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New Orleans Film Festival Announces Additional Films, Including Moonlight and Centerpiece Film I Am Not Your Negro

Festival special guests include Jessica Biel and more


New Orleans, La. (October 6, 2016)— The New Orleans Film Society (NOFS) is pleased to announce new additions to the lineup for the 27 annual New Orleans Film Festival, to take place October 12-20, 2016.

Notably, the festival announced the addition of the new James Baldwin–inspired documentary I Am Not Your Negro as the festival’s Centerpiece Film. The documentary premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and will also screen at the New York Film Festival before its New Orleans screening.

Other film additions include Moonlight, the Barry Jenkins–directed film that has received considerable awards buzz since its premiere at the Telluride Film Festival, and New Orleans–shot The Book of Love, directed by Bill Purple and starring Jessica Biel, Jason Sudeikis, and Maisie Williams. Biel, who also produced the film, will be in attendance. Other recently announced films include festival heavyweights Lion and Manchester By the Sea; the new documentary from New Orleans–based Ross Brothers Contemporary Color; the world premiere of a documentary about domestic violence legislation in Louisiana, Five Awake; and a special restoration of the 1970 John Waters film Multiple Maniacs.

These films will be screening in theaters across the festival campus. New to the campus this year is the Entergy Giant Screen Theater at the Audubon Nature Institute, which boasts the largest screen in the state at over 70 feet wide, featuring a 4k digital projection system and state-of-the-art Dolby Atmos multidimensional sound. Additionally, Ace Hotel New Orleans will serve as the festival headquarters and will also include a 300-seat theater.

“We are thrilled to be showcasing these special screenings,” said Director of Programming Clint Bowie. “They represent some of the most exciting filmmaking happening today, and we’re honored to include these films in the festival.”

The festival also announced this week a special conversation-style panel presented jointly by the festival and Saint Heron that will feature Julie Dash, director of Closing Night film Daughters of the Dust. The conversation will be moderated by Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah, a writer and contributor to The New York Times Magazine. The conversation will take place on Wednesday, October 19, at the Marigny Opera House. The following evening, Dash will receive a Career Achievement Award during the Closing Night ceremony, in conjunction with the screening of her film Daughters of the Dust.

For details on these events, visit

dir. Raoul Peck | 93 min | USA, France, Belgium, Switzerland
This acclaimed documentary envisions the book James Baldwin never finished—a radical narration about race in America, using the writer’s original words. The film, narrated by Samuel Jackson, draws upon James Baldwin’s notes on the lives and assassinations of Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr. to explore and bring a fresh and radical perspective to the current racial narrative in America. 

Monday, October 17, 2016, 6:30 PM, presented at Ace Hotel New Orleans


The Book of Love

dir. Bill Purple | 108 min | USA

Henry (Jason Sudeikis) and Penny (Jessica Biel) are a New Orleans couple very much in love, until tragedy strikes and Henry is forced to rebuild. Quite literally, it turns out. After he befriends a tough street teen (Maisie Williams), he helps her construct the raft she’ll use to sail across the Atlantic in search of her long lost father. Rounding out the cast are Orlando Jones, Mary Steenburgen, Paul Reiser, and Bryan Batt. Director Bill Purple, producer Michelle Purple, and producer/actress Jessica Biel scheduled to attend. Sponsored by FotoKem and SGPS Showrig.

Saturday, October 15, 2016, 8:45 PM, presented at Entergy Giant Screen Theater


Contemporary Color

dir. Bill Ross + Turner Ross | 97 min | USA

Ten of the country’s elite color guard teams—the flag-flipping, sequin-studded crème de la crème of the “sport of the arts”—sync steps with musical luminaries for a bacchanalia of beats, sabre-spinning, and glitter cannons. Live performances by David Byrne, Nelly Furtado, How to Dress Well, Devonté Hynes, Money Mark + Ad-Rock, Zola Jesus, Lucius, Nico Muhly + Ira Glass, St. Vincent, and tUnE-yArDs! Directors Bill and Turner Ross and producers Josh Penn and Michael Gottwald scheduled to attend.

Monday, October 17, 2016, 8:30 PM, presented at Entergy Giant Screen Theater


Five Awake

dir. Susan Willis + Donna Dees | 36 min | USA

Five Louisiana women—outraged over husbands shooting their wives—set out to strengthen domestic violence laws, including a controversial proposal to restrict the gun rights of domestic abusers. This is the story of what happens when women, armed with passion, pluck, and political savvy, wake up and refuse to take no for an answer. Directors Susan Willis and Donna Dees scheduled to attend. Post-film conversation to include film subjects Rep. Helena Moreno, Charmaine Caccioppi (United Way of Southeast Louisiana), Kim Sport, Mary Claire Landry (New Orleans Family Justice Center), and Beth Meeks (Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence).

Tuesday, October 18, 2016, 7:00 PM, presented at the Orpheum Theater



dir. Garth Davis | 120 min | Australia

Starring Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman, and Rooney Mara, Lion focuses on an orphan in India who winds up being adopted by an Australian couple. Not wanting to hurt his adoptive parents’ feelings, he suppresses his past, his emotional need for reunification, and his hope of ever finding his lost mother and brother. But a chance meeting with some fellow Indians reawakens his buried yearning. With just a small store of memories, and the help of a new technology called Google Earth, Saroo embarks on one of the greatest needle-in-a-haystack quests of modern times. Sponsored by the Australian Consulate-General in Houston.

Thursday, October 13, 2016, 8:30 PM, presented at Ace Hotel New Orleans


Manchester by the Sea

dir. Kenneth Lonergan | 137 min | USA

After the death of his older brother, Lee Chandler (Casey Affleck) is shocked to learn that Joe has made him sole guardian of his nephew Patrick. Taking leave of his job, Lee reluctantly returns to Manchester-by-the-Sea to care for the spirited 16-year-old, and is forced to deal with a past that separated him from his wife Randi (Michelle Williams) and the community where he was born and raised. In his first film since 2011’s acclaimed Margaret, Lonergan once again proves himself a powerful and visionary storyteller as he seamlessly weaves past and present together, crafting a tension-filled tale that deftly eschews sentimentality in favor of penetrating emotional insight and deeply affecting human relationships.

Wednesday, October 19, 8:30 PM, presented at Theatres at Canal Place #1


dir. Barry Jenkins | 110 min | USA

A timeless story of human connection and self-discovery, Moonlight chronicles the life of a young black man from childhood to adulthood as he struggles to find his place in the world while growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami. At once a vital portrait of contemporary African American life and an intensely personal and poetic meditation on identity, family, friendship, and love, Moonlight is a groundbreaking piece of cinema that reverberates with deep compassion and universal truths. Anchored by extraordinary performances from a tremendous ensemble cast, Jenkins’s staggering, singular vision is profoundly moving in its portrayal of the moments, people, and unknowable forces that shape our lives and make us who we are.

Friday, October 14, 2016, 9:00 PM, presented at Ace Hotel New Orleans


Multiple Maniacs

dir. John Waters | 96 min | USA

John Waters’ gloriously grotesque, unavailable-for-decades second feature comes to theaters at long last, replete with all manner of depravity, from robbery to murder to one of cinema’s most memorably blasphemous moments. Made on a shoestring budget in Baltimore, with Waters taking on nearly every technical task, this gleeful mockery of the peace-and-love ethos of its era features the Cavalcade of Perversion, a traveling show put on by a troupe of misfits whose shocking proclivities are topped only by those of their leader: the glammer-than-glam, larger-than-life Divine, who’s out for blood after discovering her lover’s affair. Starring Waters’ beloved regular cast the Dreamlanders (including David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Mink Stole, Edith Massey, and Cookie Mueller), Multiple Maniacs is an anarchist masterwork from an artist who has doggedly tested the limits of taste for decades.

Friday, October 14, 9:00 PM; Sunday, October 16, 9:15 PM; and Wednesday, October 19, 6:45 PM, presented at Chalmette Movies



Passes and tickets are on sale now at

NOFS members can purchase All Access passes for $250 and Non-Members for $320. All Access passes afford the passholder access to all festival screenings (with reservations), access to the VIP Lounge, access to all NOFF parties, priority entrance to all screenings, and a discount on all vintage merchandise.

This year, the New Orleans Film Society introduces a Weekender Pass (NOFS Members $150; General $175). Designed to appeal to out-of-town guests looking for a weekend trip to enjoy the best the city and Festival have to offer, the pass includes admission to all screenings on Friday-Sunday (with reservations), admission to all parties on Saturday and Sunday, and priority entrance to all screenings. 

Individual tickets for Spotlight and Centerpiece Film screenings are $12 for NOFS members and $15 for Non-Members. Regular screenings are $9 for NOFS members and $12 for Non-Members.

On October 10, the NOFF Main Box Office opens at Ace Hotel New Orleans for in-person advance ticket sales.



Since 1989, the New Orleans Film Society (NOFS) has engaged, educated, and inspired through the art of film. This year marks the 27th anniversary of the New Orleans Film Festival (NOFF). NOFS hosts the French Film Festival and other special events designed to benefit local film audiences, artists, and professionals. NOFS partners with local organizations to present monthly film series. NOFS reaches 32,000 people year-round through its programming. NOFS is a 501(c)3 organization.

Sponsors for the 2016 New Orleans Film Festival include Hendrick’s Gin, Ace Hotel New Orleans, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the City of New Orleans Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy, Deep South Studios, TV5MONDE, Ansgar Media / Village Studios, First NBC, ARRI Rental, Cast & Crew Entertainment Services, Hollywood Trucks, Louisiana Office of Tourism,  Peoples Health, Second Line Stages, and Tectus Security Services, United Way of Southeast Louisiana, and VER Camera New Orleans.


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