Montclair Film Festival Hires Festival Directors Raphaela Neihausen and Thom Powers

Montclair Film Festival Media Contact
Jillian Nannery, The TASC Group
(646) 723-4344

Montclair Film Festival Hires Festival Directors Raphaela Neihausen and Thom Powers; Announcement Made at Benefit Event with Stephen Colbert

Inaugural Festival Slated for May 2-6, 2012 to Include Comedy Film Competition

December 2, 2011 – Montclair, NJ – The Montclair Film Festival announced the appointment of Raphaela Neihausen and Thom Powers as festival directors to lead programming for the inaugural five-day event on May 2-6, 2012. The announcement was made at a benefit featuring Stephen Colbert in conversation with writer Jonathan Alter at The Wellmont Theater that raised over $100,000 for the festival in one night.

Neihausen and Powers are well-established in the festival world as directors of the seven-year-old documentary series Stranger Than Fiction and the two-year-old DOC NYC festival, both based at IFC Center in Manhattan. “Montclair gives us an exciting opportunity to move beyond our roots in documentary and program in other genres,” said Powers, who also programs for the Toronto International Film Festival where he’s hosted New Jersey talent such as Bruce Springsteen and Chris Rock.

“The timing of Montclair in spring makes a nice complement to our other work in the fall,”
said Neihausen. “The festival has assembled an impressive Board of Directors that reflects the community’s diversity and influence. We think the film world will fall in love with Montclair the way we have.”

The Montclair Film Festival has been in development for some two years, under the guidance of a Board of Directors that includes Bob Feinberg, general counsel of WNET; Daniel Battsek, President of National Geographic Films; Kahane Corn Cooperman, co-executive producer of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and Jeff Cooperman, managing producer of The Colbert Report. The organization has run several successful one-off events including free outdoor screenings and signed on Comedy Central as a festival sponsor.

“After months of searching for the right leadership, we’re thrilled to bring aboard Thom and Raphaela,” said Feinberg, the festival board chairman. “They bring a fresh vision for Montclair and have a great track record for creating successful film events.”

The May festival will include around 25 feature films representing fiction, documentary and international content. “Given the high concentration of comedy writers who live here, humor will be a strong component of the festival,” said Powers. The festival will showcase a competition for comedy feature films.

Montclair Film Festival

Montclair Film Festival (MFF) is a non-profit, tax exempt, community-based organization that is producing film-centered events on a year round basis and will produce a multi-day, multi-venue Film Festival in and around Montclair in May 2012. Founded in early 2010, MFF’s mission is to nurture and showcase the talents of filmmakers from around the world, while creating a cultural focal point for the Township of Montclair that unites, empowers, educates and celebrates our diverse heritage and robust artistic community.