2016 Wisconsin Film Festival

2016 Wisconsin Film Festival

Premiere date: Apr 14, 2016

Founded in 1999, the Wisconsin Film Festival is the state’s premier film festival, in the heart of Madison, our capital city.

This eight-day annual festival takes place each spring in seven Madison theaters. The Festival presents new American independent and world cinema (narrative, documentary, shorts, experimental), restored classics, and the work of Wisconsin filmmakers. Over 150 films and an attendance getting close to 30,000 make this a lively event that’s become a major part of our state’s cultural calendar.

The Festival is a program of the UW Arts Institute, a nonprofit educational unit of the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Governed by arts faculty and staff, the Arts Institute represents the collective voice and strength of the arts at the University, and works to make the campus arts more visible and effective. The Arts Institute funds and supports projects with university- and community-wide impact, including artist residencies, awards and fellowships, public programs, and arts marketing and outreach.
 

Biographies

Jim Healy | Wisconsin Film Festival  
Jim Healy is UW Cinematheque Director of Programming, a position he has held since October, 2010. From 2001-2010, he was Assistant Curator, Exhibitions in the Motion Picture Department at George Eastman House in Rochester, NY. Prior to that, he was a Film Programmer for the Chicago International Film Festival. Jim is also currently the American Programming Correspondent for the Torino Film Festival in Turin, Italy and he is supervising programming for the 2012 edition of the Wisconsin Film Festival.

Wendy Schneider | Director, “The Smart Studios Story”
Wendy Schneider, who lives in Madison, Wisconsin, is a documentary filmmaker, community activist, and former producer/engineer at Smart Studios.

Born in New York City and raised in New Jersey, Wendy Schneider began working at Smart Studios in 1992. Dedicated to tapping the power of music, film and the visual arts to address community issues, she is the creative force behind a range of projects including an audio documentary on the Civil Rights Movement, an award-winning CD compilation of songs protesting the Iraq War, audio soundscapes for children, the groundbreaking documentary, "CUT: Teens and Self Injury", winner of the “Best Wisconsin Film” award at the Beloit International Film Festival, and most recently "The Smart Studios Story," debuting at the 2016’s SXSW. A long-time community activist, her work is dedicated to bringing creativity into contact with community issues: the "Boombox the Wasteland" project, and fundraisers for groups including Housing Initiatives, Rape Crisis Center, and the Young, Gifted & Black Coalition.

"The Smart Studios Story," the center of Schneider's work since the studio closed in 2010, marks the culmination of an involvement with music production which began when she was still in high school. After getting a job as a messenger for a multimedia production company in New York City, she advanced rapidly and within eight years had become the company’s creative director of audio, producing soundscapes for major corporate clients that included the National Geographic Society and the International Center for Photography. In 1989, Wendy completed her first audio documentary for People For The American Way; a retrospective commemorating the 25th anniversary of slain civil rights activists, Andrew Goodman, Mickey Schwerner and James Chaney. Recognizing that her true vocation lay in creative work rather than corporate life, she relocated to the Midwest to attend the University of Wisconsin, where she concentrated her studies on multicultural literature and music.

Marc Kornblatt | Director, “Still 60”
Born and raised in Edison, New Jersey, Marc graduated from Brandeis University and began a professional theatrical career as an acting apprentice at New Hampshire’s Peterborough Playhouse. After six years, he earned a master’s in journalism from NYU, and for over two decades has written for newspapers and magazines, and published children’s books including the award-winning novels Understanding Buddy and Izzy’s Place.

An elementary school teacher since 2001, Kornblatt made four music videos and two documentaries, "Community" and "The Making of Carried Away", all featuring students at his school. In 2010 his play "Refuge" won the Beverley Hills Theater Guild Julie Harris Award. He used the money to make "Alone Together", which played at the Green Bay International Film Festival, Detroit Windsor International Film Festival and Wildwood Festival. Kornblatt wrote, directed, composed and performed the score for "Alone Together" as well as his second short, "Walk the Walk, 2011". He recently finished two more short films, "Bring on the Magic" and "Old Country Lullaby".
 

Emir Cakaroz | Director, “Revza”
Emir Cakaroz is a Turkish documentary filmmaker lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He received his BA and MA degrees in Cinema and Television, at Anadolu University, in Turkey.  He also holds an MFA degree from the Film Department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His award-winning films have screened all around the world, including the Cannes Film Festival-Short Film Corner in France and the Golden Orange Film Festival in Turkey. Emir’s most recent documentary films are based on observation and direct interaction with his subjects. He believes that documentary films are not just a platform for a filmmaker’s observations; it is an arena that the filmmaker and the subjects come together, communicate and negotiate. He is currently making a documentary film about Riverwest Film and Video, a store which houses an internet based radio station, in Milwaukee. Emir teaches film production at Lake Forest College and the Film Department of UW-Milwaukee.

"Revza" - After being away three years, the filmmaker visits his family for ten short days in Turkey. He films his mother's daily activities and talks to her about life and family. This is the second film of a trilogy and the first film in the trilogy, "Two Photographs" screened in the Wisconsin film Festival in 2013.

James Runde | Director, “White and Lazy”
I'm a Madison-area native and just graduated from the UW-Madison Comm Arts Department. Aside from being a wannabe filmmaker, I play in a garage/punk band and am a bit of a rock 'n roll nut. I don't know if any of my future projects will have such explicit punk/grunge influences as this film, but music is definitely a key creative force for me even if the project has nothing to do with it. I just hope to keep doing both until I become old and bitter.

Set in 1991, "White and Lazy" follows Steve as he tries to collect the month's rent from his eccentric roommates. Prone to singing in front of the mirror, smoking grass, hunting down breakfast burritos, and ranting about Ronald Reagan, Steve is decidedly not up to the task. While mostly about laughing at oneself, White and Lazy also touches on the gap between underground culture and straight society, channelling the Do It Yourself mentality of the then-soon-to-explode punk scene. Watch it, man, you know...if you want to.

Kara Mulrooney | Director, “jazzy@32 (a true story)”
Kara Mulrooney is an independent filmmaker, commercial producer and production designer from Milwaukee, WI. She recently earned her MFA from UW-Milwaukee, and is currently an instructor there. Mulrooney's "One Block Away" screened in the 2014 Cannes Film Festival's Short Film Corner, her short “An Evening at Angelo’s,” won the Cream City Cinema Jury Prize at its premiere, and her most recent film "jazzy@32 (a true story)" won the Golden Badger Award at its premiere.

The film explores the aesthetic, emotional, and commercial elements of online psychic readings, as well as the fright of a woman looking at the end of her child-bearing years.

 

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