AFI Docs, the all-documentary film festival from American Film Institute, is just around the corner, taking place Wednesday, June 19 to Sunday, June 23 in Washington, DC and Silver Spring, Maryland.
68% of their slate of films are produced by women and almost half have a woman director or co-director. The lineup features 72 documentaries from 17 countries, including six world premieres—one of them being Nest-supported film Made In Boise.
Made In Boise, directed by Beth Aala (2018 Discretionary Grant) unveils a surprising—and booming—industry which has emerged in Boise, Idaho. In this idyllic, all-American city, nurses, nail technicians, and stay-at-home mothers are having babies for strangers—in record numbers. Boise’s own St. Luke’s Medical Center founded and runs the first and best surrogacy program of its kind, in all the US. But everything is not as it appears, surrogacy is not without its health risks, and the practice is not without its emotional complications. Character-driven and stylized in its approach, Made In Boise introduces audiences to the unique world of surrogacy in the most unexpected of places.
The film will have its world premiere with director, producer Beth Aala and producer Beth Levison in attendance, as part of the Spectrum selection of AFI Docs for “filmmakers pushing the boundaries of storytelling and exploring more unconventional subject matter.”
Three other Nest-supported films are also on the list:
American Factory, directed by Julia Reichert (2016 Chicken & Egg Award recipient) and Steve Bognar will screen as the AFI Docs Centerpiece screening, with a conversation with co-directors Steven and Julia and NBC Meet The Press’s Chuck Todd to follow.
One Child Nation (2017 (Egg)celerator Lab grantee), directed by Nanfu Wang (also a 2018 Chicken & Egg Award recipient) and Jialing Zhang will also screen as part of the Truth and Justice selection, with co-director Jialing Zhang in attendance.
And don’t miss these films by former Nest grantees: Picture Character, directed by Ian Cheney and Martha Shane (co-director of Nest-supported After Tiller) and The Great Hack, directed by Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim (Nest-supported The Square).
The second annual Meet The Press Film Festival, in collaboration with the American Film Institute, features short documentaries which spotlight critical political issues, ahead of the US midterm elections. The festival will be held in Washington, DC at the Landmark Atlantic Plumbing Cinema on Sunday, October 7 and Monday, October 8.
We are proud to have supported two filmmakers featured in the Meet The Press Film Festival through our Breakthrough Filmmakers Award program. Nanfu Wang and Dawn Porter will screen their shorts and participate in discussions with fellow filmmakers and NBC News correspondents and anchors.
Out of Many, One (World Premiere), co-directed by 2018 Breakthrough Award Recipient Nanfu Wang and John Hoffman
“A Netflix original documentary short, Out of Many, One is a film about how one museum is using art, artifacts and historical documents to help green card holders prepare for the Naturalization Test and, in turn, become U.S. citizens.” *
Part of the “E Pluribus Unum” program, followed by Q&A with MSNBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff and the filmmakers. Monday October 8 at 6:00 PM.
Voting Matters, directed by 2017 Breakthrough Filmmaker Award Recipient Dawn Porter
“More than 50 years after the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most extensive pieces of civil rights legislation, people of color across the United States still are engaged in a battle to protect their right to vote. Voting Matters follows one dynamic woman working tirelessly on the ground and in the courts to ensure that they are not denied this right.” *
Part of the “My Democracy” program and followed by Q&A with “TODAY” and MSNBC anchor Craig Melvin and the filmmakers. Monday October 8 at 5:30 PM.
*Synopses from the AFI website.
Full slate available here. See you in DC!
The AFI Docs Film Festival is kicking off in Washington, DC and Silver Spring, MD this week, and Chicken & Egg Pictures is honored to have supported the following nonfiction filmmakers and their projects, which can be seen at the festival from June 13-17.
United Skates, directed by Dyana Winkler & Tina Brown (2016 Diversity Fellows Initiative)
When America’s last standing roller rinks are threatened with closure, a community of thousands battle in a racially charged environment to save an underground subculture—one that has remained undiscovered by the mainstream for generations, yet has given rise to some of the world’s greatest musical talent.
The 2018 Tribeca Audience Award-winning film will be closing out the festival on Sunday, June 17 at 6:30 pm.
Blowin’ Up, directed by Stephanie Wang-Breal
Blowin’ Up looks at sex work, prostitution, and human trafficking through the lens of New York State’s criminal justice system. The film captures the growing pains of our nation’s first human trafficking intervention court in Queens, New York, and how we define trafficking and prostitution from many different perspectives: the criminal justice system, the social welfare system, and, most importantly, the women and girls who are at the center of it all.
Screenings: Thursday, June 14 at 3:30 pm and Friday, June 15 at 6:15 pm.
Dark Money, directed by Kimberly Reed
A century ago, corrupt money swamped Montana’s legislature, but Montanans rose up to prohibit corporate campaign contributions. Today, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision —which allows unlimited, anonymous money to pour into elections nationwide—Montana is once again fighting to preserve open and honest elections. Following an investigative reporter through a political thriller, Dark Money exposes one of the greatest threats to American democracy.
Screening: Thursday, June 14 at 6:00 pm.
It Will Be Chaos, directed by Lorena Luciano and Filippo Piscopo
Life in Southern Italy is thrown into a tailspin when refugees arrive by the thousands and the locals are left to fend for themselves. Eritrean survivor Aregai, trapped in the Italian faltering immigration system, goes underground to reach Northern Europe. Through his journey, intercut with the road trip to Germany of a Syrian family, the clash between the newcomers and the locals escalates in real time.
Screening: Thursday, June 14 at 5:45 pm.
Tre Maison Dasan, directed by Denali Tiller (Accelerator Lab 2015)
Tre Maison Dasan is a story that explores parental incarceration through the eyes of three boys—Tre, Maison, and Dasan. Following their interweaving trajectories through boyhood marked by the criminal justice system, and told directly through the child’s perspective, the film unveils the challenges of growing up and what it means to become a man in America.
Screenings: Thursday, June 14 at 6:00 pm and Sunday, June 18 at 4:45 pm.
The following films were directed by Nest-supported filmmakers and will also be featured at the AFI Docs Film Festival.
Inventing Tomorrow, directed by Laura Nix (2018 Breakthrough Filmmaker Award recipient)
On Her Shoulders, directed by Alexandria Bombach (2018 SXSW LUNA / Chicken & Egg Pictures Award recipient)
A Murder in Mansfield, directed by Barbara Kopple (2011 Chicken & Egg Pictures Celebration Award)
Skywards, directed by Eva Weber (Black Out, 2007)
See the full AFI Docs Film Festival slate here.
Post by Morgan Hulquist, Summer 2018 Chicken & Egg Pictures Communications Intern.