Creative Artists Agency (CAA) will launch the virtual edition of CAA Moebius, an annual two-day screening series showcasing diverse Los Angeles-based graduate student filmmakers from the American Film Institute (AFI) Conservatory, School of Film/Video at CalArts, UCLA School of Theater, Film & Television, and USC School of Cinematic Arts. The event will be livestreamed May 20 and 21 from 6:30-8:30pm PST and feature live-action and animated short films. As in past years, CAA agents will serve as mentors to the filmmakers.
Moebius’ notable alumni include Dubois Ashong who will make his feature directorial debut with Geechee starring Andrea Riseborough, with CAA Media Finance co-representing the film’s domestic rights with AGC Studios; Max Barbakow, who most recently directed Palm Springs, sold to Neon and Hulu at Sundance this year in a record-breaking deal; CAA client Hao Zheng, who won Silver at the 2019 Student Academy Awards and is currently a member of the inaugural Disney Launchpad: Shorts Incubator; and Chris Winterbauer, who made his feature debut with WYRM based on his Sundance-selected short of the same name.
The fest was launched in 2015 by then-trainees and now CAA Motion Picture agents Christina Chou, Zach Kaplan, and Pete Stein, plus Lingie Park. The event draws attendees from major agencies, management companies, production companies, studios, networks, and streaming companies.
“Five years ago we set out to create a platform to help open doors to storytellers of all backgrounds and support a diversity of perspective in filmmaking that is as rich and nuanced on-screen as the world in which we live,” said Chou, Kaplan, Park, and Stein, in a joint statement. “It has been deeply gratifying to be a part of the trajectory of these gifted filmmakers.”
Read the programming lineup below.
MILK TEETH directed by Felipe Vargas
An orphanage spirals into mayhem when a boy discovers a shadowy creature who comes to collect more than just the children’s teeth…
THEY WON’T LAST directed by Portlynn Tagavi
After attending their friends’ perfect wedding, Christine is forced to consider the future of her own relationship when her hopeless romantic boyfriend Alex proposes. When Christine is unable to say yes, Alex makes it worse by giving her an ultimatum: either get engaged or break up right now.
SMELL OF SUMMER directed by Kristopher Wilson
Three 10-year-old boys explore their notoriously dangerous Philadelphia neighborhood searching for a place to bask in their youth.
FRENCH FLY (Animated) directed by Liam LoPinto
A fly returns home to find his world completely French.
THE SPEECH directed by Haohao Yan
Beijing, 2003 – While the SARS epidemic unravels social norms, three eight-year-old girls uncover personal truths during a school lockdown.
DIAS DE LAS CARPAS directed by João Dall’Stella
After an immigration raid, a group of boys help an undocumented girl get to the beach to reunite with her family, unaware that their new friend has a magical secret that will change their lives forever.
THE CYPHER directed by Letia Solomon
With his reputation and a potential record deal on the line, Khalil (Nigel Cox) confronts his opponent Yung Reap (O’Shay Neal) and defends his secret during a freestyle rap competition in Philadelphia.
MR. THISFORTHAT directed by Thomas Mendolia
A girl from a broken home is visited in her closet by a mysterious creature who promises her anything she wants…at a price.
UNCLE directed by Jun Hee Han
Yonghan’s got a failing business, a great girlfriend, and a complicated past – but when his overbearing father and estranged daughter show up in Seoul for an unannounced visit, his carefully structured life begins to fall apart.
BIRDBOY directed by Sanjna Bharadwaj
Shunned from his flock one foggy night on a pier, Birdboy meets a stranger who helps him find his place in the world.
YELLOW GIRL & ME directed by Isabella Issa
Set in the Jamaican countryside, a young child named Nicole waits for her sister, Yellow Girl, to teach her how to swim. Circumstances escalate when Yellow Girl breaks her promise and Nicole realizes that she is next in line for a life of sexual abuse.
CACTUS BLOSSOM directed by Samir Oliveros
To win his wife’s love back, an old man transforms into the thing she loves the most: a cactus.
For more details about the festival, click here.
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