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A Rollicking DIFF Preview With James Faust

With more than 140 films to talk about, of course this podcast started with talk about cats and bad backs and Texas Tech.
Faust is the artistic director of the Dallas International Film Festival.

James Faust has spent the last year watching 400 features and short films, which he and his team winnowed down to the 145 films that will run from April 25 to May 2 as part of the Dallas International Film Festival. Last year, DIFF made its triumphant post-COVID return to the Violet Crown theater in the West Village. But this year has an even more pronounced feeling of what Faust described as “we’re back-ness,” which includes major premieres, opening night at the Majestic Theater, and a Texas music showcase at the Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff.

We met James at DIFF sponsor Four Corners Brewing to chat about this year’s edition of DIFF. Below the player, I’ve included some more information about the films we discussed..

Dude Perfect: A Very Long Shot kicks the festival off at the Majestic. It’s more family-focused than DIFF’s programming in the past, so Faust expects kids and their parents to pack into the theater to watch the ESPN documentary. More info here.

All I Ever Wanted is about Greivis Vasquez, a seven-year NBA player who spent time with the Toronto Raptors and Brooklyn Nets before suffering a career-ending injury. It screens April 28 at 7:15 p.m.

Sing Sing sounds incredible. Faust said it received the longest standing ovation he’s seen at the Toronto International Film Festival, which he’s attended 17 times. It also won the audience prize at South by Southwest. Filmmakers Greg Kwedar and Clint Bentley are both Dallas natives, and they’re bringing the audience favorite home to DIFF. It’s about a theater group at the prison of the same name and a man who shouldn’t be there. It screens May 2, 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

Print It Black is ABC News’ documentary feature, focusing on the a journalist at the Uvalde Leader-News in the wake of the shooting at Robb Elementary. This is its world premiere, and the head of ABC News will be present. Showtime is on April 28 at 1 p.m.

Unlikely Allies is another documentary that explores how Charles Koch and far-right U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, teamed with Democratic Sen. Cory Booker as well as Alicia Keys, Van Jones, and Snoop Dogg to pass landmark legislation that reformed the country’s criminal justice system. April 27 at 2 p.m. and April 28 at 9:45 p.m.

You’ll want to park it at the Texas Theatre on the afternoon and evening of Saturday, April 27. Texas Music Revolution kicks things off at 4 p.m., which chronicles a beloved country music festival in McKinney. The documentary Bastards of Soul, about the band of the same name, bookends the day with a 7 p.m. screening. Head here for more information.

The Dead Don’t Hurt is Viggo Mortensen’s violent Western, which is having its U.S. premiere at DIFF at 4:30 p.m. on April 27. A companion piece, of sorts, is Harsh Treatment, which Faust describes as a “bumbling violent Western.” That one screens on April 26 at 9:45 p.m. and April 30 at 9:30 p.m.


Matt Goodman

Matt Goodman

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Matt Goodman is the online editorial director for D Magazine. He's written about a surgeon who killed, a man who…