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by Alece Oxendine
September 19th, 2012

We are thrilled to announce this year’s recipients of the Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund. With several wonderful and promising projects this year, the stakes were high, especially with the introduction of the new AT&T $10,000 cash grant. Rooftop Films is dedicated to not only building a community of filmmakers, but sustaining this community as well. That is why we donate $1 of each ticket sold during our Summer Series and partner with organizations who are also dedicated to helping filmmakers.

Mark Elijah Rosenberg, Founder and Artistic Director of Rooftop Films, says “We would not be able to make the Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund grants without the support of our community—our audience and our sponsors—so it’s wonderful to be able to represent the diversity of that community with a wide range of films this year, ranging from comedies and animation to serious films addressing global political issues. Each of these filmmakers previously screened at our festival, so it’s a wonderful opportunity for us to give something back to them and help them make new films which will sure to make a big impact in the near future.”

So without further ado, here are the 2012 Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund grantees. Congratulations to all the recipients!

ROOFTOP FILMS and AT&T FEATURE FILM GRANT:
Bill and Turner Ross, untitled Texas / Mexico film

ROOFTOP FILMS & DCTV COLOR CORRECTION GRANT:
Tony Gerber and Maxim Pozdorovkin, Citizen Bout

ROOFTOP FILMS & EASTERN EFFECTS EQUIPMENT GRANT:
Alison Bagnall, Funny Bunny

ROOFTOP FILMS & EDGEWORX POST-PRODUCTION GRANT:
Shaka King, Newlyweeds

ROOFTOP FILMS EQUIPMENT GRANT:
Jeremy Saulnier, Blue Ruin

ROOFTOP FILMS & ADRIENNE SHELLY FOUNDATION SHORT FILM GRANT FOR WOMEN:
Talibah Newman, Sweet Honey Chile’

ROOFTOP FILMS & DCTV EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES SHORT FILM GRANTS:
Julia Pott, Neighbors “Diamonds”
Jesse Moss, Reality Party

ROOFTOP FILMMAKERS’ FUND SHORT FILM GRANTS:
Nellie Kluz, Gold Party

Stephen Irwin, The Obvious Child

Edwin Martinez, The Last Doo Wop

David and Nathan Zellner, Part-Time Jobs

Mauricio Arango, We Won’t Always Be Hyenas

Full details:

ROOFTOP FILMS / AT&T FEATURE FILM GRANT
AT&T is the presenting sponsor of Rooftop Films 2012 Summer Series, and will award one filmmaker $10,000 cash for their feature film, at a critical stage of production. “AT&T is thrilled to support independent artists with this Rooftop filmmaker grant,” said Marissa Shorenstein, President, AT&T New York. “Filmmaking is important to New York both culturally and economically and our commitment has extended even further by presenting Rooftop’s 2012 Summer Series which builds audiences for the independent and emerging artists who are essential to making New York the culturally rich place that it is.”

Bill and Turner Ross, untitled Texas / Mexico film
Bill and Turner Ross’ third feature film will be documentary portrait of the modern frontier. Augmented by the lives of a cross-section of residents in and around Eagle Pass, Texas, we will get a sense of the symbiosis inherent in a border community. The stories, experiences and daily trials of these people will provide a real glimpse at life along the U.S.-Mexico border. Viewers will be given the chance to explore the world behind the curtain of sensational news coverage and stereotyping. Rooftop screened the Ross brothers award-winning documentary 45365 in 2009.

THE ROOFTOP FILMS & DCTV COLOR CORRECTION GRANT
Founded in 1972, DCTV is an established media arts resource for NYC’s independent filmmaking community. For this grant, DCTV will provide their color correction/mastering suite for one feature film for up to 12 days.

Tony Gerber and Maxim Pozdorovkin, Citizen Bout
On March 6, 2008, four men meet in a Bangkok hotel to discuss a $25 million arms deal. But two of them are undercover agents, and the conversation is secretly recorded. When officers raid the conference room, Viktor Bout, the world’s most famous arms dealer, is handcuffed and put up against the wall. He famously mouths the words, “game over.” That’s where this documentary begins, with unprecedented behind-the-scenes footage from officials and Bout himself. Rooftop screened Gerber’s documentary Full Battle Rattle in 2009.

ROOFTOP FILMS & EASTERN EFFECTS EQUIPMENT GRANT
Since 1999, Brooklyn-based Eastern Effects has been providing Lighting & Grip Equipment rentals for Independent Feature Films, Television Productions, Corporate & Industrial Videos, Student Filmmakers, and Live Broadcast. For this grant, Eastern Effects will award 30 days of lighting and grip equipment to one feature-length film.

Alison Bagnall, Funny Bunny
In this off-beat comedy, a compulsive do-gooder (Kentucker Audley) and a trust fund man-child (Olly Alexander) embark on a slipshod quest to vie for the heart of an afflicted but beautiful factory-farming activist (Kate Lyn Sheil) whom they have never actually met. Rooftop screened Bagnall’s film The Dish and the Spoon in 2011.

ROOFTOP FILMS & EDGEWORX POST-PRODUCTION GRANT
Edgeworx Studios is a post-production house based in Manhattan. Their areas of expertise include motion graphic design, animation, VFX, editorial and finishing. For this grant, Edgeworx will provide 1-2 weeks of post-production services to one feature-length film.

Shaka King, Newlyweeds
Lyle is a repo-man, an often perilous and/or heart breaking enterprise. His sole companion is his girlfriend Nina, an unemployed, capricious, dreamer. To dull the stress of their daily lives, they self-medicate with marijuana. But what should be a match made in stoner heaven turns into a love triangle gone awry in this black comedy about addiction. Rooftop screened two of King’s previous films, Clockwork (2006) and Herkimer DuFrayne, 7th Grade Guidance Counselor (2011).

ROOFTOP FILMS EQUIPMENT GRANT
Rooftop Films strives to support as many filmmakers as possible. This year, one film had a particular need for generators for nighttime shooting. Through the Rooftop Equipment Rental program, we are pleased to be able to help one additional film through a special grant.

Jeremy Saulnier, Blue Ruin

In this realistic horror / thriller, when a reclusive vagrant returns to his childhood home to carry out an act of revenge, he uncovers a terrible truth about his past and finds himself in a desperate fight to protect his estranged family. Rooftop screened Saulnier’s Goldfarb (1999) and Murder Party (2007).

ROOFTOP FILMS AND ADRIENNE SHELLY FOUNDATION SHORT FILM GRANT FOR WOMEN
The Adrienne Shelly Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated in loving memory to the uniquely gifted actor and filmmaker Adrienne Shelly, whose highly accomplished life was tragically cut short November 1, 2006. For this grant, we will award one $3,000 grant to a female director.

Talibah Newman, Sweet Honey Chile’
Sweet Honey Chile’ is a film about a young boy who is larger than life, but is trapped within the confines of an absurd, suffocating world. Though weighed down by the trappings of poverty, Honey tries to help his short-fused and short-sighted mother deal with her grief. Newman’s previous film, Busted on Brigham Lane, played at Rooftop Films in 2012.

ROOFTOP FILMS / DCTV EQUIPMENT & SERVICES SHORT FILM GRANT
DCTV Equipment Rentals is one of the only rental houses that does not require production insurance and is open 7 days a week. DCTV Workshops provide over 200 hands-on workshops in video production, post-production, producing, and graphic & web design each year. For this grant, DCTV will provide 2-3 weeks of production equipment and workshop enrollment to two filmmakers.

Jesse Moss, Reality Party
A documentary about a group of Southern California teenagers who get together and have a party. Then the parents show up. And the cops too. But this party is different. It’s a “fake” party, to show parents what actually happens at teenage parties. But for Jace, the “director,” the experience is a kind of existential nightmare, forcing him to revisit his own painfully awkward teenage years again and again. Rooftop showed Moss’ documentary Full Battle Rattle in 2009.

Julia Pott, Neighbors “Diamonds”
In this endearing narrative music video, a trapped little boy and a wounded girl flee to the ocean as their bodies splinter into brightly colored glitter, in a parable about the brevity of life and the need for adventure. Rooftop previously screened Pott’s animated films Howard (2011) and Belly (2012).

ROOFTOP FILMMAKERS’ FUND SHORT FILM GRANT
We at Rooftop Films believe that short films do not receive the attention they deserve in the world of film, and that all too often even a festival which prominently includes short films does little for the filmmaker in the long run. For the short film grants, Rooftop Films earmarks one dollar from every regularly-priced ticket sold and every submission fee received for the Filmmakers’ Fund, dispersing grants up to $3,000.

Mauricio Arango, We Won’t Always Be Hyenas
Set in El Salado, Colombia, a town that underwent one of the most vicious massacres in recent Colombian history, this film will mix fictional and documentary elements showing how these peoples’ lives have been impacted by such an event. Scripted in a non-linear fashion, the film explores the ways in which violence permeates and shatters every aspect of one’s life. Rooftop showed Arango’s film The Night of the Moon Has Many Hours (2012).

Stephen Irwin, The Obvious Child
The Obvious Child is an animated film about the complicated relationship between a pet rabbit and his troubled young owner. The film explores childhood delusions and the confusion that religion can cause in a developing mind. Irwin’s previous film, Moxie, played at Rooftop Films in 2012.

Nellie Kluz, Gold Party
Gold is a commodity that thrives in uncertain economic climates; rising gold prices over the past few years have created a boom industry around precious metal scrap. Gold Party watches two gold scrap dealers at work: Kate, an entrepreneur and bodybuilder who buys gold from women at home parties, and Roy, who works long hours processing metal in a small Boston office. Kluz’s previous film, Young Bird Season, played at Rooftop Films in 2012.

Edwin Martinez, The Last Doo Wop
They call him Johnny Doo Wop. He’s an old-school Bronx Italian who’s been a deli owner since he was 20 years old, first in the Bronx and now – with his Doo Wop Deli – in the upper Manhattan neighborhood of Inwood. He’s never called in sick. And after 47 years of making coffee, pasta and sandwiches for the entire neighborhood, The Last Doo Wop will document his last days before retirement. Rooftop screened Martinez’ documentary To Be Heard in 2011.

David and Nathan Zellner, Part-Time Jobs
Part-Time Jobs is a short film amalgamation involving a parallel dimension the filmmakers discovered as children. Rooftop has screened numerous Zellner films, including Kid-Thing (2012), Sasquatch Birth Journal 2 (2011), Quasar Hernandez (2007) and more.

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One Response to “Announcing the 2012 Filmmakers’ Fund Grantees”

  1. [...] scrap dealers that’s been in the works for a while here, has been awarded a grant from the 2012 Rooftop Filmmakers Fund - thank you Rooftop! GOLD PARTY is coming very very soon to the Camden International Film [...]

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Rooftop Films is a New York based non-profit whose mission is to engage diverse communities by showing independent movies in outdoor locations, producing new films, coordinating youth media education, and renting equipment at low cost to artists.

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