AFI Docs and NBCUniversal have announced today that four of the documentary projects screened at AFI Docs 2015 in Washington DC have been selected as recipients for the first inaugural AFI/NBCUniversal Impact Grants, with $75,000 in total awarded between the selectees.
The winning films are: The Conversation, directed and produced by Blair Foster and Geeta Gandbhir and produced by Jessica Jones. The film is a collection of shorts examining race and equality and fostering dialogue and related tense issues; Most Likely To Succeed, Written, directed and produced by Greg Whiteley and produced by Ted Dintersmith, with campaign strategy directed by Daria Lombroso. The film examines the American educational system’s roots in the industrial era and how it measures up to current needs; Peace Officer, the SXSW favorite directed, produced and shot by Scott Christopherson and Brad Barber, with campaign strategy by Corinne Bourdeau; and Salam Neighbor, directed by Chris Temple and Zach Ingrasci with production and campaign direction by Temple, Ingrasci and Salam Darwaza. The film examines Syrian families living along the Jordanian border with Syria.
The grants will support outreach and social action campaigns for each of the four documentary projects, which participated in the first-ever the AFI Docs Impact Lab, a two-day filmmaker workshop held this summer from June 16–17 in Washington, DC, during AFI DOCS. Sponsored by NBCUniversal and presented in partnership with Picture Motion, the lab’s goal is to inspire change by bringing together the nation’s leaders and leading artists. Along with the financial support, Picture Motion and AFI Docs will partner with the Center for Media & Social Impact at American University and CMSI Co-Director Caty Borum Chattoo for a co-authored final report documenting the social impact of the recipient films.
Wolfe Releasing has acquired the gay horror-comedy You’re Killing Me following a successful run of LGBT and horror festivals throughout 2015. Starring Jeffery Self, the film follows an internet comedy star named George whose friends are so entrenched in ironic detachment that the fail to that George’s handsome new boyfriend is a serial killer. As he begins slashing his way through George’s friends, they take matters into their own hands.
Directed by Jim Hansen and co-written by Hansen and Self, You’re Killing Me also stars Matthew McKelligon, along with Drew Droege, Jack Plotnick, Mindy Cohn, Bryan Safi, Matthew Wilkas, and Sam Pancake. Wolfe Releasing as landed all worldwide rights, and plans a spring, 2016 release on home video, VOD and other digital platforms. Jim Stephens, President of Wolfe Releasing and ICM Partners negotiated the deal.