The upcoming festival was curated by the PROXY team and filmmaker Malcolm Pullinger. Many may recognize his work from Following Sean (filmed in the Upper Haight in the 1960s) and the documentary Winnebago Man. In a press release from PROXY, the list of selected films is described as "recently released, best-of-show selections from festivals like SXSW and Sundance, focusing on independent and emerging voices in film—a lineup more likely to be found in art houses than outdoors for all to discover."
Douglas Burnham of architecture firm envelopeA+D, which is behind the interim-use activation of the Hayes & Octavia space, told us that the idea of creating an outdoor movie theater was first thought up in 2010, when a proposal for the plan was submitted to the Mayor's office. "Outdoor movies were something we thought was really great about San Francisco," he said. "They bring people together. With movies it's dark, people are quiet, there's a little bit of an intimacy."
The festival takes place despite a failed Kickstarter campaign which sought to raise funds for the temporary movie theater. Contributors donated $81,049 to the campaign, but it fell short of its $150,000 goal.
In response, PROXY launched HERE FOR NOW, a nonprofit where people could transfer their Kickstarter commitments in the hopes of raising the remaining funds for the project, without a crowdfunding timeline.
According to Burnham, about 60 percent of the Kickstarter funders transferred their donations to HERE FOR NOW, though the project is still fundraising. PROXY is in negotiations for a used projector, and is currently renting audio equipment for the festival. The screen is being completed this week. " It's going to be scrappy," said Burnham, "but it's going to be great."
All festival screenings are free, and will take place on Friday nights at 7pm. You won't be allowed to bring your own alcohol, but organizers plan to offer food and beer for sale, with proceeds to support ongoing film programming.
People are encouraged to bring their own picnics, blankets and low-backed chairs, and chairs, blankets and patches of synthetic grass will also be available for sale for viewers' comfort, with all proceeds going back to the festival. (Donations to the festival can also be made here.)
The schedule is as follows:
Me And Earl And The Dying Girl (directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rajon)
Description: Greg is trying to coast anonymously through the his senior year of high school, avoiding deeper relationships while spending most of his time making parodies of classic movies with his only friend Earl. When Greg’s mom insists he spend time with Rachel–a classmate who has just been diagnosed with leukemia—his slowly discovers the rewards and risks of true friendship.
Wild Tales / Relatos Salvajes (directed by Damián Szifron)
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (Directed by David Zellner)
Kumiko lives in a cluttered, cramped Tokyo apartment with her pet rabbit Bunzo, and works a tedious job for a nitpicky boss. When she discovers a battered VHS cassette of “Fargo," she becomes convinced that the movie’s buried suitcase of cash is real, and heads off into the harsh Minnesota winter in hopes of finding the treasure.
Turbo Kid (Directed by Anouk Whissell, François Simard, Yoann-Karl Whissell)
A special Halloween screening, this retro-futuristic nostalgic tribute to 80’s action-adventure films follows The Kid, a young solitary scavenger obsessed with comic books, traversing the post-apocalyptic wasteland on his BMX. After his his new friend, the perpetually upbeat Apple, is kidnapped by the evil overlord Zeus, the Kid dons the persona of his favorite hero to deliver justice and save the girl of his dreams.
Selected Shorts of Malcolm Pullinger
Description: An evening of short films curated by Emmy-nominated filmmaker Malcolm Pullinger. His works, which include Winnebago Man, Following Sean, The Love Competition, The Key of G and Refuge, have been released theatrically in the US and Canada and have played at film festivals around the globe.
The Wolfpack (directed by Crystal Moselle)
Description: The six Angulo brothers have spent their entire lives locked away from society in an apartment on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Nicknamed "The Wolfpack," they only know the outside world through the films they watch obsessively and recreate meticulously. After one of the brothers escapes the apartment, the others soon want to follow, leading to a chance encounter with first-time film director Crystal Moselle.
The Fall Film Festival will be the first in a regular series of screenings, with PROXY open to collaborations as well—potentially with the Exploratorium, SFJazz, San Francisco Ballet, and/or the Silent Film Festival. Stay tuned for more news about PROXY's future film events, and in the meantime, mark your calendars for the upcoming Friday night screenings.