Todd's Ten New Talents To Watch 2015

Founder and Editor; Toronto, Canada (@AnarchistTodd)
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With the year coming to a close it's time to cast an eye back over 2015 with a bit of a year-in-review. I realized a few years ago that I didn't find typical year end best-of lists particularly interesting - they tend to be collections of familiar names and faces and can often be predicted to an uncanny degree of accuracy before the year has even begun if you've been paying any sort of attention - and so once again I instead offer a selection of ten out-of-the-blue discoveries. While not an exhaustive list - there are certainly some significant titles I've missed - these are what I believe, based on what I have seen, to be the ten most exciting new talents to arrive this past year, the ten whose future work I most look forward to.

A couple words on the rules: First, anything I was directly involved with myself is out just due to simple conflict of interest. So as much as I love Jamie Dagg's River and Can Evrenol's Baskin - both of which I served as an executive producer on - those don't make the list. And, second, this is based on feature films only. So, apologies to David Sandberg and Kung Fury. It's awesome but it's only half an hour.

And so on we go, with the list sorted in alphabetical order by the director's last name.

Perry Blackshear, dir: They Look Like People

While I'd never want to suggest that being selected to screen at Slamdance is a negative for a filmmaker the fact is that in this particular year - with the hype machine running hotter than it has for ages and distributors throwing money around like mad literally just down the street - many of the Slamdance filmmakers had a hard time cutting through the noise of Sundance and I would argue that none were more overlooked than Perry Blackshear.

Blackshear is one of those unique talents who is wired just a little bit differently from those around him and who does a bit of everything and does it all well. His debut feature feels like a spiritual cousin to the work of Spring duo Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead with its blend of indie drama characterization and genre thrills and he's got an obvious mastery of tension and tone. Give this guy any resources to work with at all and the sky is the limit.

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best of 2015bone tomahawkcraig zahlerfebruaryfernando salemhardcorehow most things workilya naishullerlaszlo nemesosgood perkinsperry blackshearprincerkssrobert eggersrobin prontsam de jongson of saulthe ardennesthe witchthey look like peopleturbo kid

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Todd HarringtonDecember 31, 2015 12:33 PM

Great list: totally agree with the ones I've seen and can't wait to see the ones I haven't seen yet!

StuJanuary 4, 2016 6:07 PM

Thanks for this Todd - these sound like some great titles to chase down!