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Joe Mantegna will be honored by LAIFAFEST

Respect: Joe Mantegna will be honored at "The Sixth Annual Los Angeles Italian Film Awards" (LAIFAFEST 2004), which will be held on April 20-24, 2004, at the Arclight Cinemas in Hollywood. Mr. Mantegna  will be presented with the  LAIFA 2004 Life Time Achievement, festival Director Luigi Campanile announced today.

Chicago native Joe Mantegna has a strong background in both theater and film. After making his Broadway debut in Stephen Schwartz's musical of Studs Terkel's Working, Joe was awarded the Tony and Joseph Jefferson Award for his acclaimed performance as cynical real-estate agent Richard Roma in David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross. 

Joe made his feature film debut in 1985 as the womanizing dentist in Frank Perry's Compromising Positions, based on Susan Isaacs1 best-seller. His early films include co-starring roles in The Money Pit, Weeds and Suspect. He also starred in the critically acclaimed David Mamet films House of Games (now a cult classic) and Things Change , for which he and co-star Don Ameche both received the coveted Best Actor Award at the Venice Film Festival. In 1991, Joe starred in the highly praised police thriller, Homicide. 

Joe has also starred in Woody Allen's Alice and Celebrity , Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather III, Barry Levinson's Liberty Heights and Bugsy, Steven Zaillian's Searching for Bobby Fischer and Billy Crystal's Forget Paris, and many other.

During his career Joe has portrayed several real people, such as George Raft in Bugsy, Fidel Castro in My Little Assassin, and most notably, as Dean Martin in The Rat Pack. His role as Josh Waitzkin1s father in Searching for Bobby Fischer was based on Fred Waitzkin, who wrote the book upon which the film was based. In fact, Joe1s TV-movie debut was as Joe Esposito, Elvis1 road manager and close friend in the 1979 miniseries Elvis starring Kurt Russell.

The late summer of 2002 Joe starred in an Italian film called PONTORMO. Joe plays the role of Jacopo Pontormo an Italian Renaissance painter (b. 1494, d. 1557, Firenze).  In 2002 Joe co-starred in Stateside, a drama based on a true story. The film stars Jonathan Tucker and co-stars Val Kilmer, Carrie Fisher, Penny Marshall and Diane Venora.

The latest news is that Joe's newest show on CBS has been a big hit and was the most critically acclaimed program of last season 2003. Joe play's police chief Will Girardi in Joan of Arcadia. The Show airs Friday nights at 8pm on CBS.

LAIFA is recognized for its integrity and dedication to Italian and Italian-American film and filmmakers that does not exist anywhere else. Through year-round screenings and networking events, LAIFA seeks to introduce Italy's finest films and most promising talent to the epicenter of the entertainment industry.

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Chatelin Bruno
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