DOC NYC Unveils 2019 Lineup; ‘Just Mercy’ To Open Napa, Close Austin Fests; NewportFilm Sets Cinematographer Lab – Film Briefs


DOC NYC will open its 10th edition next month with Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band, the feature from Daniel Roher that served as the opening-night film of this year’s Toronto Film Festival. It kicks off a lineup that includes 136 feature-length documentaries and 28 world premieres among more than 300 films and events overall, repping the biggest slate yet for the event already considered the nation’s largest documentary festival.

The New York-set fest also said Thursday that it will close with Ebs Burnough’s The Capote Tapes, a fresh portrait of Truman Capote, with André Leon Talley part of a post-screening Q&A with the director. DOC NYC’s centerpiece presentation is another TIFF pic, Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator, from director Eva Orner.

The slate includes world bows for pics including Joe Berliner’s The Longest Wave, Keith Fulton and Lou Pepe’s He Dreams of Giants about Terry Gilliam’s quest to adapt Don Quixote, Viva Van Loock’s opioid crisis doc Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope, and Ira Deutchman’s Searching for Mr. Rugoff about the force behind art house distributor Cinema 5.

DOC NYC runs November 6-15 at the IFC Center in Greenwich Village and Chelsea’s SVA Theatre and Cinépolis Chelsea.


Just Mercy
Just Mercy Warner Bros

Warner Bros’ Just Mercy has been set as the opening-night film of the upcoming Napa Valley Film Festival, which has unveiled its full lineup for its ninth edition that runs November 13-17. The news comes after the pic, directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and starring Michael B. Jordan, Brie Larson and Jamie Foxx, was tapped to close the Austin Film Festival on October 31.

The film tells the true story of attorney Bryan Stevenson (Jordan) and his fight to defend Walter McMillian (Foxx), a man wrongfully sentenced to death. It hit theaters Christmas Day.

The Napa Valley fest will also host 20th Century’s Fox’s Ford v Ferrari on its Sneak Preview Night on November 12, and close with the world premiere screening of new streaming platform SOMMTV’s Verticals, a series that showcases Napa Valley winemakers and the human condition through a bottle of wine.

At AFF, Just Mercy screenwriter Andrew Lanham, who attended the University of Texas in Austin, will attend and participate in a post-screening Q&A with castmember Tim Blake Nelson.


The Kingmaker
“The Kingmaker” Showtime

The nonprofit newportFILM Lab has unveiled a new program to provide support and mentorship to documentary cinematographers. It will host seven emerging filmmakers for its Documentary Cinematography Master Class, a weekend-long retreat October 18-20 offering master classes on the craft.

The Kingmaker DP Shana Hagan, Long Strange Trip DP Nelson Hume and Robb Moss, the Harvard chair of the Department of Visual and Environmental Studies, will serve as mentors. This year’s participant class: Nausheen Dadabhoy, Jessica Earnshaw, Lucas Guilkey, Dana Kalmey, Robert Kolodny, Souki Mehdaoui and Christina Shaman.

“We’ve been interested in expanding our reach into the broader documentary community and noticed that there were not many opportunities for young cinematographers in the early stages of their career to be offered strategic guidance,” newportFILM artistic director Andrea van Beuren said. “We were thrilled to have recently received an incredibly generous grant that enabled us to start this program.”

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