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AFI FEST Red Carpet Day One
Before the lights went down and the projector fired up, AFI FEST Director Christian Gaines welcomed audience members and attending artists to a special opening night.
"I have to admit that it's both a pleasure and a bit of relief to kick things off tonight," he said. "Over the next 10 days, visitors from around the world and thousands of film fans will come to Hollywood to participate in this communal celebration of cinema, to yield to the experience and to honor the artists that make it all possible."
LIONS FOR LAMBS not only represents the beginning of the AFI FEST, but also represents the beginning of a new chapter for United Artists with Tom Cruise and longtime production partner Paula Wagner at the helm.
"This is very much a special evening for us because this is our first film for the new United Artists and our first year anniversary of this new partnership to reinvigorate and brand the future of United Artists," Wagner said.
AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale echoed Wagner's take on the significance of LIONS FOR LAMBS as the festival's Opening Night Gala.
"To open this event with this film and a new era of United Artists is a distinct honor," he said. "We stand in the long shadows of Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin, pioneers all - geniuses who pooled their talent and inspired audiences and artists alike for nearly 90 years. And now, more than ever, we need artists united and we need the movies, because when our days are darkest, the movies shine the brightest."
Finally, LIONS FOR LAMBS director Robert Redford took the stage to officially introduce the film and raise the curtain on the 2007 AFI FEST presented by Audi.
"First, my gratitude to the studio, because taking a chance on a film like this first shot out is commendable," Redford said. "The film is about the consequences and the effects of the last few years in our country, but I think the less said about the film the better. It now belongs to audiences and might provoke some thought and maybe, if we're lucky, even some debate."
(Red Carpet Worthy)
The Red Carpet Worhy Program a international non profit (501c3).
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