Bigger & Better Than Ever!!!
The City of Union City will be hosting the 5th Annual NoHu International Short Film Festival from October 16th to the 19th, and it promises to be the biggest and best yet. The festival will include three evenings of full-length feature films and an evening of shorts. The festival will kick-off on Tuesday, October 16th at 7:00 PM with the screening of the world premiere of the horror film "The Death of April" which was shot throughout Hudson County; followed by the feature film "Frank & Chip" on Wednesday, October 17th; and the third feature film "Unfinished Spaces" on Thursday, October 18th; all features will be screened at the Union City Performing Arts Center located at 2500 Kennedy Boulevard. The filmmakers from each film will be present at each screening. The four-day long event will culminate with the screening of the Short Film Finalists & Awards Ceremony on Friday, October 19th at 7:00 PM with a Red Carpet event at the William V. Musto Cultural Center located at 420 - 15th Street in Union City. Admission to all screenings is free and refreshments will be served.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - 7:00 PM
"The Death of April" - World Premiere
Union City Performing Arts Center
2500 Kennedy Boulevard
Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - 7:00 PM
"Frank & Chip" - New Jersey Premiere
Union City Performing Arts Center
2500 Kennedy Boulevard
Thursday, October 18, 2012 - 7:00 PM
"Unfinished Spaces" - New Jersey Premiere
Union City Performing Arts Center
2500 Kennedy Boulevard
Friday, October 19, 2012 - 7:00 PM
NoHu International Short Film Festival
Screening of Finalists & Awards Ceremony
Red Carpet Event (Dress to Impress)
Short films from all over the world will be screened.
at William V. Musto Cultural Center
420 - 15th Street
The screening of the Short Film Finalists & Awards Ceremony will be held on Friday, October 19th at 7:00 PM, and it is the most highly anticipated of all the evenings. The festivities will begin with a Red Carpet at 6:00 PM with all the filmmakers arriving; followed by the screening of the fourteen short film finalists from all over the world at 7:00 PM; and the awards ceremony immediately following. This final evening will be held at the William V. Musto Cultural Center located at 420 - 15th Street in Union City. This will be a great opportunity for the community to meet and greet the filmmakers and actors from the various films. Admission to all screenings is free and refreshments will be served.
About the Features
"The Death of April"
(World Premiere) was filmed by a group filmmakers from Hudson County. A project of Mojocreative Group, the film was written and directed by Ruben Rodriguez from Jersey City. Huberto Guzman was Director of Photography, also from Jersey City. The film is produced by Cesar G. Orellana, Brit Godish, Dan Lefante, and Lucio Fernandez, all of whom are from Hudson County.
The feature stars Katarina Hughes in the role of “Megan Mullen”. In the film, Megan Mullen, freshly moved into her East coast home, keeps in touch with her friends through a video blog. As her entries (and her life) become more complex and emotional, strange things begin to happen in her room: and the camera captures it all. Told from the point-of-view of a wireless webcam mixed with documentary footage, "The Death of April” explores the unsettling activity in an otherwise average teenage girl’s bedroom and the mysteries that surround it. The film promises to keep viewers in the edge of their seats. What lurks in Megan’s mind, or in her new home?
About Ruben Rodriguez (Writer/Director/Producer of "The Death of April")
Ruben Rodriguez is a Puerto Rican filmmaker, born and raised on the east coast. He is a film/broadcast graduate of New York University. He worked as a producer for CN8 (the Comcast Network) for well over ten years, developing and producing public affairs programming. He developed and directed a television series with actress Paula Garces (known for her appearance in films such as "Clockstoppers" and "The Harold and Kumar Series", and on TV shows such as "CSI: Miami", "The Shield", and "Law and Order: Special Victims Unit") titled the "MUN2 Look" that aired nationwide on the NBC affiliate MUN2 for two seasons. He is currently the executive producer of "E-Asylum" (a pop-culture entertainment program) that airs on the University Network (TUN) to 280 colleges and universities nationwide.
He is also producing a new film project with Paula Garces titled "SHHH" that is slated to begin shooting in early spring 2013. "SHHH" will feature Paula Garces as the lead actress (Angela Tucker) but also places her in the role of Executive Producer along with her husband, Antonio Hernandez. "SHHH" is a survival horror film set in the woods of up-state New York and pins Paula Garces' character against an insane cult. In addition to Paula Garces, Lauren Schneider (star of "Creature" with Sid Haig) will be playing Mattie (the leader of the cult).
Along with his production team (Cesar Orellana, Brit Godish, Humberto Guzman, and Claudia Rapalo) Ruben started MojoCreative Group, LLC in order to foster their love of entertainment and film. They have been producing short film projects for the last seven years and have decided to move their passion into the feature film arena. "The Death of April" has been an exciting challenge for them, from raising the production budget to hiring crew members, who shared their love for horror; it has sparked the group to continue to produce and develop new and exciting content. Their future projects promise to be bigger and better.
"Frank & Chip, The Olympic Experience"
The movie "Frank and Chip, The Olympic Experience" will be a very special film for the residents of Union City. It premiered in the Netherlands and screened this past August in Los Angeles, California. The City of Union City, the Swiss Turverein, and their contribution to gymnastics are prominently mentioned throughout the movie. It is an inspirational film about courage, achievement and love. The movie, spanning over three decades from WWI through WWII, is the story of Frank and Irma "Chip" Haubold, Union City residents and Olympic athletes. Frank and Irma "Chip" Haubold were among the first married couples to compete together in the 1936 Olympics. Frank was a three-time Olympian and won a silver and a bronze medal. He was also the captain of the 1936 Olympic gymnastics team. Irma was among the first women to ever compete in the Olympics for USA. The film is also the story of the Swiss Turnverein of Union City, that was located at 23rd and West Street, a gymnasium where numerous Olympic athletes trained. Other notable Olympians to emerge from the Swiss Turnverein were Frank Cumiskey, Al Jochim, Herman Witzig, Ada Lunardoni and Frank Holder.
Olympic Champions were born and bred in Union City. The fact that this film was made and it's being screened in this festival in Union City is very special. To have the descendants, also the filmmakers, visit Union City and screen their film here is quite an honor; and the City of Union City is proud to honor the Olympic Champions who were born in Union City (West Hoboken).
The filmmaker Dan Frank and his mother Geri (Haubold) Celestina who is Frank & Chip's daughter, will both be attending, as well as other members of their family. Geri (Haubold) Celestina is looking forward to visiting Union City, and has many stories and memories of growing up in the City as a child.
Dan Frank was born in New Jersey in 1975, was raised in Ft. Lauderdale, and later moved to San Francisco in 1990. He began studying film in 1998. He attended the College of San Mateo, New York Film Academy, and San Francisco State University where he studied film. The documentary "Frank & Chip: the Olympic Experience" was what led him to wanting to become a filmmaker/director. He directed his first movie in 2004. And 6 movies later, in 2011, he thought it was time to make the documentary about his grandparents. He has won over 20 awards, had 4 movies screen at festival de Cannes, and had his films screened all over the world.
About Dan Frank
SCREENING AND DISCUSSION OF UNFINISHED SPACES DOCUMENTARY
Cuba’s ambitious National Art Schools project, designed by three young artists in the wake of Castro’s Revolution, is neglected, nearly forgotten, then ultimately rediscovered as a visionary architectural masterpiece.
"Unfinished Spaces" is an award-winning new documentary by Alysa Nahmias and Benjamin Murray. The screening will be followed by a moderated panel discussion with filmmaker Alysa Nahmias, music historian and journalist Armando Lopez, and other experts in Cuban arts, architecture, and culture.
In 1961, three young, visionary architects were commissioned to create Cuba’s National Art Schools on the grounds of a former golf course in Havana. Construction of their radical designs began immediately and the school’s first classes soon followed. Dancers, musicians and artists from all over the country reveled in the beauty of the schools, but as the dream of the Cuban Revolution became Sovietized, the project was denounced as bourgeois and counter-revolutionary, and construction was halted abruptly.
Using these radical, magnificent buildings as a prism through which we see the ever-shifting history of Cuba, Unfinished Spaces follows the fates of the three architects, now in their eighties, who may now get a second chance to revitalize their utopian project.
The Union City Performing Arts Center screening is one of five, public, showcase screening-and-discussion events to take place in select cities nationwide in October. These events are planned to complement the film’s national broadcast on Latino Public Broadcasting’s VOCES, the only national television series devoted to exploring and celebrating the rich diversity of the Latino cultural experience. The film will be broadcast on New Jersey’s WNJB on October 16, 2012 at 10 pm.
The screening is funded in part by the generous support of Film Independent’s Jameson FIND Your Audience Award and is presented with special thanks to Union City Commissioner Lucio Fernandez and Mayor Brian P. Stack. The event is presented in association with WNJB, New Jersey’s public television station.
About the Cuban National Art Schools
Cuba’s National Art Schools are considered by historians to be one of the most outstanding architectural achievements of the Cuban Revolution. Initiated by Fidel Castro and Che Guevara in 1961, the schools reflect the optimism and exuberance of the early years of the Cuban Revolution. Over their years of active use, the schools served as the primary incubator for Cuba’s artists, musicians, actors and dancers. By 1965, however, the art schools and their architects fell out of favor and the schools’ architectural aesthetic was criticized for being at odds with the ideology of the Cuban Revolution. Never fully completed, the complex of buildings lay in various stages of use and abandonment. The schools’ legacy was eventually brought to light by architectural journals in the 1980s, which piqued the curiosity of both Cuban and international observers. By 2000, the schools were nominated for the World Monuments Watch Fund List, and in November 2010, the Cuban Government officially recognized them as national monuments. The National Art Schools are currently being considered for inclusion on the World Heritage list of sites that have “outstanding universal value” to the world.
About The Architects
Roberto Gottardi is one of Cuba’s most respected architects. He has lived in Havana since 1959, when he was invited to collaborate with Porro and Garatti on the design of the School of Theater at the National Art Schools complex. Unfortunately, because Cuba has not been financially able to construct many buildings, Gottardi has only been able to complete small works, such as a tourist pizzeria in the Capitolio district of Havana. After teaching architecture to generations of Cuban youth, he recently retired, and his daily life is part of “la lucha,” or “the battle” fought by Cubans on a daily basis against hardships such as food shortage, blackouts, and lack of medical supplies. Gottardi has re-drawn his plans for the completion of the School of Theater over ten times since the announcement of the restoration of the buildings in 1999. Lamentably, restoration has not yet begun in spite of his efforts and enthusiasm.
Ricardo Porro is the architect of the Schools of Plastic Arts and Modern Dance at the National Art Schools complex. A native Cuban, he participated in the early stages of the Cuban Revolution. As a student during the 1950s in Havana, Porro was so central to the student movement that he was forced to flee Cuba for Venezuela for two years prior to Castro’s coup. In Venezuela, he met Gottardi and Garatti, the Italian architects whom he later invited to join him in Cuba after the triumph of the Revolution. Porro’s interdisciplinary, poetic approach to architecture stems from his early encounters with masters of modern art and architecture such as Picasso and Le Corbusier. Porro was a close friend of legendary Cuban painter Wilfredo Lam, and a painting by Lam was the only possession Porro was permitted to take with him into exile in Paris in 1967.
Vittorio Garatti designed the Schools of Ballet and Music at the National Art Schools complex. After working in the office of Milanese architect Ernesto Rogers during the 1950s, Garatti left Italy and joined the Banco Obrero urbanist project in Venezuela. In Caracas, he met Porro and Gottardi, his future collaborators and lifelong friends. In 1974, Garatti was arrested, imprisoned for twenty-one days, and expelled from Cuba. Since then, Garatti has maintained an architectural practice in Milan and a distinguished teaching career at the Milan Politecnico School of Architecture. Garatti remains dedicated to the original ideals of the Cuban Revolution and, when he visits the art schools buildings in ruins as they are today, he sees metaphors of the Revolution itself: a mixture of nostalgia and imperfect beauty.
About the Filmmakers ("Unfinished Spaces")
Alysa Nahmias (Co-Director/Co-Producer) is founder and executive director of Ajna Films. Filmed over the course of ten years, Unfinished Spaces is her feature directing debut, for which she won a 2012 Independent Spirit Award. Her producing credits also include The Listening Archive and Outside the Giardini. She has received numerous grants and awards from government agencies and private foundations, including the New York State Council on the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, and the Graham Foundation. Nahmias holds a Masters degree in architecture (M.Arch) from Princeton University and a B.A. from New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study.
Benjamin Murray (Co-Director/Co-Producer/Director of Photography) started his post-production company, The Room, in 2010 and currently partners with Technicolor through two Flame Premium suites. His regular clients include major networks and numerous independent production companies. Murray’s recent projects include No Direction Home, directed by Martin Scorsese; Capitalism: A Love Story, directed by Michael Moore; The Promise: The Making of Darkness on the Edge of Town, directed by Thom Zimny; Client 9, directed by Alex Gibney; Reagan, directed by Eugene Jarecki; and Fog of War, directed by Errol Morris. Murray holds a BFA in Film and Television Production from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.