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SnagFilms Launches Online Film Fest 'Snag the Vote 2012'

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood August 23, 2012 at 5:00AM

What better time than presidential election season for online indie distributor SnagFilms to launch "Snag the Vote 2012," a free online film festival running through Election Day? The fest will feature more than 100 documentaries highlighting ten key issues defining the 2012 presidential election, from Economy and Jobs and Health Care to Immigration, the Environment and National Security.

More than 1800 arrests were made during protests around the Republican National Convention in New York City, among them a film crew.  "The After Party" has appearances by Andre ‘3000’, Barak Obama, twins Jenna and Barbara Pierce Bush, Hillary Clinton, and Al Sharpton – and a warrantless police spying operation uncovered by the civil rights law suit that resulted from the crew’s arrest. The film examines the thin line between security and freedom in an era of domestic surveillance, and premieres August 23.

With the Economy leading national polls as voters’ primary concern, it is no wonder that "Heist: Who Stole the American Dream?" is stunning worldwide audiences.  An expose of the complex story behind the worldwide economic collapse, “Heist,” writes the New York Times, “has the virtue of taking the long view of a crisis that recent films like ‘Inside Job’ and ‘Too Big to Fail’ have only sketchily explored. It makes a strong case that government regulation is essential for democracy to flourish.” The film comes from its theatrical run to premiere in a Snag Social Screening™ in October.

The key issue of National Security is headlined by “S.O.S. State of Security,” featuring former counter terrorism czar Richard Clarke, who famously warned the Bush Administration about the dangers of Al Qaeda, and yet took responsibility for not preventing the attack on 9/11. Michele Ohayon’s film explores current threats to American democracy and assesses our readiness to thwart attacks in the future. “S.O.S.: State of Security” premieres in a Snag Social Screening™ in October.

“Harvest of Empire,” based on journalist Juan Gonzalez book of the same name, connects the history of U.S. foreign policy in Latin America to the immigration crisis now faced by the United States. “Harvest of Empire” reconstructs an under-reported foreign affairs story that has more impact on the lives of border-state Americans than many of the conflicts frequently in the headlines from elsewhere in the world.  “Harvest of Empire” premieres in a Snag Social Screening™ in October.

SnagFilms is founded on the belief that art is part of the political process. That’s why we’re proud to feature the first release of Tribeca Film Festival and critical-favorite “Let Fury Have the Hour” as a part of “Snag the Vote 2012.”  This film, written and directed by author and artist Antonino D’Ambrosio, chronicles how a generation of visual artists, musicians, writers, and activists used “creative response” to foment social change and activate youth participation in the politics. “Let Fury Have the Hour” features Eve Ensler, Chuck D, John Sayles, Billy Bragg, Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello and Shepard Fairey. The film’s Snag Social Screening™ is in October.

Artist Shepard Fairey -- who is responsible for the iconic 2008 Obama "Hope" poster -- has also created a series of six posters for "Snag the Vote 2012," inspired by an image from author/filmmaker Antonino D'Ambrosio's "Let Fury Have the Hour," one festival premiere.

This article is related to: News, Festivals, Festivals, Independents, Politics

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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.