Posts tagged with 2008 Heartland Film Festival

Now Online – Photos from the 2008 Heartland Film Festival

Whether you made it to the festivities or not, now online are the complete photo albums from the 2008 Heartland Film Festival.  From Opening Night to Closing, experience all the buzz and excitement of over 60 films, countless special guests and filmmakers, and bigger audiences than we’d ever seen.  You can see all the albums by clicking here (  Below are just a few favorites!








Heartland Closes, Audience Choice Award Winners Announced

The 17th annual Heartland Film Festival came to a quiet close on Friday, October 24 as writer/director Daniel Barnz visited Indy with his Phoebe in Wonderland, in theaters this Spring.  The crowd at the Indiana History Center enjoyed the film, a Q&A with the filmmaker and the last party of the Festival.  People lingered over the finger food and wine, a collective resistance to the end of another great year.

Highlight of the evening, by far, was the announcement of the Audience Choice Award winners, those films voted on by the movie-goers themselves as the best of the best in 2008.

First up was the unexpected nab by an Official Selection for Best Short Film – the youth-inspired doc by Laren Poole, GO, took top honors.

Indiana-based filmmaker Don Boggs topped the Documentary category, as A Ripple of Hope (pictured), about the night Robert Kennedy spoke to Indianapolis after Martin Luther King, Jr’s assassination, was voted best by the masses.

And in what most saw coming a mile away, Grand Prize Winner Captain Abu Raed took home the double-play of honors with the Audience Choice Award for Best Feature, too.  Amin Matalqa’s quiet observation on dreams and possibilities is making a splash at festivals around the world, and it captured crowds in Indianapolis, too.

What’s not so easy to see in naming just these three top-rated films is the adoration festival fans had for most, if not all, of this year’s nearly sixty films.  Second Hand Wedding, the feature from New Zealand’s Paul Murphy, was a consistent sell-out all week, leaving the audience smiling as they filed out from the full theaters.  The short doc Montana de Luz connected with Heartland audiences so much so that it gave Ripple a run for its money in the Audience Choice Award race.  And the addition of three extra short film collections proved a smart move on the part of programmers–they remained as highly attended as any of the feature-length films this year.

If you attended the Festival and haven’t yet given us your feedback, please take the time to complete the Festival Survey.  If you didn’t make it out this year, read the blogs, watch the videos, read up on the movies and most of all, plan to attend in 2009.

Thanks to all for another memorable year!

The Heart of Heartland – The Screenings (Or, Video Blog #4)

Haven’t made it to the movies yet?  Check out the latest video blog and see what you’re missing!  Screenings continue through Thursday, October 23 so it’s not too late to check it all out.  Visit the Festival Community to see what’s playing where.

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Festival Video Blog #3 – Family Movie Event

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Families turned out in droves to see the exclusive Festival premiere of Disney’s Tinker Bell, on DVD October 28th.  Girls really got into it, with costumes and wings, fairy dust and glowing necklaces.  Check out the video blog and see for yourself, then visit the Festival community and find a few shows to see before the end of the week!

Grand Prize Winners Announced; Screenings Continue All Week

The stars came out and the town got dressed up for the 2008 Crystal Heart Awards Gala on Saturday, October 18.  This annual black-tie event is the night for filmmakers and filmlovers at the Heartland Film Festival.  Seventeen films and the filmmakers who created them were honored as Crystal Heart Award Winners, sharing a prize purse of $200,000.  When all was said and done, one filmmaker was $100,000 richer and Heartland had awarded a whopping total of $2 million dollars to deserving independent filmmakers.

Carlos Diaz, corresponded from EXTRA, emceed the night and kept things moving at a clip.  Three Truly Moving Picture Award-winning films were recognized, including Forever Strong, Tinker Bell and Henry Poole is Here.  Directory Mark Pellington and Indianapolis native Rachel Seifreth were both at the event to accept the Award for Henry Poole.

The biggest news of the night were the three films named top in their category.  Documentary short Victoria claimed the Vision Award for Best Short Film; filmmaker Charles Sommer was on hand to accept the honors.  A little later in the program, producer Abigail Disney took the stage to accept the Best Documentary Feature award for the film Pray the Devil Back to Hell, the powerful story of how the women of Liberia changed the political landscape of that country through peaceful protest.

And in the highlight of the evening, writer/director Amin Matalga stumbled over words as he tried to express his gratitude for being named the Grand Prize Winner with his Dramatic Feature Captain Abu Raed.  The film is about an airport janitor who spins exciting, albeit made-up, stories of his life as a pilot.  His sincere belief in the power of dreams serves as an inspiration to the children in the neighborhood who look up to him.

All three films are still playing–screenings run through Thursday, October 23, and tickets are always available at the door.  Visit the Festival Community to check schedules and find a movie to attend.

Heartland Film Festival Coverage, New Video Blog

Looking for more Heartland coverage that what we can offer you here?  Check out what else is floating around the internets:

The Indianapolis Star has a great piece about the variety of films and events you can see this week; check out today’s GO section for details on films and events.  They’ve also mentioned the deal you can get at a few area restaurants this weekend, if you’re coming to the Crystal Heart Awards Gala and want to make a night of it.  Best of all, though, is this great recognition of the caliber of event Opening Night really turned out to be.

Elsewhere, be sure to check out WTHR for clips and interviews, and tune into your favorite radio stations for highlights with filmmakers and special guests.

For now, there’s another installment of the video blog you can check out, too.  Watch it now!

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Heartland Film Festival – Video Blog – Day Before the Festival

Everyday, there’s so much going on at Heartland it’s impossible to see and do everything.  This year, get an inside peak at this 9-day party with daily video blogs.  Today:  Inside Heartland Headquarters and the details that go into making it all happen.  Watch Now!

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Heartland Screenings – More Affordable Than Ever

Tickets to see a regular festival screening are already pretty reasonable.  Just $8 at the door, that’s still cheaper than seeing The Dark Knight on opening weekend (especially if you go all they way and splurge on popcorn and candy, too!).

This year, we’re making screenings more affordable than ever.  Here’s how:  from Monday, October 20 to Thursday, October 23, we’re offering a two-for-one deal on screenings before 5 p.m.  When you purchase one ticket for any qualifying show, a friend/coworker/spouse/significant other will get in FREE.  Seriously, when was the last time the big theaters showed you this much love?

So which movies can you see to take advantage of this great deal?  Check out the schedules for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.  Films showing before 5 p.m. include Crystal Heart Award winners Karla’s World and Terra, Pray the Devil Back to Hell and Blessed is the Match.  You could fit in each of the four Shorts Collections (Crystal Heart Award winners, or program 2, 3 or 4); there are even some Sidebar films playing–those Truly Moving Picture Award winners you might not’ve caught when they were in theaters.  Check out Young@Heart (pictured) or Sophie Scholl: The Final Days, two films you won’t mind taking time out of your day for.

This two-for-one deal works with screening tickets you’ve already purchased, too.  So if you’ve got your 10-pack, all you need to do is bring at least one of the screening tickets to the door and two of you will get in!

Visit now to decide what you’ll see!

2008 Festival – ONE WEEK AWAY!

Do you have your tickets?  Have you planned your schedule?  Are you counting down the days?  The 2008 Heartland Film Festival opens in just one week, and we can’t wait!

Tickets are still available for Opening Night, the North American Premiere of Miramax Films’ The Boy in the Striped Pajamas.  This is a film that will change you, that will live with you long after this year’s events are put to bed.  In theaters November 7, you can be one of the first on the continent to see it.  Get your tickets through all Ticketmaster outlets or directly from The Murat Centre box office in downtown Indy.

If it’s just the regular festival screenings you’re looking forward to, swing by any of several Indianapolis-area Marsh supermarkets to pick up the tickets you’ll need at a special advanced discount.  View the map of participating locations, then check out the entire list of films to figure out just what you want to see.

And for you aspiring filmmakers out there, you can still get a ticket to the Heartland Film Institute Seminar, an all day program designed to give you the insight from the experts living and working in the movie-making industry.  Tickets start at just $20 for students–it’s a deal that can’t be beat!

It’s pretty crazy here at Heartland headquarters, but we’re right there with you counting down the days till the excitement kicks off.  See you at the movies!

2008 Heartland Film Festival – Closing Night Announced!

Elle Fanning stars in THINKFilm's "Phoebe in Wonderland," closing the 2008 Heartland Film Festival

I’m sure you’ve already got your tickets to all of the Festival’s special events.  From the Filmmakers’ Brunch to the Film Institute, you can’t beat the experiences at Heartland. In case you’ve been holding out on getting your Closing Night screening tickets, wait no more!  We’re happy to confirm that Phoebe in Wonderland will wrap this year’s festivities.  From writer/director Daniel Barnz, the story follows young Phoebe who lives in a world all her own while her parents struggle to figure out just what’s going on inside their little girl’s head.

Starring Elle Fanning (Dakota’s baby sister), Bill Pullman, Campbell Scott, Felicity Huffman and Patricia Clarkson, this small film has big heart and we can’t wait to share it with you (learn more).  Barnz is scheduled to appear at the shindig on October 24 and participate in a Q&A with the audience immediately following the film.  Get your tickets; the event is held at the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center in downtown Indianapolis.  It’s not a huge venue, so get your tickets before they go!

In other news, it looks like this year’s Family Movie Event, the exclusive Festival premiere of Walt Disney Pictures’ Tinker Bell, is one hot ticket.  So hot that it’s sold out!  If you’ve got a little fairy of your own who had her heart set on seeing this one, you may still have the chance.  Seats are on a first come-first served basis, and if they don’t fill up the day of the show, we’ll definitely let in folks who’ve come by hoping to get in.  No promises, but it may be worth a shot.  And remember, you can get this Truly Moving Picture Award winner on DVD October 28.

Lastly, be sure you’re checking out the Festival Community and plotting out the Festival films you want to see.  Stay tuned for inside info on Crystal Heart Award winners and some great Official Selections you don’t want to miss!

2008 Festival Announcement Live Online – TONIGHT!

Every year, Heartland hosts an invite-only event the day before we publicly announce the year’s lineup of films and special events. This year, we’re skirting tradition and making the Announcement Celebration an event anyone with a computer and decent internet connection can enjoy!

The show starts at 6 p.m. Indy time, and you can watch the whole thing here at Heartland’s festival website.

Immediately following the announcement, the 2008 Festival Community goes live, where you can watch trailers, read reviews and plan your own Festival schedule. The Box Office officially opens Tuesday, 9/16, so check out this year’s offerings and then plan on picking up your tickets while they’re hot!

And don’t forget about this year’s stellar Opening Night Event–the North American Premiere of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, based on the best-selling novel by John Boyne. Learn more about the biggest Festival kick-off Heartland’s ever hosted.

2008 HFF Opening Night Announced

The 2008 Heartland Film Festival kicks off October 18, with The Boy in the Striped Pajamas headlining the nine days of festivities.

Presented by Miramax Films, Boy is based on the best-selling novel by John Boyne.  Bruno is a young boy living in the midst of World War II.  When his father, an officer in Hitler’s army, takes a new job, Bruno’s discovery of a young boy on the other side of a tall fence will take him on a journey from innocence to a dawning awareness of the adult world around him.

The October 16 event marks the North American premiere of the movie, which opens for a theatrical run on November 7.  Actor David Thewlis (of Harry Potter fame), author John Boyne and writer/director Mark Herman are all expected to attend the evening, as well as participate in a Q&A after the film.

With such a coup to get the 2008 Festival going, this year’s Opening Night venue is none other than The Murat Center in downtown Indy.  The shift means hundreds of additional seats for fans of the Festival who’ve always wanted to get in on the fanfare of special events like this one.  Tickets to the screening are just $12; for the screening and admission to the reception afterwards are only $25.  (The Q&A is included in the screening-only ticket.)

Heartland Truly Moving Pictures and our flagship event, the annual festival, have a vision that film can change culture, one audience at a time.  The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is a film that resonates on every level and one that can – and will – change you.

Purchase your tickets through any Ticketmaster outlet (via the Festival site) or directly at the Murat box office.  Make plans today to be a part of the biggest kick-off Heartland Film Festival has ever presented!

The FEST Pass – Your ticket to Heartland Film Festival

Attention Heartland die-hards!  Heartland Film Festival is trying something new this year, and you’re not going to want to miss out.  Introducing the FEST Pass, a personalized ticket to unlimited screenings at the 2008 Heartland Film Festival (which is quickly approaching, hitting Indianapolis October 16 – 24).

Now on sale, the FEST Pass is just $99 and includes:

  • unlimited access to regular film screenings for the pass owner
  • an individual ticket to the Opening Night Event (October 16), including admission to the party afterwards
  • a commemorative 2008 Heartland Film Festival t-shirt
  • a Heartland Truly Moving Pictures notebook and pen set

It’s a deal you can’t beat, and they’re on sale now.  Just one catch–you’ve got to purchase before September 16 to lock in the $99 price.  On September 16, all our films and events are announced and all tickets go on sale.  That’s when the FEST Pass jumps to $119.

So don’t delay–if you’ve already put in your vacation time for the week of the Festival, you need the FEST Pass!  Buy yours now!

2008 Call for Entries NOW OPEN

It’s here! The 2008 Call for Entries has officially begun, and we’re looking for your film!


Remember, Heartland has a mission to recognize and honor filmmakers whose work explores the human journey by artistically expressing hope and respect for the positive values of life.

If you’ve made a film–short, feature, documentary, animated, anything at all–that aligns with what we’re all about, you’ve got to send it our way. The submission fees are extremely reasonable, entry deadlines are as late as June 25 (if you submit via WithoutaBox) and you could be in the running for the $100,000 Grand Prize. Previous big winners include Bella and Beyond the Gates–strong company, indeed. (Curious about other films we’ve honored? See them here or here.)

In the coming posts, we’ll talk a little about what sets Heartland apart from every other festival out there (and trust me, it’s different!). You’ll get an idea of what to expect if you attend with your film (or just as a movie-goer looking for a great experience), and you might even get some inside scoop on the process and how things are progressing as we prep for the 2008 Heartland Film Festival. Stay tuned!