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Vanessa McMahon

Vanessa is a novel writer, screenwriter, rep and a film producer. She shares her discoveries and film surprises. :-)



Off Karadeniz

In my interview with actress Melissa Papel, we discussed her new film Off Karadeniz (2010), a Turkish film about a young girl from the region of Smyrna in Turkey. me: "I'm so excited to hear about this film as I have been to Smyrna and Im fascinaed by this region of Turkey.Can you tell us about Off Karadeniz and what your role in the film is?" Melissa: "Off Karadeniz, called "Smyn-Of" in Turkish, is a 95 minute comedy. It is the story of Melek, a young girl from ...

Cirkus Columbia

Jelena Stupljanin speaks about her new film Cirkus Columbia, a Bosnian film by Bosnian Oscar winner director Danis Tanovic, set in the former Yugoslavia. me: Can you tell me about Cirkus Columbia and what your film is about? And what is your role in the film? Jelena Stupljanin: 'Cirkus Columbia' is a love story set in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the early 90's just before the war in Bosnia started. The story follows Divko (played by Miki Manojlovic) who comes back after 20 years...

Cairo Time on Aruba Time

 Cairo Time on Aruba Time! Ruba Nadda and Patricia Clarkson on red carpet at Aruba IFF. The night before their premier, we met at the Aruba Golf Resort at The Burning Plain after party and over all-you-can-Mumms, I spoke with them both about their experience filming entirely on location in Cairo. In the presence of flipping and twirling Aruba Carnivalesque stage dancers- a truly Lynchian moment- they told me how marvelous and exciting their experience in Cairo was. From the looks of their l...

Elly Glass Project

I asked Leslie Streit about her film The Elly Glass Project's about Elly (recently deceased at age 95) who rescued her husband Henry from Buchenwald in 1939. In 1948 Henry became the architect of oneof the first solar houses in America. me: Can you tell me a bit about The Elly Glass Project? What was your inspiration for telling this story? Leslie: In 2007 my friend, AnneKarin Glass, knowing I had done a previous experimental film about the Holocaust, told me...

Is It Just Me?

  This is talented actor Nicholas Downs. I asked him to tell me about his new film Is It Just Me? (2010) which is winning awards at film festivals nationwide and internationally.  NICHOLAS: Blaine (Nicholas Downs) is a typical young gay man looking for love...without much success. Enter Xander (David Loren), the man of his dreams. After meeting in an online chat room, they quickly fall for each other and start a virtual relationship. Before long, they decide to meet face-...

Mornings in Jenin

  MORNINGS IN JENIN by Susan Abulhawa Anna Soler-Pont about of Pontas Literary and Film Agency: "It is a great novel on Palestine published recently in the US by Bloomsbury and into 21 other territories in Europe and Asia so far! There is a great film inside this book! The world needs a film like this one!" More information here:   ...

Richard Gere Not Ready to Write a Book

  Aruba International Film Festival has run June 4 to 11, 2010     Legendary leading man and activist Richard Gere opened the inaugural Aruba International Film Festival (AIFF) as its official host when the Festival unspooled this June. In addition to opening the Festival, Gere has been bestowed with a special humanitarian award and participate in the Festival’s “In Conversations With” series engaging the Festival audience.  Ed...

Chris D'Arienzo and Barry Munday

see film trailer here: Chris D'Arienzo was unable to make it to the first AIFF but his film was and indeed proved a hit among viewers.After the festival, I contacted my talented writer friend and asked him if he'd answer a few questions for me about the experience of making hisfirst feature film. Ironically, I had asked to interview him 3 months before the festival for a research project I was doing for University ofLondon but he was too busy s...


Ristabbanna (2009) is a film by Italian independent filmmaker Gianni Cardillo. I interviewed him about the experience of making an indie film in Italy where their biggest rival is not studio, unlike in the U.S., but the Italian government minister of culture. Gianni’s film is independent! For five years he searched for a producer and never found one, despite the fact that many producers loved the script but were not in position to realize the film. Last year a professor frien...

Dzi Croquettes

  By far one of the greatest films at the PSIFF 2010 festival for me was the independent documentary film, the DZI Croquettes (2009) by first time directors Tatiana Issa and Raphael Alvarez. Best friends for twenty-five years, Raphael and Tatiana made this film about her childhood adopted family, a famous transvestite dance crew of thirteen who were instrumental confronting the Brazilian dictatorship of the 1970s through their avant-garde and revolutionary dance innovations. Tatiana&rsqu...

Sweet Crude

    Sweet Crude (2009) is a documentary film made by Sandy Cioffi about the crude oil problem in Nigeria that has caused much heated debate over the last fifty years of unregulated oil drilling which has resulted in major health problems and pollution in the Niger Delta. Sandy Cioffi began wanting to tell a story about schools in Nigeria and ended up with a much harsher story to tell than she never believed possible; nevertheless, a story that needed telling. A...

Paulista, Quanto Dura Amor?

          Paulista, Quanto Dura o Amor? (2009) by writer/director Roberto Moreira and actress Maria Clara Spinelli (winner of the Hollywood Brazilian Film Festival award for Best Actress) held its North American premier at the Palm Springs Film Festival in January, 2010. Both Roberto Moreira and Maria Spinelli attended for Q and A after screening. Roberto discussed that it was indeed a challenge to make a film that focuses o...

Samson and Delilah

    By far one of the best and most memorable films for me this past year was, Samson and Delilah (2009), a cinematographic masterpiece. Director Warwick Thornton directs his first feature film after sixteen years as a cinematographer. Set in the Central Australian desert, these two young lovers experience a journey together that will change their lives forever; it is like contemporary Aboriginal rite of passage story. During a Q and A with the director Warwick Thornton, he sat c...

Oscar nominated...Ajami

  Ajami (2009) is a film about the living situation between Muslims and Christians living side by side with each other in Tel Aviv and their everyday struggles in this political/religious contentious hot spot. Ajami writers/directors Scandar Copti (Palestinian) and Yaron Shani (Israeli) sat on panel on January 10, 2010 and spoke with audiences about their seven year journey making their controversial film. When I asked about the details of their film’s production, Scandar r...

Roman Polanski Released

  Following a legal battle that began almost a year ago at the Zurich Airport en route to the Zurich Film Festival, Oscar-winning director Roman Polanski has been released from legal limbo that has kept him under house arrest in Switzerland, and will most likely be back in France by later this week. Switzerland announced earlier today that it will not extradite Roman Polanski to the United States, where the film director faces charges of unlawful sex with a minor over thre...

Talking Tropicalia

        Tropicalia (2011), Paula Cosenza's highly anticipated new documentary film about politics and music in Brazil during the nation's Tropicalismo movement of the late 1960's.    Paula Cosenza is currently filming. Stay tuned for an interview in the coming weeks! ...

How Tasty Was My Little Italian?

Penso Un Sogno Cosi... This dark drama with an ironic almost Caravaggio-esque twist at the end calls to mind certain images- Titus (1999) when the failed Roman would-be emperor served the queen's sons to her on a plate- literally!; Hannibal (2001), when Dr. Lecter eats the brain of his rival Ray Liotta-ewe!; and, last but not least, an old Brazilian movie about native Tupi anthropofagia, How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman (1971).   Why do such gory...

On Venezzia

  view film trailer here:   Herrera protects Ruddy During exclusive interview with Venezzia stars Ruddy Rodriguez and Alfonso Herrera, they discuss their difficult love scene. Ruddy says that even though she is older than Alfonso, he protected her during their love scene and made her feel more comfortable. Hmmm, that mustive been hard! lol!  But all joking aside, Ruddy barely needed protection as she pr...

Thelma Schoonmaker interview

On Martin Scorsese Thelma Schoonmaker on Martin Scorsese: interview   watch whole Getty Images interview on this link:                     Three time Academy Award winner for editing Thelma Schoonmaker in an up-close-and-personal interview about what it has been like to work alongside ...

Interview with Guillermo Arriaga

Guillermo Arriaga we salute you! One on one interview with The Burning Plain director Guillermo Arriaga.  When beginning our one-on-one interview, I asked Guillermo if he could enlighten me on the situation between him and director Alejandro Inarritu. When I mentioned the latter's name, Arriaga replied: 'Who?'. Then I asked again and he replied with a wise smirk: 'You want me to talk about my divorce?' That situation made clear, I avoided the sensitive subject and ...

On Film Planet Entertainment

    Visit Film Planet Entertainment New Sales Rep/co-production company -Film Planet Entertainment- made its big debut this year at the Cannes Film Festival 2010 and continues its rise to popularity at the first ever Aruba International Film Festival and saturated the LA Film Festival as well as all the most important worldwide festivals this year and in the years to come. Film Planet Entertainment seeks to cross boundaries in cinema and the world with its internat...


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