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By Chesney Hearst, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – On Tuesday, September 2nd, organizers announced the 2015 selections for Première Brasil, the competitive section for Brazilian cinema in the Festival do Rio, Rio de Janeiro’s International Film Festival. This year’s selections include 41 full-length films and nineteen shorts.

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Ives Rosenfeld’s “Aspirantes” (Hopefuls) is one of this year’s fourteen films vying for Première Brasil’s Best Feature Film Fiction award/photo internet creation.

The upcoming festival will be the 17th edition of Festival do Rio. This year, running from October 1st through October 14th, the festival, in addition to Première Brasil, will once again feature the screening of hundreds of international and national films in theaters throughout the city. Also included will be RioMarket, a section of the festival that features seminars and workshops for and about the film industry.

The Première Brasil section of the festival spotlights the best of new Brazilian cinema and includes competitive and non-competitive selections. For the competing films, each year an Official Jury, consisting of cinematic arts experts both national and foreign, awards Troféu Redentors, the festival’s golden statuettes, to winners in sixteen categories.

In addition to awarding trophies for Best Feature Film in the New Directions category and Best Short Film, the officially juried categories include Best Feature Film, Fiction; Best Feature, Documentary; Best Short Film; Best Direction Fiction; Best Direction, Documentary; Best Actor; Best Actress; Best Supporting Actress; Best Supporting Actor; Best Screenplay; Best Editing; Best Cinematography; and a Special Jury Prize.

Previous winners have included Kleber Mendonca Filho’s film “O Som Ao Redor” (“Neighboring Sounds”), which was awarded Troféu Redentors in 2012 for Best Feature Film Fiction and Best Screenplay and Lírio Ferreira’s “Sangue Azul,” which in 2014 took home the awards for Best Feature Film Fiction, Best Director and Best Supporting Actor for Romulo Braga.

This year the fourteen selections for full-length fiction films include Ives Rosenfeld’s “Aspirantes” (Hopefuls); Vinícius Coimbra’s “A Floresta Que se Move” (The Moving Forest); Alberto Graça’s “Beatriz”; Gabriel Mascaro’s “Boi Neon” (Bull Down); Marina Person’s “Califórnia”; Sandra Kogut’s “Campo Grande” (Campo Grande); Luiz Carlos Lacerda’s “Introdução à Música do Sangue” (Introduction to the Music of Blood) and Anita Rocha da Silveira’s “Mate-me Por Favor” (Kill Me Please).

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Spanish actor Carlos Barden took part in the gala presentation of the film ” Gonzalez ” during the 2014 Rio Festival, photo by Rogerio Resende/Divulgação.

Also; Marcos Jorge’s “Mundo Cão” (In Dog’s Words); Roberto Berliner’s “Nise – Coração da Loucura” (Nise – The Heart of Madness); Guilherme Coelho’s “Órfãos do Eldorado” (Orphans of Eldorado); Ruy Guerra’s “Quase Memória” (Oblivious Memory) and Sérgio Machado’s “Tudo que Aprendemos Juntos “(The Violin Teacher).

The seven selected documentaries include Victor Lopes’ “Betinho – A Esperança Equilibrista” (Betinho – Hope on the Line); Geneton Moraes Neto’s “Cordilheiras no Mar: A Fúria do Fogo Bárbaro” (Ridges in the Sea: The Fury of the Wild Fire) and Eduardo Ades’ “Crônica da Demolição” (Chronicle of the Demolition).

Also; Maria Augusta Ramos’ “Futuro Junho” (Future June); Joana Mariani’s “Marias” (Marias); Ricardo Pinto e Silva’s “Mario Wallace Simonsen, Entre a Memória e a História” (Mario Wallace Simonsen, Between Memory and History); and Petra Costa e Lea Glob’s “Olmo e a Gaivota” (Olmo and The Seagull).

The six films in the New Directions category include João Paulo Cuenca’s “A Morte de J.P. Cuenca (The Death of J.P.Cuenca); André Antônio’s “A Seita” (The Sect); Petrus Cariry’s “Clarisse ou alguma coisa sobre nós dois” (Clarisse or something about us); Lô Politi’s “Jonas” (Jonah) and Helena Ignez’s “Ralé” (Ralé – The Lower Depths).

The ten short films selected for competition include Marão’s “Até a China” (Sheeliton); Diego Benevides’ “Cumieira” (The Top Floor); Tetê Mattos’ “Fantasia de Papel” (Photonovels); Rosana Urbes’ “Guida” (Guida); and Joel Pizzini’s “Mar de Fogo” (Sea of Fire); Andrea Nero e Iajima Silena’s “Marrocos” (Morocco); André Guerreiro Lopes’ “Olho-Urubu” (Urubu-Eye); Clara Peltier’s “Pele de Pássaro” (Bird Skin); Marcio Brito Neto’s “Serra do Caxambu” (Serra do Caxambu); and Felipe Rocha’s “Som Guia” (Sound Guide).

The four short films in the Shorts New Direction category include Felipe Bragança’s “Escape From My Eyes” (Escape From My Eyes); Isaac Pipano’s “Imóvel” (Still); Karen Akerman and Miguel Seabra Lopes’ “Outubro Acabou” (October is Over); and Aly Muritiba and Marja Calafange’s “Tarântula” (Tarantula).

In addition to the juried awards, public votes are tallied during the festival to award the year’s Best Feature Film Popular Vote, Fiction; Best Feature Film Popular Vote, Documentary; and Best Short Film Popular Vote.

The non-competitve selections for this year’s Première Brasil include full-length and short films in celebration of Rio’s 450th anniversary. The three features are: Ernesto Rodrigues’ “O Rio por Eles” (Rio by Them); Juliana de Carvalho’s “São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro, a Formação de uma Cidade” (São Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro, Creating a City); and Luciana Bezerra’s “O Porto do Rio” (The Port of Rio).

During the weeks leading up to the festival, more events and selections will be announced. For more information, see the official Festival do Rio 2015 website and stay with The Rio Times for updates.

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