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Tribeca Film Festival Lineup to Feature Paul Rudd, Kristen Stewart – and Yep, James Franco Too

The 55 films announced on Wednesday will make up a little more than half the festival’s program

The 2016 Tribeca Film Festival will include documentaries about abortion, refugees and edible insects, dramas starring Kristen Stewart and Tom Hiddleston, comedies with Kevin Kline, Paul Rudd and Patton Oswalt and an anthology film about love with segments directed by Gael Garcia Bernal and Mia Wasikowska.

And yes, it also includes a film featuring James Franco, just as every other film festival anywhere does these days.

TFF announced 55 titles on Wednesday. They make up slightly more than half the films that will be shown at the festival, which kicks off on Wednesday, April 13, with the world premiere of the documentary “First Monday in May.”

The U.S. Narrative Competition consists of 10 films, most of them by first-time directors. The directors include comedian and actor Demetri Martin, whose comedy “Dean” stars himself, Gillian Jacobs and Kevin Kline; Robert Schwartzman, whose comedy “Dreamland” stars Johnny Simmons, Amy Landecker, Frankie Shaw and Schwartzman’s mother, Talia Shire, and brother, Jason Schwartzman; and Jeff Grace, whose “Folk Hero & Funny Guy” is a road comedy starring Alex Karpovsky and Wyatt Russell.

The competition section will open with Justin Tipping’s “Kicks,” a hip-hop-inflected story about three teenagers in the San Francisco Bay Area looking for stolen sneakers.

Also included: “The Fixer,” Ian Olds’ film starring Dominic Rains as an Afghan journalist and the ubiquitous Franco as an eccentric Northern Californian.

The international narrative competition, which is taking place at Tribeca for the first time, will open with “Madly,” an anthology film about love featuring segments directed by Gael Garcia Bernal and Mia Wasikowska, as well as Sebastian Silva, Sion Sono, Anurag Kashyap and Natasha Khan.

Other films in the eight-movie section include “El Clásico,” about a young couple traveling from Iraq to Spain in an attempt to meet soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo; and “Junction 48,” a drama set amidst the Israeli-Palestinian conflict directed by Udi Aloni and written by Oren Moverman, the writer and director of “The Messenger,” and writer of “Love & Mercy.”

The World Documentary Competition will consist of 12 films from five countries, opening with “Contemporary Color,” a film about David Byrne’s 2015 Brooklyn event in celebration of the music and art of the color guard, directed by Bill Ross and Turner Ross.

The subjects of other docs include a hedge fund titan’s war against Herbalife (“Betting on Zero,” by Ted Braun), edible insects (“BUGS,” by Andreas Johnson), the militarization of police forces (“Do Not Resist,” by Craig Atkinson), a convict readjusting to the outside world after having his life sentence overturned (“The Return,” by Kelly Duane de la Vega and Katie Galloway) and the fight against sex offenders in Florida (“Untouchable,” by David Feige).

TFF describes the Viewpoints section as “Tribeca’s home for films with bold directorial visions, and … underrepresented perspectives, styles, and characters.” It consists of 25 films, 14 narratives and 11 documentaries.

Those films include the opening night attraction, “Nerdland,” a comedy starring Paul Rudd and Patton Oswalt as two men who decide to become famous overnight; “Actor Martinez,” a film by Nathan Silver and Mike Ott about an aspiring actor who hires the directors to film his life; “Adult Life Skills,” a comedy with Jodie Whittaker; “Detour,” with Tye Sheridan as a student who wakes from a night of drinking thinking he may have hired a hitman; Drake Doremus‘ “Equals,” with Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult; and Ben Wheatley’s “High-Rise,” with Tom Hiddleston, Luke Evans and Sienna Miller.

Documentaries in the section include Tracy Droz Tragos’ “Abortion: Stories Women Tell”; Ellen Martinez and Steph Ching’s “After Spring,” a doc about Syrian refugees executive produced by Jon Stewart; Stephanie Gillard’s “The Ride,” about an annual 300-mile horseback ride undertaken by young men and women of the Lakota Sioux tribe; Kristi Jacobson’s “SOLITARY,” a look inside solitary confinement in a supermax prison; and Deborah S. Esquenazi’s “Southwest of Salem: The Story of the San Antonio Four,” a true-crime story about a highly publicized assault in 1994.

Tribeca will announce selections in the Spotlight, Midnight and Special Sections on March 8. The festival will take place from April 13 through April 24 in lower Manhattan.

The lineup:

US Narrative Competition

“Kicks,” directed by Justin Tipping, written by Justin Tipping and Josh Beirne-Golden. (USA) With Jahking Guillory, Mahershala Ali, Kofi Siriboe, Christopher Jordan Wallace and Christopher Meyer.

“Always Shine,” directed by Sophia Takal, written by Lawrence Michael Levine. (USA) – World Premiere. With Lawrence Michael Levine, Alex Koch and Jane Adams.

“AWOL,” directed by Deb Shoval, written by Deb Shoval and Karolina Waclawiak. (USA) – World Premiere. With Lola Kirke and Breeda Wool.

“Dean,” directed and written by Demetri Martin. (USA) – World Premiere. With Demetri Martin, Gillian Jacobs, Kevin Kline, Rory Scovel, Ginger Gonzaga, Reid Scott, Mary Steenburgen, Christine Woods, Beck Bennett and Briga Heelan.

“Dreamland,” directed by Robert Schwartzman, written by Benjamin Font and Robert Schwartzman. (USA) – World Premiere. With Johnny Simmons, Amy Landecker, Frankie Shaw, Alan Ruck, Beverly D’Angelo, Jason Schwartzman and Talia Shire.

“The Fixer,” directed by Ian Olds, written by Paul Felten and Ian Olds. (USA) – World Premiere. With Dominic Rains, James Franco, Melissa Leo, Rachel Brosnahan, Tim Kniffin and Thomas Jay Ryan.

“Folk Hero & Funny Guy,” directed and written by Jeff Grace. (USA) – World Premiere. With Alex Karpovsky, Wyatt Russell, Meredith Hagner, Michael Ian Black, Hannah Simone, Heather Morris, Melanie Lynskey and David Cross.

“Live Cargo,” directed by Logan Sandler, written by Logan Sandler and Thymaya Payne. (USA, Bahamas) – World Premiere. With Dree Hemingway, Keith Stanfield, Leonard Earl Howze, Sam Dillon, Robert Wisdom.

“The Ticket,” directed by Ido Fluk, written by Ido Fluk and Sharon Mashishi. (USA) – World Premiere. With Dan Stevens, Malin ?…kerman, Oliver Platt, and Kerry Bishé.

“Women Who Kill,” directed and written by Ingrid Jungermann. (USA) – World Premiere. With Ingrid Jungermann, Ann Carr, Sheila Vand, Shannon O’Neill, Annette O’Toole, Grace Rex.

International Narrative Competition

“El Clásico,” directed by Halkawt Mustafa, written by Anders Fagerholt and Halkawt Mustafa. (Norway, Iraqi Kurdistan Region) – North American Premiere. With Wrya Ahmed, Dana Ahmed, Rozhin Sharifi, Kamaran Raoof, Nyan Aziz.

“Icaros: A Vision,” directed by Leonor Caraballo and Matteo Norzi, written by Leonor Caraballo, Matteo Norzi, and Abou Farman. (Peru, USA) – World Premiere. With Ana Cecilia Stieglitz, Arturo Izquierdo, Filippo Timi.

“Junction 48,” directed by Udi Aloni, written by Oren Moverman and Tamer Nafar. (Israel, Germany, USA) – International Premiere. With Tamer Nafar, Samar Qupty, Salwa Nakkara, Ayed Fadel, Sameh “SAZ” Zakout, Saeed Dassuki.

“Mother” (“Ema”), directed by Kadri Kousaar, written by Leana Jalukse and Al Wallcat. (Estonia) – International Premiere. With Tiina Mälberg, Jaan Pehk, Andres Tabun, Andres Noormets, Rea Lest, Jaak Prints, Siim Maaten.

“Parents” (“Forældre”), directed and written by Christian Tafdrup. (Denmark) – World Premiere. With Søren Malling, Bodil Jørgensen, Elliott Crosset Hove, Miri-Ann Beuschel, Anton Honik.

“Perfect Strangers” (“Perfetti sconosciuti”), directed by Paolo Genovese, written by Filippo Bologna, Paolo Costella, Paolo Genovese, Paola Mammini, and Rolando Ravello. (Italy) – International Premiere. With Marco Giallini, Kasia Smutniak, Valerio Mastandrea, Anna Foglietta, Edoardo Leo, Alba Rohrwacher, Giuseppe Battiston.

“The Tenth Man” (“El Rey Del Once”), directed and written by Daniel Burman. (Argentina) – North American Premiere. With Alan Sabbagh, Julieta Zylberberg, Usher, Elvira Onetto, Adrian Stoppelman, Elisa Carricajo.

World Documentary Competition

“Contemporary Color,” directed by Bill Ross and Turner Ross. (USA) – World Premiere.

“All This Panic,” directed by Jenny Gage. (USA) – World Premiere.

“Betting on Zero,” directed and written by Ted Braun. (USA) – World Premiere.

“BUGS,” directed and written by Andreas Johnsen. (Denmark) – World Premiere.

“Do Not Resist,” directed by Craig Atkinson. (USA) – World Premiere.

“The Happy Film: a GRAPHIC Design Experiment,” directed by Stefan Sagmeister, Ben Nabors, and Hillman Curtis. (USA) – World Premiere.

“Keep Quiet,” directed by Joseph Martin and Sam Blair. (U.K., Hungary) – World Premiere.

“LoveTrue,” directed by Alma Har’el. (USA) – World Premiere.

“Memories of a Penitent Heart,” directed by Cecilia Aldarondo. (USA, Puerto Rico) – World Premiere.

“The Return,” directed by Kelly Duane de la Vega and Katie Galloway, written by Kelly Duane de la Vega, Katie Galloway, and Greg O’Toole. (USA) – World Premiere.

“Tickling Giants,” directed and written by Sara Taksler. (USA) – World Premiere.

“Untouchable,” directed by David Feige. (USA) – World Premiere.


“Nerdland,” directed by Chris Prynoski, written by Andy Kevin Walker. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Paul Rudd, Patton Oswalt, Hannibal Buress, Laraine Newman, Mike Judge, Kate Micucci & Riki Lindhome, and Molly Shannon.

“Abortion: Stories Women Tell,” directed by Tracy Droz Tragos. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“Actor Martinez,” directed and written by Nathan Silver and Mike Ott. (USA) – North American Premiere, Narrative. With Arthur Martinez and Lindsay Burdge.

“Adult Life Skills,” directed and written by Rachel Tunnard. (U.K.) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Jodie Whittaker, Brett Goldstein, Lorraine Ashbourne, Alice Lowe, Edward Hogg, Eileen Davies, Rachael Deering, Ozzy Myers.

“After Spring,” directed by Ellen Martinez and Steph Ching. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“As I Open My Eyes” (“À peine j’ouvre les yeux”), directed by Leyla Bouzid, written by Leyla Bouzid and Marie-Sophie Chambon. (France, Tunisia, Belgium, United Arab Emirates) – U.S. Premiere, Narrative. With Baya Medhaffer, Ghalia Benali, Montassar Ayari, Aymen Omrani, Lassaad Jamoussi, Deena Abdelwahed, Youssef Soltana, Marwen Soltana. In Arabic with subtitles. Presented in association with Venice Days.

“Between Us,” directed and written by Rafael Palacio Illingworth. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Ben Feldman, Olivia Thirlby, Analeigh Tipton, Adam Goldberg, Scott Haze, Peter Bogdanovich, Lesley Ann Warren.

“Califórnia,” directed by Marina Person, written by Marina Person, Mariana Veríssimo, and Francisco Guarnieri. (Brazil) – North American Premiere, With Clara Gallo, Caio Blat, and Caio Horowicz. In Portuguese with subtitles.

“The Charro of Toluquilla” (“El Charro De Toluquilla”), directed and written by Jose Villalobos Romero. (Mexico) – International Premiere, Documentary.

“Children of the Mountain,” directed and written by Priscilla Anany. (USA, Ghana) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Rukiyat Masud, Grace Omaboe, Akofa Edjeani, Adjetey Annang, Agbeko Mortty (Bex), Dzifa Glikpo, Mynna Otoo. In Twi with subtitles.

“Detour,” directed and written by Christopher Smith. (U.K.) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Tye Sheridan, Emory Cohen, Bel Powley, Stephen Moyer and Theo James.

“Equals,” directed by Drake Doremus, written by Nathan Parker. (USA) – US Premiere, Narrative. With Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult.

“14 Minutes from Earth,” directed and written by Jerry Kolber, Adam “Tex” Davis, Trey Nelson, and Erich Sturm. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“haveababy,” directed by Amanda Micheli. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“High-Rise,” directed by Ben Wheatley, written by Amy Jump and Ben Wheatley. (U.K.) – New York Premiere, Narrative. With Tom Hiddleston, Luke Evans, Sienna Miller, Jeremy Irons, and Elisabeth Moss.

“Houston, We Have a Problem!,” directed by Žiga Virc, written by Žiga Virc and Boštjan Virc. (Slovenia, Croatia, Germany, Czech Republic, Qatar) – World Premiere.

“The Human Thing” (“La Cosa Humana”), directed by Gerardo Chijona, written by Francisco García and Gerardo Chijona. (Cuba) – International Premiere, Narrative. With Héctor Medina, Enrique Molina, Carlos Enrique Almirante, Vladimir Cruz, Miriel Cejas, Amarilis Núñez, Osvaldo Doimeadiós, Mario Guerra, Alejandro Rivera.

“Keepers of the Game,” directed by Judd Ehrlich. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“The Loner,” directed and written by Daniel Grove. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Reza Sixo Safai, Helena Mattsson, Parviz Sayyad, Julian Sands, Laura Harring, Dominic Rains.

“Night School,” directed and written by Andrew Cohn. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“Obit,” directed by Vanessa Gould. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“Poor Boy,” directed by Robert Scott Wildes, written by Robert Scott Wildes and Logan Antill. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. With Lou Taylor Pucci, Michael Shannon, Justin Chatwin, and Amanda Crew.

“The Ride,” directed and written by Stéphanie Gillard. (France) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“SOLITARY,” directed by Kristi Jacobson. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.

“Southwest of Salem: The Story of the San Antonio Four,” directed by Deborah S. Esquenazi. (USA) – World Premiere, Documentary.