The 25TH ANNUAL FLICKERS’ RHODE ISLAND INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL (RIIFF), running August 9-15, 2021, is a major destination on the Festival circuit and recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as a Qualifying Festival in all short film categories. It is the only Festival in New England with this accolade. The Festival welcomes stellar filmmaking talents from all over the world to beautiful Providence, Rhode Island—one of America’s oldest and most beloved cities. This year, responding to the impact of COVID-19, the Festival will take a hybrid approach utilizing area Drive-In theatres and intimate outdoor screening venues. Virtual programming will also take place online.
RIIFF embraces both filmmakers and screenwriters with the sort of warm-hearted spirit that fosters long lasting friendships, sparks exciting creative projects, and inspires artists to return again and again. Last year, six films from the Festival received Oscar® nominations and two, “Colette” directed by Anthony Giacchino and Alice Doyard, and “If Anything Happens I Love You” directed by Will McCormack and Michael Govier, won for Best Documentary and Animation Short, respectively. To date, there have been 76 Oscar® nominations from the Festival and 13 wins.
Along with film screenings at the Rustic, Misquamicut and the Waterfire Arts Center, online webinars, industry workshops, special tributes, virtual coffee talks, filmmaker interviews, and post film screening Q&A’s, the 2021 Festival will feature a dynamic array of programs and events for both filmmakers and festival audience members. This programming includes the acclaimed Scriptbiz Seminar, the Rhode Island Film Forum, interviews on the Festival’s weekly Rhode Island PBS series, “doubleFEATURE,” the Youth Film Jury, KidsEye Screenings, a virtual Awards program and the announcement of this year’s Winifred Brownell Scholarship Fund award winner.
The Full Festival Schedule will be available by the week of July 25th and will be evolving throughout the Festival, with new programming appearing daily. Links to films will appear on their scheduled play dates and remain live for a period of seven (7) days.
2021 FESTIVAL DEDICATION:
This year’s Festival is dedicated to the memory of Gloria Andrade, mother of long-term Flickers’ Board member, Lawrence Andrade. A special celebration of her life will take place during Flickers official opening night celebration on Tuesday, August 10, 2021 at the Rustic Tri-View Drive-In North Smithfield, RI.
According to George T. Marshall, Flickers Executive Director, “Gloria Andrade was a loyal and fervent supporter of the Festival. We felt it important to celebrate her contributions and call attention to someone who made this a better world for all of us. After the year plus of lockdowns due to COVID, we want to call attention to those we lost, acknowledge their loss and to most importantly celebrate their lives.”
Steven Feinberg, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Film & Television Office said, “My favorite week of the year has finally arrived. We salute Flickers and the prestigious Rhode Island International Film Festival for celebrating 39 exciting years of excellence. Six films from last year’s Festival – including the amazing “Collette” — went on to be nominated for the elusive Academy Award! What an amazing journey!
According to Shawn Quirk RIIFF Program Director, “Annually we are treated by the quality of the various productions from around the globe; these films bring the world to Rhode Island and enlighten us in our cultural outlook. There is nothing more exciting and invigorating than being exposed to the incredible work created by these impassioned filmmakers. This time around we will be watching premieres of such films as Lucia Kašová’s “The Sailor,” Diana Kushner’s “Beneath the Polar Sun,” Caswell Cook’s “Mostly Music: The Journey of the Chorus of Westerly” James Andrew Walsh’s “The Extinction of Fireflies,” Christopher Kahunahana’s “Waikiki,” Hannah Cheeseman’s “The Boathouse,” Dailbor Matanic’s “THE DAWN,” Sean Gannet’s “Last Night in Rozzie” Aldo Miyashiro’s “Wake Show,” Lissette Feliciano’s “WOMEN IS LOSERS” Francine Zuckerman’s “After Munich,” Wojciech Lorenc’s “Fearless,” Sevgi Hirschhäuser’s “Toprak,” Yahaly Gat’s “Mrs. G,” Eden Wurmfeld, Margaret Munzer Loeb’s “Chasing Childhood,” Mikael Kristersson, Åsa Ekman, Oscar Hedin’s “Earth Muted,” Sarah T. Schwab’s “Life After You,” Alana Waksman’s “We Burn Like This,” Bill Haney, “Jim Allison: Breakthrough,” Nadia Tass’ “Oleg: The Oleg Vidov Story,” Jeremy Ungar, Ivaylo Getov’s “Soy Cubana,” and many, many more.
Over its seven-day run, the Festival will be available online plus in-person screenings at various outdoor and Drive-In venues. A record 400 films will be available, including multiple World/United States Premieres from an entry base originating from 103 countries that include: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bermuda, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, French Guiana, French Southern Territories, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Islamic Republic of Iran, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Republic of Korea, Réunion, Romania, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Syrian Arab Republic, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Viet Nam, and 34 states in the US. The films for this year’s Festival were selected from a record entry base of 6,843 submissions.
Interns at the Festival this summer include: Rachel Adler, Bryn Mawr College; John Austin Ashmead, Roger Williams University; Kelli Bertolina, New York University; Joseph Brown, Roger Williams University; Joshua Cooperman, Muhlenberg College; Layla Dozier, Bates College; Ryan Elin, Roger Williams University; Kayla Ellis, Gettysburg College; Jake Ferrigno, University of Connecticut; Alice First, New York University; Sonic Fleming, Boston University; Jessie Garbeil, Clark University; Karl Heine. Cape Cod Community College; Amanda Margolis, Colgate University; Andrew McGowan, Bowdoin College; Isabella Nicdao-Walrath, New York University; Kelly Notine, Drew University; Audrey Orange, Brown University; Lourdes Tantas-Ortega, Rutgers University; Ava Provolo, Mount Holyoke College; Morris Pu, Vassar College; Max Silber, Boston University; Alisa Rabin, University of Connecticut; Josh Sklarin, Syracuse University; Ames Stevens, Vassar College; Abigail Sullivan, University of Massachusetts Amherst; Ryan M. Twomey, Providence College; Kyara Uchida, New York University; Gracie Vicente, Wheaton College; Gabrielle Wilson, Roger Williams University; Chen Xu, Wellesley College; and Sara Zakaria, University of Massachusetts Boston.
PREVIEW NIGHT BY THE BEACH
To celebrate the Ocean State and its vibrant beach culture, the Festival unofficially kicks off on Monday, August 9th, with a special Preview Night hosted at the Misquamicut Drive-In, 316 Atlantic Ave., Westerly, R.I., by Seaside Pharmacy and the Rhode Island Film and Television Office. Gates open at 6:30 p.m., and car’s positioning in the lot will be on a first-come first-served basis. Tickets must be ordered online and cash payments will not be accepted.
OPENING NIGHT CELEBRATION AT THE RUSTIC DRIVE-IN
It is a retro night at the movies when the Festival officially kicks-off at the Opening Night Gala Double Feature Screening on Tuesday, August 10th, 8:00 p.m. at the Rustic Tri-View Drive In, 1195 Eddie Dowling Hwy, North Smithfield, RI. The hosts for the evening include WLNE ABC-6, Michael Drywa, Esq., RIIFF’s Advisory Board President, and Steven Feinberg, Executive Director of the RI Film & Television Office. The Festival will be showcasing a dynamic lineup of international short films followed by a feature film. The first program will be RIIFF’s signature salute to short films. Advance Tickets must be ordered online and cash payments will not be accepted.
LOCAL FILMMAKERS NIGHT AT THE RUSTIC DRIVE-IN
A salute to local and New England filmmakers is on tap Thursday, August 12th, 8:00 p.m. at the Rustic Tri-View Drive In, 1195 Eddie Dowling Hwy, North Smithfield, RI. The host for the evening is Steven Feinberg, Executive Director of the RI Film & Television Office. Advance Tickets must be ordered online and cash payments will not be accepted.
SCREENINGS AT THE WATERFIRE ARTS CENTER
Thanks to sponsorship from the Sony Corporation, RIIFF will be screening films outdoors in the City of Providence at the Waterfire Arts Center, located at The ALCO: AMERICAN LOCOMOTIVE WORKS, 475 Valley St, Providence, RI 02908. Programming will begin at dusk.
ROOFTOP AT THE PROVIDENCE G
There will be screenings Monday through Wednesday at the Rooftop at the Providence G. Showcases will include Animated shorts, locally produced feature films, as well as an evening devoted to Quebecois cinema “Cine-Quebec,” which will be presented in partnership with the Quebec Delegation of Boston, The Rhode Island Historical Society, and The Museum of Work and Culture. Screenings will take place Monday through Wednesday at 8:30 PM.
THE PROVIDENCE UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL, PRESENTED BY MOTIF MAGAZINE RIIFF will feature a special showcase of local filmmakers and their work at the Dusk Lounge, 301 Harris Ave, Providence, RI 02909, in partnership with Motif Magazine. The showcase of locally made short films will start at sundown on Wednesday night, August 11.
TO REPEAT: Most of this year’s online programming will be free except for several World Premiere titles available at $2.00 per the RIIFF streaming platform; Drive-In double features are $20 per carload. Advance Drive-In ticketing can be found at this URL: www.rifilmfest.org or at the Festival Online Program Guide that will update daily: http://prog.tsharp.xyz/en/riiff/39/ ) (Available Wednesday, July 29, 2021)
FLICKERS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization that supports and promotes the film arts in Rhode Island and throughout New England. Over the past two decades plus, its production, the Rhode Island International Film Festival, has screened 6,147 independent films and videos out of 75,278 entries, presented 1,536 World/North American premieres, featured over 1,290 entries that were locally produced, and hosted 5,127 filmmakers and crew. Since its inception, over 539,951 film lovers have enjoyed the Rhode Island International Film Festival and its programming, not including those in New England watching its weekly broadcast and cable programming series, doubleFEATURE.
This year’s Festival is presented by the Rhode Island Film and Television Office, IMCS (Integrated Micro-Chromotography Systems), the City of Providence – Arts Culture and Tourism, the Providence/Warwick Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, the Quebec Delegation of Boston, The Rhode Island Historical Society, The Museum of Work and Culture, Rhode Island PBS, WLNE ABC6, and Cox Media.
ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
RIIFF is proud to be one of 10 Festivals in the world that is an Academy Award qualifier in the Live Action, Animation and Documentary Short categories and a qualifier with the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA). With vanguard programming that seeks to showcase new voices in independent filmmaking from across the globe, RIIFF serves as an exceptional platform from which to launch exciting careers for artists who deserve to be discovered. 13 films that have premiered at RIIFF have won Academy Awards with a total of 77 nominations, and many have gained distribution with the likes of HBO, Showtime, PBS, Netflix and IFC. A wide range of competitive categories—including Comedy, Drama, Horror, Children’s, LGBTQ, Documentary, Webisodes, Music Videos, Science Fiction, and Animated films—RIIFF offers entrants and audience members a veritable buffet of great stories, surprises, and narrative formats. There’s even a screenplay and teleplay competition, designed to give talented screenwriters some well-deserved industry credibility.
RIIFF offers a variety of prestigious awards to some of the most talented artists in (and soon to be in) the business. The festival’s Gilbert Stuart Artistic Vision Lifetime Achievement Award has been bestowed upon Academy Award-winning actors Ernest Borgnine and Patricia Neal, Oscar-nominated actors Seymour Cassel and Cicely Tyson, acclaimed actors of stage and screen, Paul Sorvino and Theo Bikel, director Blake Edwards, special effects icon, Douglas Trumbull and production design legend, Joseph Alves. The festival’s Creative Vision and Crystal Image Awards recognizing outstanding directors, actors, writers, film talent, have been awarded to such talents as Karen Allen, Zach Braff, Blythe Danner, Ioan Gruffudd, Rosa von Praunheim, Michael Showalter, composer Klaus Badelt, and children’s book author Sandra Boynton. More than simply a film festival, RIIFF champions artistic vision in any form and is dedicated to sharing that vision with a diverse and enthusiastic audience that hungers for great storytelling.
More information on the Festival, including advance ticket sales for screenings or special events, can be found at www.RIFilmFest.org. You can also write to RIIFF, 83 Park Street, Suite 5, Providence, RI 02903; call 401- 861-4445; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.