Life Itself receives Special Award at Traverse City Film Festival

Michael Moore, founder of the Traverse City Film Festival, gave Life Itself a "Special Award" recognition at the festival this past weekend. See the full list of award winners. Roger Ebert's widow, Chaz, was attending the festival and accepted the prize on behalf of the filmmakers. Life Itself had previously played two sold-out screenings at the festival. First released in theaters on July 4th, the acclaimed documentary is currently still playing in over 50 cities in the US and Canada through Magnolia and Video Services Corp, with many more dates to come, and is available on demand and on iTunes. Continued

It's There! Kickstarter success for Almost There

Early on Saturday morning - after being selected as Kickstarter project of the day and RogerEbert.com video of the day and raising over $6,000 in less than 24 hours - Almost There made their $20,000 crowdfunding goal! These funds mean we can now bring this film to the world! Now with the crowdfunding campaign still running until midnight on Friday, August 8th, the Almost There team has also unveiled some spectacular "stretch goals" that will appeal to anyone who has already become entranced by the beguiling, moving story of outsider artist Peter Anton. Continued

Submit to Good Pitch Chicago 2015

Submissions are now open for Good Pitch Chicago 2015! Documentary filmmakers should apply by September 5, 2014 to be eligible for selection for the event, which will take place in Chicago in April 2015. Apply and get more information here! Good Pitch brings in-progress documentary projects in front of potential funders and outreach partners "to forge coalitions and campaigns that are good for all these partners, good for the films and good for society." Since 2008 the events have raised over $8,000,000 for almost 200 different documentaries. The 2013 Good Pitch Chicago was a resounding success, showcasing the films Private Violence; Dreamcatchers; This Changes Everything; Strong Island; Becoming Bulletproof; Radical Grace; and our own The Homestretch. Continued

1 week left to get early bird tickets to the Kartemquin gala!

Only one week left to get your early bird ticket for $150 to the Kartemquin 2014 Gala! Join us for drinks, heavy hors d’oeuvres, clips from new KTQ films, and a raffle featuring a Miami getaway for two! Kartemquin's annual gala supports the work we do while offering a celebration of documentary and Chicago's independent media community. After Friday, August 8, general tickets will cost $250. More details below: Click here to purchase tickets! September, 5 2014 Moonlight Studios, 1446 W. Kinzie, Chicago, IL VIP Reception 6-7PM An intimate gathering with KTQ filmmakers. Continued

Almost There edges closer to Kickstarter success

Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter has selected Almost There as the "Film & Video Project of the Day" on their homepage today! The wonderful news comes in hand with RogerEbert.com also picking their Kickstarter appeal as "video of the day." The film, co-directed/produced by Dan Rybicky & Aaron Wickenden, follows their 'discovery' of elderly outsider artist Peter Anton, and the complications and ethical conundrums that ensue as they become more involved in his life and art. With just 7 days left to get to their goal of $20,000, the filmmakers have raised over $16,000 from 240+ backers as of this morning. Help them get to the goal! Continued

Hoop Dreams voted in top 20 of Sight & Sound "Greatest Documentaries of All Time"

Hoop Dreams has placed at #17 on Sight & Sound magazine's first ever poll of the Greatest Documentaries of All Time. The prestigious cinema magazine hosts a noted poll of the best films every 10 years, but this is their first nonfiction-only poll. They solicited top 10s from 340 critics, programmers and filmmakers, including our artistic director and founder Gordon Quinn. On the filmmakers' poll, Hoop Dreams came in at #14. Here is the overall top 10: 1. Man With A Movie Camera, (Dziga Vertov, 1929) 2. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann, 1985) 3. Sans Soleil, (Chris Marker, 1982) 4. Night And Fog (Alain Resnais, 1955) 5. The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris, 1989) Continued

Almost There enjoys special friends & family preview

This past weekend we celebrated the final stages of completing our new film Almost There with a special sneak preview for friends, people in the film, and Kickstarter backers at Pierogifest, where - eight years ago to the day - filmmakers Dan Rybicky and Aaron Wickenden first met their star, Peter Anton. The film was wonderfully received by all who came to the historic Hoosier theater in Whiting, Indiana, with many of the subjects seeing the work for the very first time. Please read a recap of the day's highlights below, and view more photos here. Video will be coming soon! Continued

Dinesh Sabu awarded Firelight Media Freshman Fund

Firelight Media has selected Dinesh Sabu, director of our upcoming documentary Unbroken Glass, as one of two recipients of their Firelight Media Freshman Fund (F3) award, which supports non-fiction filmmakers of color ages 30 and under. The winners of the F3 award receive a $5,000 grant to support the production of their project and membership in the Firelight Media Producers' Lab. Support for the Firelight Freshman Fund is generously provided by the Edward and Sally Van Lier Fund of The New York Community Trust. The other winner was Bao Nguyen. Continued

Sundance funds Cooked's "Declare Home" mobile app

The Sundance Documentary Film Program has announced that Cooked is one of 44 projects to receive funding in their Spring 2014 grant announcements. In Cooked, filmmaker Judith Helfand sets out on a quest to see if America’s disaster preparedness industry could be used to tackle what might be the deadliest man-made disaster of all – extreme poverty. The film is in post-production, but the funding from Sundance DFP will go towards Declare Home, a mobile phone-based social media app aimed at helping grassroots organizers communicate and collaborate easily to build every-day resilience in their communities. Continued

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