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Online Festival Marks Third Year of Cultivating Digital Environment with Exclusive Content Including Free Streaming of Four World-Premiere Feature-Length Festival Films, Live, and Interactive Special Events


Universal Studios 100th Anniversary Celebration With Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep and Judd Apatow Is Among the Live Streaming Events


New York, NY – (March 09, 2012) –The 2012 Tribeca Film Festival (TFF) today unveiled the lineup and programming for the Tribeca Online Film Festival, presented by founding partner American Express. The third year of the pioneering digital initiative continues the extension of the TFF experience across digital platforms, allowing domestic audiences to view select feature and short films for free, including four world-premiere features to be streamed just after their TFF theatrical premieres. Audiences across the country will get front row access to the exclusive Festival content and hear filmmakers and industry leaders talking about the future of the industry as TFF’s 11th edition runs concurrently in lower Manhattan from April 18 to 29.

The 2012 Tribeca Online Film Festival offers film enthusiasts new avenues to experience a film festival. Audiences will get to vote, via, on the best online feature and short, with winners receiving a total of $16,000 in prize money. Tribeca Online is employing the latest digital video and web technology to deliver an immersive, interactive experience, re-contextualizing Festival content and presentation.

Four world premiere feature selections from the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival, and five short films, three of which are world premieres, will be available during the online Festival. Each film will have limited screening windows and capacity. Reservations begin on April 10 for American Express Cardmembers (who will also get access to select content from distribution label Tribeca Film upon registration) and April 16 for the general public. Online viewers will be able to vote for the Best Tribeca Online Feature Film, a prize of $10,000, and the Best Tribeca Online Short Film, a prize of $5,000. Winners will be announced at the Tribeca Film Festival Awards on April 26. There will also be a social voting competition, based solely on popularity: the number of “likes” that film accrues on the Tribeca Online Film Festival film detail page. The feature film and the short film that drive the most Facebook likes on the page will each receive a separate $500 prize. Winners will be announced on April 30.

The complete list of feature films streamed on the Tribeca Online Film Festival is as follows:

  • Babygirl, directed and written by Macdara Vallely. (Ireland, USA) – World Premiere, Viewpoints. For as long as she can remember, Bronx teenager Lena has watched her mom Lucy squander her life on a series of deadbeat men. When Victor, her mom’s latest boy toy, starts hitting on Lena, she sets up a trap to expose Victor for the creep he is… but the plan backfires. Macdara Vallely crafts a heartfelt drama about the emotional highs and lows in the moment between childhood and adulthood.


  • On The Mat, directed and written by Fredric Golding. (USA) – World Premiere, Viewpoints and Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival. Achieving greatness in high school wrestling requires a level of devotion unmatched perhaps by any other sport. That greatness has become a yearly expectation at Lake Stevens High, winner of seven Washington state championships in the past 10 years. Narrated by Lake Stevens wrestling alum Chris Pratt (Moneyball), this riveting documentary follows the team over the course of a season as they fight through injuries and academic issues to maintain their school’s legacy.
  • The Russian Winter, directed by Petter Ringbom. (Russia) – World Premiere, Spotlight. Brooklyn-born John Forté was a Grammy-nominated musician in The Fugees at 21 and a federal prison inmate at 26. When his prison sentence was remarkably commuted in 2008, Forté was given a second chance to share his talents with the world. Chronicling his concert tour across Russia, this inspirational documentary takes us on Forté’s personal journey—one that’s as much about having his voice heard as having his music heard. In English, Russian with subtitles.
  • Town of Runners, directed by Jerry Rothwell. (UK) – World Premiere, Viewpoints. Over the past two decades the small, rural Ethiopian town of Bekoji has been the unlikely home to numerous Olympic champion long-distance runners, whose athletic success has paved the way for a generation of young Ethiopians searching for a better future. With a keen artistic eye, TFF award winner Jerry Rothwell (Donor Unknown) follows two teenage track hopefuls who face the challenge of growing up and striving for greatness in a developing nation. In Amharic, Oromo with subtitles.

The short films streaming on Tribeca Online are:

  • BFF (World Premiere) Directed and written by Neil LaBute. Jack and Jill have been “best friends forever,” and when Jill suspects that her boyfriend is cheating on her, Jack offers to help her.


  • CatCam (New York Premiere) Directed by Seth Keal. German engineer Jürgen Perthold was intrigued about where his newly adopted stray, Mr. Lee, disappeared to for days on end, so he developed the CatCam to help solve the mystery.
  • Scenes from a Visit to Japan (World Premiere) Directed and written by Joel Schlemowitz. An experimental film invoking diverse cultural landscapes, suggesting a collective struggle of humanity between apocalyptic visions of the past, present, and future, and the redemptive power of the human spirit.


  • Transmission (International Premiere) Directed and written by Zak Hilditch. Following a deadly pandemic that has decimated the world’s population, a father drives his nine-year-old daughter from the west coast of Australia to the safe zone.
  • Doggy Bags (World Premiere) Directed and written by Edward Burns. A young man suspects the girl he is dating to be hiding a secret after she routinely orders massive amounts of food to go. Produced by American Express as a result of the 2011 My Movie Pitch contest. This film is ineligible for awards.


Nine additional short films will be made available through FOCUS FORWARD Short Films, Big Ideas,apartnership between GE and CINELAN. Five will premiere on beginning today, April 9, when the Tribeca Online Film Festival site goes live. The last four, which are world premieres, will debut on on April 25, simultaneous with their TFF premieres at Tribeca Cinemas. The four world premiere films are directed by Nelson George, Katy Chevigny, Steven Cantor, and Michèle Ohayon. Each film is three minutes long and tells an amazing story of innovators making our world a better place.

Select events will be streamed live as part of the Tribeca Online Film Festival, with TFF’s many other events, Q&As and conversations being captured on video for dynamic segments to be posted each day on, giving online audiences a comprehensive Festival experience. Among the live events scheduled are:

  • April 19 at 3pm EDT - A celebration of Universal Studios 100th Anniversary, featuring

Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, and Judd Apatow sharing their favorite moments and memories from Universal's extraordinary history.

  • April 26 at 7pm EDT - TFF Awards Night, saluting the best of the Festival;
  • April 27 at 11am EDT - Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Awards, celebrating innovation across the

media, entertainment and technology spectrum.

Visit for all the details.

To keep up with Tribeca, visit the Tribeca Film Festival website at, and log in at, where you can also subscribe to the Tribeca Newsletter.

Like the Tribeca Film Festival Facebook page at Follow us on Twitter @TribecaFilmFest and join the conversation by using the hashtag #TFF or #TOFF for the Tribeca Online Film Festival.

About the Tribeca Film Festival:

The Tribeca Film Festival helps filmmakers reach the broadest possible audience, enabling the international film community and general public to experience the power of cinema and promote New York City as a major filmmaking center. It is well known for being a diverse international film festival that supports emerging and established directors.

Founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 following the attacks on the World Trade Center, to spur the economic and cultural revitalization of the lower Manhattan district through an annual celebration of film, music and culture, the Festival brings the industry and community together around storytelling.

The Tribeca Film Festival has screened more than 1,300 films from more than 80 countries since its first edition in 2002. Since inception, it has attracted an international audience of more than 3.7 million attendees and has generated an estimated $725 million in economic activity for New York City.

About the 2012 Festival Sponsors:

As Founding Sponsor of the Tribeca Film Festival, American Express is committed to supporting the Festival and the art of filmmaking, bringing business and energy to New York City and offering Cardmembers and festivalgoers the opportunity to enjoy the best of storytelling through film.

The Tribeca Film Festival is pleased to announce the return of its Signature Sponsors: Accenture, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Apple, Bloomberg, Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), Brookfield, Cadillac, Caesars Atlantic City, ESPN, Heineken USA, JetBlue, Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Magnum® Ice Cream, NBC 4 New York, NCM Media Networks, New York Nonstop, Stolichnaya Vodka, The New York Times, Time Warner Cable, as well as its Cultural Partner the Doha Film Institute. The Festival is also honored to welcome the following new Signature Sponsors: BOMBAY SAPPHIRE® Gin, Conrad Hotels & Resorts and Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Focus Forward - a partnership between GE and CINELAN, and OppenheimerFunds.


TFF/Rubenstein Communications:            
Anna Dinces Associate VP, (212) 843-9253,
Dade Hayes Senior VP, (212) 843-8022,

TFF/Tribeca Enterprises:             
Tammie Rosen, VP of Communications, (212) 941-2003,


MEDIA NOTE:  Film stills for the feature and short films in the Tribeca Online Film Festival are available at If you are not an media user yet, please register using the following referral code: 2604.

Screen shots from the Tribeca Online Film Festival can be found at