Canadian cinema a hot ticket at the 2016 Palm Springs International Film Festival

Some 15 Canadian representatives at the Festival, including directors Andrew Cividino (Sleeping Giant) and André Turpin (Endorphine) and actor Connor Jessup (Closet Monster)

MONTREAL, Dec. 21, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - The 2016 Canadian film season will kick off under sunny skies as 10 Canadian films have been selected by the Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF), January 1 to 11, 2016, and will be represented by some 15 top-flight talents, including directors Andrew Cividino (Sleeping Giant), André Turpin (Endorphine), Stephen Dunn (Closet Monster) and Adam Garnet Jones (Fire Song) as well as actors Connor Jessup (Closet Monster) and Luzer Twersky (Felix and Meira).

Feature film Felix and Meira will be part of the Awards Buzz section at PSIFF, a selection of 40 films that the Festival's programmers consider to be among the strongest of the 80 foreign-language contenders at the upcoming Academy Awards. In addition, two actresses who recently excelled in successful Canadian coproductions will be honoured at the Festival's Awards Gala on January 2: Brie Larson (Room) will receive the Breakthrough Performance Award and Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn), the International Star Award.

"With such appealing Canadian films on display, including Felix and Meira, which was Canada's Best Foreign Language Film Oscar submission for 2016, and a delegation that reflects Canadian creativity, this is proving to be a very promising year on the international scene," said Carolle Brabant, Telefilm Canada's Executive Director.

As part of a partnership that is now in its fourth year, Telefilm and the Palm Springs International Film Festival work together to support the Canadian presence at the Festival in terms of both selection and promotion. Palm Springs is one of the marquee events of the film festival season and generates significant buzz owing to the fact that its line-up includes several contenders for the Golden Globes and Oscars, two events that take place not long after the Festival.

Helen Du Toit, Palm Spring's Artistic Director, added: "This year's selection of Canadian films at PSIFF illustrates the vitality of the Canadian film culture and the strength of its emerging talent. In addition to Andrew Cividino's impressive debut Sleeping Giant competing in our New Voices New Visions program, five of the Canadian directors featured are debut filmmakers. The fact that all but one of these films are U.S. premieres and that we have guests attending with nearly every film will make for a great showcase for Canada in Palm Springs."

Canadian line-up at the 2016 Palm Springs International Film Festival

  • Closet Monster, Stephen Dunn
  • Don't Blink: Robert Frank, Laura Israel (United States/Canada co-venture)
  • Endorphine, André Turpin
  • Felix and Meira, Maxime Giroux
  • Fire Song, Adam Garnet Jones
  • The Girl King, Mika Kaurismäki (Finland/Canada coproduction)
  • My Internship in Canada, Philippe Falardeau
  • On My Mother's Side, Dominic Goyer
  • Sabali, Ryan McKenna
  • Sleeping Giant, Andrew Cividino

Canadian talent at PSIFF

Canadian talent will be on hand to help promote films being screened at the Festival and lay the groundwork for the films' U.S. releases:

  • Director Stephen Dunn and actors Connor Jessup, Sofia Banzhaf, Aaron Abrams and Joanne Kelly (Closet Monster);
  • Director André Turpin (Endorphine);
  • Actor Luzer Twersky (Felix and Meira);
  • Director Adam Garnet Jones (Fire Song);
  • Director Dominic Goyer (On My Mother's Side);
  • Director Ryan McKenna and producer Becca Blackwood (Sabali); and
  • Director Andrew Cividino and producers Karen Harnisch and Aeschylus Poulos (Sleeping Giant).

Canada, A World of Talent special events on January 4, 2016

Canadian cinema will be particularly in the spotlight on January 4 at the following three events:

  • The day's screenings of Canadian films will include the American premiere of Andrew Cividino's film Sleeping Giant. This film made its world debut during International Critics' Week at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, and was named Best Canadian First Feature Film at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival. It has been selected by the Toronto Film Critics Association as one of three films in the running for the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award.
  • A networking event bringing together Canadian talent at PSIFF with representatives from the film industry as well as Canadian and foreign media representatives.
  • An event in support of the Talent Fund, a private donation fund set up by Telefilm in order to stimulate investment in the production and promotion of Canadian films. Canadian philanthropists Carol and Paul Hill will host the event, which will bring together businesspeople with Canadian and international creative talent. Carol Hill is a member of the Fund's Advisory Committee. This event is being held for a second consecutive year.

Palm Springs Speaks French!, January 8, 2016
The Festival, in conjunction with the consulates general of Belgium, France and Switzerland, the Quebec Government Office in Los Angeles, Telefilm Canada and TV5 Monde, will once again hold an event, on January 8, to celebrate French-language cinema at Palm Springs.

For more information about the Canadian selection at the 2016 Palm Springs International Film Festival.

About Telefilm Canada—Inspired by talent. Viewed everywhere.
Created in 1967, Telefilm is dedicated to the cultural, commercial and industrial success of Canada's audiovisual industry. Through its various funding and promotion programs, Telefilm supports dynamic companies and creative talent here at home and around the world. Telefilm also makes recommendations regarding the certification of audiovisual treaty coproductions to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, and administers the programs of the Canada Media Fund and the Talent Fund, a private donation initiative. Visit and follow us on Twitter at and on Facebook at


SOURCE Telefilm Canada

For further information: Douglas Chow, Head, Public Relations, Telefilm Canada, (416) 973-6436, ext. 2548 or 1-800-463-4607,


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