2018 MWFF Spotlight Award Winner

We are very proud to announce this year’s ‘MWFF Spotlight Feature’ winner is Minding the Gap, directed by Rockford native Bing Liu!

Minding the Gap

“Minding the Gap” is about three young men who bond together to escape volatile families in their Rust Belt hometown. As they face adult responsibilities, unexpected revelations threaten their decade-long friendship.

First-time filmmaker Bing Liu’s documentary Minding the Gap is a coming-of-age saga of three skateboarding friends in their Rust Belt hometown hit hard by decades of recession. In his quest to understand why he and his friends all ran away from home when they were younger, Bing follows 23-year-old Zack as he becomes a father and 17-year-old Keire as he gets his first job. As the film unfolds, Bing is thrust into the middle of Zack’s tumultuous relationship with his girlfriend and Keire’s inner struggles with racial identity and his deceased father. While navigating a complex relationship between his camera and his friends, Bing explores the gap between fathers and sons, between discipline and domestic abuse, and ultimately that precarious chasm between childhood and becoming an adult.

Director’s Biography for Bing Liu

Bing is a Chicago-based director and cinematographer who Variety Magazine listed as one of 10 documentary filmmakers to watch. His 2018 critically acclaimed documentary Minding the Gap has earned over 29 award recognitions since its world premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, where it took home the Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking. He also directed three storylines on America To Me, a 10-hour documentary series from Steve James that examines racial inequities in the U.S. education system, which will air on Starz. Bing was a member of the International Cinematographers Guild for seven years, working alongside master directors of photography including John Toll, Matthew Libatique, and Wally Pfister. Bing is a graduate of Rock Valley College, a 2017 Film Independent Fellow, a Garrett Scott Development Grant recipient, and graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Literature from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Tickets can be purchased online via our FilmFreeway page.

The opening night’s events will begin with our annual Spotlight Winner’s reception at 6pm. The film will begin at 7:15pm and be followed at 9PM by a filmmaker and cast Q&A.

Our second Minding the Gap screening and Q&A will begin at 2pm and precedes our annual regional filmmakers reception and screening.

Our third Minding the Gap screening and Q&A will begin at 4:30pm and will conclude our screenings for the entire 2018 MWFF.

All tickets can be purchased now. Any tickets that do not sell out online will be available for purchase the day of the screening at the Nordlof Center box office beginning at 10:30am.

    We recommend purchasing your tickets in advance online to guarantee a seat.

Hope to see you at the #2018MWFF!

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