2019 Montclair Film Festival Announces Complete Lineup with Super Secret Screening Clues


The Montclair Film Festival announced their lineup that includes films and events with stars like Ben Stiller, Mindy Kaling, Lily Collins, Olympia Dukakis, Dome Karukoski, and Ben Stiller.  Also proud to announce that your AwardsCircuit founder and editor Clayton Davis, will be serving on the jury for the New Jersey films competition.

Read the Press Release:

April 5, 2019, MONTCLAIR, NJ – Today, Montclair Film announced the full program for the 8th annual Montclair Film Festival (MFF), presented by Investors Bank, taking place May 3-12, 2019, in Montclair, NJ and featuring over 150 films, events, discussions, and parties.

This year’s Storyteller Series, presented by Audible, features conversations with the leading voices in film and includes A Conversation with Mindy Kaling, moderated by Stephen Colbert, taking place Saturday May 4; A Conversation with Ben Stiller, moderated by Stephen Colbert, taking place Sunday, May 5; the legendary Olympia Dukakis returns to Montclair for an extended Q&A following the May 5 screening of Harry Mavromichalis’ OLYMPIA; Stephen Colbert will moderate an extended Conversation with Lily Collins, Nicholas Hoult, and Dome Karukoski  following the festival’s screening of TOLKIEN, which will be streamed into cinemas around the country courtesy of Fox Searchlight and Fathom Events; and Erin Lee Carr will feature in ALL THAT YOU LEAVE BEHIND: A Conversation with Erin Lee Carr on Saturday, May 11 (admission for this event includes a copy of Carr’s new memoir ALL THAT YOU LEAVE BEHIND, which the author will sign following the conversation). Audible, the world’s largest producer and provider of audiobooks and other spoken-word entertainment, collaborating with the Montclair Film Festival, will also launch the new Audible Storyteller Award, given to a screenwriter chosen by Audible from the 2019 Montclair Film Festival program. The winning writer will be given the opportunity for a first-look deal with Audible to create a new, original audio program for the Audible platform.

The festival’s fiction film highlights include Michael Tyburski’s THE SOUND OF SILENCE starring Peter Sarsgaard and Rashida Jones, Noble Jones’ THE TOMORROW MAN starring John Lithgow and Blythe Danner, Mary Harron’s CHARLIE SAYS with Harron attending on May 4, and Alex Thompson’s SXSW Audience Award winner SAINT FRANCES, and Guy Nattiv’s SKIN starring Jamie Bell, Danielle Macdonald, and Vera Farmiga and adapted from Nattiv’s 2019 Oscar® winning short film of the same name. The festival will also feature two classic films, including the World Premiere of the restored THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, directed by George Stevens and restored by Twentieth Century Fox and The Film Foundation. The Montclair Film Festival will also celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the founding of United Artists by presenting a special screening of Brian De Palma’s horror masterpiece CARRIE on Saturday, May 11.

For the first time, the festival will present a Super Secret Surprise Screening on Sunday, May 5, at 8:30 PM at the Montclair Kimberley Academy Upper School. A clue as to which film is playing can be found at montclairfilm.org/events/super-secret-surprise-screening

Documentary highlights this year include the return of Roger Ross Williams (LIFE, ANIMATED) to the festival with his new film THE APOLLO, screening Saturday, May 4, Don Argott and Sheena M. Joyce (BELIEVER) returning to the festival with their new film FRAMING JOHN DELOREAN (starring Alec Baldwin, portions of which were shot in Montclair), Montclair’s own Erin Lee Carr bringing her new true crime thriller I LOVE YOU, NOW DIE: THE COMMONWEALTH VS. MICHELLE CARTER to the festival, the World Premiere of Ken Spooner and Mike Mee’s LIFE WITH LAYLA, which examines the opioid epidemic through the experiences of a New Jersey family, and a special partnership between the festival and The United Tastes Of America, who will co-present a special screening of the award-winning MIDNIGHT TRAVELER on Wednesday, May 8, followed by a cocktail reception catered by local Syrian cooks, offering economic opportunity while building cultural and social connections in our community.

The festival’s family offerings are highlighted by the first Family Centerpiece film, Mark Deeble and Victoria Stone’s stunning THE ELEPHANT QUEEN, which is presented by The Nature Conservancy and which will also mark the festival’s first screening utilizing 4K. The festival’s rich strand of Educational offerings includes the annual EMERGING FILMMAKERS SHOWCASE, highlighting work by students in 6th through 12th grades; as well as our annual Spotlight Series screenings by public and private students in our community; our 2019 Junior Jury, featuring a selection of high school students adjudicating films in the program; the SHORTS FOR ALL AGES program; and more.

The festival will also feature a special performance by Montclair Improv Comedy, who will be presenting their longform improvisational piece THE MOVIE on Friday May 10. In this show, Montclair Improv Comedy will take suggestions from the audience to create their own “movie” live on stage, featuring ravishing special effects, inventive camera angles, real-time-direction, and everything you’d expect from a cinematic experience.

The festival also announced films in its Documentary, Fiction, Future/Now, and New Jersey Film competitions, to be awarded at a ceremony on May 11, as well as the complete lineup of feature and short films in the festival program.

As was previously announced, the festival will open on Friday, May 3, with a screening of Tom Harper’s WILD ROSE, with star Jessie Buckley attending for a post-screening Q&A. On Saturday, May 11, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’ TONI MORRISON: THE PIECES I AM will screen as the festival’s Closing Film, with the director in attendance for a post-screening Q&A. Nisha Ganatra’s LATE NIGHT will serve as the Fiction Centerpiece, with Mindy Kaling attending a post-screening Q&A moderated by Stephen Colbert on Saturday, May 4, and the Documentary Centerpiece will be MILES DAVIS: BIRTH OF THE COOL on May 10, with director Stanley Nelson attending for a Q&A. Lily Collins, Nicholas Hoult, and director Dome Karukoski will attend a special screening of TOLKIEN. Finally, the festival will partner with Outpost In The Burbs for a special screening and Q&A with legendary guitarist Richard Thompson prior to his Outpost performance on Saturday, May 11.

“This year’s festival program reflects a wide range of concerns and points of view that speak to the current state of our cinematic world,” said Montclair Film Executive Director Tom Hall. “Film is a global community, held together by our collective passion for the power of cinema. We look forward to our artists and audiences coming together to share that passion at the festival.”



The Documentary Feature Competition features cinematic non-fiction films that examine the diverse possibilities of the form. The winning film in this category will be awarded the 4th Annual Bruce Sinofsky Prize for Non-Fiction Filmmaking.

  • AMERICAN FACTORY, directed by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert
  • HONEYLAND, directed by Tamara Kovetska and Ljubomir Stefanov
  • THE HOTTEST AUGUST, directed by Brett Story
  • MIDNIGHT FAMILY, directed by Luke Lorentzen
  • PAHOKEE, directed by Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan

2019 Documentary Jury: Sam Bisbee, Producer, Zach Scharf, Indiewire, Nick McCarthy, Newfest


The Fiction Feature Competition highlights the MFF’s most ambitious, auteur-driven fiction films.

  • DIVINE LOVE, directed by Gabriel Mascarano
  • A FAMILY SUBMERGED, directed by Maria Alche
  • MANTA RAY, directed by Phuttiphong Aroonpheng
  • MONOS, directed by Alejandro Landes
  • ONE MAN DIES A MILLION TIMES, directed by Jessica Oreck

2019 Fiction Jury: Milton Tabbot, Independent Filmmaker Project, Tomris Laffly, New York Film Critics Circle, Caroline Kaplan, Cinereach


The Future/Now Competition celebrates American, low-budget independent filmmaking by first or second-time feature film directors who are creating innovative, challenging films. Presented by The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey.

  • JULES OF LIGHT AND DARK, directed by Daniel Laabs
  • LIGHT FROM LIGHT, directed by Paul Harrill
  • MICKEY AND THE BEAR, directed by Annabelle Attanasio
  • PREMATURE, directed by Rashaad Ernesto Green
  • THE WORLD IS FULL OF SECRETS, directed by Graham Swon

2019 Future Now Jury: Matt Cowal, Netflix, David Sims, The Atlantic, Lauren Sanchez, Vogue


The New Jersey Films competition this year focuses on non-fiction films directed, produced by, or featuring New Jersey talent.

  • FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO, directed by Daniel Karslake
  • THE INFILTRATORS, directed by Cristina Ibarra and Alex Rivera
  • LIFE WITH LAYLA, directed by Ken Spooner and Mike Mee
  • MOSSVILLE: WHEN THE GREAT TREES FALL, directed by Alexander Glustrom
  • WHAT SHE SAID: THE ART OF PAULINE KAEL, directed by Rob Garver

2019 New Jersey Films Jury: Leigh Blickley, Huffington Post, Clayton Davis, Awards Circuit, Rafer Guzman, Newsday

Competition winners, including the 5th Annual David Carr Award for Truth in Non-Fiction Filmmaking, and the 2019 Audible Storyteller Award, will be announced on Saturday, May 11. The festival’s Audience Awards, presented by Investors Bank, will be announced on Monday, May 13

Tickets for the Montclair Film Festival are available Monday, April 8, for Montclair Film members, with public sales beginning Friday, April 12. Tickets and memberships may be purchased online at montclairfilm.org or by visiting the festival’s Box Office, located inside the lobby of the Investors Bank Film & Media Center at 505 Bloomfield Avenue in downtown Montclair.


Montclair Film is a non-profit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization that engages, entertains, and educates through the power of visual storytelling. The eighth annual Montclair Film Festival will take place from May 3-12, 2019. Montclair Film’s year-round and festival programming is made possible through generous support from Investors Bank; Audible; Hackensack Meridian Health, Mountainside Medical Center; the Horizon Foundation for New Jersey; The Bravitas Group; Ashenfelter, Slous, Trembulak, McDonough, Golia & Trevenen, LLP; Chubb; Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage; William H. Connolly & Co.; The Nature Conservancy, and RBC Wealth Management. Our programs are made possible by funds from the New Jersey Department of State, Division of Travel and Tourism, as well as the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support is provided by Partners for Health Foundation; Kore Private Wealth; Saxum Real Estate; Bridge Furniture and Props; Events by Joni; Gelotti; Ironbound Hard Cider; Java Love; Little Daisy Bake Shop; New Jersey Beer Co.; Opici Wines; Shine Global; Simple DCP; and Wine Guys. For more information about Montclair Film, visit www.montclairfilm.org


Investors Bank, headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, is a full-service community bank that has been serving customers since 1926. With over $25 billion in assets and a network of more than 145 retail branches, Investors Bank delivers personalized services and products tailored to the needs of its customers. Investors Bank’s banking services include complete deposit, loan and cash management products for consumers and businesses.


Audible, Inc., an Amazon.com, Inc. subsidiary (NASDAQ:AMZN), is the leading provider of premium digital spoken audio content, offering customers a new way to enhance and enrich their lives every day. Audible content includes more than 475,000 audio programs from leading audiobook publishers, broadcasters, entertainers, magazine and newspaper publishers, and business information providers.