The Chandler International Film Festival (CIFF) kicked off Saturday night and continues through Sunday, Jan. 29. Known as one of the fastest-growing film festivals in Arizona, CIFF will feature over 120 films from more than 35 countries this week.
This year’s festival features a diverse range of international films and industry workshops in Chandler at LOOK Dine-In Cinema,1 W. Chandler Blvd.
On Sunday, Rob Schneider showed up during a red carpet event prior to the screening of his recent film, “Daddy Daughter Trip.” The Emmy-nominated actor and Scottsdale resident spoke with those in attendance before they watched his heart-warming family adventure/comedy, filmed entirely in Arizona. It's the story of a second grader’s dream of a fun-filled spring break vacation her family can't afford and all the fun and mayhem that ensues as her father makes sure she gets the adventure of a lifetime.
“My wife Patricia and I chose to make the great state of Arizona our home to raise our family not just for its incredible natural majesty and beauty, but also for all that it has to offer,” explained Schneider. “Our company, Mandalini Films, is now based in Scottsdale and we are very proud of this film that is truly a postcard for the state’s picturesque cinematic locations. We are grateful to the people of Arizona for their support and generosity of spirit in what we hope is the first of many family-friendly films we want to make right here in our new home."
He continued telling the audience that Arizona does not offer tax incentives for movies to be filmed in the Grand Canyon State, so that's why so many are currently being made in New Mexico.
"I said I wanted to film here because I live here. You guys are my neighbors and Arizona is my home forever. I will be starting a movie and acting class right here (in the Valley)," Schneider continued. "I made this movie for me during the pandemic and you see the love there (between Schneider and his now 10-year-old daughter, Miranda Scarlett Schneider) and I feel it's important to see Latinos in this film because my wife is Hispanic (Adam Sandler's wife, Jackie Sandler, plays Schneider's wife in the film)."
Film industry professionals can learn about filming in Arizona and learn about the resources offered by the Arizona Film Commission on Friday, Jan. 27. That's when a special Arizona-focused workshop hosted by Ramsay Wharton, program manager for the Arizona Commerce Authority’s Film & Digital Media program, will take place at the festival.
Each of these featured movies will be making its Arizona premiere at the festival this week, including: “Last Film Show,” directed by Pan Nalin, which has been selected as India’s official entry to The Oscars this year; “The Beast Below,” also known as “LEIO,” directed by Chalit Krileadmongkon; “Neon Bleed” directed by John Capone; “Dying to Sleep,” directed by Paris Dylan; “It’s Spring,” by Roman Musheghyan; “Bobcat Moretti,” directed by Rob Margolies; “Peacemaker,” directed by Maximilian Osterholz; “De Vuelta a Casa,” directed by Darius Stevens Wilhere; and “Guilt,” directed by Tom Proctor.
Local Arizona selected films include “Reflect,” shot in Sedona and directed by Dana Beth Kippel; “ID,” directed by Kiran Kondamadugula based in Chandler; “The Monster Inside Me,” directed by Tony C. Silva based in Phoenix; “Walkout,” directed by Rob Smat based in Phoenix; and “Eyes Upon Waking,” directed by Timothy Zwica based in Tucson.
Tickets for CIFF begin at $15 for a single show and $220 for an entire festival event pass. To view the event schedule and to purchase tickets, visit chandlerfilmfestival.com.