The festival, now in its third year, showcases local and international independent films. It also allows attendees a chance to learn more about the film industry through panels, workshops and presentations.
“We’re bringing diversity and light to filmmakers that you might have not ever seen who are looking for a break,” said executive director Jayson Simba. “Playing these movies at an actual movie theater really elevates everything.”
Last October, the film festival officially rebranded from the Kew Gardens Film Festival to the Festival of Cinema NYC.
Festival organizers said the move will allow the festival to expand its appeal by attracting more attendees and filmmakers from around the world.
The films, selected from a shortlist of 425 films, fall under categories such as Narrative Features, Documentaries, Short Films, Web Series and Animation, Experimental and Music Videos.
The 2019 festival kicked off with a screening of “5th of July” starring Jaleel White, which had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in 2018.
The East Coast premiere of “Quest” by director Santiago Rizzo, which features Lou Diamond Phillips, Dash Mihok and Betsy Brandt, closes out the festival on Saturday, August 10.
In “Quest,” Mills plays a middle-schooler addicted to tagging. His home life is a mess with an abusive dad and a mom who doesn’t believe him, and his school life isn’t much better.
A sympathetic teacher and champion of at-risk kids enters his life. And as much as Mills pulls away, he finds himself compelled to try to trust one more time.
The Festival of Cinema NYC Award Dinner Celebration is on Sunday, August 11, at Queens Brewery in Ridgewood.
The Festival of Cinema NYC is also partnering with several local organizations. On Thursday, August 8, at 4:30 p.m., the Forest Hills branch of Queens Library will host a presentation to teach filmmakers how to present their ideas to audiences, investors and collaborators.
Seed & Spark, the country’s highest rated crowdfunding platform for filmmakers, will lead the presentation.
At the Queens Museum in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, non-profit organizations Arte East and the Asian American Film Club will be presenting work.
The Asian American Film Lab’s “Race, Sex & Hold the Mayo!” will showcase the power of entertainment media to effectuate positive social change and raise awareness about important societal issues. The event will take place on Saturday, August 10, at 1 p.m. at the Queens Museum.
The Festival of Cinema NYC film lineup includes 125 films from 40 countries. For a full lineup and to purchase tickets, visit festivalofcinemanyc.com.