Academy Award®-qualifying festival to feature 134 independent films over 10 days with special event appearances by Vanessa Hudgens, Director Ronald Krauss, Academy Award® winner Geoffrey Rush, Director Brian Percival, and more
The Heartland Film Festival has announced details of its 22nd annual event (Oct. 17-26), including 134 independent films from 76 countries. The Academy Award®-qualifying festival within the Short Films category will be host to special Hollywood premieres, workshops and filmmakers from all over the world.
Note: Event film stills, Festival logo and other press materials available for download here.
Opening Night Event – Special Premiere of “Gimme Shelter” (Roadside Attractions)
- Thursday, Oct. 17 – Screenings at 4 p.m. (tickets $25) and 7:30 p.m. (tickets $50)
- The Toby, Indianapolis Museum of Art with reception to follow at Deer Zink Pavilion (7:30 p.m. screening only, included in ticket price)
- Talent to appear on red carpet beginning at 6:15 p.m.
- Q&A to follow each screening with cast and filmmakers
Talent scheduled to attend (subject to change):
- Actor Vanessa Hudgens
- Kathy Difiore (real-life inspiration behind the film)
- Writer/Director/Producer Ronald Krauss
- Producer Jeff Rice
Centering on 16-year-old Agnes “Apple” Bailey, “Gimme Shelter” uncovers the struggle for survival and the hope of redemption through the harsh realities of life on the streets of New Jersey. As a pregnant teenager, Apple’s journey plummets to perilous struggles until finding salvation in a suburban shelter for homeless pregnant teens. Based on the lives of actual homeless, pregnant young women, writer and director Ronald Krauss lived in the primary shelter one year prior to production writing the “Gimme Shelter” screenplay. Hudgens similarly prepared for her transformative role by living in the actual shelter for three weeks of pre-production.
Closing Night Event – Special Premiere of “The Book Thief” (20th Century Fox)
- Saturday, Oct. 26, 7 p.m. – The Toby, Indianapolis Museum of Art – tickets $25
- Closing Night Party to follow at The Jazz Kitchen – tickets $20 (combo ticket $40)
- Q&A to follow with cast and filmmakers.
Talent scheduled to attend (subject to change):
- Actor Geoffrey Rush (Academy Award® winner)
- Will receive the Heartland Pioneering Spirit Award
- Actor Sophie Nélisse
- Will receive the Heartland Pioneering Spirit: Rising Star Award
- Director Brian Percival
- Will receive the Heartland Truly Moving Picture Award for the film
Based on the beloved bestselling book, “The Book Thief” tells the inspirational story of a spirited and courageous young girl who transforms the lives of everyone around her when she is sent to live with a foster family in World War II Germany.
The Festival Closing Night Event will include the presentation of select awards, including the Best U.S. Premiere Awards and the Audience Choice Awards.
Animation Workshop – Behind-the-scenes with DreamWorks Animation
- Monday, Oct. 21, 6 p.m. – AMC Castleton Square 14 – Free, but ticketed
Rob Minkoff has been one of the most innovative artists in animation, from creating character design for “The Little Mermaid” to directing “The Lion King” and “Stuart Little.” Now he is hard at work directing DreamWorks Animation’s upcoming feature film “Mr. Peabody & Sherman,” based on the beloved characters from “The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show.”
The Festival is honored to have Rob Minkoff join us in Indianapolis to lead an animation workshop. Joined by the film’s Head of Story Walt Dohrn, Minkoff will take the audience through the creative process behind a major animated feature, showing clips from “Mr. Peabody & Sherman” (to be released in theaters March 7, 2014) and answer questions from the audience.
Awards Ceremony to Honor Independent Filmmakers, Bestow Award to Vanessa Hudgens
- Saturday, Oct. 19, 8 p.m. – Indiana Repertory Theatre – tickets $100, black tie optional
- Afterglow Party to follow ceremony in Indiana Repertory Theatre lobby
This is the night to celebrate the excellence of independent film as we gather to honor the Festival’s award-winning filmmakers. Be the first to know the winners of Heartland’s top prizes, which include:
- The $50,000 Grand Prize for Best Narrative Feature
- The $50,000 Grand Prize for Best Documentary Feature
- The $5,000 Grand Prize for Best Narrative Short
- The $5,000 Grand Prize for Best Documentary Short
- The $2,000 prizes for the Jimmy Stewart Memorial Awards
- The $2,500 Grand Prize Winner of the High School Film Competition
The Festival will honor actor Vanessa Hudgens with the Heartland Pioneering Spirit: Rising Star Award at the ceremony. Immediately following the event is the Afterglow Party, a unique opportunity for one-on-one conversation with filmmakers from around the world. The evening includes hors d’oeuvres and light jazz by Sarah Scharbrough.
Filmmakers’ Brunch to Offer Intimate Insight with Filmmakers
- Sunday, Oct. 20, 11 a.m. – The Omni Severin Hotel (Exclusive Hotel of the Heartland Film Festival) – tickets $25
Discover the inspiration behind some of your favorite Heartland films by joining the filmmakers for an informal brunch. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to speak one-on-one with fascinating storytellers to hear what inspires them to work in this industry and the challenges they face when creating moving films.
Festival to Screen 20 Festival Award winners alongside 96 Official Selections, 12 High School Film Competition Films and 4 Special Presentations
Festival Award winners, all eligible for the Grand Prize within their respective category, include:
Narrative Feature ($50,000 Grand Prize)
- “The Forgotten Kingdom”
- “Hide Your Smiling Faces”
- “Life Inside Out”
- “This is Where We Live”
- “When a Wolf Falls in Love with a Sheep”
Documentary Features ($50,000 Grand Prize)
- “Blood Brother”
- “The Genius of Marian”
- “Life According to Sam”
- “The Network”
Narrative Short ($5,000 Grand Prize)
- “The Amber Amulet”
- “Rhino Full Throttle”
- “The Sweatshop”
Documentary Short ($5,000 Grand Prize)
- “Atomic Dream”
- “The Circle”
- “Herd in Iceland”
- “How the Light Gets In”
- “Wrinkles of the City – La Havana”
Special presentations include:
- “The Crash Reel”
- “Gideon’s Army”
- “Valentine Road”
World premiere titles include, but are not limited to:
- “The Christmas Candle”
- “Life Inside Out”
- “Little Hope Was Arson”
- “No Ordinary Hero: The SuperDeafy Movie”
10 days of independent, international, enlightening film
As an Academy Awards®-qualifying festival within the Short Films category, Heartland is widely respected in the independent film community. Offering 282 film screenings, Q&A sessions with filmmakers, workshops and special events, Heartland gives you the opportunity to see films from around the world and meet the filmmakers who craft them.
View the Festival guide book for complete schedule and list of films. Tickets go on sale Sept. 23.