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Actress and LGBTQ activist Bella Thorne will attend this year’s Oldenburg Film Festival and will premiere Her & Him, a short film she wrote and directed.
Thorne, who first came to prominence in the role of CeCe Jones on the Disney Channel series Shake It Up, has since transitioned to the indie film scene, starring in Jeremy Ungar’s tech thriller Ride and landing lead roles in upcoming features Southland from director Joshua Caldwell, science-fiction horror film The Friendship Game, directed by Scooter Corkle, and Chad Faust’s thriller Girl. Thorne has also gotten behind the camera, directing a series of shorts and music videos.
The 21-year-old actress was in the news recently after she had intimate photos of herself hacked. Rather than face extortion from the hackers, Thorne publicly released the photos herself.
Oldenburg’s festival director, Thorsten Neumann, said Thorne represented exactly the kind of “indie spirit” the German fest celebrates.
Oldenburg on Tuesday also announced two new awards for its 2019 event: a first film award, given to a debut feature screening in any of the festival’s sections; and an “Audacity Award,” meant to honor a work of cinema that pushes the boundaries of the medium. Neumann said the audacity award would honor films “on the border between genre cinema and the avant guard.” The first film award is sponsored by Luv&Lee, a local luxury gin brand, which will put up the $3350 (€3000) prize money for the winner.
Oldenburg also unveiled the first titles in its 2019 lineup, including the international premiere of Cuck, Rob Lambert’s scarily prescient debut feature about a right-wing blogger who turns to violence; MOOP, a fantasy romantic drama from director Arin Crumley (Four-Eyed Monsters), which will have its world premiere in Oldenburg; and In Full Bloom, a boxing drama from first-time directors Adam Villasenor and Reza Ghassemi, set in post-War Japan in which a down-on-his-luck American pugilist (Tyler Wood) signs up to fight a Japanese champion (Yusuke Ogasawara). In Full Bloom will also have its world premiere in Oldenburg. Ronny Sen’s drug drama Cat Sticks, which premiered at the Slamdance festival earlier this year, will have its European premiere in Oldenburg.
Other highlights this year include Jesus shows you the way to the Highway from director Miguel Llanso (Crumbs), Magnetick Pathways from Edgar Pera, Mothers’ Instinct from Belgium filmmaker Olivier Masset-Depasse (Illégal), and Tito, the directorial debut of actress Grace Glowicki, which premiered at South By Southwest.
The 26th Oldenburg Film Festival runs Sept. 11-15.
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