Raindance Film Festival : Rudolf Buitendach’s « Dark Hearts » nominated as « Best International Feature »

Buitendach’s « Dark Hearts« , a pulpy thriller with stacked ensemble cast (featuring X-men star Lucas Till, BBC Copper star Kyle Schmid, silver screen veteran Goran Visnjic and newcomer Sonja Kinski) lands top Festival Honors with Nomination for Best International Film at the legendary Raindance Film Festival.

The “Best International Film” nomination comes just days before the highly-anticipated world premiere of the star-studded independent film ‘Dark Hearts’. The edgy thriller, helmed by Rudolph Buitendach, is set to World Premiere at the Raindance Film Festival this Saturday, September 29th. Originally nominated as “Best U.K. Feature”, Festival Programmers reviewed the film a final time before contacting the filmmakers with a surprising honor: upping the Nomination to “Best International Feature”. Hearts’ Director Buitendach said of the nomination: “A Raindance laurel is an honor and represents a rewarding validation for the passionate efforts of the cast and crew who made ‘Hearts’ a reality… to have a ‘Best International Picture’ nomination to boot is a humbling and thrilling achievement.

2012 marks the 20th year for the Raindance Film Festival. Over the last two decades, Raindance has become one of Europe’s most prestigious international film festivals. Festival Founder Elliot Grove and his team had over 4,000 submissions for the 2012 Festival, 250 of which were selected for the Festival’s lineup. Dark Hearts is one of 18 Nominated Feature Films and competes with five other films in the “Best International” category.

Dark Hearts, with its loaded ensemble cast and a score featuring (among others) DJ Paul Oakenfold and members of « The Who », has garnered a cult following amongst millennials and dedicated fans of the performers. The film stars X-Men star Lucas Till (Paranoia, Wolves, Walk the Line) Kyle Schmid, (star of BBC America’s ‘Copper’, A History of Violence), international star Goran Visnjic (Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, ER, Beginners) and introduces Sonja Kinski, daughter of actress Natassaja Kinski, in her first leading role. Rounding out the ensemble cast are Rachel Blanchard (‘Clueless’, Snakes on a Plane) and Juliet Landau of ‘Buffy’ and ‘Angel’ fame.

The lusty thriller pulses to electrifying musical compilations from some of music’s most prolific artists. The film features an original collaboration between Shirley Manson of « Garbage » and Gabrial McNair of « No Doubt », original compositions from legendary DJ Paul Oakenfold, Richard Strange and Steve Bolton of « The Who ».

« Dark Hearts » marks the directorial feature debut by award-nominated, South African Director Rudolf Buitendach. Named one of the top Directors to watch by the BBC, his short films have played at Cannes, Venice and other premier international film festivals. The trailer he cut for Tom Hardy’s career-launching turn in the movie « Bronson« , caught the eye of « Dark Hearts » Executive Producer Jack Bowyer.

« Dark Hearts » is a sultry thriller set in the mysterious world of underground contemporary Los Angeles: three struggling artists’ lives collide explosively when painter Colson (Schmid) and younger brother Sam (Till) meet musical seductress Fran (Kinski). Colson begins a passionate and forbidden love affair with Fran while his brother looks on. As the brothers fall for the seductive Fran they find themselves drawn into a dangerous and thrilling world. Beset by Fran’s violent tormentor (Visjnic) and the rest of her dark past, her mysterious motives tear the brothers apart as they discover a world of ferocious desire and revenge. Brought to the silver screen from the tightly wound script penned by Christian Piers Betley (Friday Hill, Stranded, 13 Eerie), the picture was lensed entirely on location in Los Angeles, California in June 2011 by twice-Emmy-nominated Cinematographer and Producer Kees Van Oostrum (Gettysberg, Gods and Generals).

Of the film’s exotic and exciting oeuvre, Director Buitendach says, ‘I like films that journey outside of cinematic convention and capture that unquenchable and unyielding quality in the artistic spirit – for me « Dark Hearts »had just this quality’. Buitendach has just returned from wrapping production on his African drama « Where the Road Runs Out » starring Casino Royale star Isaach De Bankole.

« Dark Hearts » as produced through Jack Bowyer Productions, Alexis Varouxakis’s Adrenaline Entertainment, Christian Piers Betley’s Axel Pictures and Kees Van Oostrum’s Black Tulip. The film will World Premiere at the Apollo theater in the West End of London on Saturday, September 29th, 2012 at 8:30pm.

Jack Bowyer Productions is a UK-based producer and distributor of independent film. Principal Jack Bowyer founded the company in 2007. JB is a prolific producer and distributor of independent film; their first film was Wesley Snipes-topper Gallowwalker.

Founded in 2008 by Courtney Lauren Penn and Brandon Burrows, Boundless Pictures is a New York City, Los Angeles and Greenwich, Connecticut-based production company that develops, co-finances and produces independent film. Boundless Pictures’ in-house publicity team is managing Press for « Dark Hearts ».

The Raindance Film Festival is a prominent international independent film festival, famous for premiering Christopher Nolan’s MEMENTO, Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction and The Blair Witch Project. Raindance will run from the 26th of September to the 7th of October in London’s West End at the Apollo Cinema Piccadilly Circus SW1Y 4LR.


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