunkel’s 2005 novel Indecision for Paramount Pictures.

 

His fourth feature Computer Chess, a period film set at a computer programming tournament in 1980, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival 2013 and won the Alfred Sloan Feature Film Prize.  Andrew studied film at Harvard’s Department of Visual and Environmental Studies, where the Belgian filmmaker Chantal Akerman was his thesis advisor. He types 89 wpm.

 

Andrew Bujalski said, “It’d be tempting to say a lot has changed in the 20 years I’ve been making films, but, geez, a lot has changed in the last 5 months. I’m honored and excited to take part in this year’s BendFilm Festival, eager to connect with y’all movie people, always happy to talk about the past and hoping someone might be able to explain the future to me!”

About the BendFilm First Features Program:

The BendFilm Festival discovers and supports new filmmaking talent. BendFilm screens several feature films each year by first-time filmmakers who display mature and original filmmaking technique and ability. These filmmakers are navigating a very crowded field of new and experienced filmmakers. They now have a much harder time establishing filmmaking careers in comparison to the celebrated independent filmmakers who came to prominence before the digital age. BendFilm brings in established independent filmmakers to share their experience to help mentor emerging filmmakers breaking into the industry.  Other First Feature honorees and mentors include:  John Sayles & Maggie Renzi (2016), Peter Gilbert (2017), Debra Granik, Chris Eyre, Ondi Timoner (2018) and Ron Shelton (2019).