Gasparilla Film Festival 2014 Lineup Announced

The Gasparilla Film Festival has just announced its 2014 lineup, and here at CraveOnline we’re especially interested since our own Film Channel editor and head film critic William “Bibbs” Bibbiani is going to be one of this year’s jurors. You know his writing, you know his dumb sense of humor, you know his tendency to be more than a little critical, so who knows how he’s going to respond to the following slate of films, which star such familiar names and faces as Jake Gyllenhaal, Brittany Snow, Rumer Willis, Sean Astin, Sara Paxton, Gaby Hoffman, David Cross, Melanie Lynsky, Mercedes Ruehl, Judd Hirsch and David Morse. 

The Gasparilla Film Festival runs from March 19-23, 2014 in Tampa Bay, FL. Visit the official website for more information and to buy tickets.

Opening Night Film

“There’s Always Woodstock” – World Premiere

Directed by Rita Merson

Cast: Brittany Snow, Katey Sagal, Ryan Guzman, Allison Miller, Jason Ritter, Anna Anissimova, Rumer Willis, James Wolk

When neurotic, struggling songwriter, Catherine Brown’s life in New York City falls apart, she is forced to confront her past when she spends the summer at her childhood home in Woodstock, New York, learning that becoming successful means becoming your true self first.

Centerpiece Films

“The Boys of Abu Ghraib” – World Premiere

Directed by Luke Moran

Cast: Luke Moran, Sean Astin, Sara Paxton, Michael Welch

An American soldier deployed at Abu Ghraib finds himself behind the walls of the infamous Hard Site, where he develops a secret friendship with an Iraqi detainee.


“Enemy” – Florida Premiere

Directed by Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners)

Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal and Melanie Laurent.  

World Premiered at Toronto 2013

Adam Bell is a glum, disheveled history professor, who seems disinterested even in sex with his beautiful girlfriend, Mary. Watching a movie on the recommendation of a colleague, Adam spots his double, an actor named Anthony Clair, in a bit role, and decides to track him down — an adventure he quite relishes. The identical men meet, and their lives become bizarrely and irrevocably intertwined.


“Obvious Child” – Florida Premiere

Directed by Gillian Robespierre

Cast: Jenny Slate, Gaby Hoffmann, David Cross, Richard Kind

World Premiere at Sundance 2014

An honest comedy about what happens when Brooklyn comedian Donna Stern gets dumped, fired and pregnant just in time for the worst/best Valentine’s Day of her life.


“Hank and Asha” – Tampa Premiere

Directed by James E. Duff

Audience Award Slamdance 2013

Cast: Mahira Kakkar, Andrew Pastides

An Indian student in Prague and a lonely New Yorker correspond online through video letters.


Closing Night Film

“Chu and Blossom” – Florida Premiere, Filmed throughout Tampa, Pinellas, Lakeland, Plant City, and Ocala over 18 days in summer of 2012

Directed by Gavin Kelly and Charles Chu

Cast: Charles Chu, Ryan O’Nan, Annie Potts, Caitlin Stasey, Alan Cumming, Melanie Lynskey, Richard Kind and Mercedes Ruehl

World Premiered at Santa Barbara International Film Festival in 2014  

A coming of age comedy centers on an unlikely brotherhood between a pensive, awkwardly tall Korean foreign exchange student and a militant performance artist, both trapped together in a small town.


Side Bars

Cuisine Short Films at the Tampa Museum of Art – Celebrates the culinary delights of cinema and highlights sustainable practices of today’s farmers, chefs and entrepreneurs.

Women Filmmakers – Panels featuring women in the entertainment industry and a selection of films that spotlight film through the heart and eyes of the female filmmaker.

Cuba – Selection of documentaries and a feature film that explore the vibrant film culture and beautiful landscape of Cuba.

Family Programming – A slate of family films offered to the community presented by GIFF’s programming team.

Focus on Florida – A Spotlight on Florida filmmakers and documentaries that highlight the artist that call the Sunshine State home.

Local Shorts – Block of films that highlight the emerging and talented artists that reside or are from the Florida and the Bay area.


The Educational Panels

The GIFF brings some of the most creative filmmaking minds to the Tampa community for smart, insightful and informative discussions. 

“Filmmakers Roundtable” – Meet the filmmakers making headlines at GIFF as they take you through their filmmaking journey from the concept to the screen.

“Women in the Biz” – focused on some of the most creative and women in the film industry

“Behind the Scenes: Realities of the Casting Process” – Sheds light on exactly how casting directors operate, and reveals the most effective techniques actors use to stand out from the crowd and get noticed.

“Actors on Acting” – Festival talent guests discuss their craft.

“Movers and Shakers” – Producers, Talent Managers and Distributors discuss the art of packaging a film for distribution success. 

Sam Maydew: Talent Manager Workshop and Discussion (CineBistro, Hyde Park)

Meet the Press: Lauren Wissot (Filmmaker Magazine) and Nancy Vaughn (GIFF Publicist) host discussion with several media and filmmakers. (Filmmaker Lounge)

Panels take place at Hillsborough Community College Ybor Campus Ybor Room unless otherwise noted.  Panelists will be announced soon.


Narrative Competition Films

“House of Last Things” – US Premiere

Directed by Michael Bartlett

Cast: Lindsey Haun, Blake Berris, RJ Mitte

A mind-bending thriller set in Portland, Oregon about an unspoken tragedy and its effects on a house, its temporary caretakers and the owners, a classical music critic and his wife on a recuperative trip to Italy.


“The Red Robin” – FL Premiere

Directed by Michael Z. Wechsler

Cast: Judd Hirsch, Ryan O’Nan, C.S. Lee, Jaime Ray Newman, Caroline Lagerfelt

A family reunion goes awry when the oldest son makes the accusation that his dying father, a famed psychiatrist who also did work for the CIA, adopted his children for the purposes of psychological experimentation.


“Copenhagen” – FL Premiere (Slamdance 2014 Audience Award Winner)

Directed by Mark Raso

Cast: Gethin Anthony, Frederikke Dahl Hansen, Olivia Grant

When the girl of your dreams is half your age, it’s time to grow up.


“In Lieu of Flowers” – FL Premiere

Directed by William Savage

Cast: Josh Pence, Spencer Grammer, Nate Corddry, Melissa Rauch

Most love stories are about losing love or finding it. This is a story about what happens in between.


“Winter in the Blood”

Directed by Alex Smith and Andrew J. Smith

Cast: Chaske Spencer, David Morse, Gary Farmer, Julia Jones

True to the tough, lyrical, magical spirit of James Welch’s classic novel of Native American life, this hauntingly beautiful movie follows a young Blackfoot Indian’s alcohol-fueled search for his wife, his rifle, his identity—and salvation.


“Teddy Bears” – FL Premiere

Directed by Thomas Beatty and Rebecca Fishman

Cast: Gillian Jacobs, Zachary Knighton, David Krumholtz, Melanie Lynskey, Ahna O’Reilly, Jason Ritter, Ned Beatty

Dark comedy about three couples who head to the desert to help their friend heal after the death of his mother. They would do anything for him – except for the one thing he wants.


“Odd Brodsky” – FL Premiere

Directed by Cindy Baer

Cast: Tegan Ashton Cohan, Matthew Kevin Anderson

Audrey Brodsky is a lovable loser who hates her job. After 11 years, she finally quits the office to pursue her childhood dream of becoming an actress. There’s just one problem – she’s not very good at it.


World Showcase Competition

“The Bloc” – Poland, FL Premiere

Directed by Max Sturgeon

In a totalitarian communist state, a private detective who works for vodka vouchers searches through a dark urban wasteland for missing children.


“Tu Seras un Homme” – France, FL Premiere

Directed by Benoit Cohen

A 20-year-old boy, on the verge of adulthood, encounters Leo, a lonely 10-year-old child.


“Puzzle” – Romania, US Premiere

Directed by Andrei Zinca

A repressed middle aged man realizes that his life had become one of misery and loneliness. After becoming friends with a blind writer he had to evict from his house, he finds the inspiration and courage he needs to break all the rules he had been forced to abide by and to reconnect with life’s joy and excitement.


“Melaza” – Cuba, Tampa Premiere

Directed by Carlos Lechuga

With the closure of the sugar mill, the little town of Molasses is devastated, lifeless. Aldo and Monica form a young married couple that do not find a way to survive. By supporting each other, they try to save their world without loosing their faith.


“Bella Vita” – Italy, FL Premiere

Directed by Jason Baffa

Can a region surrounded by land produce world-class surfing waves?


New Visions Competition

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“Misled” – World Premiere

Directed by Scott Baldyga

Two brothers from southwest Detroit struggle to improve their lives.


“The Cold and the Quiet” – World Premiere

Directed by Colleen Griffen

Isolated over the Christmas holiday by her own anxiety, a young college student finds herself responsible for a strangers troubled children as she struggles with the unsettling connection between her own unraveling mental stability and the cold, quiet dark of their broken home.


“The Black Tape” – World Premiere

Directed by Ramone Menon

An intruder breaks into the home of an unsuspecting family in order to make a home made murder film.


“River Guard” – World Premiere

Directed by Jim Klock

An edgy father-son crime story wrapped around a bizarre murder trial in the South.


“Sand Castles” – World Premiere

Directed by Clenet Verdi-Rose

In rural Indiana, Noah and his impoverished family wrestle with the mysterious return of his now mute sister, Lauren, who was kidnapped and held captive for over a decade.


Documentary Feature Competition

“The Human Experiment” – FL Premiere

Directed by Don Hardy Jr. and Dana Nachman, Narrated by Sean Penn

A documentary that explores chemicals found in everyday household products.


“The Tinaja Trail” – World Premiere

Directed by Bryce Newell

In the desolate borderlands between the United States and Mexico, hundreds of undocumented immigrants die every year while attempting to cross into the United States.


“The Longest Game” – FL Premiere

Directed by Camille Thoman

In the picturesque village of Dorset, Vermont, twelve men get together every day at 1 p.m. to play a game called paddle tennis.


“Antarctica: A Year on Ice” – Tampa Premiere

Directed by Anthony Powell

A visually stunning chronicle of what it is like to live in Antarctica for a full year, including winters isolated from the rest of the world, and enduring months of darkness in the coldest place on Earth.


“Machine Gun Preacher” – World Premiere

Directed by Kevin Evans

The Machine Gun Preacher Documentary tells the true story of Pennsylvanian (USA) biker Sam Childers. It follows the raw story of a man who overcame a life of drugs and violence to become a rebel of hope, waging a 13-year war to free enslaved children.


“Cyber Seniors” – World Premiere

Directed by Saffron Cassaday

Proving you’re never too old to learn something new, initially reluctant seniors discover the wonders of the world-wide-web with the help of their teenage mentors.


Focus on Florida

“Ride with Larry” – Tampa Premiere

Directed by Andrew Rubin, Ricardo Villarreal

“Ride with Larry” puts a human face on the day-to-day fight against Parkinson’s through the story of Larry Smith, a retired police captain, now beloved small-town baker.


“Before the Law was Equal: The Desegregation of the Hillsborough County Legal Community”

Directed by Stan Arthur

Veteran attorneys and judges tell their stories of what life was like for minorities in the legal community in the greater Tampa area in the 1960s.


“Lies I Told My Little Sister “– World Premiere

Directed by William J. Stribling

Cast: Lucy Walters, Donovan Patton

After the death of her oldest sister, a 30-year-old globetrotting nature photographer is guilted onto a family trip to Cape Cod – along with the younger sister she used to torment.


“Under the Hollywood Sign” – FL Premiere

Directed by Owen Williams

Cast: Jenette Goldstein, Sadie Katz, Owen Williams, Sherry Romito

A struggling actor whose dream is slowly slipping away, loses almost everything he has before attempting to rediscover his purpose in life.


Cuban Films

“Melaza” – Cuba, Tampa Premiere

Directed by Carlos Lechuga

With the closure of the sugar mill, the little town of Molasses is devastated, lifeless. Aldo and Monica form a young married couple that do not find a way to survive. By supporting each other, they try to save their world without loosing their faith.


“Detras del Muro”(Behind the Wall) – Cuba, FL Premiere

Directed by Rolando Almirante, Sebastian Milo’

The documentary features many artists and their work installed along Havana’s historic Malecón during the recent 11th Annual Havana Biennial


“Oshuns 11” – Cuba, Florida Premiere

Directed by Laurie Anne Schag

11 Cuban Americans return to Cuba and study the Yoruba religion in Cuba, a combination of Catholic and African beliefs.


“Pedro Pan” – USA, Tampa Premiere

Directed by Andrea Puente

Sent to Miami in 1962 to escape the Castro regime, young Elena and little brother Manuel are determined to stick together, no matter the odds.


Shorts Programs

Competition Films

“The Morning After”, USA

Directed by David Renaud


“Rosita Lopez for President”, USA

Directed by Rachel Goldberg


“Ma Foret”, Belgium

Directed by Sebastien Pins


“Sure Thing”, USA

Directed by Deborah Reinisch


“Portrait of Olivia”, USA

Directed by Elisa Victoria


“Gli Zii, United Kingdom/Italy

Directed by Gerard Monaco


“A Day in the Life of a Bathroom Mirror”, United Kingdom

Directed by Phil Hawkins


“In the Black”, USA

Directed by Vincent Talenti


“Small Fish, USA

Directed by Alesia Glidewell


“….And a Bag of Chips”, USA

Directed by Sabyn Mayfield


“Note”, USA

Directed by Vincent Sabella

Cast: August Roads


“Seasick Sailor”, USA

Directed by Torre Catalano

Cast Keir Gilchrist, Martha Macisaac, Martin Starr, Emily Osment


“God’s Got His Head in the Clouds”, Italy/Lithuania

Directed by Gianluca Sodaro


Screen Cuisine Shorts


“Sausage”, United Kingdom

Directed by Robert Grieves


“Baking Alaska”, USA

Directed by Kari Barber


“Silk Formaggio”, Italy/USA

Directed by Devyn Bisson, Katie Wise, Dan Duran


“Sriracha”, USA/Thailand

Directed by Griffin Hammond


“Vroom Vroom Yum Yum”, USA

Directed by Mana Handel


Florida Shorts


“The Beach House”, Palm Coast

Directed by Patrick Russell


“Welcome to the South”, Plant City

Directed by Charles Box


“Eye of the Storm”, Tampa

Directed by Domonic Smith


“Red Winter”, St. Petersburg

Directed by Ben Daniele


“Near”, Tampa

Directed by Skeek Allen


“Sisters” Bonds Destroyed by the Unimaginable, World Premiere

Directed by Sabyn Mayfield


College Showcase


“White”, University of Pittsburgh

Directed by Lucas Omar


“John Dablovski: Reality TV Star”, NYU

Directed by Gerard Zarra


“Sheltered Love”, University of Arizona

Directed by Alex Italics


“Valediction”, Full Sail University

Directed by Rodrigo Correia


“Zack”, University of Tampa

Directed by Alexa Speyer


“This Too Shall Pass”, FSU

Directed by Dylan Hendrickson


“Nice is Cool”, Ryerson University

Directed by Ben Petrie


“Tobacco Burn”, Columbia University

Directed by Justin Liberman


“The Bright Side, Chapman University

Directed by Sarah Thacker


“Into the Silent Sea”, Chapman University

Directed by Andrej Landin


“Aria”, FSU

Directed by Tavner Murphy


“Grounded”, Chapman University

Directed by Monica Stefanelli


“Eternal”, FSU

Directed by Armaan Uplekar


“Scapegoat”, FSU

Directed by Khadif Sanders


“Light me Up”, Chapman University

Directed by Ryan Walton, Derek Dolechek


“Been There Done That: The Linsey Alexander Story”, FSU

Directed by Taylor Kidd


High School Showcase


“Jete”, FL

Directed by Amber Van Schaaijk


“Zombie Crush-A Teenage Zomedy”, GA

Directed by Tendal Mann


“Bongo”, KY

Directed by Evan Sennett


“Awaken”, Canada

Directed by Adam Madrzyk


“Come al Solito, Italy

Directed by Rodolfo Lissia


“PenDemonium”, FL

Directed by Wesley Hayes


“Safe”, FL

Directed by Steven Lesser


“A Quest for Peace – Nonviolence Among Religions, CA

Directed by Matthew Evans


“Under Influence”, FL

Directed by Eric Moots


“Peppers”, VA

Directed by Cullen Burk


“RGB – Red Green Blue”, FL

Directed by Caitlyn Hall


“Depraved”, FL

Directed by Alec Montiel


Family Shorts


“The Magic Bracelet”, USA

Directed by Jon Poll


“Blue”, USA

Directed by Asia Lancaster, Katelyn Bianchini, Rena Cheng


“Grounded”, USA

Directed by Monica Stefanelli


“Green Acres”, USA

Directed by James Beck


“Light Me Up”, USA

Directed by Ryan Walton, Derek


“East of Kensington”, USA

Directed by Kellen Moore


“The Boy and the Deer”, USA

Directed by Dan Bakst



Directed by Samuel Albis


Shorts Preceding Features


“Untitled Zombie Documentary”, FL

Directed by Tony Ahedo


“Limbo Kings”, World Premiere

Directed by Eric Polins


“The Cure to Violence: The Prometheus Process”, FL

Directed Cesar Hernandez


“Folie a Deux”, World Premiere

Directed by Ernie Mosteller


“The Harlot”, World Premiere

Directed by Dolly Donshey


“The Last Orange Grove of Middle Florida”, Tampa

Directed by Carl Knickerbocker


“Dan Behind his Eyes”, Tampa

Directed by Sheri Kebbel


‘The Finest”, World Premiere

Directed by Tony Ahedo


“Noisy Silence”, Tampa

Directed by Daniel Mall