A broad variety of special programs are planned for the 55th AAFF, and artists and programmers from all over the world will be in attendance to engage with the audience. This includes strong Asian representation this year with “Video Bureau: Works From an Archive of Chinese Video Art,” programmed by Ellen Zweig; a screening and installations by Taiwanese artist Yuan Goang-Ming; and special presentation of the Japanese avant-garde film classic A Page of Madness (1926) by Teinosuke Kinugasa, with distinguished Japanese benshi Ichiro Kataoka and live music performed by world-renowned local experimental music darlings Little Bang Theory. The New Negress Film Society (NNFS) have been commissioned


A Word From Our Executive Director: In a time such as ours, intensely destabilized by the latest reinventions of our information gathering and story sharing powers, find support and solace in our film festival. When opaque algorithms and sophisticated hucksters can so easily gain control over our collective consciousness, find freedom in our film festival. What was supposed to bring us all together and shine a light on darkness has now helped alienate us from each other, and obscured perception. But the light of the projector still shines, and the theater brings us together. When our society seems so unsettled, and our path forward together so uncertain, come be with us, at our film festival


We are excited to announce the release of volume nine of the DVD collection from the 54th Festival. This volume features various short films and award winning features from the 2016 Festival. The DVD allows you to enjoy some of the highlights from the Festival right in your living room and support the filmmakers and the AAFF. Give the gift of the DVD or keep it for yourself and experience some of the finest and most recent avant-garde and experimental films. Featured works on the ninth installment of the DVD series include the animated short Life With Herman H. Rott by Chintis Lundgren, an animated tale of a cat and mouse with conflicting personalities, Blue and Red by Zhou Tao, a compelling


“Let’s Watch” with Martin Thoburn aired on December 6th and includes an engaging interview with the local artist as well as a screening of his film “Frames,” which was shown at the 49th AAFF (2011). In this segment, Martin expressed his interest in film and the digital and how this led to his career in graphic design and animation. He had a love for film from a young age, and attended Washtenaw Community College for high school in their Washtenaw Technical Middle College program. His involvement with the AAFF started when he was a student at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit and began making trailers for the Festivals. His film “Mates,” one of his thesis projects, screened at the 4


“Years later, one of my own shorts was accepted by AAFF, and I returned home to see it screen, proud to be able to give back to an institution that has influenced generations of experimental filmmakers." -- Brendt Rioux, Founder of Lost & Found 16mm Film Club We reached out to past AAFF interns and asked them about their time with us and how it has impacted their careers. They were excited to share their stories and expressed their love for the Festival. We connected with six interns who worked with us between the 40th (2002) and 52nd (2014) Festivals. There are many different intern roles at the AAFF from creative to business and everywhere in between. Hands-on experience for our interns c


With the 55th Festival season getting underway we are pleased to provide you with even more resources to learn about the history of the AAFF. On our website we now have a page about our beloved founder, George Manupelli, as well as a roster of past festival directors. The Manupelli webpage highlights his work with the AAFF and includes a brief biography of his life. There are links to some of his artistic works and other relevant resources, including the talk he gave, “An Unauthorized History,” at the University of Michigan Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series in 2009 during the 47th AAFF. The history of the Festival makes us who we are today, so immerse yourselves on our website!


When we interviewed Mark Ducker, the Founder and Director of the Ypsi 24 Hour Film Shootout, he highlighted the importance of its partnership with the AAFF. He is grateful to have such a strong relationship with our long standing organization, to help build their reputation in the avant-garde film community. Mark told us that the Manupelli Award was enhanced this year to emphasize the relationship between the two film festivals. When asked about the criteria the jury looks for in a Manupelli Award winner, he expressed that they look for works that “mirror” the types of experimental films one would see at the AAFF and embody the values of avant-garde cinema. The winners of the Ypsi 24 Manupel


"Let's Watch With the Ann Arbor Film Festival" is back for a second season! The episodes air on CTN (Ann Arbor Cable TV). Click on the picture above to watch both the previous season and to follow the upcoming season. Each episode of “Let’s Watch” focuses on a filmmaker from the Ann Arbor Film Festival and their work. The first installment of this season aired two weeks ago and featured UM Screen Arts and University of Michigan Screen Arts & Cultures alumni Andrew Day, whose short film, "The Human Body, Our Friend" screened at the 54th AAFF. "Let's Watch" features the film along with an interview of Day. When he came to Michigan, Day did not know he wanted to be a filmmaker, but once he took



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