Heartland Truly Moving Pictures Blog

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Three Heartland Film Festival Titles Make Oscar® Shortlists

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has released its shortlists across various categories for February’s 86th Annual Academy Awards®.

Three films from the Heartland Film Festival have been shortlisted:

Oscar® nominees will be announced on Thursday, January 16. Best of luck to all three films!

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Support Heartland on Giving Tuesday!

Dear Friend of Heartland,

We don’t ask often, but we need your support more than ever before. This year’s Heartland Film Festival broke submission and screening attendance numbers, but we’re not certain how much longer we can sustain our efforts without your generosity.

As we plan to build on this year’s successes in 2014, and plan for our silver anniversary in 2016, we need to know if we can count on your support. Your donation makes it possible to honor and celebrate the best of independent films and filmmakers right here in Indianapolis.

Thank you for believing in us – please consider giving your strongest year-end gift to Heartland today.

Can’t make a large donation? Even a gift of $11 – the price of a Festival screening ticket – will make a big impact!


Stuart Lowry
Heartland COO

Heartland Truly Moving Pictures, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofits arts organization. Donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
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Help “Linsanity” Return to Indy on Dec. 11

“Linsanity,” the feature length documentary about NBA star Jeremy Lin (2013 Heartland Film Festival special presentation), will come back to Indianapolis on Wednesday, Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. at AMC Castleton Square, if enough tickets are pre-sold via Tugg!

In February 2012, the New York Knicks, mired in a disappointing season and out of desperation, looked to the end of their bench and found Jeremy Lin, an undrafted free agent from Harvard. On the verge of seeing his lifelong NBA dream vanish, Lin – at, or near what was believed to be his last chance as an NBA professional, underwent a now-legendary run, obliterating stereotypes along the way, and in the process birthed a global phenomenon known as “Linsanity.” Basketball–and the world–was never the same.

The film opened nationwide in select cities and played at the recent Heartland Film Festival.  Here in Indy, it may be you last chance to catch the film on the big screen! The only this can happen if 67 total tickets are pre-sold before Dec. 4! Get your tickets now to make sure this inspiring film returns to Indy.

Visit the film’s official website at:

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Disney’s “Frozen” a Truly Moving Picture Award Winner

Latest Walt Disney Animation Studios release honored for its ability to inspire, educate and engage audiences

Upcoming Walt Disney Animation Studios release “Frozen” has been recognized by nonprofit Heartland Truly Moving Pictures with the Truly Moving Picture Award.

“The Truly Moving Picture Award jury found ‘Frozen’ to be an engaging and beautifully animated film with a great message,” said Tim Irwin, Heartland’s artistic director. “The film presents many genre clichés and turns them on their head as the story progresses. The updated notion that true love can be found within ourselves will resonate with audiences of all ages.”

From the studio behind 2010’s “Tangled” and last year’s “Wreck-It Ralph,” Walt Disney Animation Studios presents “Frozen,” the most daring comedy-adventure ever to hit the big screen. When a prophecy traps a kingdom in eternal winter, Anna (voice of Kristen Bell), a fearless optimist, teams up with extreme mountain man Kristoff (voice of Jonathan Groff) and his sidekick reindeer Sven on an epic journey to find Anna’s sister Elsa (voice of Idina Menzel), the Snow Queen, and put an end to her icy spell. Encountering mystical trolls, an amazing and comedic snowman named Olaf, Everest-like conditions and magic at every turn, Anna and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom from destruction. The film is directed by Chris Buck (“Tarzan,” “Surf’s Up”) and Jennifer Lee (screenwriter, “Wreck-It Ralph”), and produced by Peter Del Vecho (“Winnie the Pooh,” “The Princess and the Frog”). Featuring music from Tony® winner Robert Lopez (“The Book of Mormon,” “Avenue Q”) and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (“In Transit”), “Frozen” journeys into theaters Nov. 27, 2013, in Disney Digital 3D™ in select theaters. For more information, like “Frozen” on Facebook: and follow “Frozen” on Twitter:

Select theatrically-released films that offer more than mere entertainment are honored with the Truly Moving Picture Awards: these films inspire, educate and engage audiences and filmmakers alike. Heartland bestows the Truly Moving Picture Award to approximately 15-20 films a year that impact their targeted audiences in a meaningful way. Submissions are received directly from studios and producers for consideration.

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“Ways to Live Forever” Expands Its Theatrical Run, Returns to Indianapolis Area in December

2011 Heartland Film Festival Award-winning film “Ways to Live Forever” will return to the Indianapolis area in December. The film is based on author Sally Nicholls’ popular novel of the same name, published by Scholastic.

The film’s story centers on Sam, a spunky 12-year-old leukemia patient, and his best friend/fellow-patient, Felix. Together, they set out to achieve their dreams and despite dealing with illness, learn some inspirational lessons about family, friends, and the oddities of life. The touching and surprisingly humorous film provides an insider’s look at how cancer affects both patients and their families, but also leaves viewers feeling both uplifted and inspired by the incredible way that these two courageous boys really live life to the fullest. Many who have seen the film throughout the country say that it is an “important” story for families to see.

Since the film was at the Heartland Film Festival, the filmmakers have teamed up with many health organizations, hospitals, and cancer foundations throughout the U.S. (including Johns Hopkins, children’s hospitals, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and more) to promote the film, and are donating a portion of the box office proceeds back in support of their efforts (for the complete list, visit

The next round of cities, theaters, and dates for the U.S. theatrical opening of the film includes Indianapolis, IN, I’m happy to say. Locations will be:

December 6, 2013:

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Catch “Blood Brother” and “Medora” Again in Indy

Two films awesome enough to have been selected by both Heartland Film Festival AND Indianapolis International Film Festival are returning to Indianapolis for limited theatrical runs:

“Blood Brother”

Playing for only three more screenings at the IMAX Theater, Indiana State Museum


Playing at the IMAX Theater, Indiana State Museum

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Get Ready for the Great American Songbook Film Series, Season Two at The Palladium!

Great American Songbook Film Series at the Palladium

Heartland Truly Moving Pictures and The Michael Feinstein Initiative are proud to present the second season of the Great American Songbook Film Series at The Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, IN. Like many other Heartland Roadshow events, this year’s series will feature scheduled post-screening video chat Q&A sessions with personalities related to each film:

  • “Hello Dolly!” Patricia Ward Kelly (widow of Gene Kelly, director of “Hello Dolly!”)
  • “White Christmas”: TBA
  • “South Pacific”: Mitzi Gaynor (played Nellie Forbush in the film)
  • “Stormy Weather”: TBA
  • “Gentleman Prefer Blondes”: George Chakiris (dancer in the film)

Showcasing classic films that feature selections from the Great American Songbook, the 2013-14 series will feature six great films: Read more »

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Saturday, Nov. 16 – Catch Four Short Films from the 2013 Heartland Film Festival at the JCC Ann Katz Festival of Books & Art

Heartland will once again showcase four of its best short films from the latest Heartland Film Festival at the Ann Katz Festival of Books and Art at the Arthur M. Glick JCC. Filmmakers are scheduled to join the audience for Q&A sessions via Skype video chat for select screenings!

This year’s lineup includes:

“The Amber Amulet”- 2013 Heartland Film Festival Grand Prize Winner for Best Narrative Short / Audience Choice Award Winner for  Narrative Short - Director Matthew Moore is scheduled to join us via Skype for a Q&A following the screening

Synopsis: The Masked Avenger can make things happen. Though at 10 he is considered young for a justice fighter he has already proved himself highly effective in the pursuit of peace. He has discovered powers that are locked inside gems and minerals and uses them to keep Franklin Street safe. But something is wrong in the house at the end of the street. There is a woman in trouble. When The Masked Avenger leaves a ‘happiness questionnaire’ in her letterbox a series of events are set in motion that no one could predict. This is the story of a superhero, a beagle, an amber amulet and the potential that is locked inside all of us.

“Rhino Full Throttle” – 2013 Heartland Film Festival Award Winner

Synposis: Bruno roams the streets of Berlin with his head full of questions, gazing behind the many facades and surfaces. He is seeking the soul of the city, that certain something that others might never notice. He unexpectedly meets an ally who immediately understands his way of thinking. Bruno falls in love. Everything would be fine if only his newly found soul mate did not have to move on so soon. Bruno does not have much time to express his feelings.

“Hannah Cohen’s Holy Communion” – 2013 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection

Synopsis: Set in Dublin in the 1970s, this film explores a rarely glimpsed Ireland, as seen through the eyes of spirited seven year old, Hannah Cohen. Hannah can’t wait to make her Holy Communion – only problem is – she’s Jewish.

“Running Blind” – 2013 Heartland Film Festival Audience Choice Award Winner for Documentary Short / Official Selection – Star E.J. Scott is scheduled to join us via Skype for a Q&A following the screening


Synopsis: E.J. Scott set out to run 12 marathons in 12 states in 2012 for charity, and he did them all blindfolded. E.J. suffers from a rare degenerative eye disease called Choroideremia, and was diagnosed as legally blind. He’s now raising awareness to find funding for a possible cure.

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Heartland Film Festival Reports Record Numbers, Breaks All-Time Screening Attendance Record

In its twenty-second year, the 2013 Heartland Film Festival experienced growth across all areas, including a 13 percent rise in attendance compared to 2012 with 24,000 in screening attendance

This year’s 10-day celebration of independent, international, enlightening film proved to be the biggest yet for Indianapolis-based Heartland Film Festival. The event (Oct. 17-26), bookended by a world premiere of Vanessa Hudgens’ “Gimme Shelter” and a red carpet special presentation of “The Book Thief” with Geoffrey Rush, drew all-time record numbers in categories spanning attendance, submissions, programming and community outreach:

Oscar®-winning filmmakers Eva Orner (left) and Sean Fine, along with Sundance winner Danny Yourd, discuss the filmmaking process at the 2013 Heartland Film Festival Awards Ceremony on Saturday, Oct. 19. Orner’s film, “The Network,” won Heartland’s $50,000 Grand Prize for Best Documentary Feature.


  • 13 percent increase in attendance (over 2012, more than double the 5.5 percent increase in 2012 over 2011)
  • 24,000 screening attendance (all-time record, previous record was 23,000 in 2010)
  • 600+ in attendance at the Wheeler Arts Community (new, third venue added in Fountain Square—Heartland’s neighborhood—number is for 8 screenings over 4 days)
  • 120 attending filmmakers from 10 countries


  • 1,521 total film submissions (all-time record, previous record was 1,292 in 2012)
  • 76 submitting countries (all-time record, previous record was 68 in 2012)
  • 71 High School Film Competition submissions from 5 countries (all-time record, previous record was 62 submissions in 2011)


  • 134 films programmed (all-time record, previous record was 129 in 2011)
  • 282 film screenings (all-time record, previous record was 276 in 2012)
  • 27 U.S. or world premiere titles (new prize category added in 2013)


  • 62 community partners signed up for $2Back Ticket Program fundraiser (all-time record, previous record was 29 in 2012)
  • Earned media figures for 2013 are more than double that of 2012

“Beyond our amazing lineup of films and world-renowned hospitality, this year’s success can be attributed to three specific areas,” said Greg Sorvig, Heartland’s director of marketing and communications. “Our strategic marketing plan, revitalized brand identity and expanded community partnerships foreshadowed these numbers. We have supporters that have been around from the beginning 22 years ago, and we keep hearing that—from artistic, marketing and operational standpoints—the 2013 Heartland Film Festival was the best one yet.

“Heartland keeps pushing the envelope on what inspiring film can be. This year’s diverse lineup combined with our year-round presence in Fountain Square has expanded Heartland’s fan base and broadened the overall demographic. Internationally, as an Academy Awards®-qualifying Festival in the Short Films category, Heartland continues to attract attention from top tier filmmakers from all over the world. Momentum is on our side, so moviegoers can expect great things again in 2014.”

Planning has already begun for the 2014 Heartland Film Festival (Oct. 16-25, 2014), with the Call for Entries period beginning in February, as well as the Festival’s twenty-fifth anniversary in 2016.

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“Delivery Man” Wins Truly Moving Picture Award

Upcoming DreamWorks Pictures release “Delivery Man” has been recognized by nonprofit Heartland Truly Moving Pictures with the Truly Moving Picture Award.

“The Truly Moving Picture Award jury found ‘Delivery Man’ to be an enjoyably comedic film,” said Tim Irwin, Heartland’s artistic director. “With a gentle and warm heart at its core, the film discusses interesting themes in an offbeat and entertaining manner.”

“Delivery Man” is the story of affable underachiever David Wozniak (Vince Vaughn), whose mundane life gets twisted in a knot when he finds out that he fathered 533 children via sperm donations he made twenty years earlier. In debt to the mob, rejected by his pregnant girlfriend, things couldn’t look worse for David when he’s hit with a lawsuit from 142 of the 533 twentysomethings who want to know the identity of the donor. As David struggles to decide whether or not he should reveal his true identity, he embarks on a journey that leads him to discover not only his true self but the father he could become as well. See “Delivery Man” in theaters nationwide beginning Nov. 22.

Select theatrically-released films that offer more than mere entertainment are honored with the Truly Moving Picture Award: these films inspire, educate and engage audiences and filmmakers alike. Heartland bestows the Truly Moving Picture Award to approximately 15-20 films a year that impact their targeted audiences in a meaningful way. Submissions are received directly from studios and producers for consideration.

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