sujewa films nyc

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Check out George's Restaurant blog & sites for great food & delivery in Sunset Park, Brooklyn

I filmed a part of my new movie Breakthrough Weekend at George's.

Check out their blog here and their menu site here and their Facebook page here.  When you need good food in Sunset Park, Brooklyn (free home delivery) visit George's.

All the Links:

George’s Restaurant on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/georgesdinersunsetpark

George’s Restaurant on Tumblr - http://georgesdiner.tumblr.com/

George’s Restaurant blog - http://georgesdinersunsetpark.blogspot.com/

George’s Restaurant on Twitter - https://twitter.com/GeorgesDiner

George’s Restaurant Menu site - http://georgesmenu.com/

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Examiner.com review of Breakthrough Weekend

Check out the review here - http://www.examiner.com/review/indie-film-review-breakthrough-weekend-directed-by-sujewa-ekanayake

From the review by Angelo Bell:  "Breakthrough Weekend tells the story of philosophical detective, Sal, who has a roster of clients with special needs. Sal takes on a new protege, Yevgeny, for this particular weekend and proceeds to introduce him to the crazy whacky world that has made Sal's "particular set of skills" of great value. Yevgeny has been perpetually depressed and detached from life for much of his adult life, despite writing a successful novel, and finds himself lost, confused and the perfect candidate for Sal's rare form of sociological and metaphysical motivation. As the two private dicks bond over a literally insane weekend, Yevgeny finds solace in knowing that he's not as fucked up as he thought, and Sal continues -- business as usual -- helping a slew of New York nutjobs get their lives back on track by overcoming personal flaws."

Read the rest here.




Breakthrough Weekend opens 6/12 Thu at Breakthrough Festival NYC at Anthology Film Archives

Get all the info plus a link to a great review of the film here.


Monday, May 26, 2014

Where We Started NYC Theatrical Premiere Run 6/12-18 Event Page on Facebook

Check out the event page & show your support for this NYC theatrical release of an excellent new indie film. - https://www.facebook.com/events/1427228017543846/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular&source=1

Breakthrough Festival NYC Event Page on Facebook

Check out the event page & join it if you are going to be in NYC 6/12-18 & or if you want to show your support for an awesome indie film screening event - https://www.facebook.com/events/664768526927703/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular&source=1

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Breakthrough Weekend review by Rick Schmidt

BREAKTHROUGH WEEKEND a film by Sujewa Ekanayake.
Reviewed by Rick Schmidt 

When my Feature Filmmaking at Used-Car Prices book first came out, I ended the Preface by saying, "In an age where motion pictures are being called the major new art form of the twentieth century, I think it is important that many more of these "features" are created outside the Hollywood system, by artists who have something to say with an original and personal point of view." Well, with his new feature, Breakthrough Weekend (80 minutes, Color, ©2014), writer/director Sujewa Ekanayake has done just that. Very rarely do I get to see a movie this unique, with a fresh new approach, that can't be readily compared to much else. And because it is an original, filmmaker Ekanayake having invented his own brand of storytelling and interplay of characters, it will demand more from an audience than, say, a Spiderman, X-Men or Scorsese film (sorry Martin, but your movies are 'cookie cutter,' even when they're suspenseful; ie. Departed). Compared to these fast-food flicks, 'Breakthrough' is a 7-course French banquet. It moves differently, looks different, all the while joining the 'buddy movie' genre. For those who enjoy everything from The Sting to Chan is Missing, it should be a highly pleasing ride, at the same time offering the viewer contact with some deeper-meaning stuff.

The two detectives, Sal and sidekick Yevgeny (perfectly played by Damien Bosco and Sean Bempong, respectively), go about the business of making clients happy with their snooping, solving personal difficulties more than any actual real crimes. You've got Mirabel, an attractive blond real estate agent apparently rolling in dough (deliciously performed by Jennifer Blakemore), who is suspicious of her live-in boyfriend's fidelity. A first impression allows the viewer to join in that suspicion; his aloofness and self-absorbed nature are a dead give-away. It's Sal's job to tail the guy and report back, so he puts his partner on the case. Yevgeny uses iPhone technology to make his own digital movie of the guy, who's caught walking with his other girlfriend, kissing her, which is just what we expected (so I'm not revealing too much). But among such clichéd scenarios this movie offers more. We hear solutions to life's bigger dilemmas, beyond just 'nailing a cheater.' Beneath the cloak-and-dagger of story or 'narrative,' the odd detectives start solving OUR modern problems. Are we cheating ourselves if we forgo our responsibly to be happy, being too driven by the almighty dollar? Is that not a crime? Yes, Mirabel may not have a faithful lover, but she's partially responsible, Sal points out, because without taking some time to actually enjoy her life how can she expect to have a good relationship.

The film indicates that we all need to re-examine our "Level of Happiness" and strive toward maintaining a better frame of mind, no matter what exterior forces affect our mood. That's one of the challenges the movie dumps at our feet. It turns out we may be responsible for the negative things that happen around us, if we don't follow our bliss.

Another client of the Sal-run detective agency are German siblings caught in a comical-yet-sad incestuous relationship (Clara Schmidt and Matthew Ryan make us believe…), who require Sal's expert (and expensive) services. He's hired to come up with a method to halt their lovemaking, in order to save their father's inheritance. And again, Sal invents a solution (I won't give this one away…). So, of course, it's no problem (if you're Sal!). His past life experiences, vast in creativity and topped off with a deep understanding of human complexity, allow him to not only fix relationships, but also mend his own partner's personal troubles.

Can Sal help Yevgeny address his writer's block? What advice can Sal possibly give to solve that old, "day-job vs. creative art-making" dilemma? The long walks the men take, with shots of New York cityscapes; highways, waterfront, streets and parks overlooking the city, allow us to eavesdrop on the soul-searching. Watch the image pan, dip and zoom, as if the movie's visuals were generated by the same investigatory iPhone used by Yevgeny on stakeouts. Throughout these journeys by foot, the lively music of Kevin Macleod keeps the movie's dependable and elegant heartbeat going. At any rate, Sal knows his stuff. "It's like Spinoza said, Don't weep, understand," he tells his partner along a deserted side street, adding, "You have to effortlessly glide through the obstacles in your life…like a great, big, floating squirrel."

When film critics Jim and Bob (Matt Saxon and David A. Steinberg play this great odd-couple) argue about the meaning of Mumblecore to their upcoming book project, one of them uses his magic powers to knock his partner out cold with a blast of energy from his hands. Sal is hired by the Mohawk-donned critic to confront his powerful partner, to talk the fellow wizard into lifting the harmful spell. Sal's so well versed in various techniques – old and new 'Merlin-style' wizardry – that nothing either surprises or confounds him.

While it's fun and entertaining to see unique solutions to these odd characters' problems, I found that Sal's pontifications coupled with his partner's soul-searching took me into deeper realms. Perhaps the viewer can let this clever narrative spill over into their real life, allowing some of this smart-wackiness to help overthrow any remaining excuses. We need to get on with the real job of creating art and music and literature – something more divine – in spite of our demanding day-jobs. Sal might simply say, "There's no time like the present to begin doing that."

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Apparently Indiewire's Sam Adams hates indie film distribution

That or he has a very poor understanding that small distributors, foreign distributors, art distributors, and individual filmmakers have always carried out small/relatively low budget distribution projects - including self-distributed projects - and that this type of activity is what created the independent film movement and practice and also what sustains it, and that in NYC, it is an awesome thing that New York Times reviews every movie that plays in the city for a week or more (very useful thing for small distributors who might get a good review, also very useful for audiences in discovering new voices).  Read the sad article and ask yourself why someone who hates indie film distribution and indie films getting reviewed by the Times is writing for Indiewire (I believe that 'indie' in Indiewire stands for independent film, not certain though :) - http://blogs.indiewire.com/criticwire/memo-to-the-new-york-times-quit-reviewing-every-movie

- Sujewa

::

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Upcoming NYC indie film events - Where We Started 6/10, Breakthrough Weekend 6/12-18, Where We Started 6/12-18, Breakthrough Festival NYC 6/12-18

It's going to be a very busy indie film screening late spring for me.

Here's info on NYC indie film screenings - a US theatrical premiere/1 week run (Breakthrough Weekend), a NYC theatrical premiere/1 week run (Where We Started), a new film festival (featuring US & NYC theatrical premieres of additional movies, Breakthrough Festival NYC) - that I am producing & also one that I am promoting (WWS 6/10).

::


Where We Started
A film by Chris Hansen
NewFilmmakers New York Screening
at Anthology Film Archives
6/10, 9 PM
More info about screening here - http://www.newfilmmakers.com/
And more info about the film here - http://www.wherewestartedmovie.com/home.html

Note:  Where We Started is now playing in LA - 5/2 - 5/8 at Arena Cinema Hollywood
LA Weekly review of Where We Started here.

::

Where We Started
NYC Theatrical Premiere
June 12-18, daily
For more info, go here
at Anthology Film Archives
as a part of Breakthrough Festival NYC
more info here

::

























Breakthrough Weekend
A film by Sujewa Ekanayake
US Theatrical Premiere
6/12-18, daily
More info here
at Anthology Film Archives
screening as a part of Breakthrough Festival NYC
more info here

::


Breakthrough Festival NYC
Films about attempting positive change, failure, & success
An independent film festival featuring Breakthrough Weekend, Where We Started, Matha, Mille Soya, Resurrection of Serious Rogers, Little Fishes, and the short films Khoobi, Pizza 2015, & possibly other shorts.
6/12-18
at Anthology Film Archives
More info here

*

- Sujewa

::

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Hanging w/ Jim Jarmusch at Only Lovers premiere :: Trailer

Saw Jim Jarmusch's vampire romance comedy Only Lovers Left Alive last night at Lincoln Center, at the start of the movie's theatrical run.  Got to speak w/ Jarmusch for a minute, always a blast :)























Filmmakers Sujewa Ekanayake (L) and Jim Jarmusch (R), 4/11/14
*

More info about the film & show times at Lincoln Center here.

And here's the trailer for the movie:





::





Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Last chance to join Team Little Fishes, help a great new film heading to Cannes & NYC!

Less than 20 hours to go on the Little Fishes Kickstarter campaign.  Go here to check out the trailer, donate, & become a part of this excellent project.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The latest on Alexia Anastasio's projects, including new film Little Fishes




First, Little Fishes Kickstarter is down to it's final week/7 days of campaigning for finishing & release funding (to get to her most important & useful stretch goal of $8K, she needs to raise about $5K-$6K more).  Go check it out now & see if you want to become a part of that excellent indie art film project.



Next, here's the latest on Alexia's projects, from a recent press release:

Filmmaker Alexia Anastasio completes work on new film Little Fishes, crowdfunds for release, participates in a film finance panel discussion, and talks about her work in new interview

Filmmaker Alexia Anastasio has completed major work on her new film Little Fishes. Little Fishes is a romantic drama about the relationship between two women. The film was inspired by the writings of D.H. Lawrence. The film will be submitted to film festivals in the coming days. Anastasio will attempt to screen the film at the Cannes Film Festival and Market in France later this year. More information about the film can be found at: www.alexiaanastasio.com/films/littlefishes.html

Alexia Anastasio is raising money for the completion expenses and release expenses for new film Little Fishes using the crowdfunding site Kickstarter. Recently Anastasio completed her Kickstarter fundraising goal 1 by raising over $2,000 on the crowdfunding site. The project will be funded on April 2. Anastasio is now working towards her ultimate stretch goal of $12,000. The Little Fishes Kickstarter project can be found at: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/alexiaanastasio/little-fishes-a-film-about-girls-in-love

Alexia Anastasio participated, as a speaker, in the Bloomberg BNA International Film and TV Finance Summit March 19 and 20 in Los Angeles, California. On March 19 Anastasio participated at the event's crowdfunding panel at 11:15 AM. Then, from 12 to 12:45 PM Anastasio delivered a case study presentation regarding her new film Little Fishes. More information about the event can be found here:http://www.bna.com/2014film_losangeles/

Alexia Anastasio was recently interviewed about her career, current projects, previous projects, and future plans at DIY Filmmaker blog. The interview can be read at: http://diyfilmmaker.blogspot.com/2014/03/a-woman-making-indie-movies-interview.html

For interviews or additional information about her participation in the above mentioned items, Alexia Anastasio can be contacted through:


Alexia Anastasio website: www.alexiaanastasio.com/

Alexia Anastasio is a filmmaker, actress, and artist who has starred in, co-directed and co-produced several independent films. Anastasio draws, paints, does collage work and photography. As an actress she was recently featured in feature film Supernaturalz, HBO's Bored to Death, VH1's 'If you like...' commercial and Vetiver’s 'Everyday' music video. Anastasio started working with film 14 years ago while attending SUNY Purchase. At SUNY Purchase she made many short films, some experimental narratives and documentaries, and also started her own art, music and film festival - the CAMP Festival. Anastasio edited the feature documentary Vampira: The Movie, associate produced The Wild World of Ted V. Mikels, produced and starred in the mockumentary 7 Deadly Sins: Inside the Ecomm Cult and helped promote and sell the movies at horror and comic book conventions. Anastasio’s most recently completed documentary Adventures in Plymptoons! has played world wide at over 40 film festivals including Annecy International Animation Film Festival, San Francisco Documentary Film Festival, Dok Leipzig, Bend Film Festival, Woodstock Film Festival, Flip Animation Film Festival and more. The film is available through Hulu, Amazon, and Vimeo.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Thursday, March 20, 2014

All of the official pages, sites, blogs for Breakthrough Festival NYC - An Independent Film Festival, June 2014



I will keep a running list here.  New links will be added as they become alive.  Official festival website coming on 3/31.

- Sujewa

BREAKTHROUGH FESTIVAL LINKS

1 - Breakthrough Festival Blogger Blog - http://breakthroughfestnyc.blogspot.com/

2 - Breakthrough Festival Facebook page (for Likes)

3 - Breakthrough Festival Facebook Group page

More coming soon...

::


Saturday, March 15, 2014

Support this awesome NYC art film institution - Anthology Film Archives

Every city needs a place like this.  A NYC original.  A rare, excellent thing.  Check out how you can support Anthology Film Archives here.

 

- Sujewa


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Little Fishes trailer 2 - funny, NSFW, has a Midnight In Paris aspect



Little Fishes Trailer 2 from Alexia Anastasio on Vimeo.

*
For more on the film, go here, check out & support the project, join this exciting cinematic journey:

Monday, March 10, 2014

Lunchbox reviewed by Kenneth Turan in LA Times

Check out the review here.  Sounds like an interesting movie.

- Sujewa

::

A Woman Making Indie Movies - An Interview With Alexia Anastasio

By Sujewa Ekanayake

While gender should not be an issue when it comes to making movies, unfortunately, at this point in time, women have a relatively more difficult time launching and sustaining their filmmaking careers (see here, here, here, also here).  No doubt this situation will be corrected in the future and most likely that will happen with the help of the next wave of female filmmakers - as they figure out what works for each of them, what doesn't, and how to improve the overall situation. Alexia Anastasio is a female independent filmmaker who has made several films and is nearing completion on her new film Little Fishes. I spoke with her recently about her past projects, the current project, and future challenges.
Sujewa - Alexia, thanks for taking the time out for this interview. Let's jump in to the subject that I mentioned at top, why do you think, at this point in time, it appears to be more difficult for female independent or Hollywood filmmakers to launch and sustain their filmmaking careers? And what are some future solutions that you see on the horizon?
Alexia - Thank you Sujewa.  Pretty ridiculous right that we even have to have a conversation about it being difficult to be a women making movies?  I actually think it is finally becoming an option when it was so hard being a filmmaker that past 100 years because it was so expensive.  Now women can raise a reasonable amount and do it themselves. I think the future is the audience choosing more of what they want to see and experience. I think that there will be less movie theaters in the future and more ways to connect movies to games and to each other in the movie watching experience. 
Sujewa - How did you get started with filmmaking? Why did you decide to do it? 
Alexia - I got started in filmmaking through my love of acting. When I was 11 years old I knew I wanted to be an actress and when I was 16 I had an amazing teacher that introduced me to making a short film with a small team in two high school afternoons. That teacher was Louise Millmann and I will always be grateful because it was then that I knew that I wanted an art and family type experience from the process. You can see that film on my YouTube channel it was a remake of A Girl and her Trust and I played the girl. From then I went on to SUNY Purchase where I was in the first class on the New Media major. I was able to take film history, Video Art, Creating Digital Video, Photography and Computer Graphics classes and I use all the skills I learned there in my chosen career as a filmmaker. 
Sujewa - What were some of the major obstacles that you had to overcome on your earliest projects? Production and distribution wise?
Alexia - The biggest obstacle was stress related. When I was fundraising for Adventures in Plymptoons! and I didn't know if I was going to make it. I was breaking plates. Thankfully I learned Transcendental Meditation and that helped me through the crowdfunding process and also with staying focused while finishing the film. The film is now available on Hulu, Amazon and Vimeo On Demand.  
Sujewa - Can you talk a bit more about your most recently completed project - Adventures In Plymptoons! - how did you get started on that project?
Alexia - That project started with me watching Bill Plympton's master class at my home town movie theater the Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington, NY.  I was looking for a subject for my first feature documentary so it was all about timing.  I asked Bill if he would like a documentary on him, he told me to submit a proposal and he accepted and we were off to the races. Two and half years later I had a feature film that became 'Adventures in Plymptoons!'
Sujewa - What was the distribution process like on Adventures In Plymptoons!? Were you happy with how many people were able to see it in festivals and are you happy with the current availability of that film?
Alexia -  The distribution process included the 40 plus film festivals that played the movie and I am happy with the availability of the film online but I really would like more people to see it around the world and be inspired that they can become full time artists like Bill Plympton. 
Sujewa - What is your current film Little Fishes about?
Alexia - Little Fishes is a film about girls in love inspired by the poetry of D.H. Lawrence.  I am very excited about it.  


Sujewa - How can interested people become a part of your Little Fishes production & distribution journey?
Alexia - It is best that people watch the trailer and read about the film on the Kickstarter page. That is where they can get original art by me, perks and be a part of the process including getting updates for the film. Our goal is to bring the film to the Cannes Marche du Film in May and use Tugg.com to tour the film throughout the world with films like this with the Mumblecore Film Festival. 


Sujewa - What, if any, other projects do you plan on pursuing after Little Fishes?
Alexia - I am also finishing up a documentary about girls with natural red hair called Ginger Girls: The Secret Lives of Redheads. That project is a feature documentary, photo book and art show and my goal is to have a gathering and premiere in Las Vegas this fall. 
Sujewa - What helpful advice do you have for new filmmakers - both male and female - and for filmmakers who are considering becoming active again after a long break?
Alexia - Get connected to everybody in your life. Throw a party, have people come and celebrate your decision to be a part of the film community again. It is important to know that you can do it and that there are many ways that you can do it with others.
Sujewa - Any other thoughts that you would like to share with the world?

          Alexia - Thank you universe for allowing me to make films that I love for the past 14 years. 
          I am so grateful that I can teach     others to do the same. If anybody has any more questions I                         can be easily reached through my website: http://www.alexiaanastasio.com/.

Thanks Alexia!
- Sujewa


Friday, February 28, 2014

Breakthrough Weekend will screen June 12-18 at Anthology Film Archives in NYC - early notice

By end of March we will have final posters, promo art, final trailers, final clips, and we will be launching an epic marketing campaign to spread the word about the June 12-18/one week long run of Breakthrough Weekend at Anthology Film Archives in NYC.  Also film festival news coming by the end of March.  In the meantime, enjoy the early notice promo image below :) -


::

US Senators Introduce Resolution in Support of Sri Lanka's Domestic Reconciliation Process

sl_gov_logo
The Embassy of Sri Lanka
Press Release 


 
US SENATORS INTRODUCE RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF
SRI LANKA'S DOMESTIC RECONCILIATION PROCESS

Calls on President Obama to adopt balanced & comprehensive policy towards Sri Lanka

Eleven senior Members of the United States Senate introduced a bipartisan Senate Resolution (S. Res. 364) on Thursday, Feb 27 expressing support for Sri Lanka's internal reconciliation process and the significant overall progress the Country has made since the end of the civil war--some 5 years ago.

The Senators also called on the President of the United States to develop a "comprehensive and well balanced policy towards Sri Lanka", supportive of promoting U.S. interests including respect for human rights, democracy  the rule of law as well as taking onto account the United States economic and security interests.

Senate Resolution 364 recognizes the immense suffering of the Sri Lankan people caused by the 26-year conflict, and the genuine aspiration of the government  to prevent any outside force from triggering a reemergence  of similar situations that are now behind us;   but instead  look to the future through enhanced national unity and reconciliation . A special recognition has been given to the establishment of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) and the significance of implementing its recommendations.

Sri Lanka President H.E. Mahinda Rajapaksa appointed the LLRC in May 2010, following the end of the three decade long terrorist conflict. The Commission Report was released in November 2011 and tabled in the Parliament in December 2011. The Cabinet of Ministers approved the National Plan of Action to implement the recommendations of the LLRC in July 2012.

Senate Resolution 364 underscores that the Government of Sri Lanka has made significant progress in implementing the LLRC recommendations within a limited time.  With a special reference to the first ever elections held in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka in September 2013, the Resolution commends the reestablishment of representative democracy in the conflict-ridden areas through elections.

“ …the elections allowed the people of the North of Sri Lanka to exercise their political rights that had been withheld from them for more than 20 years by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and resulted in a clear victory for the provincial wing of the Tamil National Alliance”

The Resolution however remains concerned over possible restrictions to the media freedom and religious freedom of Sri Lanka. It highlights that a peaceful and just society reconciled through a political settlement addressing the needs of all ethnic group should be achieved by a process driven by the people of Sri Lanka themselves.

The Resolution calls on the United States Government and the International community to offer meaningful assistance to theGovernment of Sri Lanka to make its domestic endeavors toward reconciliation more effective, while respecting the country’s sovereignty, stability and security.

The Resolution encourages Sri Lanka to  consider a mechanism similar to the South African Truth & Reconciliation Commission to heal the wounds of war. The Government of Sri Lanka is further urged to take necessary steps to improve religious and media freedom in the country.

The following U.S. Senators are original Co-Sponsors of Senate Resolution 364:

The Honorable James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma);
The Honorable John Cornyn (R-Texas);
The Honorable Orrin Hatch (R-Utah);
The Honorable John Barrasso (R-Wyoming);
The Honorable Roy Blunt (R-Missouri);
The Honorable Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia);
The Honorable Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama);
The Honorable John Boozman (R-Arkansas);
The Honorable Mike Crapo (R-Idaho);
The Honorable Susan Collins (R-Maine);
The Honorable Mike Enzi (R-Wyoming)

The Following is the Full Text of U.S. Senate Resolution 364:

113th CONGRESS
2d Session 
S. RES. 364
Expressing support for the internal rebuilding, resettlement, and reconciliation within Sri Lanka that are necessary to ensure a lasting peace.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
February 27, 2014


Mr. INHOFE submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the
Committee on Foreign Relations

RESOLUTION
Expressing support for the internal rebuilding, resettlement, and reconciliation within Sri Lanka that are necessary to ensure a lasting peace.

Whereas May 19, 2014, marks the five-year anniversary of the end of the 26 year civil war between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and the Government ofSri Lanka;

Whereas the people of Sri Lanka suffered greatly as a result of this conflict, the impact and aftermath of which has been felt by all, especially by women, children, and families;

Whereas the Government of Sri Lanka established a ‘‘Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission’’ (LLRC) to report whether any person, group, or institution directly or indirectly bears responsibility for incidents that occurred between     February 2002 and May 2009 and to recommend measures to prevent the recurrence of such incidents in the future and     promote further national unity and reconciliation among all communities;

Whereas the LLRC report was presented to the Sri Lankan Parliament on December 16, 2011, and officially     translated into Sinhala and Tamil on August 16, 2012;

Whereas the LLRC report acknowledges important events and grievances that have contributed to decades     of political violence and war in Sri Lanka and makes constructive recommendations on a wide range of issues, including the need to credibly investigate widespread allegations of extrajudicial killings; enforced disappearances; intentional targeting of civilians and noncombatants; demilitarizing the north and the country as a whole; reaching a political settlement with minority communities on the meaningful decentralization of power; and promoting and protecting the right to freedom of expression for all through the enactment of a right to information law and additional rule of law reforms;

Whereas the Government of Sri Lanka developed the National Plan of Action to implement the recommendations of     the LLRC and has made significant progress within limited time in the implementation of the National Plan of Action,     notably in the areas of demining, rehabilitation of ex-combatants, resettlement of displaced persons, improvements of     infrastructure and social services in the North and East, as well as investigations into complaints regarding persons who     have disappeared during the war;

Whereas there have been reports of attacks on places of worship and restrictions on the media in several places in Sri Lanka;

Whereas the Government of Sri Lanka expressed its commitment to address the needs of all ethnic     groups and has recognized the necessity of a political settlement and reconciliation for a peaceful and just society, which     is a long-term process that will need to be driven by the people of Sri Lanka themselves;

Whereas the September 21, 2013, elections in Sri Lanka for the Northern, Central, and North Western     Provincial Councils were an important step in fulfilling this commitment;

Whereas these elections were made possible through a sustained effort by the Government of Sri Lanka     to restore infrastructure in the North and put in place a system for the conduct of the elections;

Whereas the elections allowed the people of the North of Sri Lanka to exercise their political rights that    had been withheld from them for more than 20 years by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and resulted in a     clear victory for the provincial wing of the Tamil National Alliance;

Whereas Sri Lanka is enjoying rapid economic growth as an important hub for shipping transport,     technology, and tourism in the South Asia region;

Whereas Sri Lanka is of great strategic importance to the United States, due to its location,    deep- water ports, and proximity to the world’s busiest shipping lanes, an importance noticed and pursued by other    significant powers; and

Whereas Sri Lanka seeks to be a key United States partner in the fight against terrorism and Indian Ocean piracy:

  
Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Senate—
    (1) calls upon the President to develop a comprehensive and well balanced policy towards Sri Lanka that reflects United States interests, including respect for human rights, democracy, and the rule of law, as well as economic and security interests;
 
    (2) calls on the United States Government and the international community to assist the Government of Sri Lanka, with due regard to its sovereignty, stability, and security, in establishing domestic mechanisms to deal with any grievances arising from actions committed by both sides during and after the civil war in Sri Lanka;
 
    (3) encourages the Government of Sri Lanka to put in place a truth and reconciliation commission similar to the one adopted by South Africa to help heal the wounds of war, taking into account the unique characteristics of the conflict and its aftermath; and
 
    (4) urges the Government of Sri Lanka to improve religious and media freedoms and to bring to justice those responsible for attacks on journalists and newspaper offices as well as places of worship, regardless of religion.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A good letter about stopping the unjust US & UN threats against Sri Lanka :: Petition for the White House

2/27 Update:

Petition for the White House re: not bringing counter-productive war crimes charges at this point in time - https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/safeguard-sovereignty-sri-lanka-and-not-pass-resolution-against-sri-lanka-alleged-war-crimes/VvwB6LgR

Sri Lanka needs more time to recover from a brutal 29 year long civil war. While the Sri Lankan government has done a lot for peace & reconciliation since the war ended 5 years ago, and there is a lot more to do, calls for war crimes charges by the UN & US at this point will help no one. Check it out & sign the petition if you agree.

*

From the letter:

"This is a witch hunt against my people who have suffered enough with terrorism for nearly 29 years that we who live in the US do not understand.  The threat of a third resolution against Sri Lanka due to impatience, with unreal expectations of what you believe should have been accomplished in a short period of 5 years, fails to credit the work completed and currently in progress.   Demanding more that is humanly impossible in 4 years following a 29 year war of destruction is counterproductive to moving forward with the momentum gained so far."

And:

"The threat of economic and political sanctions is viewed by individuals and other nations as a death sentence to deprive civilians as we have seen happen in other countries with US imposed sanctions.  This is no way to protect human rights by taking away rights of other nations and its people."

And:


"To add insult to injury at the upcoming UNHRC, human rights are being discussed with the harshest criticism against Sri Lanka and North Korea.  Do you really believe that Sri Lanka can be placed on level with North Korea?  Sri Lanka eliminated the terror group declared by the FBI as the most brutal among the top three in the world.  A study by Canada’s Mackenzie Institute on terrorism, speaks volumes about the LTTE brand of terrorism.
I wish to respectfully remind the Senators and everyone in the Obama administration that the suicide bombs that killed thousands of US and NATO security forces were the invention of the Sri Lanka LTTE.  They continue to be used against US Security forces.  The FBI has credited the LTTE with more than that if directly quoted from the FBI website. 
Sri Lanka rehabilitated over 12,000 combatants.  They did not face a firing squad on surrender.  Isn’t that humanitarian consideration shown by the Sri Lanka authorities?"

Read the full letter herehttp://www.lankaweb.com/news/items/2014/02/25/memo-to-the-us-congress-and-senate-regarding-the-unhrc-resolution-re-the-geneva-unhrc-resolution-in-march-2014-against-sri-lanka/ 

- Sujewa

::

Monday, February 24, 2014

some places i've screened my films

getting ready for the upcoming release of my new film breakthrough weekend.  making a list of previous screenings - for various purposes.  i've been showing/sharing my films with audiences at screening venues since 1992.  here is a quick, incomplete list of some places i've screened:

- the kennedy center, washington, dc

- cineplex odeon foundry, washington, dc

- cafe metro, washington, dc

- atlanta film festival 2009

- the pioneer theater, new york city

- anthology film archives, new york city

- northwest film forum, seattle

- visions cinema, washington, dc

i'll have a complete list available in march.

my films so far are: 1 - fresh coffee, 2 - wild diner, 3 - 17 dc poets, 4 - date number one, 5 - indie film blogger road trip, 6 - brooklyn fantastic (not yet complete), 7 - breakthrough weekend (mid-2014 release)

- sujewa

::

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

On the set, love scenes, interviews, inspiration & a lot of other great links about new film Little Fishes



Little Fishes Crowdfunding campaign from Alexia Anastasio on Vimeo.












Join the project & support it at IndieGoGo:


Sunday, February 09, 2014

NYC Indie Film Group 1 had meeting #1 on Saturday 2/8/14 night in midtown


L-R - Eric (with daughter) from Vamp Bikers, Jane from Warhol's Cars video, Jeanine (seated) from Vamp Bikers, Sujewa from Breakthrough Weekend, Manuel from Vamp Bikers, Adrian from Sex, Love & Salsa, not pictured - James from Brooklyn Unemployed.

The filmmakers plan on working together on distributing & marketing their current projects and on making new films.

Links to the films:

Breakthrough Weekend - Facebook, website

Brooklyn Unemployed - Facebook

Sex, Love & Salsa - Facebook, website

Vamp Bikers - Facebook

More from this group soon…

::


Wednesday, February 05, 2014

How True/False Film Festival Just Became The Coolest Indie Film Festival In America!


They are going to pay their filmmakers!  Something that many filmmakers requested from film festivals for a long time.  Way to lead on positive change there T/F.  Get all the info at this Filmmaker mag blog article.

- Sujewa

::

A Brooklyn Fitness Blog

Check out Brooklyn Fitness blog by Sharissa Reichert - http://brooklynfitnesssharissa.blogspot.com

::

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Great interview with Haile Gerima at Shadow & Act

From mid-2013.  Still great.  From the interview:

"S&A: If not a movement, are there any specific filmmakers that you find are doing interesting work?
HG: Well you know, they start and they disappear, and the reason is because they don't enter into joint relationships. Most, especially the young filmmakers, do not see strength in communal or collective existence. They just think they're going to conquer the world as individuals. There is no world like that. In cinema it's always, even in Hollywood, a collective surge.  A group of filmmakers enter and take over power. And so individual efforts do exist, which I've seen left and right, but they do not understand the collective, the communal, the importance of working together. And when you don't work together you can't emerge as a force. It becomes what some call a “lonely struggle” and individual self-destruction."
Read the rest of the interview at Shadow & Act.
::

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Similar to 'Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee', except it's film bloggers in apartments talking about film blogging



Indie Film Blogger Road Trip from Sujewa Ekanayake on Vimeo.

All of the following methods of raising money for your indie art film biz are fine: self-financing, using money/pay from other work, crowdfunding, investors, grants, donations, making movies for $0, using profit from your film biz to make more movies, selling merchandise related to films...

Those plus whatever other methods you can think of will work for meeting the expenses of your indie art films.  Or your indie genre film or just indie film or film/movie - if one wants to be very simple about identifying the product or work being made.

Or one can try to work for a studio, work with other producers, work for a TV network, etc to get the movie or TV show made & out.  You might not fully own your work through this route however.

The important thing is, with digital video & the web where it is, it is now possible to make & distribute movies for $0 if you had to (grab your iPhone, grab 2 volunteer actors, shoot a short, upload to Vimeo or YouTube, promote it through social media, etc).  Also, if you want to take the time to do so, you can spend a few years and raise a couple of million $s to make & release a movie w/ known actors, etc.

Making a good movie is always a challenge.  Making money from movies is always a challenge.  But, if you want to make movies your art work, & then make that work available for people to buy & or check out, it is possible to do so now, for we live in the Glory Days of Indie Film.

Here's Coppola on his method of making film art - http://99u.com/articles/6973/Francis-Ford-Coppola-On-Risk-Money-Craft-Collaboration

Examples of how I will use this new reality, how I will use these Glory Days of Indie Film to make & release my own movies in 2014 are coming up.  In the works - 2 new features (Breakthrough Weekend, Brooklyn Fantastic), film festival submissions, a week long run in NYC, a possible film screening series and very rough ideas for a possible film festival, increased presence on the web re: my film work, increased marketing & advertising in the regular world re: my film work.  Details & links as they happen.  I am going to make 2014 a breakthrough year for my indie art filmmaking & distribution work :)

- Sujewa

::

A new phase in indie film, a new set of related & significant activities, perhaps a new 'movement' - coming soon...

... 2014 will be a breakthrough year for a new thing in indie film.

Details coming to this blog in the coming days and weeks.

Yes, indie film will transform the world for the better this year.

It will be EPIC :)

- Sujewa

::

Trailer for the most recent Chantal Ackerman film 'Almayer's Folly'

::

Check out a New York Times review of the movie here.

More on Chantal Ackerman on Wikipedia.

- Sujewa

::

ADVERTISEMENT

Brooklyn Fitness, Brooklyn Personal Trainer - Sharissa Reichert - A Brooklyn Fitness Blog - http://brooklynfitnesssharissa.blogspot.com

::





Thursday, January 02, 2014

Check out Sue Gardner's excellent blog

Sue Gardner, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation, writes at length about a lot of interesting topics at her blog.

From her post about what's wrong with non-profits - "Preface! I’ve always been irritated by people who assume nonprofitland is self-evidently suckier than forprofitland. I’m particularly irritated by people who say that nonprofits “should be more businesslike,” with businesslike as a kind of confused stand-in for “better.” That just seems dumb to me — I feel like it’s obvious that nonprofits function in a specific context including challenges unique to the sector, and that solutions aimed at increasing our effectiveness needed to be designed to respond specifically to those actual, real circumstances. That’s what this post is about: my goal is to describe a serious problem, and point to where I believe we’re beginning to see solutions emerge."

Read the full article here - http://suegardner.org/2013/10/20/whats-really-wrong-with-nonprofits-and-how-we-can-fix-it/

Also, on how Wikipedia "got it wrong" on Chelsea Manning.

And many more interesting articles at her blog.

- S

::

ADVERTISEMENT

Brooklyn Fitness, Brooklyn Personal Trainer - Sharissa Reichert - A Brooklyn Fitness Blog - http://brooklynfitnesssharissa.blogspot.com

::


BREAKTHROUGH WEEKEND Teaser Trailer

DATE NUMBER ONE on Vimeo VOD

Indie Film Blogger Road Trip

ad - wifi doorbells from rintercom

NEW WiFi Doorbells from Rintercom - amazing deals on a great product


call us for great prices on wifi doorbell intercoms & similar items! we sell wholesale to builders. also retail to individual users.

we have several wifi doorbell intercoms starting at $180. see various products & prices here - http://www.rintercom.com/blank-1

WiFi Doorbell Intercom
Monitor your doorsteps at anytime and anywhere from your smartphone or tablet
Receive Instant Alerts everytime a visitor presses your doorbell
No App charges or monthly maintenance fees
Using the ControlCam App you can see the live feed video and have a two-way conversation as well as recording both videos and photos.
With any electronic lock or magnetic lock you can unlock the door using the App.

more info here - http://www.rintercom.com/

or visit our showroom in brooklyn!

*
similar to skybell wifi doorbell, ring wifi doorbell, door bird wifi doorbells

At DIY Filmmaker Blog's Facebook Page

Followers

BREAKTHROUGH WEEKEND Teaser Trailer on Vimeo

Breakthrough Weekend teaser trailer on YouTube

Good Reads