93-year-old jazz legend Clark Terry is among the few performers ever to have played in both Count Basie’s and Duke Ellington’s bands. Today, Terry continues to attract and cultivate budding talents. This film highlights his friendship with Justin Kauflin, a blind, 23-year-old piano prodigy who suffers from debilitating stage fright. As the clock ticks, we see two friends confront the toughest challenges of their lives.
Prior to directing < Keep on Keepin’ on >, Australian Alan Hicks was a drummer, surfer and former student of jazz legend Clark Terry at William Paterson University near New York City. He began documenting the film, his first feature, as a college student and while traveling the world as a member of Terry’s musician ensemble in the mid-2000’s.
Lenny is a wild and solitary 19-years-old from the projects north of Marseille. She expresses the difficulties of daily life through rap, which is also her way of escaping from it. One evening, when she’s sneaked off to rehearse on an abandoned building site, Lenny runs into Max, a young Congolese women without immigration papers, who is blown away by her voice and the power of her lyrics. From that point on, the two girls form a special bond.
Fred Nicolas has worked as assistant director for numerous directors including Erick Zonca, Arnaud Despleschin, Sandrine Veysset and Marina de Van. He directed the short film < Vivre >(2000), which was selected for the Festival Tous Courts in Aix-en-Provence and elsewhere, and two documentaries, including < Rouge Bandit > about the extremeleft militant Charlie Bauer. < Max & Lenny > is his first feature film.
Yonfan, born in China in 1947, is a director/photographer based in Hong Kong. He made his debut in 1984 with A Certain Romance and became famous with his 1988 film Last Romance. He gained international reputation as he was invited to the Berlin International Film Festival for his 1999 film Bishonen, and his 2001 film Peony Pavilion was selected as one of the ten best movies of the year by Time Magazine.
Eli Marshall is an American composer based in Asia since 2003. He studied at Bard College, the Curtis Institute of Music, the Hamburg Hochschule fur Musik and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. He has taught at the Central Conservatory(Beijing), the Witten/Herdecke University(Germany) and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He has composed film music for Hong Kong directors Ann Hui(The Golden Era, 2014) and Wong Kar-wai(Ashes of Time ? Redux, 2009); with the latter he collaborated with ‘sheng’ virtuoso and music director Wu Tong. His upcoming composition work includes a film score for Hong Kong art film director Clara Law and an album of microtonal works for Chinese instruments.
Raymond Phathanavirangoon is a film producer and a film festival programmer who is currently an official delegate for Cannes Critics’ Week. He acted as a Reading Committee Member for the Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum and was an advisory member of the Asian Film Awards. Previously he served as international programmer for the Toronto Film Festival and the Toronto Reel Asian Film Festival, as well as Programme Consultant for the Hong Kong Film Festival. He has served as jury at festivals such as Berlin, Sarajevo, Vladivostok and others. His producing credits include Kurosawa Kiyoshi’s Tokyo Sonata(2008), Pang Ho-cheung’s Dream Home(2010), Penek Ratanaruang’s Headsh ot(2011) and Pang Ho-cheung’s Aberdeen(2014).
She started her career with winning a special contest for KBS TV actress. After restless activity in public television dramas and films, she won best actress award for Kim Ki-duk’s Pieta in Fantasporto: Oporto International Film Festival, 2013. At same year, she actively worked as public ambassador for Dajeong Film Awards in Korean. Recently, she took leading role in Venus Talk with Uhm Jung-hwa and Moon So-ri, showing off her pleasant and mature acting ability. She is obviously one of best Korean actress who actively working in both TV and film screen.
Director Min Kyu-dong made a brilliant debut in 1999 with his first feature film Memento ori, which gave him a Rookie of the Year in Baeksang Art Awards. He is one of representative Korean directors who achieved success in terms of both criticism and box office record. In 2015, his seventh feature film The Treacherous has released and since now director Min directed 7 feature films including All For Love(2005), Antique(2008), In My End is My Beginning(2009), The Last Blossom(2011) and All About My Wife(2012).