Gasparilla 2016: Preview of Gasparilla Film Festival In Tampa, Florida

Contributor; Toronto, Canada (@filmfest_ca)
Gasparilla 2016: Preview of Gasparilla Film Festival In Tampa, Florida

ScreenAnarchy is headed to Tampa! We're very pleased to have been invited to the land of Magic Mike to cover the Gasparilla International Film Festival that starts next week. With frost descending on Toronto and a winter that just won't quit, the invitation couldn't have come at a better time.

Better yet, there's an opportunity to interview a very rare creature indeed, a real life EGOT. The Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony Award-winning Rita Moreno is getting a Lifetime Achievement award from the fest and I could not be more excited to meet the legend. Yes we'll talk West Side Story and her new film Remember Me, of course, but I'll be sure to take time to talk Electric Company and HBO's OZ as well.

The fest looks to showcase a number of terrific films culled from the likes of Toronto, Sundance and SXSW, as well as a number of interesting world premieres. Precious Cargo, starring Bruce Willis, looks like a cool little heist film, while the doc Hair I Go Again, about a bunch of guys trying to put a band together, will likely provide the perfect over-the-top heavy metal soundtrack for my Florida trip.

This will also be, I think, the fourth festival I've attended that Embrace of the Serpent is playing, so just maybe I'll get to see this Oscar-nominated film! Gavin Hood's Eye in the Sky, the drone flick with Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul and Alan Rickman, is their big opener and Hood should be attending. Their closer is Linklater's Everybody Wants Some, his companion film to Dazed and Confused, which again will likely find the perfect idiom for this bro-ish flick.

I'm perhaps most excited to try and see some of the Cuban films that they're showcasing, Ron Chapman's Forbidden Shore looks at contemporary music on the island, and given the changing relationship between the U.S. and Cuba it's an extraordinary time to engage with their culture just on the cusp of some significant and potential changes to the nation over the coming years.

Running March 30th to April 3rd, if you find yourself wanting to spend some sunny days inside watching world class cinema be sure to join down in Tampa!

Full press release below:






TAMPA, FL (March 07, 2015) Suncoast Credit Union Gasparilla International Film Festival (GIFF) announces its official program selection for its 10 th year anniversary in Tampa, Florida. The 10th annual festival will be held March 30-April 3 at the Tampa Theater and Ybor City's Carmike Cinemas. With 115 films, the festival will host international and regional premieres of narrative features, documentaries and short films around the world, special tributes, master classes, panel discussions and much more.

This year's special tribute will celebrate the many accomplishments of Oscar, Grammy, Emmy, Golden Globe and Tony winner RITA MORENO. GIFF will honor Moreno with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Also, her film, REMEMBER ME will screen at the festival.

A jury of industry professionals and acclaimed filmmakers will be presenting awards to competition films in the following categories: Narrative Feature, Documentary, Spotlight and Shorts. Highlights include:


Eye in the Sky (UK): Academy Award winner Helen Mirren stars alongside Aaron Paul, Alan Rickman and Iain Glen in this timely thriller about a terrorist-targeting drone mission that becomes a flashpoint when a civilian girl enters the kill zone. Directed by Gavin Hood.


EVERYBODY WANTS SOME (USA): A group of college baseball players navigate their way through the freedoms and responsibilities of unsupervised adulthood. Starring Zoey Deutch, Tyler Hoechlin, Ryan Guzman, Blake Jenner. Directed by Richard Linklater


  • Precious Cargo (World Premiere) : After a botched heist, Eddie, a murderous crime boss, hunts down the seductive thief Karen who failed him. In order to win back Eddie's trust, Karen recruits her ex-lover and premier thief Jack. Starring Bruce Willis, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Claire Forlani. Directed by Max Adams
  • Embrace Of The Serpent (Colombia. Florida Premiere): Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Language Film. The story of the relationship between Karamakate, an Amazonian shaman and last survivor of his people, and two scientists who work together over the course of 40 years to search the Amazon for a sacred healing plant. Starring: Jan Bijvoet, Antonio Bolivar. Directed by Ciro Guerra
  • Ma Ma (SPAIN. Florida Premiere): A woman recently diagnosed with cancer forms an unexpected bond with a soccer scout (Luis Tosar) whose wife has been gravely injured in a car accident. Starring: Academy Award winner Penélope Cruz. Directed by Julio Medem
  • Love and Friendship (FRA/NETHERLANDS. Florida Premiere): In the 18th century, the seductive and manipulative Lady Susan uses devious tactics to win the heart of the eligible Reginald De Courcy. Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Chloe Sevigny. Directed by Whit Stillman


  • The Daughter (AUS. Florida Premiere): A young man returns to his dying hometown and discovers a dark family secret that could tear apart the lives of those he left behind, in this contemporary adaptation of Ibsen's The Wild Duck. Starring: Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush, Ewen Leslie, Paul Schneider, Miranda Otto, Anna Torv, with Odessa Young and Sam Neill. Directed by Simon Stone
  • The Debt (USA. Florida Premiere): A hedge-fund honcho puts through the deal of a lifetime: the redemption of a billion-dollar debt owed by the Peruvian government to its citizens. The quick buck soon turns into a nightmare. Starring: Stephen Dorff, Alberto Ammann, Carlos Bardem, and David Strathairn. Directed by Barney Elliott


  • The Adderall Diaries (USA. Florida Premiere): Based on the bestselling memoir by Stephen Elliott, The Adderall Diaries is the story of an author paralyzed by writer's block and an escalating drug dependency who is sucked down the rabbit hole of a high-profile murder case. Starring:James Franco, Ed Harris and Amber Heard. Written and directed by Pamela Romanowsky


  • One More Time (USA. Florida Premiere): After one too many big city problems, Jude heads to the Hamptons home of her father, an over-the-hill crooner desperately charting his musical comeback. Starring: Amber Heard, Kelli Garner and Christopher Walken. Directed by Robert Edwards
  • LITTLE MEN (USA. Florida Premiere): Jake is a quiet, sensitive middle schooler when he meets the affably brash Tony at his grandfather's funeral. The budding friendship is put at risk, however, when a rent dispute between Jake's father, Brian and Tony's mother, Leonor, threatens to become contentious. Starring: Greg Kinnear, Theo Taplitz, Michael Barbieri and Alfred Molina. Directed by Ira Sachs


  • A Beautiful Now (USA. Florida Premiere): As a beautiful dancer balances between reality and fantasy, she asks her friends to help her figure out the passions and relationships that have shaped her identity. Starring: Abigail Spencer, Cheyenne Jackson, Collette Wolfe. Directed by: Daniela Amavia
  • Puerto Ricans in Paris (USA. Florida Premiere): Two Puerto Rican NYPD detectives head to Paris to track down a stolen handbag. Starring: Luiz Guzman, Rosie Perez, Rosario Dawson. Directed by Ian Edelman
  • The Black Coat's Daughter (USA. Florida Premiere). Beautiful and haunted Joan makes a pilgrimage across a frozen landscape toward a prestigious all girls prep school where Rose and Kat find themselves stranded after their parents mysteriously fail to retrieve them for winter break. Starring: Emma Roberts, Kiernan Shipka, James Remar, Lauren Holly. Directed by Osgood Perkins


  • The Truth About Lies (USA. Florida Premiere) : A desperate, unemployed man (Fran Kranz) who lives with his mother weaves an ever-growing web of lies to impress a beautiful woman. Starring: Fran Kranz, Odette Annable. Directed by Phil Allocco.



  • Hair I Go Again (World Premiere): Facing a mid-life crossroads, two longtime friends risk everything as they set out to fulfill their dreams of achieving rock & roll stardom. Directed by: Kyle Kruger


  • Hano! A Century in the Bleachers (Florida Premiere): Meet Arnold Hano, 93, legendary sportswriter and social activist. Baseball fan, war veteran and storyteller emeritus: few have lived and chronicled the American experience as extensively. Directed by: Steve McClure


  • SMART (Florida Premiere): Groundbreaking feature-length documentary about a group of highly trained, adrenaline-fueled professionals who risk life and limb to rescue animals. They're Los Angeles' Specialized Mobile Animal Rescue Team! Directed by Justin Zimmerman


  • No Greater Love (Florida Premiere): U.S. Army Chaplain Justin Roberts goes on missions with the legendary NO SLACK battalion in Afghanistan in 2010/2011 armed with only a camera. Directed by Justin Roberts



CUBAN SIDEBAR: Films focusing on Cuba

  • Craving Cuba (World Premiere): A Cuban-American woman seeks to understand her true identity. Directed by: Zuzy Martin Lynch


  • The Forbidden Shore (World Premiere)- The amazing diversity of contemporary Cuban music is gorgeously explored in Ron Chapman's third documentary feature. Chapman captures the full gamut of what's happening now in Cuba, both the most exciting artists and the distinct musical scenes they move In. Directed by Ron Chapman.


  • Havana Motor Club (Florida Premiere): Reforms have offered opportunity in Cuba but the children of the Revolution are unsure of the best route forward. For a half-dozen drag racers, this means last-minute changes to their beloved American muscle cars, as they prepare for the first sanctioned race in Cuba since 1960. Directed by Bent-Jorgen Perlmutt


FLORIDA FOCUS: World premiere of independent films made in Florida

  • Waiting on Mary: A struggling actor, traumatized by a brutal divorce, assumes the personality of a colonial character he played at a failed amusement park as a way of retreating from his pain. Directed by: Zachary Beckler


  • Bear With Us: A modern farce about a guy who attempts to propose to his girlfriend in the most romantic way possible, but his plan falls apart when a ravenous bear stumbles on their charming cabin in the woods. Directed by: Kire Patputts


  • Dooder And the Lighthouse: Dooder Parker is eighty-six and full of life. When the historic lighthouse in his hometown becomes doomed to fall into the Gulf, his recounting of local history evolves into a reflection on his love for his wife. Stories intertwine to paint a portrait of a vanishing way of life. Directed by: Deborah Louise Ortiz


In addition to feature length films, GIFF will present over 70 short films. Short film blocks include:

· "LOL": Comedic short films

· "Films on a Mission": Short films focusing on a specific cause

· "Thrill Ride": Thriller, action, and horror short films.

· "Love is In the Air": Romantic short films

· " Motion Tunes": Short films related to music

· "Save the Drama": Drama short films

· "Films 101": College made short films

· "High School Film Showcase": GIFF's high school filmmaking competition sponsored by Suncoast Credit Union

Additionally, Gasparilla will feature in-depth, informative Industry Panels, including, Meet The Press, Casting Directors, "The Performance" Actor's panel, Special Effects, Do's, Don'ts for a Film Festival Run and "The Pitch." Additionally, GIFF is proud to welcome Academy Award nominated animator Bill Plympton (1987's Your Face).

For more information on all the films to be screened and industry events, please go to:


About the Gasparilla International Film Festival

Launched in 2006, GIFF is a film festival held annually in Tampa Bay. The festival is celebrating its 10 th Year anniversary in 2016. Operated by the 501 (c)(3) non-profit Tampa Film Institute, GIFF's mission is to provide year-long support for film screening, production, and education throughout the Tampa Bay Region. For more information visit:, or gasparillafilm.


#GasparillaFilm #GIFF10 #SuncoastCommunity


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