Sheila Nevins, President of HBO Documentary Films, at the Athena Film Festival 2015
Sheila Nevins, President of HBO Documentary Films, at the Athena Film Festival 2015
HBO's Nevins Keynotes DOC NYC

(released 11/9/2015)

DOC NYC has in a short period of 6 years garnered much success.  The festival is an Academy qualifying festival for the Documentary Short Subject category and by some accounts, it is being claimed to be the largest documentary film festival in the country.  Its fast start can be credited to its leaders, Executive Director Raphaela Neihausen and Artistic Director Thom Powers.

This year's festival runs November 12-19 at SVA Theatre, Bow Tie Chelsea Cinemas, and the festival flagship, IFC Center.  There will be over 150 films and events including pitch sessions, panels, industry talks, and of course, documentary films.

The festival opens with First Time Filmmaker Day which is aimed at beginners and kicks off with a talk by Oscar-nominated Kirby Dick.  Also on opening day is the Visionaries Tribute, which will honor Barbara Kopple, Frederick Wiseman, Jon Alpert, Kim Longinotto, and Tom Quinn.

Jon Alpert is co-founder and co-executive director of the Downtown Community Television Center in New York.  He will be joined by the President of HBO Documentary Films Sheila Nevins in presenting the world premiere of his latest short, Mariela Castro's March: Cuba's LGBT Revolution.  The film is being released by HBO Documentary Films.  Sheila Nevins will follow up the screening with a keynote conversation and reception at Bow Tie Chelsea Cinemas on Tuesday, November 17.

Other highlights of the festival include Michael Moore's latest Where To Invade Next, Stanley Nelson's The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, showcases by Columbia University, NYU, SVA, and NYFA, and the world premiere of Kurt Vincent's The Lost Arcade.

There's plenty more docs bringing to light the stories of New York and the world during the festival's week long run.  Check the schedule at

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