By Ray Pride

Mike Plante Named Las Vegas Film Festival “Captain of Strategy”

Las Vegas Film Festival and CineVegas
to Partner on Presenting Films, Comedy,
Independent Video Games and More
2018 Festival to Return to Brenden Theatres and
Palms Casino Resort June 6 – 10
LAS VEGAS (September 21, 2017) – Seasoned film festival programming veteran Mike Plante returns to Las Vegas as Captain of Strategy for the Las Vegas Film Festival, which is partnering with CineVegas to present films, live comedy, independent video games and more. The 2018 Las Vegas Film Festival is scheduled to return to Brenden Theatres and the Palms Casino Resort June 6 – 10.
For nearly 25 years, Plante has worked as a programmer for film festivals, and continues to serve as Senior Programmer for Short Films at the Sundance Film Festival, where he has worked since 2001. No stranger to Las Vegas, Plante also served as the Director of Programming for the CineVegas Film Festival from 2002 to 2009.
Plante has assisted with programming films for the CineVegas Presents section at the Las Vegas Film Festival over the past three years. In this new role with LVFF, Plante will guide the city’s premier film festival into a new era, adding new sections including live comedy as well as independent video games.
“Even from my first programming job in 1993, the landscape of what a film festival looks like has been growing in terms of the types of artists to support, while being innovative in presentation,” said Plante.“CineVegas prided itself on taking risks and connecting unique films with audiences, and we had always tried to have the mania on the screen spill throughout the city. Before it went on hiatus in 2009, we had started exploring art installations, comedy and video games at the Festival.”
“We are proud of CineVegas’ past, but we are strictly focused on the future. While CineVegas pushed the limits of a festival experience years ago, the Las Vegas Film Festival has shown the creativity and vibrant audience that is currently in town. With the LVFF back at the Brenden Theatres and the Palms, the timing is perfect for us to combine efforts for this new vision. CineVegas just needed a little nap,” Plante continued.
Festival leadership will continue to include Milo Kostelecky (President), Robin Greenspun (CineVegas President) and West McDowell (Programming Director).
Submissions for the 2018 Festival will be accepted from October 1, 2017 through January 31, 2018 at
About Las Vegas Film Festival
The Las Vegas Film Festival is a community of filmmakers and film-lovers drawn to the unique, curious and cultivating environment that is Las Vegas. The LVFF pushes the boundaries of cinema, annually presenting work by passionate, rebellious, and wild storytellers to an audience of local and national filmmakers, film lovers, journalists, and film industry representatives. For more information, please email, and find the festival on Facebook.


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“Roger Ebert claimed that the re-editing of The Brown Bunny after Cannes allowed him a difference of opinion so vast that he first called it the worst film in history and eventually gave it a thumbs up. This is both far fetched and an outright lie. The truth is, unlike the many claims that the unfinished film that showed at Cannes was 24 minutes shorter than the finished film, it was only 8 minutes shorter. The running time I filled out on the Cannes submission form was arbitrary. The running time I chose was just a number I liked. I had no idea where in the process I would actually be when I needed to stop cutting to meet the screening deadline. So whatever running time was printed in the program, I promise you, was not the actual running time. And the cuts I made to finish the film after Cannes were not many. I shortened the opening race scene once I was able to do so digitally. After rewatching the last 4 minutes of the film over and over again, somewhere within those 4 minutes, I froze the picture and just ended the film there, cutting out everything after that point, which was about 3 minutes. Originally in the salt flats scene, the motorcycle returned from the white. I removed the return portion of that shot, which seemed too literal. And I cut a scene of me putting on a sweater. That’s pretty much it. Plus the usual frame here, frame there, final tweaks. If you didn’t like the unfinished film at Cannes, you didn’t like the finished film, and vice versa. Roger Ebert made up his story and his premise because after calling my film literally the worst film ever made, he eventually realized it was not in his best interest to be stuck with that mantra. Stuck with a brutal, dismissive review of a film that other, more serious critics eventually felt differently about. He also took attention away from what he actually did at the press screening. It is outrageous that a single critic disrupted a press screening for a film chosen in main competition at such a high profile festival and even more outrageous that Ebert was ever allowed into another screening at Cannes. His ranting, moaning and eventual loud singing happened within the first 20 minutes, completely disrupting and manipulating the press screening of my film. Afterwards, at the first public screening, booing, laughing and hissing started during the open credits, even before the first scene of the film. The public, who had heard and read rumors about the Ebert incident and about me personally, heckled from frame one and never stopped. To make things weirder, I got a record-setting standing ovation from the supporters of the film who were trying to show up the distractors who had been disrupting the film. It was not the cut nor the film itself that drew blood. It was something suspicious about me. Something offensive to certain ideologues.”
~ Vincent Gallo

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