DOC NYC Announces Closing Night Gala, Doc-A-Thon, New Staff & Returning Sponsors

August 02, 2012

The Central Park Five, the new documentary by Ken Burns, Sarah Burns and David McMahon about the five innocent teenagers wrongfully imprisoned for the infamous “Central Park jogger” rape case, will make its New York premiere as the Closing Night film of the third annual DOC NYC festival, taking place November 8-15, 2012 at IFC Center and other venues.

“We’re honored to premiere such a compelling and resonant New York story for our Closing Night,” said DOC NYC artistic director Thom Powers. “In this new film, Ken Burns and his collaborators craft a galvanizing account of an event that transfixed the city and the nation, and the injustice that followed in its wake.” Following its DOC NYC screening, The Central Park Five will be released theatrically throughout the country this fall.

The festival also announced an ambitious, expanded line-up of panel discussions called “Doc-a-thon,” covering the art and business of documentary filmmaking. Spanning five days, the program features some twenty seminars and panels with acclaimed filmmakers and experts devoted to different stages in the filmmaking process. The line-up will explore financing sources, marketing, distribution and legal issues in documentary, and also includes master classes with leading directors, editors, animators, composers and other key creative figures.

“Whether you’re a veteran or a newcomer there’s a lot to learn about rapid changes happening across the documentary field – in craft, technology, financing and distribution,” said Powers. “Doc-a-thon panels are carefully programmed with the top practitioners in the field to bring filmmakers vital information for keeping current.” Doc-a-thon will feature representatives from A&E Indie Films, Abramorama, Argot Pictures, Cinereach, HBO Documentary Films, IFC Films, Impact Partners, Kino Lorber, New Video, POV, Zeitgeist Films, and more.

Once again, DOC NYC will offer festivalgoers an “Insider Pass” that gives holders access to all Doc-a-thon panels, as well as screenings and festival events weekdays before 5pm at IFC Center—more than 35 film, panels and events.. The Insider Pass is now on sale at a special advance discount of $99 until October 5; after that date, the regular Insider Pass price of $125 applies. Click here to purchase your pass.

DOC NYC has also added two key members to its team: Mystelle Brabbée serves as senior programmer for feature-length documentaries; and Basil Tsiokos joins as programmer of shorts and Doc-a-thon panels. Brabbée brings 16 years experience as the artistic director of the Nantucket Film Festival where she continues to serve; she also produced and directed the award-winning documentary Highway Courtesans and teaches in the Graduate Film Department at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. Tsiokos, a 17-year veteran of the festival world, works as a programming associate for the Sundance Film Festival and formerly served as artistic and executive director of NewFest from 1996 to 2008. “We’re delighted to welcome Mystelle and Basil to expand and strengthen our programming,” said DOC NYC executive director Raphaela Neihausen.

DOC NYC is pleased to welcome back its Presenting Sponsors who have been with the festival since its beginning in 2010: A&E IndieFilms, History Films, and New York magazine.

DOC NYC will have more announcements in the coming weeks of its Opening Night film; Viewfinders and Metropolis competition titles and other sections. The full line-up will be announced by early October when tickets for individual films will go on sale.