A scene from “Happy,” a short film directed by Laura Rindlisbacher. COURTESY HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Renee King Sonnen with Frosty in “Rowdy Girl,” a documentary directed by Jason Goldman. COURTESY HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
A scene from “Wilding,” a documentary directed by David Allen. COURTESY HAMPTONS INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Created in 2012, the Compassion, Justice & Animal Rights program at the Hamptons International Film Festival, which runs October 5 to 12, combines animal advocacy, environmental and social justice issues, providing a platform for filmmakers to share meaningful information, stories of inspiration and tools for creating a safe and humane world for animals. For tickets, visit hamptonsfilmfest.org.
Here’s what’s screening this year:
“Rowdy Girl,” U.S. Premiere, Directed by Jason Goldman (USA), 2023
Unable to come to terms with the cruelty of animal agriculture, former Texas cattle rancher Renee King-Sonnen goes vegan, transforming her husband’s beef operation into an animal sanctuary. When their story goes viral, she realizes her true calling: helping farmers transition to a more sustainable and financially-viable, plant-based agriculture. Goldman’s film is an honest and compelling study challenging the normalized violence against animals within food culture and showcases the inspiring work of an activist building common ground between farmers and vegans in a shared mission of compassion and sustainability. Screens Monday, October 9, 11:30 a.m. UA East Hampton; Wednesday, October 11, 8:15 p.m. UA East Hampton. Renee King Sonnen will be in attendance for both screenings.
“Happy,” (Short Film), U.S. Premiere, Directed by Laura Rindlisbacher (UK), 2023
Happy the elephant was captured as a baby and has been confined for the past 40 years. A historic court case examines the question: Is she also a person? Precedes “Rowdy Girl” screenings. Elizabeth Stein, lead attorney for the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP), who is featured in the film, will be in attendance.
“Wilding,” North American Premiere, Directed by David Allen (UK), 2023
Inspired by Isabella Tree”s captivating best-selling novel, “Wilding” introduces audiences to a young couple who bet on nature for the future of their failing, 400-year-old estate. In daring resistance to entrenched tradition, they take a gamble by ripping down their fences, entrusting the land’s recovery to a motley mix of animals both tame and wild. This pivotal moment marks the inception of a grand experiment, one of Europe's most significant rewilding projects to date. “Wilding” seamlessly combines scientific exploration, natural history, a healthy dose of suspense, and above all, a beacon of optimism. Screens Wednesday, October 11, 4 p.m. UA East Hampton with the filmmaker in attendance for the Q&A.
One fine body…