TUCSON, AZ (September 22, 2021) – Films from the 2021 and 2020 editions of I Dream in Widescreen, the showcase of senior thesis films made by emerging filmmakers at the University of Arizona School of Theatre, Film & Television (TFTV), continue to generate major festival buzz. Official selections now total 27. Here are some of the latest highlights.
TESORO selected for Young Creators Showcase at Urbanworld Film Festival in NYC
Inspired by the stories from her own Mexican-American family, Roxanna Denise Stevens Ibarra’s poignant film Tesoro has been selected by 10 film festivals around the country. Later this month, Tesoro will screen in New York at the 25th annual Urbanworld Film Festival. Presented by founding partner HBO and partners WarnerMedia and Ally, Urbanworld is dedicated to advancing the impact of diverse content creators. Roxanna’s film is one of seven shorts selected for the Young Creators Showcase, screening both virtually and in person at Cinépolis Cinemas Chelsea on September 30.
“Having Tesoro – a film created with family and our small Chicano community in Tucson – being screened as part of the Young Creators Showcase in NYC, at the largest Academy Award-qualifying film festival in the world, is magical. I just want to make my family proud and continue to make art, and I’m so grateful that UrbanWorld is providing a space to do that,” says Roxanna.
The Urbanworld Film Festival will take place in New York from September 29 – October 3, 2021.
FALLACY to screen at Seattle Queer and San Francisco Transgender Film Festivals
Atlas Woods-Smith’s film Fallacy, about a trans man working through his insecurities as he pursues the man of his dreams, will screen at the Seattle Queer Film Festival in October 2021 and at the San Francisco Transgender Film Festival (SFTFF) in November 2021. Seattle Queer has grown into the largest event of its kind in the Pacific Northwest, gaining industry and audience recognition for showcasing the latest and best in queer film, from major motion picture premieres to emerging talent. Established in 1997, SFTFF exhibits courageous, moving and innovative works that show the complexity of lives lived on the transgender spectrum.
“I’m so honored to have this story shown at these festivals,” says Atlas. “My purpose in making this film was to showcase the experience of living in the intersection of trans and gay identities, and I’m hoping there are audience members who will finally feel seen by watching it.”
In addition to Fallacy, Atlas’s short documentary Ditat Deus, co-produced with classmate Zelio Pereira, has been selected by the Desperado LGBTQ Film Festival in Phoenix AZ, the Austin Spotlight Film Festival, and the Queerbee LGBTQ Film Festival in London, UK.
TREASURES BENEATH MY TREE to screen at Chicago International Children’s Film Festival
In November 2021, Alexandra Cerna’s film Treasures Beneath My Tree will screen at the 38th annual Chicago International Children’s Film Festival (CICFF). CICFF was founded with the aim to introduce culturally diverse films to American children, and is now one of the two Academy Award-qualifying children’s film festivals in the world. Alexandra grew up in Scottsdale AZ and spent her summers in the tiny mountain town of Concepción de Buenos Aires in Jalisco, the home of her father’s family. Treasures Beneath My Tree honors the beloved ‘patches of nature’ she knew growing up – both the lone tree in her front yard in the Arizonan desert, and the lush green of her Mexican pueblo – and the power of staying connected to nature, and to our younger selves.
“All my favorite films are children’s movies,” says Alexandra. “To be in the same festival that has hosted some of my childhood favorites is truly incredible! My film is centered around creativity, thinking outside of the box and the simplicity of a child’s happiness. This festival embodies the exact morals of my film. I couldn’t be more honored!”
The Chicago International Children’s Film Festival will take place from November 5 – 14, 2021.
International Black Film Festival selects ONE-WAY MIRROR
Sparked by the turmoil following the death of George Floyd, One-Way Mirror tackles the topic of white liberals not understanding their own privilege. In a review for Arizona Spotlight, Chris Dashiell said that it “handles a thorny subject with grace and nuance, and is thought-provoking without being pedantic.” The film was co-written by Mackenzie Giguere and Vaune Suitt, marking the first time a senior thesis film was written jointly by a Film & Television student and an Acting/Musical Theatre student respectively. Vaune also stars in the film alongside fellow Acting/Musical Theatre students Reagan Kennedy, Brach Drew, and Babacar Ba. The film will screen at the International Black Film Festival, taking place in Nashville, TN from December 2 – 5, 2021.
“Having One-Way Mirror selected for the International Black Film Festival means the world to me,” says Vaune. “As a black girl from Arizona, getting to share a story with personal meaning was not something I knew I could do, or had the ability to. Working with Mackenzie to create this movie brought life to some of my experiences, and I am so grateful.”
Mackenzie Giguere: “This is our first festival acceptance, and it is such an honor to have been selected. One Way Mirror would not have been possible without the dedication of our crew, the support of our friends and family, or the vulnerability and skill Vaune brought to the project. I’m incredibly proud and grateful!”
Following the official festival selections announced in a story in May, the latest list of selected films from the Film & Television Classes of 2020 and 2021 include:
Fallacy | directed by Atlas Woods-Smith (’21) | Seattle Queer Film Festival
Fallacy | directed by Atlas Woods-Smith (’21) | San Francisco Transgender Film Festival
Fallacy | directed by Atlas Woods-Smith (’21) | Triangle North Carolina Film Festival
Ghosts(?) | directed by Antonia Maher (’21) | Houston Comedy Film Festival
One-Way Mirror | directed by Mackenzie Giguere (’21) | International Black Film Festival
Treasures Beneath My Tree | directed by Alexandra Cerna (’21) | Chicago International Children’s Film Festival
Barren | directed by Emma Sinex (’20) | Reading Film Fest
Houses in Motion | directed by Adrian Meyer (’20) | Philadelphia Unnamed Film Festival
IRIS | directed by Zach Lovvorn (’20) | Brooklyn SciFi Film Festival
Karen from Susie May | directed by Dan Crowley (’20) | Philadelphia Unnamed Film Festival
Tesoro | directed by Roxanna Denise Stevens Ibarra (’20) | Urbanworld Film Festival
Tesoro | directed by Roxanna Denise Stevens Ibarra (’20) | Los Angeles Lift-Off Film Festival
Tesoro | directed by Roxanna Denise Stevens Ibarra (’20) | Idlewild International Film Festival
Tesoro | directed by Roxanna Denise Stevens Ibarra (’20) | LFM Film Festival
The Lights Are On, No One’s Home | directed by Faye Ruiz (’20) | Palm Springs International ShortFest
The Lights Are On, No One’s Home | directed by Faye Ruiz (’20) | Long Distance Film Festival
The University of Arizona School of Theatre, Film & Television (TFTV) nurtures and develops outstanding artists and scholars via rigorous training and mentoring by internationally recognized faculty, high-level internship opportunities, industry-standard resources, and hands-on production experience. TFTV offers comprehensive training programs that aim to prepare students to succeed in a wide range of careers – in the industry, the arts, and higher education. Each year through Arizona Repertory Theatre productions, Next Performance Collective productions, and Film & Television screenings, students of TFTV are able to showcase their talents, tell compelling stories, and provide clear results of what happens in their classrooms and studios. TFTV’s Film & Television program regularly ranks in The Wrap’s “Top 50 Film Schools,” and the School’s Theatre programs regularly rank in Onstage’s “Top 30 College Musical Theatre Programs” and “Top 30 College Theatre Design & Tech Programs” making UA one of the country’s top institutions to study theatre, film and television. More at tftv.arizona.edu.
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