Tuesday, May 29, 2018


The 8th annual LESFF, June 7th - 13th, 2018, invites you to experience innovative feature films and specialty short showcases, retrospectives, and more throughout the week long festival, all with an open wine and beer bar provided by Hidden Sea Wines, Lagunitas, and Sixpoint.

New York, NY -- The Lower East Side Film Festival directors are proud to announce the festival’s 8th annual opening and closing night films along with the complete festival schedule. Opening Night (June 7th) will feature James Lester’s Getting Naked: A Burlesque Story and Closing Night (June 13th) will feature The New York Premieres of Eugene Kotlyarenko’s Wobble Palace and When Jeff Tried to Save the World (Directed by Kendall Goldberg, Starring Jon Heder (IN ATTENDANCE) and Jim O'Heir. The LESFF celebrates the work of creative up and coming short and feature filmmakers. This year’s schedule also features The New York Premiere of Papillon starring Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek, The New York Premiere of The Outdoorsman starring Brent Morin and Sasheer Zamata, and the 10th Anniversary Screening of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist with Ari Graynor in attendance.

This year’s festival judges include Rosario Dawson (Kids, Rent, Daredevil, Jane The Virgin), cinematographer Sam Levy (Lady Bird, Frances Ha, Mistress America), Matt FX (Music Supervisor for Broad City) Ajay Naidu (Office Space, Blindspot, Friends from College), Heather Bruns (Manchester by the Sea, Choke, Miss Congeniality) among others.

The Opening Night Film, Getting Naked: A Burlesque Story at Village East Cinema, June 7th at 8pm, will be followed by a live burlesque show at the Opening Night Party at Drom. Getting Naked: A Burlesque Story peels back the curtain to reveal the sexy sub-culture of the neo-burlesque scene in New York City. This verité documentary intimately follows four performers who find that all that glitters is not necessarily gold. This liberating community does not, necessarily, insulate them from the harsh realities of sexism, illness, and existential crisis. Getting Naked explores what it means to be an artist, an entertainer, and a woman in the toughest city on Earth.

The New York Premiere of Papillon will be held on Friday, June 8th at 7pm at Village East Cinema. Based on the international best-selling autobiographical books Papillon and Banco, Papillon follows the epic story of Henri “Papillon” Charrière (Charlie Hunnam), a safecracker from the Parisian underworld who is framed for murder and condemned to life in the notorious penal colony on Devil’s Island. Determined to regain his freedom, Papillon forms an unlikely alliance with quirky convicted counterfeiter Louis Dega (Rami Malek), who, in exchange for protection, agrees to finance Papillon’s escape, ultimately resulting in a bond of lasting friendship.

The New York Premiere of The Outdoorsman will be held on June 9th at 9pm Village East Cinema. Brent Morin (Netflix’s The Standups) and Sasheer Zamata (SNL) star in David Haskell’s directorial debut The Outdoorsman. As he prepares to cut ties with society and spend a year in the mountains, an aspiring wilderness writer meets a goal oriented corporate woman who has quit her job to 'find herself.' He falls in love, but ultimately must ask himself what he wants: the 'normal' life he's avoided his whole life, or living his outdoor fantasy, alone.

The New York Premiere of Wobble Palace, from Writer/Director Eugene Kotlyarenko, will be held June 13th at 7pm at Village East Cinema. On the eve of America's most traumatic election, a couple on the verge of a nervous break-up decide to split their house up over the weekend. Desperate to make new connections, Jane and Eugene find themselves in a series of unpredictable misadventures, sexual escapades and emotional traumas.

The New York Premiere of When Jeff Tried to Save the World Jeff will be held June 13th at 8pm at Village East Cinema. Jeff (Jon Heder) is the manager of an old-school bowling alley called Winky’s World. Everyday he is the first to arrive and the last to leave. He has memorized the shoe sizes of community regulars and the quirks of his fellow employees. Routine is Jeff’s middle name, and it’s up to him to keep everything and everyone in order. When Jeff’s boss Sheila (Candi Milo) tells him that her soon-to-be ex-husband Carl (Jim O’Heir) is selling Winky’s, he takes matters into his own hands. In hopes of sparking nostalgia within Carl, Jeff throws a party at the bowling alley in homage to its opening celebration. While keeping this plan on a need to know basis, Jeff also struggles to hide Winky's World from his family who, for years, believed Jeff was putting his computer engineering degree to use.

This year The Lower East Side Film Festival has partnered with Audio Network, Viacom, and The Writers Guild of America East for WAVEFORMS - A Night of Music, Media, and Storytelling. The event will feature a conversation on music’s role in TV and Film with Music Supervisors Michael Hill (Lady Bird, Shortbus), Matt FX (Broad City), Screenwriter David Magee (Life of Pi, Finding Neverland), Nick Platt (Audio Network), Anita Chinkes Ratner (SVP and Head of Music and Licensing Strategy at Viacom) among others and will be followed by an intimate rooftop concert by Synead at MEET on Bowery!

Short showcases this year include: Mind F*ck Night - includes short films that festival programmers promise will f*ck with your mind, Ladies’ Night is a series of shorts with strong female characters (where Feminists pay $18.50, and Non-Feminists pay $8,632 to adjust for the median annual earnings difference between men and women), New York Filmmaker Shorts, among others.

The Complete 2018 Lower East Film Festival Schedule is as follows:

Thursday, June 7th: Opening Night
  • Opening Night Film, GETTING NAKED: A BURLESQUE STORY  8pm, Village East Cinema
  • Opening Night Party: Live Burlesque Show! Presented by HEEET Vodka 10pm, DROM

Friday, June 8th:
  • WAVEFORMS - A Night of Music, Media, and Storytelling Presented by Audio Network, Viacom and The WGA - East - 7pm, MEET on Bowery
  • Feature Film: PAPILLON - NEW YORK PREMIERE Starring Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek) - 7:00pm, Village East Cinema
  • 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF NICK & NORAH'S INFINITE PLAYLIST (Ari Graynor in attendance) - 9:30pm, Village East Cinema

Saturday, June 9th:
  • FILMMAKER HAPPY HOUR - 5pm, Juke Bar
  • LADIES’ NIGHT SHORTS SHOWCASE (where Feminists pay $18.50, and Non-Feminists pay $8,632 to adjust for the median annual earnings difference between men and women), 7pm, Village East Cinema
  • Feature Film: THE OUTDOORSMAN - NEW YORK PREMIERE Starring Sasheer Zamata (SNL) and Brent Morin ( Netflix’s The Standups). 9pm, Village East Cinema

Sunday, June 10th:
  • GOOD VIBES’ SHORT SHOWCASE. 6pm, Village East Cinema
  • Feature Documentary: SHOW ME DEMOCRACY - NEW YORK PREMIERE  8pm, Village East Cinema

Monday, June 11th:
  • NY FILMMAKER SHORTS SHOWCASE. 7pm, Village East Cinema
  • Feature Documentary: A SNIPER’S WAR - NEW YORK PREMIERE. 8pm, Village East Cinema
  • Feature Film: A MAINE MOVIE - WORLD PREMIERE Starring Gary Richardson (SNL, Don't Think Twice), Jessica Frey (The Characters), Eleanore Pienta (Cocoon Central Dance Team, 7 Chinese Brothers), John Reynolds (Search Party, Stranger Things), Carmen Christopher (2017 Comedy Central 'Comic to Watch', The Chris Gethard Show), Ana Fabrega (The Jim Gaffigan Show, Portlandia'), Lorelei Ramirez (Adult Swim) and more. 9pm, Village East Cinema

Tuesday, June 12th:
  • THIS IS OUR YOUTH SHORT SHOWCASE. 7pm, Village East Cinema
  • Feature Documentary: MILWAUKEE 53206. 8pm, Village East Cinema
  • MIND F*CK SHORT SHOWCASE. 9pm, Village East Cinema
  • REAR WINDOW - RETROSPECTIVE 10pm, Village East Cinema

Wednesday, June 13th:
  • Closing Night Feature Film: WOBBLE PALACE, 7:00pm, Village East Cinema
  • Closing Night Feature Film: WHEN JEFF TRIED TO SAVE THE WORLD, 8:00pm, Village East Cinema
  • Closing Night Party, 9:30pm: Coney Island Baby

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