Now that we've got award season out of the way (I tweeted on Monday that "Moving Cinema Eye to January was the best decision ever. I can't imagine planning an awards show right now."), we can dive full force into the films of 2011. And nothing underlines that more than the impending launch of two major US film festivals - True/False and SXSW - and the documentary rebirth of the Miami Film Festival, courtesy of doc-master Thom Powers, that festival's new documentary programmer.
Miami kicks off unofficially tonight with an outdoor screening of Sarah McCarthy's THE SOUND OF MUMBAI, a crowd-pleasing film that premiered in Powers' 2010 Toronto line-up and has been picked up by the folks at HBO. During the week that follows, Miami will screen a potent round-up of the best of Sundance 2011, including James Marsh's PROJECT NIM, Morgan Spurlock's THE GREATEST MOVIE EVER SOLD, Marshall Curry's IF A TREE FALLS, Steve James' THE INTERRUPTERS, Liz Garbus' BOBBY FISCHER AGAINST THE WORLD, Andrew Rossi's PAGE ONE, David Weissman's WE WERE HERE, Daniele Anastasion and Eric Strauss' THE REDEMPTION OF GENERAL BUTT NAKED, Alex Gibney and Alison Ellwood's MAGIC TRIP and Göran Hugo Olsson's THE BLACK POWER MIXTAPE.
[Full disclosure: I am on the documentary jury at the Miami Film Festival this year.]
Marsh, James, Garbus, Rossi, Ollson and Anastasion/Strauss will also be screening their films this weekend at True/False in Columbia, Missouri, where Marsh will be presented with the fest's True Vision Award (which has previously gone to Laura Poitras, Alex Gibney, Kim Longinotto and Kirby Dick) and the subjects of James' film THE INTERRUPTERS will be the beneficiaries of the fest's True Life Fund.