29th Annual Miami International Film Festival, Produced and Presented by Miami Dade College, Highlights Four World Directors

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Festival Contact:
Danny Diaz
Tel: +1 305-389-8986

MDC Contact:
Juan Mendieta
Tel: +1 305-237-7611


Falco Ink Contact:

Shannon Treusch

Tel: +1 212-445-7100


For Immediate Release: 

February 22, 2012


29th Annual Miami International Film Festival, Produced and Presented by Miami Dade College, Highlights Four World Directors  


-MIFF runs from Mar. 2 to 11, 2012


MIAMI, FL – The 29th Annual Miami International Film Festival (MIFF) will shine a spotlight on four up-and-coming directors from around the world, most who will be presenting their films in the U.S./North America for the first time. Joong-Hyun KimAlejandro LandesPippo Mezzapesa, and Susan Youssef are this year’s featured 4 World Directors to Watch.


“Original, unique rhythms and personalities are uncommon among very young directors,” said MIFF Executive Director Jaie Laplante. “These four directors all have found a way to speak the language of cinema with a voice that doesn’t sound like any other of their generation.”


Kim is a native of Seoul, South Korea. He graduated from the film program at the Seoul Institute of Arts, as well as the directing program at the Korean Academy of Film Arts. Since 1999, he has produced a diverse filmography of shorts and documentaries. Choked, his first feature film, is about two young adults with a mentally unstable mother who bear the consequences of her bad choices.


Landes was born in São Paulo, Brazil, to a Colombian mother and Ecuadorian father. He studied literature, economics and architecture at Brown University. He went on to write for The Miami Herald and the syndicated- television talk show “Oppenheimer Presenta.”  With Porfirio, he was a fellow at the Cinéfondation Residence and the Sundance Institute. Making its U.S. Premiere, Porfirio is about man in diapers, confined from his bed to a wheelchair, who sells call time on his cell phone in a faraway city on the outskirts of the Colombian Amazon and dreams of a better life.


Italian director, producer and writer Mezzapesa brings his first feature film. Annalisa, a coming-of-age story set in a Southern Italy factory town in the 1990s. Four soccer-playing teenage friends deal with dead-end prospects when Annalisa, a mysterious, tormented and beautiful woman, tries to jump off the church roof becoming an instant legend among the locals and a source of wonder and passion for the boys.


Habibi, a story of forbidden love, is the first fiction feature set in Gaza in over 15 years. Youssef, a Brooklyn-born filmmaker of Lebanese and Syrian parents, presents her award-winning film about a soulful Palestine in the West Bank who falls in love with a pretty fellow student, and shocks her family by expressing his love publicly through poetry.


In addition, this year’s Festival will showcase of more than 100 films from 35 countries during the 10-day event, which runs March 2-11, 2012. Highlights include red carpet galas at Olympia Theater, parties, education seminars, international film premieres, and more!


For more information about films, screenings and tickets, visit miff2020.wpengine.com.


Miami International Film Festival (MIFF), celebrating its 29th edition on March 2-11, 2012, is considered the preeminent Ibero-American film festival in the U.S. The annual Festival, produced and presented by Miami Dade College, attracts more than 70,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers, producers, talent and industry professionals. It is the only major festival housed within a college or university. In the last five years, the Festival has screened films from more than 60 countries, including 300 World, International, North American, U.S. and East Coast Premieres. MIFF’s special focus on Ibero-American cinema have made the Miami International Film Festival a natural gateway for the discovery of Ibero-American talent. Additionally, the Festival offers unparalleled educational opportunities to filmmakers and the community at large. For more, visit miff2020.wpengine.com or call 305-237-MIFF (3456).   Major sponsors of the 2012 Miami International Film Festival include: Lexus, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Miami Beach Visitors & Convention Authority, FPL, EGEDA, Downtown Development Authority of the City of Miami, Comcast, Miami New Times, The Historic Alfred I. Dupont Building, ABC Management Services, Screen International and the City of Miami Beach.  The official headquarter hotel of MIFF 2012 is The Standard Spa, Miami; and the Festival is produced with the support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.


Miami Dade College has a long and rich history of involvement in the cultural arts, providing South Florida with a vast array of artistic and literary offerings including The Miami Book Fair International, the Florida Center for the Literary Arts, the MDC Live! Performing Arts Series, The MDC Tower Theater Cinema Series, nine visual arts galleries including The Freedom Tower at Miami Dade College and the School of Entertainment and Design Technology, in addition to the renowned Miami International Film Festival. MDC is the largest institution of higher education in the country and is nationally recognized for many of its academic and cultural programs. With an enrollment of more than 174,000 students, MDC is the nation’s top producer of degrees. The college’s eight campuses and outreach centers offer nearly 300 distinct degree programs including several baccalaureate degrees. It has admitted nearly 2 million students since it opened its doors in 1960. More at mdc.edu.


Additional MDC contacts: Tere Estorino, director of media relations, 305-237-3949, testorino@mdc.edu; Sue Arrowsmith, 305-237-3710, sue.arrowsmith@mdc.edu; or Tarnell Carroll, 305-237-3359, tcarroll@mdc.edu.