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Film News Roundup: Stage 32 Sets Online Screenings After SXSW Cancellation

SXSW Festival
Michael Buckner/Variety/Shutters

FILM FESTIVALS

Social network-educational site Stage 32 will offer SXSW filmmakers a showcase for their projects beginning in April.

The site made the announcement on Monday, three days after the film festival was canceled due to concerns about the coronavirus epidemic. Filmmakers and content creators accepted into SXSW 2020 are welcome to submit their pics for screening. Filmmakers will have a choice whether to screen privately to Stage 32’s community or publicly.

“As filmmakers, producers, screenwriters and actors ourselves, all of us at Stage 32 are devastated for everyone impacted by the cancellation of SXSW,” said Stage 32 CEO Richard “RB” Botto. “Given the sad reality that the coronavirus will likely cause more festival cancellations, we want to assure that these filmmakers and their connections get the exposure their work and efforts so richly deserve.”

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The Sarasota Film Festival has unveiled the drama “Dream Horse” as its opening night film on March 27.

“Dream Horse” stars Toni Collette as a small-town Welsh bartender who convinces her neighbors to chip in their meager earnings to help raise a horse in the hopes he can compete with the racing elites. Bleecker Street is releasing the movie.

“The Artist’s Wife,” starring Bruce Dern and Lena Olin, will serve as the festival’s centerpiece film. The drama “The Last Shift,” starring Richard Jenkins, will be the closing night movie on April 4.

Connie Nielsen will receive the festival’s impact award and Wendie Malick will receive the TV comedy icon award.

CASTING

Rapper Busta Rhymes and actor Kevin Dillon have been cast as detectives in the upcoming movie “Red Money.”

Steve Stanulis is directing and producing through his Stanulis Films. Shooting is set to begin in June in New York City.

Rhymes has received 11 Grammy nominations. Dillon portrayed Johnny “Drama” Chase on HBO’s “Entourage.”

BOARD MEMBERS

The International Documentary Association named Bonni Cohen and Jannat Gargi as new members of its board of directors.
Cohen is co-founder of the Catapult Film Fund, which supports the development of documentary films. She co-directed “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” and co-directed and produced the Peabody Award-winning film “Audrie & Daisy.”
Gargi served as the head of documentary films for Vulcan Productions and serves as the co-chair of The Redford Center, a nonprofit that harnesses the power of media to engage people and galvanize environmental action.