The Las Cruces International Film Festival (LCIFF) Creative Team has selected THE TIGER HUNTER for its opening night film on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 – 7:00 pm at Allen Theatre Cineport 10.
THE TIGER HUNTER is the story of Sami Malik, a young Indian who travels to 1970s America to become an engineer in order to impress his childhood crush and live up to the legacy of his father—a legendary tiger hunter back home. When Sami’s job falls through, he takes a low-end job and joins a gang of oddball
friends in hopes of convincing his childhood sweetheart that he’s far more successful than he truly is, or perhaps ever could be.
THE TIGER HUNTER stars John Heder (NAPOLEAN DYNAMITE,) Danny Pudi (COMMUNITY,) Karen David (WATERLOO ROAD REUNITED,) and Rizwan Mangi (OUTSOURCED.) All four stars including the writer and director Lena Khan and producer Megha Kadakia will be attending the festival.
Jon Heder became an overnight sensation and gained an instant cult following with his feature film debut in the title role of the offbeat comedy NAPOLEON DYNAMITE. Heder’s endearing portrayal of the somewhat nerdy high schooler who helps his friend Pedro get elected class president was a huge financial success and brought him two MTV Movie Awards, one in the category of Breakthrough Male and a second for Best Musical Performance for his crowd-pleasing election night dance. Heder has also starred opposite Will Ferrell in the hit comedy, BLADES OF GLORY, which took in close to $120 million dollars at the box office. Heder has also starred in films such as MAMA’S BOY opposite Diane Keaton and Jeff Daniels, and in animated films such as SURF’S UP and MONSTER HOUSE.
Danny Pudi has quickly established himself as a highly sought-after actor in film and television. Best known for his breakout role of ‘Abed,’ in the hit comedy COMMUNITY (NBC), Pudi has also established himself through recurring roles in shows such as GREEK and GILMORE GIRLS and starring alongside the likes of Stanley Tucci and Patricia Arquette in films such as LARRY GAYE: RENEGADE MALE FLIGHT ATTENDANT and VIJAY AND I, respectively. Pudi will next be seen returning to his breakout role of ‘Abed,’ in the comedy COMMUNITY, previously on NBC and continuing its life on Yahoo.com. In its first season, COMMUNITY premiered as NBC’s highest rated comedy debut in three and half years and Pudi’s ‘Abed’ quickly emerged as a favorite of both fans and TV Critics alike, earning him a “Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series” nomination at the Critic’s Choice Awards for 2012 and 2013. Daily Variety named him one
of “TV’s Top 10: New Faces for Fall.”
Karen David’s television roles have earned her a diehard fanbase. She played a teacher named Francesca Montoya from WATERLOO ROAD REUNITED, where admirers fell for her compelling performance. She has also starred in a two-part special of ABC’s hit crime drama CASTLE, which gained the highest ratings for the show. She has played alongside Kiefer Sutherland in the pilot episode of TOUCH, which was a huge success and debuted in American to 12.5 million viewers. Aside from a flourishing screen career in films such as RED LIGHTS with Robert DeNiro, David is now set to star in ABC’s much-lauded upcoming musical-comedy GALAVANT.
Rizwan Manji is best known for his role in the NBC sitcom OUTSOURCED. He has recurring roles in hit television shows, including PRIVILEGED, BETTER OFF TED, 24 and many others. Manji has also been featured as a guest star on shows such as GLEE and TNT’s HAWTHORNE.
On the big screen, Manji has worked with director Mike Nicols and Tom Hanks in CHARLIE WILSON’S WAR, with director Martin Scorsese in THE WOLF OF WALL STREET with Leonardo DiCaprio, and with director Larry Charles on THE DICTATOR with Sasha Baron Cohen.
A writer and director, Lena Khan gained experience at companies like Participant Media (SYRIANA, THE KITE RUNNER) before focusing on directing her own work. After graduating summa cum laude from UCLA with degrees in political science and history, Lena entered the prestigious UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television. Lena worked in development for several years while honing her directing skills by directing commercials, short films, and music videos for international artists. Lena’s videos have been broadcast on TV across the world; been covered by media outlets such as the New York Times, Guardian, and USA
Today; and received over 30 million hits on YouTube. Lena’s debut feature, THE TIGER HUNTER, is now garnering several Grand Jury words across the festival circuit. Lena is now working on her second feature film as well as a TV show.
The Las Cruces International Film Festival presented by New Mexico State University will be held March 8 – 12, 2017 in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The Las Cruces International Film Festival aims to bring the best of international cinema to the thriving film community of Las Cruces, NM. With an eye towards connecting filmmakers with diverse and eager audiences, the LCIFF will feature workshops, exhilarating after parties, and unparalleled access to some of the most exciting venues in Las Cruces. Film submittals, tickets and general information may be viewed at www.LCIFFEST.com.