Join us for the 2016 Phoenix Film Festival Summer Showcase

This special summer event returns with a fresh batch of films to help you cool off as we inch closer towards the end of summer. This year's event will be held August 22 to 25, 2016 at the Harkins Scottsdale 101 Theatre. All screenings are at 7pm with all of the films featuring a post-film discussion hosted by members of the Phoenix Critics Circle.

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Hands of Stone Poster

Starring: Robert De Niro, Édgar Ramírez, Usher, John Turturro and Ellen Barkin.

Hands of Stone follows the life of Roberto Duran, the legendary Panamanian fighter who made his professional debut when he was just 16 years-old, and his equally legendary trainer Ray Arcel who together changed each other's lives. In June 1980, he defeated Sugar Ray Leonard to capture the WBC welterweight title, but shocked the boxing world by returning to his corner in their November rematch, famously saying the words "no mas" (no more.)

A discussion will follow the film hosted by Phoenix Critics Circle member Monte Yazzi of and the Phoenix Film Festival.





The Sea of Trees posterDirected by Gus Van Sant

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Naomi Watts and Ken Watanabe

In this powerful story of love and redemption, Matthew McConaughey stars as Arthur Brennan, an American professor who travels to Japan in the midst of a personal crisis.  As he wanders through a mysterious forest with a dark past, he experiences flashbacks of his fraught but loving relationship with his wife, Joan (Naomi Watts), and meets an enigmatic stranger, Takumi (Ken Watanabe), who is lost and injured. Arthur devotes himself to saving Takumi and returning him home to safety, and the two embark on a spiritual, life-changing journey of friendship, discovery, and healing—one which may ultimately re-connect Arthur with his love for his wife.

A discussion will follow the film hosted by Phoenix Critics Circle member Jeff Mitchell of and the Phoenix Film Festival.






Author The JT Leroy Story PosterSundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize nomination for documentary.

On January 9, 2006 The New York Times sent shockwaves through the literary world when it unmasked “it boy” wunderkind JT LeRoy, whose tough prose about a sordid childhood had captivated icons and luminaries internationally. It turned out LeRoy didn’t actually exist. He was the creative expression of 40-year-old San Francisco former phone-sex operator turned housewife, Laura Albert.  Author: The JT LeRoy Story takes us down the infinitely fascinating rabbit hole of how Laura Albert—like a Cyrano de Bergerac on steroids—breathed not only words, but life, into her avatar for a decade. Albert’s epic and entertaining account plunges us into a glittery world of rock shows, fashion events, and the Cannes red carpet where LeRoy becomes a mysterious sensation. As she recounts this astonishing odyssey, Albert also reveals the intricate web spun by irrepressible creative forces within her. Her extended and layered JT LeRoy performance still infuriates many; but according to Albert, channeling her brilliant fiction through another identity was the only possible path to self-expression.

A discussion will follow the film hosted by Phoenix Critics Circle member Jeff Mitchell of and the Phoenix Film Festival.





Complete Unknown Poster

Starring: Rachel Weisz, Michael Shannon, Kathy Bates and Danny Glover

Alice (Rachel Weisz) is a woman with a past—multiple pasts. She’s been a Portland hippie, an ER nurse, and a magician’s assistant in China, changing names and identities at the drop of hat. But when she walks into a Brooklyn dinner party one night, she’s recognized by Tom (Michael Shannon), who knows her not as Alice, but as Jenny, an ex-lover he hasn’t seen in fifteen years. Drawn once again to the enigmatic, chameleon-like woman, Tom steals away with her into the New York City night where she introduces him to the thrills and dangers of reinventing oneself. Acclaimed filmmaker Joshua Marston (Maria Full of Grace) directs this smart, seductive investigation into the mystery of identity that explores what it means to leave everything behind and start your life over.

A discussion will follow the film hosted by Phoenix Critics Circle member Monte Yazzi of and the Phoenix Film Festival.



4 Amazing Films.

4 Amazing Nights.

Tickets are $10 each and a pass for all 4 films is just $32. Don't wait to buy tickets. Seating is limited!

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Presenting De Palma Week!

See some of your favorite movies back on the big screen as the Phoenix Film Festival presents De Palma Week.

You know Brian De Palma from his amazing slate of movies from over the last forty years including iconic films like Carrie and Scarface. In June, we’ll be celebrating this legendary filmmaker with a retrospective of his career and a screening of the new documentary, De Palma -- all at the Harkins 101 in North Phoenix. But the coolest part about it is you helped us choose one of the films!

On June 13th, we’ll be screening Carrie on the big screen at the Harkins 101

On June 14th, we’ll say hello to Scarface.

For the June 15th screening, as our Audience Choice screening, you chose... Dressed to Kill !

So here's our lineup for De Palma week:

MONDAY, JUNE 13, 2016


Directed by Brian De Palma Starring: Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Amy Irving

Synopsis: In this chilling adaptation of Stephen King's horror novel, withdrawn and sensitive teen Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) faces taunting from classmates at school and abuse from her fanatically pious mother (Piper Laurie) at home. When strange occurrences start happening around Carrie, she begins to suspect that she has supernatural powers. Invited to the prom by the empathetic Tommy Ross (William Katt), Carrie tries to let her guard down, but things eventually take a dark and violent turn.

A discussion will follow the film.



TUESDAY, JUNE 14, 2016


Directed by Brian De Palma Starring: Al Pacino, Michelle Pfeiffer

Synopsis: After getting a green card in exchange for assassinating a Cuban government official, Tony Montana (Al Pacino) stakes a claim on the drug trade in Miami. Viciously murdering anyone who stands in his way, Tony eventually becomes the biggest drug lord in the state, controlling nearly all the cocaine that comes through Miami. But increased pressure from the police, wars with Colombian drug cartels and his own drug-fueled paranoia serve to fuel the flames of his eventual downfall.

A discussion will follow the film.




dressed to kill DRESSED TO KILL

Directed by Brian De Palma Starring: Michael Caine, Angie Dickinson, Nancy Allen

Synopsis: When Liz Blake (Nancy Allen), a prostitute, sees a mysterious woman brutally slay homemaker Kate Miller (Angie Dickinson), she finds herself trapped in a dangerous situation. While the police think Liz is the murderer, the real killer wants to silence the crime's only witness. Only Kate's inventor son, Peter (Keith Gordon), believes Liz. Peter and Liz team up to find the real culprit, who has an unexpected means of hiding her identity and an even more surprising motivation to kill.

A discussion will follow the film.





Directed by Noah Baumbach, Jake Paltrow

Synopsis: One of the most talented, influential, and iconoclastic filmmakers of all time, Brian De Palma's career started in the 60s and has included such acclaimed and diverse films as Carrie, Dressed to Kill, Blow Out, Scarface, The Untouchables, Carlito's Way, and Mission: Impossible. In this lively, illuminating and unexpectedly moving documentary, directors Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow engage in a personal and candid discussion with De Palma, exploring not only his life and work but also his singular approach to the craft of filmmaking and his remarkable experiences navigating the film business, from his early days as the bad boy of New Hollywood to his more recent years as a respected veteran of the field. In the end, what emerges is a funny, honest, and incisive portrait of a truly one-of-a-kind artist, and an exhilarating behind-the-scenes look at the last 50 years of the film industry through the eyes of someone who has truly seen it all.

A discussion will follow the film.

Click here to check out the trailer for De Palma -

Tickets are not available for purchase for this film. Stay tuned to learn how you can win tickets to see De Palma!

Tickets to Carrie, Scarface and Dressed to Kill are on sale now and are just $5.00 each. We will also have a special advanced screening of the new documentary De Palma on June 16th, but that's not a ticket you can buy! You have to win them. Not to worry. We’ll have several opportunities for you to win tickets leading up to De Palma Week and of course at the screenings of Carrie, Scarface and Dressed to Kill. All screenings will be held at the Harkins Scottsdale 101 with a post-film discussion following each.

Join us as the Phoenix Film Festival celebrates Brian De Palma!

Click here to get your tickets -

Mark your Calendars for the 2017 Phoenix Film Festival

Drumroll, please. The 2017 Phoenix Film Festival will be...

April 6 - 13, 2017 at the Harkins Scottsdale 101.

So take off work now. Tell your friends not to get married that week. Schedule your island vacation for April 14th, because you are going to be very busy April 6 - 13, 2017.

We will be back with over 175 screenings of the best in independent cinema from here and abroad. Plus some great films you can't see anywhere else!

So block it out now! Early bird passes will go on sale in December.

And for you filmmakers out there, we will start accepting submissions in August, so get those final edits finished because we want to see your film.

We will see you in 2017!

PFF 2017 Dates


It's become one of your favorite events at the Phoenix Film Festival and this year's Silent Auction HAS BEEN EXTENDED! Continue the excitement of the 2016 Phoenix Film Festival Silent Auction!  We have opened the Auction for "Part Deux".  Starting today, April 12th through Sunday, April 17th at 6pm, you have the opportunity to bid on a very limited list of items.  Opening bids as low as $5 on some items valued at over $100 and more.

All auction proceeds go to Phoenix Film Foundation, a 501c3 Non-profit Organization, whose purpose is to support and develop the growth of independent filmmaking in Arizona.

All you need to do is click on our auction site HERE to see all of the amazing items!



auction 2Can't make it to the festival? No problem. This year, we will be online with many of our auction items, so everyone can join in on the fun.

All you need to do is click on our auction site HERE.


Check back soon to see some of the cool items you could be bringing home!



If you were a bidder with us last year, your login information still works for this year. If you are a new bidder this year, WELCOME!

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Be ready to bid on items the moment our auction goes live by registering early for your bidder number.



The Phoenix Film Foundation is a 501c3 and depends on the kindness of donations from the community. Do you have something that you would like to donate to the Foundation for our Silent Auction? If so, contact Brenda at [/box]

Get to Know Your PFF 2016 Filmmakers - Scott K. Foley

We're just seven days shy of PFF 2016 and we want to introduce you to some of our newest filmmakers.  This week we chatted with Scott K. Foley, director of this year's feature festival selection Jessica.   SCOTT

What should festival goers know about your film? 

Sometimes to get where you’re going, you have to outrun who you don’t want to be.

Jessica is a low-budget indie that's been favorably compared to films like Drinking Buddies and Frances Ha, though, as one reviewer put it, with a "story unique enough that it never falls victim to cliché." It’s a movie with a complicated female character at the center of her own story, a film that passes the "Bechdel Test" in its opening minutes and one that goes on to set a new grading curve as it unfolds. We like to say Jessica is a story about a young woman who’s coming-of-age, just five years too late.

How did you first learn about the Phoenix Film Festival, and what made it the right fit for your film?

When we started looking into festivals, we had the opportunity to sit down with talented filmmaker Frank Hall Green to talk about our strategy. Frank’s film Wildlike had played at Phoenix last year and he spoke very highly of the fest. After learning that the festival was started by filmmakers and was recently named one of the Top 25 coolest Fests by Moviemaker Magazine, it was clear that the Phoenix Film Festival would be on our list! Plus, for a short time, when he was Jessica’s age, director Scott Foley lived in Arizona (Wickenburg), and he’s very excited to share the film with the with one of the few places he has called home.

What are you most looking forward to at the festival?

We’re incredibly excited about the screenings of the film. There’s simply nothing better than getting to share the film with audiences, which is always such a rewarding experience. Films were meant to be shared, and we’re really excited about how the Phoenix Film Festival is not only helping us share Jessica, but also allowing us the opportunity to connect with audiences in person. We’re also excited to meet other filmmakers and attend the awesome seminars and talks!

What do you most enjoy about the independent film world?

The piles of money, right? :) But seriously, what we love the most is the sense of community.  First in the creativity and passion of all the amazing collaborators you get to work with throughout the entire process, and then again when screening the film. At every festival we’ve been to, we’ve met lots of other talented filmmakers and independent film fans, and the conversations have been truly amazing. To be able to interact with such a large group of like-minded people is a rare privilege.

What projects are you currently working on?

Well Josh and I actually just moved from our beloved Chicago. Unfortunately we moved in separate directions.  Josh moved to Los Angeles where he continues to work for the Oprah Winfrey Network and I moved to Brooklyn where I’m doing film and video editing. Although we are both still getting settled in our new cities, we have been working on two new genre scripts--one about the dangers of human cloning. Quite a departure from Jessica!

Get to Know Your PFF 2016 Filmmakers - Valerie Weiss

It's that time of the year again! PFF 2016 is just around the corner and we want to introduce you to some of our newest filmmakers.  This week we chatted with the team from A Light Beneath Their Feet, and the film's director Valerie Weiss.  VAL

What should festival goers know about your film? 

A Light Beneath Their Feet is a commanding performance, Taryn Manning (Orange Is The New Black) plays Gloria, an Evanston mother wrestling with bipolar disorder and an imminent empty nest. Her dedicated daughter Beth (Madison Davenport) has a bright future ahead, but must decide if she will stay near home to care for her unpredictable mom or follow her own path.

How did you first learn about the Phoenix Film Festival, and what made it the right fit for your film?

We produced a movie called Bread and Butter directed by Liz Manashil that screened at the Phoenix Film Festival. Liz raved about the festival so we decided we couldn’t miss it this year!

What are you most looking forward to at the festival?

Our writer, Moira McMahon Leeper, will be attending and representing the film. I know she is very excited about the whole idea of the festival and sharing our film with the amazing audiences of Phoenix.

What do you most enjoy about the independent film world?

Being able to tackle topics that can have a profound affect on our society and help change the world we live in.

What projects are you currently working on?

Valerie Weiss, our director, is directing a feminist coming-of-age action film called The Archer that shoots in April 2016.  PhD Productions has several other films and television shows in development. Feel free to get in touch for more info!

Join us for our Opening Night Premiere Event

The Phoenix Film Festival is proud to announce that our Opening Night Film is Morris From America. A heartwarming and crowd-pleasing coming-of-age comedy with a unique spin, Morris from America centers on Morris Gentry (Markees Christmas, in an incredible breakout performance) a 13-year-old who has just relocated with his single father, Curtis (Craig Robinson) to Heidelberg, Germany. Morris, who fancies himself the next Notorious B.I.G., is a complete fish-out-of-water—a budding hip-hop star in an EDM world. To complicate matters further, Morris quickly falls hard for his cool, rebellious, 15-year-old classmate Katrin. Morris sets out against all odds to take the hip-hop world by storm and win the girl of his dreams.Morris-From-America

Written and directed by acclaimed up-and-coming filmmaker Chad Hartigan (This is Martin Bonner), Morris from America won two prizes at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the Waldo Salt Screening Award and a Special Jury Award for Robinson, who has been receiving tremendous praise for his touching and nuanced performance in his first serious role. Poignant and funny in equal measure, Morris from America is a delightfully original take on growing up, following your dreams, and finding your voice.

Opening Night 7Once again, our opening night film will be shown in conjunction with our Opening night Premiere Event on April 7, a full night of food and celebration, beginning at the Party Pavilion with tastes from some of the best restaurants in town, great entertainment and some special silent auction items.

Then it's over to the theatre for our Opening Night Film, Morris from America.

Tickets for this Opening Night Event are $60 with all proceeds going to the Phoenix Film Foundation's education programs.

Please note that the Opening Night Event is not included in Single Tickets, Flex, Festival and VIP Passes.

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Tickets and Passes are on sale NOW!

Passes and tickets are available now for the 2016 Phoenix Film Festival! We have a great line up of films for you this year. Check out our SCHEDULE! The schedule is arranged by venue and gives you a great visual of when everything is happening.

And, of course, if you don't have your passes or tickets yet, CLICK HERE to purchase tickets.

Purchasing your passes online through Brown Paper Tickets will allow you to choose what films you would like to see right on the web. Then when you come to the Phoenix Film Festival Ticket office, you can get your passes and tickets all at once! It couldn't be easier.

We are also available to help you purchase tickets at the Festival office by calling 480-513-3195.

See you at the Festival!


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