The full lineup for the SIFF 2015 Catalyst Program has been revealed, which includes six American films (all World Premieres and all included in SIFF’s New American Cinema competition), plus a number of panels and workshops all taking place over the course of one trailblazing weekend (May 28-31) during the 2015 Seattle International Film Festival.
Now in its fourth year, the SIFF Catalyst program presents some of the most unique narrative feature films produced by American filmmakers. Pushing beyond typical indie fare, SIFF Catalyst has a mandate to take curatorial risks and make adventurous programming choices. And this year may just be its most adventurous yet.
In addition to the six films (CHATTY CATTIES, CIRCLE, FOURTH MAN OUT, FRONT COVER, HAPPY 40th, and A RISING TIDE – the latter produced by two filmmakers who met during SIFF Catalyst weekend three years ago!), the 2015 Catalyst program boasts two full days of panels covering everything from production, distribution, and workflow, to current trends in Indigenous Cinema. This year’s Catalyst “State of the Indie Industry” will be delivered by IFP’s Deputy Director and Head of Programming, Amy Dotson.
Brad Wilke, the SIFF programmer who spearheads the Catalyst program, says: “Four years in and I feel like this is our strongest overall program yet. Six world premieres, four first-time feature film directors, and a weekend full of panels and workshops aimed at sharing the latest best practices, all while forging new connections among attendees, participants, and audience members, alike.”
Not only are all six of this year’s Catalyst films world premieres, but four of them are also from directors making their feature film debuts, offering audiences a front row seat to the next wave of U.S. film directors. With a growing network of Catalyst alums with films playing on screens of all sizes across the country, the Catalyst program is fast becoming a launchpad for U.S. indie film.
View SIFF screening times, venues, and ticketing information here.
The full 2015 SIFF Catalyst film lineup is as follows:
Meet sassy tabby Leonard and his emotional wreck of an owner, Shelby, in a world where domesticated cats are able to communicate with people and pass judgment on their all-too-human foibles. Hard-of-hearing actors provide the feline voices in this hilarious black comedy.
Director: Pablo Valencia
Cast: Megan Hensley, Matthew Grathwol, John Autry II, Julia Holter, Jennie Taylor, Russ Tamblyn
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 85 min
Could you trust a jury of your peers with your life? 50 strangers in a mysterious death chamber must make harrowing decisions as they strategize for survival in this psychological sci-fi thriller.
Directors: Aaron Hann, Mario Miscione
Cast: Julie Benz, Mercy Malick, Carter Jenkins, Lisa Pelikan, Cesar Garcia
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 87 min
FOURTH MAN OUT
On his 24th birthday, Adam, a small-town mechanic, decides it’s time to finally tell his friends and family that he’s gay. Will his straight-as-an-arrow best bros have his back? A lighthearted and unexpectedly subversive comedy about coming out of the blue-collar closet.
Director: Andrew Nackman
Cast: Evan Todd, Parker Young, Chord Overstreet, Jon Gabrus, Kate Flannery
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 95 min
A mature, nuanced drama, set in the high fashion world of New York, that explores the relationship between two Asian men as they battle the cultural norms and traditions that keep them from living an honest, authentic life, together or apart.
Director: Ray Yeung
Cast: Jake Choi, James Chen
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 86 min
A middle-aged woman, wheelchair-bound for the last two years, invites her three best friends over for a long, emotionally fraught birthday weekend in this drama about marriage, friendship, betrayal, and, ultimately, survival.
Director: Madoka Raine
Cast: Yvonne Woods, Brian Slaten, Madoka Raine, Jenni Blong, Robyn Cohen,
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 100 min
A RISING TIDE
After Hurricane Sandy destroys his family’s Atlantic City restaurant, young chef Sam Rama must start from scratch, forging new relationships that instill in him a hope for the future.
Director: Ben Hickernell
Cast: Hunter Parrish, Ashley Hinshaw, Tim Daly, Victor Slezak, Jonathan Togo
World Premiere | USA | 2015 | TRT: 98 min