Friday, December 8, 2023

Animation First!


New York, NY (December 8, 2023) — The French Institute Alliance Française announces the program for the seventh annual Animation First, the only U.S. festival dedicated to showcasing the legacy and innovation of Francophone animation. FIAF is thrilled to celebrate the seventh edition of its popular festival, which expands this year from a three-day to a six-day festival due to increased popularity, running from Tuesday, January 23 through Sunday, January 28.

This year's festival presents seven feature-length films (including three U.S. and three New York premieres), six short film programs, a "First Look" presentation, filmmaker talks, the annual Student Short Film Competition, and much more. New for 2024 will be the premiere of an inaugural limited-edition Animation First series poster, a juried competition of the New Francophone shorts, and a special spotlight on Québécois animated cinema. Animation First programmers are Delphine Selles-Alvarez, FIAF Film Curator, and Chloé Dheu, FIAF Film Coordinator. “This year’s festival celebrates the power of animation to explore thought-provoking subjects —as with the films, When Adam ChangesThe Siren, and Mars Express—and magnificent worlds such as those showcased in Sirocco and the Kingdom of Air Streams, and the new VR experience, Gaudi, the Atelier of the Divine, amongst others, Selles-Alvarez explains. "With the inclusion of the inaugural limited-edition poster by illustrator Peter de Sève, FIAF is highlighting its mission to celebrate animation as a cinematic art that’s not just a genre for young audiences."

The festival opens with the New York premiere of director Jérémie Périn’s futuristic sci-fi film noir Mars Express, a prescient narrative that sparks the current conversation about AI anxiety through pop culture references and hard-boiled themes. The centerpiece film is the New York premiere of Benoît Chieux’s Sirocco and the Kingdom of Air Streams, a surreal tale of two sisters trapped in the world of their storybook. The closing night film is the U.S. premiere of Sepideh Farsi and Zaven Najjar's The Siren, a powerfully visceral odyssey that follows a 14-year-old navigating the aftermath of an Iraqi missile strike in 1980 Abadan. Additional features include Pablo Berger’s popular Spanish-French film Robot Dreams, the New York premiere of filmmakers Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli’s Nina and the Hedgehog's Secret; the U.S. premiere of Cameroonian directors Daniel Minlo and Cyrille Masso’s The Sacred Cave, and the U.S. premiere of Quebec filmmaker Joël Vaudreuil’s new film, When Adam Changes. The festival’s six short film programs include Best of Annecy, Best of Annecy WTF, New Francophone Shorts 1 and 2, National Film Board of Canada Shorts, and Cinémathèque Québécoise.

New for 2024 will be the premiere of an inaugural limited-edition Animation First series poster. FIAF is excited to have commissioned illustrator Peter de Sève to create the first Animation First poster, which will be printed in limited-edition by Posteritati. For the first time, Animation First will have a juried competition for its New Francophone Shorts program. The jury for the New Francophone Shorts program will be made up of industry professionals including film curator Marco de Blois, director and animator Candy Kugel, and illustrator Marcos Chin. Also new for 2024, FIAF is pleased to present Animation Speak/Easy. For this special gathering, three guest artists will be asked to share an animated short that inspires them, after which an audience discussion will ensue. This year's festival will also bring a focus on Québécois animation. The Québécois programs will include Montreal filmmaker Joël Vaudreuil's U.S. premiere of When Adam Changes, a talk with Montreal based filmmaker Janet Perlman, and two shorts programs: National Film Board of Canada Shorts and Cinémathèque Québécoise. Returning for the 2024 festival will be the popular Animation Jam, the 48-hour student exercise to complete an animation sequence, and free AR/VR experiences in the FIAF Library including the U.S. premiere of Gaudi, the Atelier of the Divine and Plastisapiens, with more titles to be added.


About Animation First

Created in 2018, Animation First is the only film festival in the United States dedicated to French animation.

Today, France is Europe’s largest producer and the world’s third-largest exporter of animated film. Since its early beginnings in the late 19th century when Émile Reynaud projected his Pantomimes Lumineuses at the Musée Grevin in Paris, the French animation industry has inspired filmmakers and artists. Their resulting experiments with puppets, cutouts, and stop motion, have been instrumental in inventing important techniques in cinema. Renowned for its stylistic innovation and an approach that integrates artisanal methods with technological ingenuity, French animation continues to garner awards worldwide and spans a diversity of genres. It is responsible for a variety of films from independent art-house successes such as Sylvain Chomet’s The Triplets of Belleville and Michael Dudok de Wit’s The Red Turtle to those for mature audiences like Persepolis and I Lost My Body to the Franco-American Despicable Me franchise.

Beyond films, France has carved out an important space in animated TV programs, web series, video games, and the rapidly developing fields of virtual reality and new technologies.


AFI AWARDS 2023 HONOREES ANNOUNCED Honorees To Be Celebrated At Private Luncheon On January 12, 2024



Honorees To Be Celebrated At Private Luncheon On January 12, 2024


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Los Angeles, CA, December 7, 2023 – The American Film Institute (AFI) announced today the recipients of AFI AWARDS 2023. AFI AWARDS honorees include 10 outstanding motion pictures and 10 outstanding TV programs deemed culturally and artistically representative of this year’s most significant achievements in the art of the moving image.  



























“As our nation and our world continue to navigate difficult times, AFI is honored to shine a proper light upon these works of art that lift us up and, ultimately, lead us to empathy,” said Bob Gazzale, AFI President and CEO. “That we do so without competition is AFI’s hallmark, and we are proud to gather this community of artists together – as one – to celebrate their extraordinary contributions to our time.”


Honorees will gather on Friday, January 12, 2024, for recognition at the annual AFI AWARDS private luncheon at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills — an event favored by the entertainment community for its informal intimacy and its inclusive acknowledgement of excellence. 


FIJI Water is returning as the Official Water Sponsor for the event. The No. 1 premium imported water bottle brand in the U.S. will keep luncheon honorees and attendees hydrated with Earth's Finest, iconic 500mL bottles made from 100% recycled material (rPET). This, along with the 330mL, is part of the brand's effort to shift the entire portfolio to recycled plastic bottles. FIJI Water is excited to help AFI celebrate entertainment’s past year of performance and production milestones.


AFI AWARDS celebrates film and television arts’ collaborative nature and is the only national program that honors creative teams as a whole, recognizing those in front of and behind the camera. All of the honored works advance the art of the moving image, inspire audiences and artists alike and enhance the rich cultural heritage of America’s art form. When placed in a historical context, these stories provide a complex and rich visual record of our modern world. 


AFI AWARDS selections are made through a jury process where AFI Trustees, artists, critics and scholars determine the year’s most outstanding achievements and provide artistic and cultural context for the selection of each honoree. 


This year’s juries — one for motion pictures and one for television — included artists Paris Barclay, Sarah Broshar, David Chase, Carol Leifer, Gina Prince-Bythewood and Joe Weisberg; scholars Mark Harris, Leonard Maltin and more from Syracuse University, the University of Southern California and the University of Texas at Austin; members of the AFI Board of Trustees; critics Ann Hornaday, Mary McNamara, Janet Maslin, Peter Travers and others from The New Yorker, TV Guide and more. The juries were chaired by AFI Board of Trustees member Jeanine Basinger (Chair Emerita and Founder of the Film Studies Department, Wesleyan University) and AFI Board of Trustees Vice Chair Richard Frank (former Chairman of Walt Disney Television, President of Walt Disney Studios, President of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences).


The 2023 recipients join a distinguished group of previous AFI AWARDS honorees whose works define the art form and contribute to our rich cultural legacy. View past AFI AWARDS honorees.


About the American Film Institute (AFI)

The American Film Institute (AFI) is a nonprofit organization with a mandate to champion the moving image as an art form. Established in 1967, AFI launched the first comprehensive history of American film and sparked the movement for film preservation in the United States. In 1969, AFI opened the doors of the AFI Conservatory, a graduate-level program to train narrative filmmakers. The Conservatory, which counts Deniese Davis, Affonso Gonçalves, Susannah Grant, Matthew Libatique, David Lynch, Melina Matsoukas and Rachel Morrison as Alumni, is ranked the #1 film school in America. AFI’s enduring traditions include the AFI Life Achievement Award, which honors the masters for work that has stood the test of time; AFI AWARDS, which celebrates the creative ensembles of the most outstanding screen stories of the year; and scholarly efforts such as the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and the AFI Archive that preserve film history for future generations. AFI exhibition programs include AFI FEST and year-round exhibition at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Maryland. AFI Movie Club is a destination for movie lovers from around the world to celebrate and engage with the art form every day. Other pioneering programs include workshops aimed at increasing diversity in the storytelling community, including AFI DWW+ and the AFI Cinematography Intensive for WomenRead about all of these programs and more at AFI.comand follow us on social media at and


From the Screenwriter of The Ring & The Ring 2 THE GHOST STATION The Horror-Mystery Based on the Korean Urban Legend Debuts on Digital, Blu-ray™ & DVD December 19




From the Screenwriter of The Ring & The Ring 2



The Horror-Mystery Based on the Korean Urban Legend

Debuts on Digital, Blu-ray & DVD December 19



PLANO, TEXAS (December 6, 2023) – While covering an accident, a young reporter learns that her source was dead prior to their interview. As more mysterious deaths occur, she and her partner dig deeper into the case, eventually coming face to face with a horrifying truth in THE GHOST STATIONdebuting on digital, Blu-ray and DVD December 19 from Well Go USA Entertainment.  Directed by JEONG Yong-Ki (The Doll MasterOnce Upon a Time) from a screenplay by TAKAHASHI Hiroshi (The RingThe Ring 2)and LEE So-Young (Robot Sound), THE GHOST STATION stars KIM Bo-Ra (Ghost Mansion), KIM Jae-Hyun (“Love You as the World Ends”), and SHIN So-Yul (A Violent Prosecutor). 



After a young reporter covers a suspicious accident, she learns from police that her source was supposedly already dead at the time of their interview. As more mysterious deaths occur, she and her partner dig deeper into the case and come face to face with a horrifying truth.


Country of Origin:    South Korea


THE GHOST STATION has a runtime of approximately 81 minutes and is not rated.


Watch the Official U.S. Trailer:  


Additional materials (including box art) will be available at:


Be sure to use #TheGhostStation and tag@WellGoUSA on all platforms when socializing your coverage. For more information, please visit:   




Catalog #: WGU03636B

Catalog #: WGU03635D

UPC Code: 810348036360

UPC Code: 810348036353

Pre-Order Date: 11/14/23

Pre-Order Date: 11/14/23

SLP: $29.98

SLP: $19.99

Audio: DTS HDMA 5.1 / Stereo

Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital / 2.0 Stereo



Well Go USA Entertainment ( is an Oscar®-nominated theatrical and home entertainment distribution label that specializes in bringing the best in action, genre and independent films from the U.S. and around the world to North America. Well Go titles can be seen across a variety of platforms, including in theaters, on-demand, via DVD and Blu-ray and on television, as well as on mobile and connected devices through martial arts action channel Hi-YAH! ( Well Go USA Entertainment’s corporate headquarters is in Plano, Texas, with an additional office in Taiwan.

Max Releases Brand Spot Showcasing New Footage From Expansive 2024 HBO And Max Original Programming Lineup


Max Releases Brand Spot Showcasing New Footage From Expansive 2024 HBO And Max Original Programming Lineup
Spot Features Never-Before-Seen Footage From Anticipated Series And Documentaries Including “The Sympathizer,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Industry,” “Jerrod Carmichael: Reality Show,” “The Jinx – Part Two,” “My Brilliant Friend,” “Elizabeth,” “The Franchise,” “The Penguin,” “Pretty Little Liars: Summer School,” “Tokyo Vice,” And “Hacks”  
Spot Includes Special First-Look Footage Of The 2025 Max Original Series “Welcome To Derry (working title)”
Max has released a new brand spot featuring highly anticipated HBO and Max Originals coming in 2024 following the reveal of the season two teaser for HBO Original HOUSE OF THE DRAGON at CCXP23. The spot affirms why Max is the one to watch, with never-before-seen footage from new HBO Originals premiering next year, including the limited series THE SYMPATHIZER, starring Hoa Xuande, Fred Nguyen Khan, Toan Le, Ky Duyen, with Sandra Oh, and star and executive producer Robert Downey Jr., who plays multiple roles; unscripted comedy series JERROD CARMICHAEL: REALITY SHOW, and comedy series THE FRANCHISE, along with the new Max Original series THE PENGUIN, from Warner Bros. Television and DC Studios starring Colin Farrell.

The spot also features first looks at returning fan-favorite HBO Originals like comedy series CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM, season three of INDUSTRY, the fourth and final season of MY BRILLIANT FRIEND, and the second installment of the HBO documentary series THE JINX, a six-episode continuation of the hit 2015 series. Returning Max Originals highlighted in the spot include TOKYO VICEand the Emmy®-winning comedy HACKS.

The spot is rounded out by an extraordinary lineup of 2024 programming, including season two of HBO Original HOUSE OF THE DRAGON, new HBO Original TRUE DETECTIVE: NIGHT COUNTRY, starring Academy Award®-winning and Emmy®-nominated Jodie Foster and Kali Reis, HBO Original limited series THE REGIME, starring Academy Award®-winner Kate Winslet, and the returning HBO Original comedy series SOMEBODY SOMEWHERE. The spot also features the new Max Original series CONAN O’BRIEN MUST GO and the returning Max Original series PRETTY LITTLE LIARS: SUMMER SCHOOL and THE SEX LIVES OF COLLEGE GIRLS.

Finally, the spot gives special mention to the eagerly awaited returns of the HBO Original series THE LAST OF US, which had the biggest debut season in HBO's history, THE WHITE LOTUS, EUPHORIA and the Max Original series AND JUST LIKE THAT…, all coming in 2025, along with a first look at the 2025 Max Original series WELCOME TO DERRY (working title).
Below is a full list of all titles showcased in the new Max brand spot:
*Indicates a new title debuting in 2024

And Just Like That... (Max Original Comedy Series) 
*Conan O’Brien Must Go (Max Original International Travel Series) 
Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO Original Comedy Series)
*Elizabeth (HBO Original Documentary)
Euphoria (HBO Original Drama Series) 
*The Franchise (HBO Original Comedy Series) 
Hacks (Max Original Comedy Series)
House of the Dragon (HBO Original Drama Series)
Industry (HBO Original Drama Series) 
*Jerrod Carmichael: Reality Show (HBO Original Unscripted Comedy Series) 
The Jinx – Part Two (HBO Original Documentary Series) 
The Last of Us (HBO Original Drama Series) 
My Brilliant Friend (HBO Original Drama Series) 
*The Penguin (Max Original Drama Series) 
Pretty Little Liars: Summer School (Max Original Drama Series)
*The Regime (HBO Original Limited Series) 
The Sex Lives of College Girls (Max Original Comedy Series) 
Somebody Somewhere (HBO Original Comedy Series) 
*The Sympathizer (HBO Original Limited Series) 
Tokyo Vice (Max Original Drama Series)
*True Detective: Night Country (HBO Original Drama Series) 
Welcome To Derry (Working Title) (Max Original Drama Series) 
The White Lotus (HBO Original Drama Series)