Denver, CO, June 16, 2020 – In anticipation of the sixth annual international television festival taking place June 18-24, SeriesFest today revealed new additions to its previously announced line-up as well as details regarding its annual international International Spotlight in partnership with Liberty Global.
New to the season six roster of special network events will include a screening of Apple TV+’s multi-Daytime Emmy Award nominee, Ghostwriter, followed by a conversation with Academy Award-Winning and DGA-Nominated Director, Luke Matheny, the children’s series’ writer and director, and SVP, Creative Development, Sesame Workshop, Kay Wilson Stallings, also an executive producer. Additionally, there will be a screening of Silent Rose, a hybrid drama that is a multi-character portrait of life in high school after the 2016 presidential election fallout, has also been added to the docket, followed by a conversation with Variety’s Top Documaker to Watch, Mitch Dickman, Academy Award nominated producer Shane Boris, moderated by executive producer, Evan Shapiro (Portlandia). The festival will also showcase a special screening of Heredia Vision: The Quarantine Collection, a compilation of songs, videos, and segments created by the Heredia Vision, a female founded production company fixated on unconventional stories, empowering new voices, and creating collective experiences for the digital space; and a special screening of Hot Spot, an anthology comedy series about connecting while the world is on pause from creators Rachel Myers (“Wendy’s Shabbat”, “2 Black Boys”) and Par Parekh ( “The Happy”).
SeriesFest continues to put the spotlight on storytellers from across the globe with the annual International Spotlight, featuring eight original series from Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Peru, and UK. The new series’ include the work from the co-creator of The Killing and popular talent including Rachel Griffiths, Charlotte Rampling, Anders W. Berthelsen, Freddie Fox, Mark Addy, Stephen Graham, Gemma Whelan, and Alife Allen.
Joining the previously announced line-up of esteemed and influential talent this year, SeriesFest unveils various new talent additions to the special events and panels including: Aaliyah Williams (Founder/Producer, Just A Rebel) joining the Innovation Talk with Teri Weinberg; star Mattea Conforti and executive producer Joe Hill for AMC’s NOS482 season two premiere and panel; additional cast members Danny Pudi, Ashly Burch and Imani Hakim will participate in the Q&A tied to the Apple TV+ original Mythic Quest: Quarantine; new panelists Patrick Wimp (“Brothers from the Suburbs), HaJ (“Angry Black Women”), Dahéli Hall (“Dear White People,” “Angry Black Women”) on the Amplify Inclusion Through Independent Series panel.
SeriesFest: Season 6, taking place from June 18-24, will ‘Fest / Differently’ with six days of must-stream events including competition screenings, engaging panel discussions, one-of-a-kind workshops, as well as never-before-seen sneak peeks and television premieres. SeriesFest will also offer two free meditation programs led by Antoinette Beauchamp and Laura von Holt, breakrooms hosted by industry leaders, opening and closing night receptions, and late night parties including dance instruction, karaoke, photo booths and more.
Passes to SeriesFest: Season 6 are now on sale at www.seriesfest.com – including all screenings, panels, network premieres, and special events Television Academy & Stage32 members will be offered a discounted rate. 50% of ticket sales to the “COVID-19 and the Altered Entertainment Landscape” panel will be donated to World Central Kitchen.
Press accreditation applications to SeriesFest: Season 6 are now open! Both returning and new press can apply for the SeriesFest: Season 6 Press Pass at link HERE.
SeriesFest is presented with the continued generous support from our partners: Xfinity, Once Upon A Time Productions, Denver Film, Liberty Global, Brownstein Farber Hyatt Schreck, Fries Foundation, Unreal Media, Dilettante Productions, Coca-Cola, Citi Private Bank, Bank of America, Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting, Oklahoma Film +Music Office, JP Morgan Chase, Anna & John J. Sie Foundation, Hyde Park Jewelers & Stage32.
NEW SPECIAL EVENTS, INDUSTRY PANELS, & SCREENINGS (Full Schedule HERE)
SATURDAY, JUNE 20
GHOSTWRITER: HOW THE DAYTIME EMMY AWARD-NOMINATED APPLE ORIGINAL SERIES HAS BEEN REIMAGINED FOR TODAY’S MULTIGENERATIONAL AUDIENCE – SPECIAL EVENT
Panelists: Luke Matheny (Series Executive Producer, Writer and Director; Academy Award-Winning and DGA-Nominated Director) and Kay Wilson Stallings (Series Executive Producer; SVP, Creative Development, Sesame Workshop)
Moderator: Marah Eakin, AV Club
Since its premiere on Apple TV+ on November 1, 2019, Apple original series Ghostwriter has garnered eight Daytime Emmy nominations – tying legendary children’s show Sesame Street for the most nominations for a kids’ program this year – and claimed a highly-coveted 2020 Prix Jeunesse Children’s Jury (Fiction) Prize, Parents’ Choice Gold Medal Award and recognition from Common Sense Media.
A reimagining of Sesame Workshop’s original ‘90s series, this modern iteration was well-primed for the unexpected challenges of distance learning faced by families across the globe. Its core aim is to expand kids’ exposure to various forms of literature, encouraging them to find the fun in reading different genres. It secondarily drives increased vocabulary skills, reading comprehension, and literacy fundamentals. Join SeriesFest for an in-depth conversation with Luke Matheny, Oscar-winning and DGA-nominated writer/director and Executive Producer, Writer and Director of Ghostwriter; and Kay Wilson Stallings, Sesame Workshop’s SVP, Creative Development and Executive Producer of the series, about rebooting this fan-favorite franchise for today’s families, the inclusion of diverse storytellers of new and classic literary works, and how Ghostwriter continues to spotlight literature as an enduring and engaging art form.
AMPLIFY INCLUSION THROUGH INDEPENDENT SERIES – PANEL
Panelists: Chris Jenkins (Executive Producer, Mavericks) , Michael Michele (Executive Producer & Director, Mavericks), Patrick Wimp (Writer/Director, Brothers From the Suburbs), HaJ (Creator & Executive Producer, Angry Black Women), Dahéli Hall (Creator & Executive Producer, Angry Black Women)
At Seriesfest, we recognize that we need to play an even greater role in supporting and amplifying the voices of Black storytellers. We need a space to collectively learn and process the injustice that is evident in our society while exploring our common humanity. Join our panel of SeriesFest Alumni for an honest conversation about the state of the world and utilizing independent series to highlight racial, political, and gender equity issues facing America today. This will be a special conversation with cutting edge filmmakers who are all using episodic storytelling as their weapon of choice for invoking change.
“INNOVATION TALK” WITH TERI WEINBERG AND AALIYAH WILLIAMS – SPECIAL EVENT
Presented in Partnership with Liberty Global, Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting and UnReal Media
In Attendance: Teri Weinberg (President of ‘Yellow Brick Road’) and Aaliyah Williams (Founder/Producer, Just A Rebel)
Join us for an intimate conversation with veteran television executive producer Teri Weinberg (The Office, Ugly Betty), President of Yellow Brick Road, and executive producer Aaliyah Williams (Gentefied), founder of Just A Rebel. Weinberg and Williams will discuss their impactful careers and the importance of broadening the scope of storytelling to reflect an inclusive and authentic representation of the world.
STORYTELLERS INITIATIVE LIVE READ: COLLEGIATE WRITING COMPETITION – SPECIAL EVENT
Presented in partnership with the Anna & John J. Sie Foundation & Once Upon a Time Productions
Produced in Partnership with Heredia Vision
In Attendance: Katie Lee Hill, Morgan Anita Wood, Simon Longnight, Shakina Nayfack, Giuseppe Diomede
SeriesFest will celebrate its sixth festival of the Storyteller’s Initiative Live Read with a focus on Collegiate Writing. Join us for a live read presentation of Peach Pit by Sidney Nordstrom; a comedy series about Mel, a 24-year old burnout whose morals are as lacking as her income, is presented with an opportunity to fix her financial woes, but only if she can commit one, tiny little murder…
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 24
SILENT ROSE – SPECIAL EVENT
In Attendance: Mitch Dickman (Director), Shatira Herrera (cast), Karen Slack (cast)
Moderator: Evan Shapiro, Executive Producer (Portlandia)
From Variety’s Top Documaker to Watch, Mitch Dickman, Academy Award nominated producer Shane Boris and executive producer, Evan Shapiro (Portlandia) comes Silent Rose. Silent Rose is a powerful portrait of a diverse group of high school students and faculty coming to terms with the results of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, racial inequality in the wake of Trayvon Martin’s murder, and the rise of fascism. With an unconventional mix of improvisational and scripted acting based on actual situations from the lives of real high school students, the series becomes an intimate canvas for each individual to paint their own stories.
HOT SPOT – SPECIAL SCREENING
Hot Spot is an anthology comedy series about connecting while the world is on pause. It turns out our connections are only as good as our tech…and WiFi. How do we start new relationships, fix old wounds and stay close to our loves? We’ll find out with these diverse collections.
AVAILABLE THROUGHOUT FESTIVAL
HEREDIA VISION: THE QUARANTINE COLLECTION – SPECIAL SCREENING
A compilation of songs, videos, and segments created by the Heredia Vision, a female founded production company focused on unconventional stories, empowering new voices, and creating collective experiences for the digital space. Highlights include Curtain Up!, The Sunshine Concert Series with Laura Benanti, and more.
France, 45 minutes
Creator: Torleif Hoppe
Producers: Nordisk Film Production in collaboration with France’s, Frenchkisse Pictures and co-produced by TV 2 Denmark and Arte France, Warner Bros. International Television Production Danmark
Director: Kasper Gaardsøe
Writers: Torleif Hoppe, Nanna Westh
Cast: Charlotte Rampling, Zofia Wichlacz, Anders W. Berthelsen, Nicolas Bro, and Olivia Joof
International Distribution: Newen Distribution
Rolf Larsen, a respected detective on the Copenhagen police force, has his life brutally upended when his baby daughter goes missing. Five years after the tragedy a new lead emerges when a serious flaw is discovered in the Danish police’s DNA database.
Canada, 45 minutes
Creator: François Létourneau
Executive Producers: Joanne Forgues, Charles Ohayon, Jean-Marc Casanova, Julien Leroux, Peter Emerson
Producers: Joanne Forgues and Catherine Faucher
Director: Jean-François Rivard
Writer: François Létourneau
Cast: François Létourneau, Marilyn Castonguay, Patrice Robitaille, Karine Gonthier-Hyndman, Sophie Desmarais
After dropping off their kids at summer camp in July 1974, two middle-class couples in crisis are confronted by the truth of their disintegrating relationships. Their desperate search for marital bliss ultimately leads them into a ruthless life of murder and criminality.
Peru, 44 minutes
Creators: Héctor Gálvez / Diego Vega
Executive Producer: Joanna Lombardi
Producer: Enid “Pinky” Campo
Director: Daniel And Diego Vega
Writers: Héctor Gálvez / Diego Vega
Cast: Lucho Cáceres (Toño) Leónidas Urbina (Héctor Lavoe) Alejandra Guerra (Marina) Urpi Gibbons (Elvira) Carlos Carlín (Genaro) Pietro Sibille (Yupanqui)
In the port of Callao, Toño is an impersonator of Hector Lavoe who, because of life’s hardships, is always looking for signs that will lead him to ﬁnd his lucky day.
The last signal he has received seems to be the ﬁnal one: Lavoe has arrived in Lima.
Australia, 54 minutes
Creator: Bunya Productions
Producers: Greer Simpkinand David Jowsey
Directors: Warwick Thornton and Wayne Blair
Writer: Steven McGregor
Cast: Aaron Pedersen, Sofia Helin
Detective Jay Swan takes on a grisly case in a new town in order to be closer to his family, but has he left it too late? In this small coastal community, where the desert meets the ocean, Jay will find that secrets from the past and present run deep and dark. Jay must reconcile the law with the rules of lore, and confront a dangerous enemy in a world where deception is king.
Total Control (AKA Black B*tch)
Australia, 60 minutes
Creators: Darren Dale, Rachel Griffiths and Miranda Dear
Producers: Blackfella Films, Keshet International
Director: Rachel Perkins
Writers: Darren Dale, Rachel Griffiths and Miranda Dear
Cast: Deborah Mailman, Rachel Griffiths, Harry Richardson, Rob Collins, Celia Ireland, Wesley Patten, Huw Higginson, David Roberts, Shantae Barnes-Cowan, Adele Perovic, James Sweeney
A horrific event thrusts Alex Irving (Deborah Mailman), a charismatic Indigenous woman, into the national limelight and Prime Minister Rachel Anderson (Rachel Griffiths) sees her as a publicity goldmine for her party. When her cynical calculations betray her, Alex sets out for revenge that sends the political establishment into meltdown.
Brazil, 48 minutes
Creator: Ana Paula Maia
Producer: Globo Studios
Director: Carlos Manga Junior
Writer: Ana Paula Maia
Cast: Maria Ribeiro, Claudia Abreu, Cassia Kis,
After her husband’s suicide a woman and her daughters move to Brigida a small town that is about to bring back the pagan festivities of Ivana Kupala which had been banned 30 years before. But terrifying events along with a dangerous ritual of transmigration of souls unsettle the community and bring to light the secrets of a crime that ties three families’ destinies through time. In this supernatural thriller full of mysticism the mysteries mount up in a complex puzzle until the shocking revelation of what connects
WHERE MY HEART IS
Brazil, 46 minutes
Creators: George Moura and Sergio Goldenberg
Director): Luísa Lima
Writers: George Moura and Sergio Goldenberg
Cast: Letícia Colin, Mariana Lima, Fábio Assunção, Daniel de Oliveira
A privileged resident doctor turns to crack as an escape from life’s pressures, and now must face the consequences of her addiction.
WHITE HOUSE FARM
UK, 50 minutes
Creator: New Pictures
Producers: Willow Grylls, Charles Pattinson, Elaine Pyke, Kris Mrksa
Director: Paul Whittington
Writer: Kris Mrksa and Giula Sandler
Cast: Mark Addy, Stephen Graham, Gemma Whelan, Alfie Allen, Amanda Burton, Cressida Bonas and Freddie Fox
A dramatised true crime story about a search for the truth about what happened when three generations of one family were murdered at their isolated farm.
SeriesFest, a non-profit organization, champions and empowers artists at the forefront of episodic storytelling by providing year-round opportunities for creators and industry professionals to connect, collaborate, and share stories, which inspire and impact global audiences. Each June, SeriesFest culminates in a highly-curated and celebrated Denver-based festival and marketplace. Dedicated to showcasing innovative episodic content, the annual festival includes in-competition independent pilot screenings, panels, workshops, live reads, parties and network television premieres.
SeriesFest: Season 7, will return to Denver in June 2021 with an even more ambitious, creative and exciting program.
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