Founded in 1994 by filmmakers Todd Phillips
, Old School
) and Andrew Gurland, the New York Underground Film Festival
was an annual event that occurred each March at Anthology Film Archives
in New York City
from 1994 through 2008. After Phillips and Gurland turned the festival over to programmer Ed Halter (now an author and occasional critic for the Village Voice
), it became noted for documentary
and experimental film
programming, and occasionally courted controversy, particularly in its early years.
Some of these have included: premiering the North American Man/Boy Love Association
(NAMBLA) documentary, Men Who Love Boys
, in 1994; premiering a film in 1995 that accused Quentin Tarantino
of plagiarism; being protested by Reverend Fred Phelps
in 2002 (apparently for not choosing to show a film about Phelps); and premiering a theatrical version of Brad Neely's Harry Potter
parody Wizard People, Dear Reader
, which eventually led to action by Warner Brothers
to suppress future theatrical performances of the work.
Nevertheless, though the festival has remained a small affair, and has little value as a market, its programming has attained a certain prestige, especially among younger or more experimental filmmakers.
In February 2008 the festival organizers announced that, instead of passing on the torch to a younger generation - as has been the tradition, the 15th festival would be the last. Instead two of the former organizers intend to create a new festival under the name... Read More