Kiiller Film's Christine Vachon – producer of such iconic independent films as 'Still Alice,' 'Boys Don’t Cry,' and 'Carol' - has been named the Fusion “Woman of the Year” for 2016. The award presentation will be part of the Festival’s three days of screenings and panels celebrating women creators in film, TV, and New Media beginning Thursday, March 3 and running through Saturday, March 5.
The Fusion Film Festival, NYU Tisch School of the Arts’ premiere student film festival showcasing the work of emerging female filmmakers throughout NYU, will name Killer Film’s Christine Vachon – producer of such iconic independent films as Still Alice, Boys Don’t Cry, and Carol - the Fusion “Woman of the Year” for 2016. The award presentation will be part of the Festival’s three days of screenings and panels celebrating women creators in film, TV, and New Media beginning Thursday, March 3 and running through Saturday, March 5. All events are free of charge.
The Festival will kick off with a screening of Vachon’s most recent film, Weiner-Dog, directed by Tisch alumnus and Tisch Grad Film faculty member Todd Soldonz, followed by a public conversation and Q&A between Vachon and Soldonz. This screening is open exclusively to the NYU community and will take place Thursday, March 3 at The Cantor Film Center, located at 36 E. 8 Street.
“Christine Vachon’s body of work is so impressive that she could probably have been named Woman of the Year every year for the past 20 years,” said co-director Callahan Zacks.
“She inspires us as a fearless producer who has changed the landscape of indie film and forged enduring professional relationships with some of some of the most talented directors and actors of our time,” added Fusion Co-Director Gabriela Alcalde.
Vachon is an Independent Spirit Award and Gotham Award winner who co-founded indie powerhouse Killer Films with partner Pamela Koffler in 1995. Over the past decade and a half, the two have produced some of the most celebrated American indie features including, in addition to the ones listed above Far From Heaven, One Hour Photo, Kids, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Happiness, Velvet Goldmine, Safe, I Shot Andy Warhol, Camp, Swoon and I’m Not There. In television, Vachon recently executive-produced the Emmy and Golden Globe winning miniseries Mildred Pierce for HBO and an upcoming series on Amazon based on the life of Zelda Fitzgerald. Other recent work includes Kill Your Darlings and Magic Magic. Vachon is also the director of the MFA program at Stony Brook University.
Previous winners of the “Woman of the Year” award have included Oscar-winning screenwriter Lucy Alibar; Dr. Mary Schmidt Campbell, Dean Emerita of NYU Tisch; and acclaimed cinematographer/director and Tisch alumna Reed Morano.
In addition to screenings throughout the three day festival, Fusion will also offer a variety of special events, including “Queens of Comedy” with Tisch alum Azie Dungey (writer on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and creator of the hit satirical web series “Ask A Slave”), three time Emmy Award winner Julie Rottenberg (HBO’s Sex and the City, and Bravo’s new series Odd Mom Out), SNL’s Above Average writer Glenn Boozan, with comedian and NPR host Ophira Eisenberg moderating.
Other special events include a conversation on women in games with Susanna Pollack, president of Games for Change, and Maria Saint Martin, head of WIGI NYC, moderated by Clara Fernandez Vara of the NYU Game Center also offers a game arcade featuring exclusively games created by women for the audience to experience at a special reception; a documentary pitch competition with finalists screening trailers and offering their pitches to judges from HBO, VICE, PBS, and IFP; and an RSVP-only brunch with Christine Vachon, who will be interviewed by Pulitzer-Prize winning film critic for Time, Stephanie Zacharek.
“Fusion brings together an extraordinary collection of accomplished talent from across all areas of the entertainment industry in support of women as creators and decision makers,” offered Nicole Quintero Ochoa, Fusion’s Co-Director for the past three years. “Our festival creates a thrilling intersection of creativity, energy, mentoring spirit and new ideas and offers a true signal for change.”
Below is a full list of programming and events. All events free and, with the exception of the Weiner Dog screening and Brunch events, open to the public on a first come, first served basis. This year’s festival is sponsored by Movado, Canon, Final Draft, Avid, ADOBE, and Project Greenlight Digital Studios.. For Fusion Festival 2016 updates, please visit www.fusionfilmfestival.com.
THURSDAY MARCH 3
Opening Night! Special Advanced Screening Celebrating Woman of the Year Christine Vachon
Weiner Dog, Written and Directed by Todd Solondz, followed by Christine Vachon and Todd Solondz in Conversation
NYU ID Required for Admittance
7pm | Cantor Film Center , 36 E 8th Street
***NYU ID’s REQUIRED for this event only.
In the opening night event, the Fusion Film Fes.val offers a surprise screening of a Chris.ne Vachon film, a producer whose fearless body of work has changed the landscape of indie filmmaking.
FRIDAY MARCH 4
Docs-in-the-Works Pitch Competition
Friday, March 4th 3pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Grab a hot seat in the room as finalists present work in progress to top industry judges and listen in on the exec’s feedback and selection of winner!
Judges Include: HBO’s Jackie Glover, VICE’s Gianna Toboni, Impact Partners Film’s Jenny Raskin, IFP’s Milton Tabbot, POV’s Chris White, and Chicken & Egg’s Wendy Ettinger.
Level-Up: Women in Video Games
Friday, March 4th 7pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Female visionaries and game creators take us on a journey into the new world of gaming Featuring Maria Saint Martin (Head of WIGI NYC), Susanna Pollack (President of Games for Change), Mitu Khandaker-Kokoris (Assistant Arts Professor, NYU Game Center), Catt Small (Co-Founder of Code Liberation), Angela Lee (Game designer, animator, NYU MFA candidate) and Clara Fernandez Vara (NYU Game Center Faculty) moderating.
***This event will be followed by a reception with a video arcade of games you can experience all created by women!
SATURDAY MARCH 5
Brunch with Woman of the Year Christine Vachon
Saturday, March 5th 9:30am | Limited Seating, RSVP Only fusionfilmfestival.com
NYU students must apply for a seat this event and receive accepted notification to attend.
Join us for breakfast and a thrilling conversation with producing icon and our Woman of the Year Christine Vachon and TIME Magazine film critic Stephanie Zacharek. With almost 100 producing credits to date, Christine is a powerhouse producer who leads the way for filmmakers.
No Limits: Women in Experimental Media
Saturday, March 5th 12pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Innovators pushing the limits of their medium share their work and personal stories. Featuring Keren Cytter (exhibition at The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago), Rebecca Lieberman (Monuments to Hart Island), Lana Lin (exhibition at The MOMA), Jennifer Reeves (Color Neutral), Jenner Perlin (NYC Based Experimental Filmmaker) and Lynne Sachs (Alternative Filmmaker and NYU Professor) moderating.
The Independent Approach
Saturday, March 5th 1:30pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Some of the most daring women in indie producing talk frankly about what it takes to get their ideas to the big screen. Featuring Anne Carey (Archer Gray), Lydia Dean Pilcher (Cinemosaic), Sarah Walker (Tribeca), Gabrielle Nadig (Buffalo Picture House), Sarah Megan Thomas (Equity), Taylor Shung (Independent Producer), Lindsey Taylor Wood (LTW Communications) and Joe Pichirallo (Tisch Undergraduate Film & TV Chair) moderating.
Going Global: Her Vision, Her Story
Saturday, March 5th 3pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Filmmakers working across borders and cultures share their bold stories. Featuring Charlo7e Mangin (America By the Numbers, PBS), Christine Choy (Who Killed Vincent Chin?), Heather White (Who Pays the Price, the Human Cost of Electronics), Zipora Trope (Tell Me That You Love Me), Christina Kallas (42 Seconds of Happiness) and Sue Williams (Founder of Ambrica Productions) moderating.
Queens of Comedy Writing
Saturday, March 5th 4:30pm | Tisch Theater 006 , 721 Broadway
Top comedy creators share their insider experiences. Featuring, Azie Mira Dungey (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), Glenn Boozan (Above Average) and Ophira Eisenberg (comedian, NPR’s Moth Host) moderating. Julie Rottenberg (Sex and the City, Mom)
Fusion Competition Screenings and Awards Ceremony
Saturday, March 5th 6:30pm| Cantor Film Center , 36 E 8th Street
Join us for a stunning showcase screening of the finalists in the Fusion Film Festival 2016 Competion as we reveal the next generation of storytelling greats with award presentation and reception to follow.
About Fusion Film Festival
The Fusion Film Festival is NYU Tisch’s premiere festival dedicated to celebrating the work of women in film, television and new media, from student to icon. In the 13 years since its launch, the student-run festival has ben proud to attract accomplished artists such as Julie Taymor, Linda Obst, Miranda July, Lena Dunham, Penny Marshall, Amy Heckerling, Barbara Kopple, Lauren Zalaznick, and Jane Campion. Beyond the multi-day annual showcase of work, Fusion also serves as a vital artistic community that explores ways to break down barriers that separate men and women in film and television, while creating valuable opportunities for collaboration, cross-promotion and mentorship. For more information, visit www.FusionFilmFestival.com.