We're thrilled to announce our new Works-In-Progress Program! As a continued effort to connect traditionally underrepresented filmmakers with industry professionals, six TFI selected documentary and fiction features will be presented to accredited industry at the upcoming Tribeca Film Festival. Each filmmaking team will have the opportunity to show excerpts of their selected works, most of which are currently in the post-production stage. This gives filmmakers an opportunity to show footage to an industry audience and enhance the connections made during the festival.
“This is the next logical step to build out our three-day TFI Network Market for distinctive and thoughtful storytellers,” said Amy Hobby, Executive Director of TFI. “This is an opportunity for funders, post facilities, sales agents, distributors and anyone tracking new talent to discover exciting new work.”
The Works-In-Progress participants were selected through TFI’s submissions cycle and each project will also be participating in TFI Network, presented by AT&T.
2018 marks our second year of partnership with AT&T, and their continued support has propelled this year's TFI Network into being more inclusive and beneficial than ever.
In addition to the Works-In-Progress films, as well as Tribeca All Access grantees and Sloan Filmmaker Fund grantees taking part in TFI Network, we selected a handful of exceptional projects to take meetings and participate in the annual film market. These projects are chosen through our grant application pool and our partnerships with film markets and festivals in the US and abroad, and all of the projects are currently in development, production or post-production. Through industry meetings, participants have the opportunity to make connections with leading professionals who can provide invaluable support and mentorship to their projects. These filmmakers also receive year-round mentorship and professional guidance by the TFI Artist Programs department.
Here are the six Works-In-Progress projects:
Works-In-Progress Scripted Projects
Director, Co-screenwriter: Darya Zhuk | Producer: Debbie Vandermeulen | Producer: Birgit Gernböck | Screenwriter: Helga Landaur Olshvang
In 1990s Belarus, a wanderlust young DJ is derailed by a typo in a forged US Visa application, forcing her to a backwater factory town where she is determined to fake her way to the American dream.
Director, Screenwriter: Numa Perrier
In the last days of her mother’s life, 19 year old Tiffany crashes with five family members in a Las Vegas studio apartment. In order to make ends meet, her sister, a phone sex operator, introduces her to the world of internet fetish cam girls.
Director: Emma Westenberg | Producer: Claire Read | Screenwriter: Valerie Kamen
Reunited on Long Island, three friends attempt to solve their hometown’s cold case. Instead, their amateur investigation leads them to face the realities of the residents of their town and the truth about themselves.
Works-In-Progress Documentary Projects
Co-director, Producer: Ben Guez | Co-director, Producer: Alexsandra Kulak | Producer: Misha Maclaird
In a fearless battle against conformity, the brilliant and volatile Kate Woods and her brother Kemp resettle in an abandoned California mining camp, conjuring the zeal of the ghost town’s past inhabitants. While homesteading duties are eased by fervent discussions with their old friend Tommy about politics, art, and existence, a new challenge arises: facing their own ghosts.
Watermelon Thump Queen
Director, Producer: Jeff Reichert | Director, Producer: Farihah Zaman
In the "toughest town in Texas”, a high stakes election plays out as seven high school girls compete to become the next Watermelon Thump Queen.
What We Left Unfinished
Director, Producer: Mariam Ghani | Consulting Producer: Alysa Nahmias | Editor: Ian Olds
WHAT WE LEFT UNFINISHED examines five unfinished fiction films from the Communist era in Afghanistan - when film was a weapon, filmmakers became targets, and the dreams of political regimes merged with the stories told on-screen.
Here are the additional scripted and documentary projects that have been selected to participate:
Additional Scripted TFI Network Projects
#streetpunxofyangon in Collaboration with New Orleans Film Festival
Director, Screenwriter: Maja Holzinger | Producer, Screenwriter: Yamil Rodriguez | Cinematographer: Matt Clegg
An aspiring filmmaker in New Orleans quits her high school teaching job to make a film about punk rockers in Yangon, Myanmar, overlooking one detail: she has no story.
Dive in Collaboration With Los Cabos International Film Festival
Director, Screenwriter: David Pablos | Producer, Actor: Karla Souza | Producer: Ana Laura Rascón
Heading into her final Olympic games, synchronized diver Mariel discovers a terrible truth about her partner, forcing her to confront her painful past marked by sexual abuse, manipulation and lies.
Girl With Child in Collaboration with Chicago International Film Festival
Director, Screenwriter: Maria Abraham | Producer: Luz Agudelo Gipson | Associate Producer: Lucía Moscoso T.
Near Quito, Ecuador, Diana escapes an institution for troubled girls with her son, embarking on a journey to rescue her younger sister from an abusive home. Diana faces the harsh realities of surviving as a teen mom while looking for a new life.
Director, Screenwriter: Gabriella Moses | Producers: Julius Pryor and Marttise Hill, Pryor Hill Productions | Producer: Shruti Ganguly
Nina is a ten-year old Dominican American girl who believes she can perform miracles after resurrecting an albino deer. She discovers that what sets her apart may be more of a blessing than a curse in this magical realism coming-of-age story.
Loading... in Collaboration with Nuevas Miradas, Cuba - EICTV
Director: Yimit Ramírez | Producer: Gregorio Rodríguez
A group of police officers investigate a set of videos found in a camera that has passed through various strata of Cuban society, revealing their judgements and biases.
Director: Lorena Padilla | Producer: Georgina Gonzalez | Producer: Alejo Crisóstomo
Martínez, a cranky and lonely bureaucrat resisting retirement, receives a surprise gift from a deceased neighbor. He finally begins to enjoy life through a love affair with her through her old belongings.
Perfume de Gardenias
Writer, Director: Gisela Rosario | Producer: Arleen Cruz
Isabel is a grieving widow who gains a new sense of creativity and purpose by helping her friend Toña plan their neighbor’s funerals. Once she learns that Toña assists these sick neighbors in their deaths, Isabel begins to come to terms with her own grief and loss.
Raising A Beast in Collaboration with Luang Prabang Film Festival
Director: Xaisonghkam Induangchanthy | Producer: Abigail Lazaro | Co-producer: Steve Arounsack
In Laos, two Hmong siblings with diverging destinies are responsible for grooming a bull into a prize fighter that will earn the family money and honor.
Those Girls in Collaboration With SANFIC (Santiago International Film Festival) & DIRAC - Chile
Director, Screenwriter: Alexandra Hyland | Executive Producer: Sebastian González Vildoso
Living in Santiago, best friends Rafaella and Gabriela compromise their relationship when they are faced with challenges of getting Rafaella an illegal abortion.
The Year Between
Director, Screenwriter: Alex Heller | Producer: Eugene Park | Producer: Brian Hieggelke
During the year between Clemence’s earth-shattering diagnosis of bipolar disorder and her earth-shattering comeback, she attempts to rejoin society from her room in her parents’ basement.
Additional Documentary TFI Network Projects
Charlotte So Far
Writer, Director: Douglas Tirola & Charlotte Tirola | Producer: Susan Bedusa
A teenage girl starts her sophomore year of high school being anonymously betrayed. This act inspires her to tell her life story with self-created videos and social media to figure out why this happened, who might have done it, how to move forward - and who she is.
A Destruction in Collaboration With Kartemquin Films - Diverse Voices in Documentary
Director, Producer: Urooj Yazdani | Cinematographer: Omar Nubalsi
Humera, an eleven-year-old girl from a remote village off the coast of Karachi Pakistan, dreams of becoming a doctor. When the only school in her community comes under threat of closure, Humera faces intense pressure to forego her education for an arranged marriage. A DESTRUCTION follows Humera’s life trajectory as it reaches a critical point: she must maintain the determination to stay in school or risk falling prey to the cycle of poverty.
Dreams (Vaychiletik) in Collaboration with DocsMX
Director: Juan Pérez
DREAMS (VAYCHILETIK) explores the dream-like world of Mayan Indian “tzotzil” culture. A traditional musician believes he’s been granted the gift of music by the gods - but it’s a gift that cannot be rejected, otherwise it would put his family in danger. As a result, he undertakes his destiny of serving his Mayan Indian community, despite any consequences that might arise.
Director: David Osit | Producer: Mohanad Yaqubi
MAYOR is a real-life political saga about a search for identity behind the battle lines of a global conflict. With startling and unprecedented access, MAYOR follows a charismatic leader's quixotic quest to build the city of the future in a land paralyzed by its past.
Panquiaco in Collaboration With EICTV Nuevas Miradas
Director: Ana Elena Tejera | Producer: Maria Isabel Burnes
Cebaldo, an indigenous Panamanian man who lives in Portugal, believes he is plagued with the disease of nostalgia. His loneliness in Porto takes him on a journey that turns into a dream-like experience. His memories and recollections end up revealing a path in search of his ancestral origins: the sea.
Rajada Dalka – Nation's Hope in Collaboration With Greenhouse Forum
Director: Hana Mire | Creative Consultant: Cynthia Kane | Associate Producer/Cinematographer: Jude Chehab
RAJADA DALKA (NATION’S HOPE) is an inter-generational, character-driven portrait of courageous young women in Somalia and their coaches as they stand up against oppression and gender bias, illuminating the power of basketball as a sport that ends up reuniting and inspiring a fractured nation.
The Seer and the Unseen
Director: Sara Dosa | Producer: Shane Boris
THE SEER AND THE UNSEEN is an unexpected environmental film about invisible elves, the free market and the surprising power of belief told through a grandmother’s quest to save a threatened landscape in Iceland – and preserve the beloved home her family has lived in for generations.
The Syrians in Collaboration with the Dubai Film Connection Market
Director: Ismaël Louati | Producer: Willy Rollë | Producer: Justin Pechberty
THE SYRIANS presents existential stories of Syrian refugees in contemporary Beirut: mother-to-be Leena, postcard artist Omar, surfer Ali, and closeted transgender Myriam. Filmmaker Ismaël explores these individuals’ aspirations and struggles as they go through important moments in their lives.
Things We Shouldn't Do
Director, Cinematographer: Bruno Santamaría | Producer: Abril López
The island of El Roblito in Nayarit Mexico, surrounded by jungles and an open sea, appears to be inhabited only by children. El Roblito seems like a pure and idyllic place that lacks adult supervision - until the children’s actions slowly reveal signs of the adults’ repressive behavior and the negative influences that loom over their childhood.
Unteachable in Collaboration With Kartemquin Films - Diverse Voices in Documentary
Director: Shuling Yong | Producer: Lisa Teh | Executive Producer: Violet Feng
In the shadows of Singapore's world-renowned education system are teenagers who've fallen through the cracks. UNTEACHABLE follows a young woman's mission to transform learning in classrooms. Having grown up in Singapore where grades often define one’s self-worth, she challenges teenagers deemed “unteachable” by society to rediscover their joy of learning.
TFI Network - presented by AT&T takes place April 19th and 20th during the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival.