Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Sixteenth Annual Valley Film Festival (VFF) Announces Complete Line-Up

North Hollywood, California - The sixteenth annual Valley Film Festival (VFF) announces its feature selections and complete line-up.  

VFF returns in full force with a five-day festival showcasing over 50 of the best independent films, from the (818) and from around the world, September 28-October 2 at Laemmle NoHo7 in the NoHo Arts District. Tickets are $12 and available at

The Festival kicks off Opening Night, Wednesday, September 28, with the dramatic feature, A LIFE LIVED, the story of a single dollar and the many lives it passes along the way. Directed by Riley Wood and produced by Chris Cashman (VFF07, Carts) A Life Lived features Denise Richards (Wild Things, Love, Actually), Jennifer Taylor (Two and a Half Men), Brendan McCarthy (True Blood), Lili Bordan (Battle Star Galactica: Blood and Chrome) and Marshall Manesh (How I Met Your Mother, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End).

Currently nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Short Form Comedy or Drama Series category, HER STORY, Directed by Sydney Freeland, lights up the NoHo7 screen with the friendship of two trans women in Los Angeles who have given up on love, when chance encounters give them hope. Executive produced by Eve Ensler (“The Vagina Monologues”) and Katherine Fisher, the cast includes Jen Richards and Laura Zak.

VFF16’s Centerpiece Screenings include the World Premiere of BADSVILLE, Directed by April Mullen, about a violent greaser gang ripped apart when their leader finds love and is determined to leave BADSVILLE - a town where love doesn't exist. Cast: Robert Knepper (Prison Break, Heroes) Emilio Rivera (Sons of Anarchy) and Tamara Duarte (Degrassi: The Next Generation) and ELECTRIC SLIDE, a chronicle of the life of furniture salesman turned bank robber Eddie Dodson, Directed by Tristan Patterson and featuring Jim Sturgess (Cloud Atlas, 21) Chloë Sevigny (Bloodline, Big Love, American Horror Story) Isabel Lucas (Red Dawn, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen), Kate Micucci (Garfunkle and Oates, The Big Bang Theory) and Academy Award Winner, Patricia Arquette (Boyhood, Medium, True Romance).

The World Premiere of DRUGS & OTHER LOVE, Directed by Noah Applebaum, closes out The 2016 Valley Film Festival. In this comedy, a charming, terrible older sibling keeps his stoner brother high on drugs so he can win the heart of a lady dope dealer who happens to owe money to a gangster. Cast: Noah Applebaum (VFF12, Route 30, Too, VFF14, Route 30 Three!), John Weselcouch (The Purge), Angelina Spicer (Conan, Jimmy Kimmel Live), Whitney Moore (Birdemic: Shock and Terror, Birdemic 2: The Resurrection) and Teri Fruichantie (Hollywood is Hard).

The Documentary selections launch with an intimate oral history of the trials, tribulations, heartbreak and joy of bringing some of the most iconic and memorable motion pictures to the screen in IT’S ALWAYS ABOUT THE STORY: CONVERSATIONS WITH ALAN LADD, JR., Directed by Stanley Isaacs, featuring interviews with Alan Ladd, Jr., Jay Kanter, Michael Gruskoff and Mel Brooks. “The Creative Life” documentary program also includes FOSSE: RECREATED, Directed by Wolfgang Glattes (All That Jazz, Star 80, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory) and #NONAHENDRYX: TRANSORMATION from VFF alumni and two time Emmy Award winners, Renee Sotile and Mary Jo Godges (VFF06, Christa McAuliffe: Reach for the Stars).

The Festival remains fully committed to supporting local independent production by showcasing twenty-six films made by Angelenos, Vals, and shot in or about the glamorous San Fernando Valley, while continuing to promote diverse films from around the world, with shorts from Canada (Chaos Management, Flush, The Silence), France (West Empire), Germany (Chamber Music), Italy (Black Comedy), Kazakhstan (The Sky Over Berlin of my Childhood), Korea (I Am Grace), Serbia (Play!), Switzerland (Stories Upon Your Lips) and the United Kingdom (Dead Fred, I Used to be Famous).

Other features include:

BAD PEOPLE/U.S.A./World Premiere (Director: Alex Petrovitch) - Bad People is a dark comedy feature film that begs us to laugh at the absurdity that is all around us: crack smoking politicians, prostitutes turned reality stars, religious charlatans, sex obsessed online dating, elitist parents, infidelity, and political correctness. Told through the lens of several short stories, the film examines the hysterical dark side that permeates our society today. Cast: Ben Gleib (Showtime's Neurotic Gangster), Leah McKendrick (Bad Moms) Andy Mackenzie (HBO's True Detective Season 2), Christopher Goodman (Showtime's Ray Donovan), Jason Faunt (Power Rangers Time Force) and Jordan Wall (A&E's The Glades).

CHANGEOVER/U.S.A./Los Angeles Premiere (Director Estes Tarver) - After Haley suffers the loss of her parents in a fatal car wreck, she moves in with her almost estranged single uncle and his young son. Together the trio must attempt to move on and make a life as a new family. Cast: Madeline Taylor (John Adams, The Girl Next Door), Estes Tarver (Under the Dome, Finding Carter) and Carter Godwin (Solace).

THE RICH WOMAN/Vietnam/World Premiere (Director: Le-Van Kiet) – When an international business owner informs authorities that her partner has criminal ties, she is forced to face her enemy to save her daughter. Cast: Nguyen Cao Ky Duyen, Truong Quynh Anh and Quang Su.

VIRTUAL REVOLUTION/U.S.A./France (Director: Guy-Roger Duvert) – The year is 2047 and most of the population spends their time online, connected into virtual worlds where they can fulfill all of their fantasies, losing all interest for reality and leaving it to a small minority. A shadow Agent is tracking and eliminating terrorists who want to destroy this system. Cast: Mike Dopud (Stargate Atlantis, Stargate Universe, 300) and Jane Badler (V).

THE BUSINESS OF NOSTALGIA/U.S.A./Los Angeles Premiere (Directed by Mark DiNatale) – This documentary offers a glimpse into eleven business owners who own, operate, or create something that harkens back to a previous era.

The Valley Film Festival 2016 will open on Wednesday, September 28 and continue through Sunday, October 2 with daily screenings at the Laemmle NoHo 7, located at 5240 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. Tickets are $12. For more information and tickets, visit


8:00 pm - Opening Night Feature: A Live Lived with I Used to Be Famous and Hands Up (music video)

7:30 pm - Dramatic Shorts Program: Becoming a Man, Frieda’s Turn, Protocol: New Orleans, Rain, The Serene Heartache, Shackled, The Sky Over Berlin of my Childhood, Three-Legged Stool and West Empire.
10:00pm - Feature Program: Bad People with The Unconventional Gourmet and Dead Fred (Trailer)

FRIDAY – 9/30
7:30pm - Feature Program: Electric Slide with Welcome to the Party and Stories Upon Your Lips (music video)
10:00pm - Feature Program: Virtual Revolution with 2BR02B and Synapse (trailer)

12:00 pm/noon – “The Creative Life” Documentary Program: It’s Always About the Story: Conversations with Alan Ladd, Jr. with Fosse: Recreated and #NonaHendryx Transformation
2:00pm – Feature Program: Changeover with I Am Grace
4:30pm – “The Past is Present, and for Sale” Documentary Program: The Business of Nostalgia with Dockery & Son
6:30pm – Feature Program: The Rich Woman with Boxer and Chaos Management
9:00pm – Centerpiece Screening: Badsville with Black Comedy and Caihong City (trailer)

SUNDAY - 10/2
12:00 pm/noon – “Voices of Troubled Youth” Documentary Program: Be More with The Silence and Play!
2:00pm – Celebrating the LGBTQ Community: Her Story with The Prisoner
3:45pm – Girls on Film Shorts Program: Chamber Music, Chippy, Doble 9, Fanny Pack, Flush, Jordan Almonds, The Last Course, Slow Fade to Autumn and Tea & Therapy
6:00pm – Closing Night Program: Drugs & Other Love with The Invitation to Armageddon and $5

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

...And That's a Wrap on VFF15!

North Hollywood, CA - The Valley Film Festival (VFF) lowered the curtain on another showcase of thought provoking cinema so independent it could only be found in L.A.'s San Fernando Valley.

DIRTY BEAUTIFUL and SLINGSHOT took home the top Narrative and Documentary Jury Awards, respectively, while FRUITCAKE and NUMBER 2: I AM MARILYN tied for the juried short film.  Additional short film Audience Award winners included: DOG BOWL, PRETTY GOOD DAY, and TOM IN AMERICA.

Feature – DIRTY BEAUTIFUL (Tim Bartell)
Documentary  - SLINGSHOT (Paul Lazarus)
Short – FRUITCAKE (Sarah Baker and Seth Sherwood)
Tied with – NUMBER 2: I AM MARILYN (JC Falcon)

DOG BOWL (Gordy Hoffman)
PRETTY GOOD DAY (Beth Einhorn)
TOM IN AMERICA (Flavio Alves)

The 5-day festival, which ran October 21-25 at Laemmle NoHo7, opened with a special screening of FORBIDDEN ZONE (Richard Elfman), complete with pre-show, and screened 40 of today’s most provocative films from 9 countries, including Afghanistan, Italy, and Serbia to name a few.

With a mission further the education, production, and distribution of filmmaking in The Valley, VFF continues to promote local independent production with over eighteen films made by Angelenos, Vals, and shot in or about the glamorous San Fernando Valley this year. Local films with LA premieres included BONED, THE WRISTWATCH, FRUITCAKE, MARILYN & I, and PRETTY GOOD DAY.

Founded in 2000, The Valley Film Festival, a non-profit project of Community Partners ®, is the first and longest continually running film festival in the San Fernando Valley. VFF has screened over 500 shorts, features, documentaries, animated films, experimental works, and music videos from around the world. While emphasizing independent film, the festival also screens studio productions, including BOOGIE NIGHTS, CHINATOWN, ENCINO MAN, FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH, MAGNOLIA, TERMINATOR 2, VALLEY GIRL, and WORLD TRADE CENTER.  In addition to screenings, the Festival provides educational panels and networking opportunities throughout the year.

Looking ahead, The Valley Film Festival will begin accepting submissions for VFF16 in January. More information available at

Thursday, October 8, 2015

VFF15 - Meet our Female Filmmakers

Other than VFF's "Girls on Film" shorts program, The Valley Film Festival does not seek out, or exclude, films made by one gender over another. While we'd love nothing more than to say that 50%* of our programming is from women, it is not. That being said, we are extremely proud of the women** behind some of the VFF15 films and want to take this opportunity to recognize their diverse voices:

7 DAYS IN SYRIA (Documentary/75mins/2015/USA & Syria)
Janine di Giovanni (Producer)

In the most dangerous country in the world for journalists, Newsweek Middle East editor, Janine di Giovanni, risks it all to bear witness, ensuring that the world knows about the suffering of the Syrian people.

THE AFTER PARTY (Dramatic Comedy/8mins/2014/USA)
Sue Gillan (Director)

A solid, long-term marriage takes a turn for the tense when a wife finds her husband suddenly hiding his online activities. Navigating these uncharted waters, this couple employs the tools that have always served them best - straight talk and a sense of humor. At once deeply relatable and completely surprising, The After Party gives a whole new meaning to the words 'what would I ever do without you?'

ALL IN TIME (Drama/98mins/2014/USA)
Marina Donahue (Co-Director)

Charlie quits his job In New York to follow his dream of managing his favorite rock and roll band.

BONED (Comedy/85mins/2015/USA)
Laura Lee Bahr (Director)

A struggling actress must play the role of a detective in order to save an adorable Maltese puppy from a murderous group of Goth thugs, a Devilish Dominatrix, and a handsome, lying doctor.

THE CO-STAR (Comedy/14mins/2013/USA)
Jeanne Taylor (Producer)

A hilarious insight about auditioning for one-line parts in Hollywood.

A CRAIGSLIST EXORCISM (Comedy/14mins/2014/USA)
Sarah Taylor (Producer)

A short film about what happens when you hire an exorcist off Craigslist.

HANKY PANKY (Comedy/8mins/2014/USA)
Lindsey Haun (Director)

A blind date between an autistic napkin expert and a free-spirited Bohemian goes surprisingly well thanks to the efforts of two eccentric napkins.

THE FALLEN PHOENIX (Animation/6mins/2015/USA)
Gwen Barriac and Heather Larkin (Directors/Animators)

An established composer struggles to write a masterpiece that pleases both himself and his sponsor. Ultimately, he realizes he must choose between staying true to his art or pleasing those around him.

FRUITCAKE (Drama/13mins/2015/USA)
Sarah Baker Grillo (Co-Director)

Set in peaceful suburbia during the early 1950′s, Fruitcake tells the story of Rosemary and Sallie. Battling inner urges and mysterious longings, and pressured from every angle to live up to an imaginary ideal of perfection, these women might be swayed to take any course of action

IT'S A JOURNEY, NOT A DESTINATION (Documentary/11mins/2013/Serbia)
Jelena Zlatkovic Velickovic (Director)

Costume Designer, Jelena Zlatkovic Velickovic, provides an inside look celebrating her designs, from conception to the runway.

NUMBER 2: IF I WERE MARILYN (Comedy/15mins/2015/Spain)
Sofía Pedroche (Producer)

Clari is going out tonight and she's on a mission: Her girlfriend is about to stand up a guy she met on the internet and Clari has every intention of hooking up with him. They'll spend the night together and he'll want to see her again, he could very well be the man of her dreams and the envy of her friends. Too good to be true and for Clari not to spoil it.

MY SARDASHT (Documentary/3mins/2014/Iran)
Ziba Arzhang (Director/Animator)

Through carpet weaving, Kajal shares the story of losing her family during the chemical bombings on Iran.

OUR FATHER (Drama/22mins/2014/USA)
Linda Palmer (Director)

An estranged father suffering from late stage dementia, in a fleeting moment, reveals to his son secrets that begin to heal a broken family. Featuring Michael Gross (Family Ties) and Michael Worth (God's Ears).

PIG (Animation/2mins/2014/USA)
Amelia Giller (Director/Animator)

A naked pig-woman goes on an outing in order to feel better about herself.

PRETTY GOOD DAY (TV Pilot/Comedy/13mins/2015/USA)
Beth Einhorn (Director)

Classically trained violinist Chris Woods moves to Hollywood to pursue his true passion - Stand Up Comedy. Along the way, Chris struggles with the question of fame and what you have to give up to make it in Hollywood.

SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Drama/11mins/2014/USA)
Pamela St. Jean (Producer)

In the early 90's--when music was shared hand-to-hand--Jerry shows up at Liz's doorstep after disappearing with her prized collection of Bob Dylan bootlegs.

TEXTING: A LOVE STORY (Comedy/8mins/2014/USA)
Jeannette L. Buck (Director)

A short, awkward romantic comedy about love, intimacy, and connection in the digital age.

WINGS (Animation/5mins/2014/Israel)
Keren Rijensky (Director/Animator)

A young girl is sexual assaulted in her room. The attacker is represented as typography, while the girl tries to escape using her imagination.

*40% isn't something to brag about, but we're still proud!  
**If we missed a key player, please let us know. We'll happily add her name to the list. 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The 15th Annual Valley Film Festival Announces Film Line-Up


North Hollywood, California – The fifteenth annual Valley Film Festival (VFF) announces its complete line-up and Opening Night screening.  VFF returns in full force with a five-day festival showcasing 40 of the best independent films, from the (818) and from around the world, October 21-25 at Laemmle NoHo7 in the NoHo Arts District. Tickets are $12 and available at

The Festival kicks off Opening Night, Wednesday, October 21, with a special screening of  FORBIDDEN ZONE – in color! Referred to as the Citizen Kane of underground movies, a French girl falls into an insane underworld ruled by a horny little king and his jealous queen. This cult classic stars Susan Tyrrell, Herve Villechaise, Danny Elfman, Matthew Bright, and Marie-Pascale Elfman. The soundtrack features music by Danny Elfman, Cab Calloway, Josephine Baker and others.  Preceded by a fun, live pre-show with Richard Elfman, this screening is a tribute to Producer, Jack F. Murphy, who served on VFF’s Advisory Board from 2008 until his passing in 2014.

Other celebrity-driven films include TOM IN AMERICA, with Academy Award® nominees Sally Kirkland (JFK) and Burt Young (Rocky), OUR FATHER (Michael Gross, Family Ties), MARIYLN AND I (Ray Anthony, legendary trumpeter) ALL INTIME (Lynn Cohen, Sex and the City) PRETTY GOOD DAY (Chris Woods, comedian/violinist, Abby Elliott, Saturday Night Live and Marion Ross, Happy Days), I’LL TEXT YOU (Victor Williams, The King of Queens), BONED (Bai Ling, The Crow) and FRENCH KISS (Tyler Ritter, The McCarthy’s).

The Festival continues to proudly support local independent production, with twenty films made by Angelenos, Vals, and shot in or about the glamorous San Fernando Valley. THEWRISTWATCH, a drama directed by Gino Gaetano, uses Woodland Hills as the backdrop to transform the lives of four people who come in contact with a supernatural wristwatch.  Other local features include DIRTY BEAUTIFUL, a dysfunctional love story, and our closing night feature, ACTOR FOR HIRE, a comedy about a bald actor in Hollywood who discovers the power of persona in the form of a cheap wig. 

VFF continues to program diverse films from around the country and the world. This year’s programs include films from New Jersey to Ohio and Spain to Serbia.

7 DAYS IN SYRIA kicks off our documentary programming and follows Newsweek Middle East Editor, Janine di Giovanni, who risks it all to ensure the world knows about the suffering of the Syrian people. While CONGOBEAT THE DRUM takes us on an adventure, to catch-up with forgotten Reggae artists of the 70s & 80s, SLINGSHOT takes us into the world of Segway inventor, Dean Kamen, and his work to solve the world’s water crisis.

LA Premieres include the feature films: Boned, Congo Beat the Drum, It Plays Like Love, and The Wristwatch. Short films making their LA debut are: As it is in Heaven; A Divinely Twisted Comedy, Blue-Eyed Me, Californication, Fruitcake, It’s a Journey, Not a Destination, Number 2: If I Were Marilyn, Omid, Marilyn and I, My Sardasht, Pretty Good Day, and Wings


Founded in 2000, The Valley Film Festival, a project of Community Partners®, is the first and longest continually running film festival in the San Fernando Valley.  With a mission to join established and emerging talent with adventurous audiences in Los Angeles, VFF screens shorts, features, documentaries, animated films, experimental works, and music videos from around the world.  While emphasizing independent film, the festival also has screened studio productions including BOOGIE NIGHTS, CHINATOWN, ENCINO MAN, FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH, MAGNOLIA, TERMINATOR 2, VALLEY GIRL, and WORLD TRADE CENTER.

In addition to screenings, the festival provides educational panels, social mixers, audience awards, and the juried "Ten Degrees Hotter" award.

THE VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL 2015 will open on Wednesday, October 21 and continue through Sunday, October 25 with daily screenings at the LAEMMLE NOHO 7, located at 5240 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. Tickets are $12. For more information and tickets, visit



8:00 pm - Opening Night Feature: Forbidden Zone – in Color! Includes Fun, Live Pre-Show with Richard Elfman

THURSDAY – 10/22
8:00 pm - Girls on Film Shorts Program: It’s a Journey, Not a Destination, Our Father, Pig, Pretty Good Day, Texting: A Love Story, and Wings

FRIDAY – 10/23
7:30pm – “Made in the (818)” and Alumni Shorts Program: Attraction, The Co-Star, Cocaine vs. Corn 4 Gold Malt Liquor, A Craigslist Exorcism, Did You Hear the One About…, Dog Bowl, and The One and Only Eddie Duke
9:00 pm - Feature Program: Boned with Number 2: If I Were Marilyn
SATURDAY – 10/24
12:00 pm/noon – Documentary Program: 7 Days in Syria with My Sardasht and Omid.
2:00 pm – Feature Program: The Wristwatch with As it is in Heaven: A Divinely Twisted Comedy
4:00 pm – Feature Program: It Plays Like Love with Dreamcatchers
6:30 pm – Feature Program: Dirty Beautiful with Mulligan’s Island
9:00 pm – Feature Program: All in Time with Shelter from the Storm

SUNDAY – 10/25
12:00 pm/noon - Documentary Program: Congo Beat the Drum with The Fallen Phoenix
2:30 pm – Documentary Program: SlingShot with Blue-Eyed Me
4:00 pm – “Love My Way” Shorts Program: The After Party, Californication, French Kiss, Hanky Panky, I’ll Text You, Marilyn and I, and Tom in America
6:00pm – Closing Night Program: Actor for Hire with Fruitcake