It’s a packed cinematic week for Timur Musabay and J.Lee Williams during the Guanajuato International Film Festival held in two of Mexico’s art and cultural hot spots: San Miguel Allende and Guanajuato City. Occupied was invited to help celebrate Canada’s 150 commemoration by representing the nation’s VR front.
Chosen as the Spotlight Country this year, Canadian’s best and newly emerging talents are commended in the 150 film screenings selected across the country from varying institutes like Telefilm or the Vancouver Film School and distinctive movie festivals from The Toronto International Film Festival to the Calgary Underground Film Festival. The diversity of film directors includes indie favorite Sarah Polly; critically acclaimed, psychological-thriller Director Denis Villeneuve; to the up and coming Kevan Funk. With a whole spectrum of Canadian film talent reached, it was no surprise that GIFF had their sights on the country’s virtual reality arena. Occupied being given the honored seat.
The week for Musabay and J.Lee begins in the colonial-preserved city of San Miguel Allende, an international art hub attracting all sorts of creatives from visual artists to writers, and of course, filmmakers. A perfect vibrant backdrop, not only to screen Canada In A Day by Trish Dolman with Sr. Pierre Alarie—the Canadian Ambassador for Mexico, but to kick it with film enthusiasts eager to learn more about VR.
After an instant immersion into the lively creative scene, they were off to the hilly and winding streets of Guanajuato city. A place where the pair got a taste of GIFF’s unique programming. Amongst the living and the dead, J.Lee and Musabay sat back to view The Brood by Canada’s own David Cronenberg in a cemetery! Soon after, and just as flavorful, the two were slotted to screen Occupied projects: Vice’s Cut-Off, Technolust and The Holy City Doc.
In the remaining days left, the challenge of tackling those inclining streets were dodged, thanks to their fattened schedule, listing of keynotes they led and joined called Canada and Mexico Bilateral—promoting, and covering the logistics of co-productions between Canada and Mexico—and “In The Eyes of J.Lee.”