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The Turks & Caicos Fest: one month away from paradise

The Turks & Caicos International Film Festival today announced the film line-up for their second annual festival, October 17-21, 2006. The festival, which takes place in Providenciales, Turks & Caicos in the Caribbean, brings a unique celebration of the fusion of music and cinema with movies from around the world that tell stories about music, feature music or have musical themes.

Screening both feature films and documentaries, the TCIFF will present a diverse slate of films from around the world with a strong musical theme. This year, some of the films audiences will look forward to range from the International Premieres of “The Last Days Of Left Eye,” a surprisingly spiritual and touching documentary about Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes from the all-female hip-hop group TLC, and “Brass Tacks” which follows a group of young, hungry and talented musicians struggling to find the “promised land” of a record deal at night while working grueling days of blue-collar construction work to fund their nocturnal pursuit of becoming full-time musicians; to “The Donnie McCurklin Story: From Darkness to Light,” a unique inspirational concert docudrama about the extraordinary yet controversial life and times of world famous gospel singer Donnie McMlurkin -- who will be attending the festival -- featuring appearances by Beyoncé, The Winans family, Andre Crouch, Kirk Franklin, Yolanda Adames, Bishop T.D. Jakes, David Foster and Magic Johnson; “The Hip Hop Project,” a dynamic and inspirational story about New York City teenagers who use hip-hop as a vehicle for self-development and personal discovery; while also presenting a selection of classic films that best illustrate the use of music in film; and the ever-popular Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing documentary which follows the lives and careers of the Dixie Chicks over a period of three years during which they were under political attack and received death threats, while continuing to live their lives, have children, and of course make music.


The festival will also honor two individuals: a composer and an artist who has crossed over from music to film, enjoying success in both mediums. The TCIFF honorees will be announced at a later date.

Films are not the only piece of Hollywood the TCIFF brings to the islands—the Festival’s executive directors are Jasmine Guy and her husband, investment broker Terrence Duckette of Imani World Productions. Jasmine Guy, widely recognized for her hit television series “A Different World” in the late ‘90’s, has fostered her own love of music by performing on Broadway in shows such as “Chicago” and “The Wiz.” Now she and her husband Terrence are bringing their love of music and cinema together in this picturesque island setting, along with Academy Award-nominated producer Karolyn Ali, TCIFF Program Director.

“I have felt for a long time that film and music are inseparable in creating an impactful on-screen experience,” Guy said. “This is a great opportunity to celebrate that fusion and to embrace films and filmmakers from around the globe.” Added Ali, “We have assembled an exciting slate of films which will both entertain and inspire, and look forward to creating a ‘must-attend’ festival for the world’s best and brightest filmmakers.”


The event’s advisory board also includes Hollywood heavyweights such as Oscar-winning director Paul Haggis (“Crash”), Robert Johnson (CEO The RLJ Companies, and founder of BET), Cheryl Boone Isaacs (Board of Governor’s, A.M.P.A.S.) and mega-star Bruce Willis. Working with The Honorable Dr. Michael Misick, Premier of Turks & Caicos, and First Lady LisaRaye Misick, the TCIFF is set to move successfully into the future.

The esteemed jury, who vote for Best Feature and Documentary films, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Score and Best Song, is comprised of Eleanor Granata (director of the Venice Film Festival), Sanaa Hamri (film and music video director) and Robert Forster (actor).


Complete Festival packages and screening tickets are available now and can be purchased by visiting www.turksandcaicosfilmfestival.com. Individual tickets are also available for TCIFF parties and events and well as package or individual screening tickets.


TCIFF attendees will enjoy the island atmosphere in between screenings, including Festival-sponsored parties, island poker tournaments, a fashion show, and of course live musical performances at this music-focused film festival. The TCIFF constructs temporary theatres around the island, including screenings on the white sand beaches of Grace Bay, named “Best Beach in the World” by the 2005 World Travel Awards.


The host hotel, The Alexandra Resort (http://alexandra.nex-creative.com) will be the location of the Festival Hub and production office. The Alexandra Resort is offering a package deal to help combat the rising cost of airfare with their “You Fly, We Buy” deal, which allows festival attendees to receive an airfare credit back on their hotel bill (airfare credit varies). Other hotels partnering with the TCIFF include The Palms (http://www.thepalmstc.com) and The Sands (http://www.thesandsresort.com).

With direct flights from New York, Toronto, Philadelphia, Boston, Charlotte, Atlanta and Miami, Turks & Caicos has long been a favorite destination in the Caribbean for visitors from the United States and Canada. Aside from the stunning characteristics of the islands, visitors and locals enjoy activities such as windsurfing, fishing and beach volleyball. Known as one of the top three diving destinations in the world, Turks & Caicos is just as exciting under the water as on land.

Travelers from around the globe have discovered Turks & Caicos as a great vacation destination and The Turks & Caicos International Film Festival is proud to enable others to discover it as a destination for great films. The Festival takes place on the island of Providenciales in the beautiful Caribbean, October 17-21, 2006. For more information log onto www.turksandcaicosfilmfestival.org.

If you are interested in interviewing Jasmine Guy or anyone else involved in the festival, please contact Carol Marshall, Carol@cmarshallpr.com or Stephenie Hope, Stephenie@cmarshallpr.com.


TCIFF 2006 FILMS

AFRO PUNK, 2003, USA
Director: James Spooner
Producer(s): Matthew Morgan

This documentary, explores race and identity within the punk scene. More than your everyday behind-the -music this film tackles issues of loneliness, exile, interracial dating and Black power. We follow the lives of four people who have dedicated themselves to the punk rock lifestyle. They find themselves in conflicting situations, living the dual lives of a person of color in a mostly white community.


BRASS TACKS, 2004, USA (International Premiere)
Director: Gavin Dougan
Producer(s): Gavin Dougan, Chapin Wilson

This feature film follows a group of young, hungry and talented musicians who are struggling to find the “promised land” of a record deal. Grueling days of blue-collar construction work fund their nocturnal pursuit of becoming full-time musicians. Confronted with reality that jazz has limited commercial appeal, the band’s leader, Nick, battles with slick music industry executives and other band members for respect and recognition in the music world without “selling out.” The musicians’ candid and realistic conversations, the live music performances, and a distinct editing style bring viewers into their world of artistic struggle.


CAFFEINE, 2006, England (International Premiere)
Director: John Cosgrove
Producer(s): Jo Levi DiSante, John Cosgrove

“Caffeine” invites us to spend a lunch hour with the quirky staff and patrons of a London coffee house where the relationships of several couples are turned upside down by the revelations of embarrassing secrets and idiosyncrasies. Cast includes Mena Suvari, Marsha Thomason, Katherine Heigl and Mike Vogel.


CRAZY AGAIN, 2006, USA (International Premiere)
Director: Zalmon King

Filmmaker Zalman King travels to Texas to research country music for an upcoming feature film he plans to direct. He's put in contact with Texas Music Hall of Fame inductee Dale Watson. Watson is exactly the right person King is looking for to star in his film, so he goes on the road with Watson as he performs throughout the southern U.S. As the trip progresses, Watson reveals how he went crazy with grief after the death of his girlfriend. Trying to contact her spirit through an Ouija Board leads Watson down a road to further insanity. An insanity from which he might not be able to, or want to, return.


DANCE WITH THE DEVIL, 2006, USA (International Premiere)
Director: Zalmon King
Producer: Zalmon King

Singer/Songwriter/Poet/Force-Of-Nature Toledo and his nightclub act The Toledo Show are an underground sensation in Los Angeles. They perform every Sunday night at Harvelle's in Santa Monica where they have developed a die-hard cult following. This film gives you an inside look at what makes Toledo, his band and his dancers - The Dames - tick.

DIXIE CHICKS: SHUT UP AND SING, 2006, USA
Director: Barbara Kopple, Cecilia Peck
Producers: Barbara Kopple, Cecilia Peck, David Cassidy and Claude Davies

Documentary follows the Dixie Chicks, from the peak of their popularity as the national-anthem-singing darlings of country music and top-selling female recording artists of all time, through the now infamous anti-Bush comment made by the group’s lead singer Natalie Maines in 2003. The film follows the lives and careers of the Dixie Chicks over a period of three years during which they were under political attack and received death threats, while continuing to live their lives, have children, and of course make music. The film ultimately presents who the Dixie Chicks are as women, public figures, and musicians.


DJ DRAMA’S RESPECT THE GAME, 2006, USA
Director: Juwan Lee
Producer(s): Tyree Simmons

Directed by Juwan Lee, and produced by Tyree Simmons, DJ Drama’s “Respect the Game” documentary exposes the exploding Southern hip-hop phenomenon through testimonials of today’s hottest hip-hop artists including T.I, Nelly, and Pharrell. The film brings viewers into the streets, strip clubs and recording studios to reveal the unique culture of hustlin’, music and respect for the game.


FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT: THE DONNIE MC CURKLIN STORY, 2004, USA
Director: Stephanie Frederic
Producer: Brian Hollingsworth

From Darkness to Light…is an unique inspirational concert docudrama about the extraordinary yet controversial life and times of world famous gospel singer Donnie McMlurkin. With appearances by Beyoncé, The Winans family, Andre Crouch, Kirk Franklin, Yolanda Adames, Bishop T.D. Jakes, David Foster and Magic Johnson. Donnie McCurklin will be in attendance.



GENGHIS BLUES, 1999, Mongolia
Director: Roko Belic
Producer(s): Roko Belic, Adrian Belic

A bluesman, Paul Pena, blind and recently widowed, taught himself throat singing and was by chance invited to the 1995 throat-singing symposium in Kyzyl. Helped by the "Friends of Tuva," Pena makes the arduous journey. Singing in the deep, rumbling kargyraa style, Pena gives inspired performances at the festival, composes songs in Tuvan, washes his face in sacred rivers, expresses the disorientation of blindness in foreign surroundings, and makes a human connection with everyone he meets.


THE HIP HOP PROJECT, 2006, USA
Director: Matt Ruskin, Scott K. Rosenberg
Producer(s): Matt Ruskin, Scott K. Rosenberg

From Executive Producers Bruce Willis and Queen Latifah, “The Hip Hop Project” is the dynamic and inspirational story of a group of New York City teenagers who transform their life stories into powerful works of art, using hip hop as a vehicle for self-development and personal discovery. Film includes appearances by Sway, Bruce Willis and Russell Simmons.


JANUARY 2nd, 2006, UK
Director: Matt Winn
Producer(s): Ivan Francis Clements

Adam and Claire move to the middle of Wales to escape the problems in their marriage but when they invite their oldest and dearest friends down for a New Year’s Eve party, ancient jealousies and long-held crushes raise their heads with chaotic and explosive results. With music also written by director Matt Winn.

JERICHO'S ECHO: PUNK ROCK IN THE HOLY LAND, 2005, USA/Israel
Director: Liz Nord
Producer: Liz Nord

Mohawks, stage diving, fists flying. Homemade band t-shirts, circle pits, singalongs. These scenes are not unfamiliar; they have flooded pop culture imagery for over 25 years. The punk rock ethos gains new relevance in Israel, however, when band members' choices are often between picking up a guitar or picking up a gun. Like the country itself, the punk rock music scene in Israel is young, small, and passionate. The bands have differing political views, but they share a struggle for freedom in a country where they feel restricted by religious laws, mandatory military service and an explosive political situation. Looking at the present situation in Israel through the eyes of punk rockers is not a common vantage point, but the voices of these young people will illuminate the thoughts of a generation of disillusioned Israelis who yearn for an end to the bleak politics of war, so that they might live out their dreams


LAST DAYS OF LEFT EYE, 2006, USA (International Premiere)
Director: Lauren Lazin
Producer(s): Katy Garfield, Lauren Lazin

This 90-minute documentary captures the last 30 days in the life of TLC superstar Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes. Edited from the tapes Lisa shot and left behind at her mysterious Honduran jungle retreat, the film is an intimate portrait of Lisa’s life, music, personal struggles and her final chilling spiritual journey. Directed by Academy Award nominee Lauren Lazin (“Tupac: Resurrection”).

LOST ON THE B SIDE, 2006, USA
Director: Lyle Holmes
Producer(s): Janet Jennings

An indie film about indie music. A successful music executive’s well-ordered life spirals out of control when he falls for the wrong woman. The soundtrack includes music from some of the hottest garages and studios around the world: 26 bands from nine countries.

ORQUESTA TIPICA: TANGO OR DEATH, 2006, Argentina
Director: Nicholas Entel
Producer(s): Nicholas Entel

Twelve guys looking like punk rockers push a piano down the street. Their sound is elaborate but raw. Their music is politically committed while historically linked to counterculture. It is part of a genre more than a hundred years old. This is their story.


PERHAPS LOVE, 2005, China
Director: Peter Ho-Sun Chan
Producer(s): Andre Morgan, Peter Ho-Sun Chan

A famous actor arrives in Shanghai for the filming of a musical. His co-star is an old flame from a decade ago. The musical is about a love triangle: an amnesiac woman forgets everything, recovers her memory and finds herself torn between her past and present. The musical features the lead actors and the director as the third part of the triangle. The musical’s real director is unaware of his two stars’ previous relationship, and the analogy reflected in the musical. As the actors spend more time with each other, memories of their past begin to overwhelm them. Cast includes Takeshi Kaneshiro and Xun Zhou.


PUCCINI FOR BEGINNERS, 2005, USA
Director: Maria Maggenti
Producer(s):Jake Abraham, Gary Winick, Eden Wurmfeld

Allegra loves Samantha, but she won’t say so. Grace loves Philip, but he won’t marry her. Samantha leaves Allegra. Philip leaves Grace. Allegra meets Philip. Allegra falls for Philip. Allegra meets Grace. Allegra falls for Grace. A story about chance encounters, psychoanalytic excuses and one woman’s struggle to make a commitment, “Puccini for Beginners” is a sophisticated screwball sex comedy with characters that love, what else, opera! Cast includes Gretchen Mol, Justin Kirk and Elizabeth Reaser.

ROMANTICO, 2005, Mexico
Director: Mark Becker
Producer(s): Mark Becker, Nadine Maleh

Romantico is a feature-length documentary about Mexican musician Carmelo Muniz. The film follows Carmelo as the troubadour returns home to scratch out a living after years of trying to get ahead in San Francisco. An immigrant tale in reverse, this portrait vividly captures why a 60-year-old father chose to leave and cross the desert to the U.S.

THE SALON, 2005, USA
Director: Mark Brown
Producer(s): Mark Brown, Carl Craig
Cast: Vivica A. Fox, Terrence Howard, Darrin Dewitt Henson, Kym Whitley

A Beautyshop owner finds romance as she struggles to save her business. A Beautyshop owner finds romance as she struggles to save her business.


SALVADOR’S DELI, 2006, Turks & Caicos Islands (World Premiere)
Director: Trevor Mirosh
Producer(s): Michelle Von Chudenitz, Renee Giesse

Salvador’s Deli is a story about three Italian brothers who pull together to run their father’s famous pizza joint after he is murdered during a random act of violence. Running the pizza parlor, however, is not as easy as first thought and within a month the boys are on the brink of bankruptcy. As always, it comes down to that one fateful phone call that changes everything – a seemingly typical order instantly alters the nature of the pizza business and the brothers’ lives. Their delivery unintentionally assists the customer in committing suicide; however, he leaves the boys such a generous tip for their aid that they quickly realize how lucrative “facilitating suicides” or “consensual euthanasia” is. Through darkly comedic and effective marketing, the twisted business becomes a killer success that the brothers’ beliefs into question. At what point does a planned death become murder?

SCREAMING MASTERPIECE, 2006, Iceland
Director: Ari Alexander, Ergis Magnusson
Producer(s): Joni Sighvatsson, Ari Alexander, Ergis Magnusson

Icelandic music hit it big on the international scene with Bjork and the Sugarcubes. In the last decade, several bands and solo acts have followed suit. Profiled in the film are acts coming out of the bustling Icelandic music scene such as Sigur Rós Múm, Bang Gang Mugison, Minus and Slowblow. You won’t forget this diverse and highly original music.



SEA OF DREAMS, 2005, Mexico
Director: Jose Bojorquez
Producer(s): Jose Bojorquez, Nickolay Todorov

A beautiful woman, led to believe she has powerful ties to the sea, defies everyone to prove them wrong in a world where man and nature connect in improbable ways, where myths are real and truth is imaginary. Sea of Dreams creates a fascinating world that celebrates the miracles of falling in and out of love, of death and of freedom. The film’s powerful score comes from Luis Enriquez Bacalov, who has contributed to more than 140 films, including both of Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” films. The story is a classic narrative that celebrates the mysteries and wonders of human relationships in a magical world where people carry strong beliefs that can fulfill the heart’s deepest desires. Cast includes Johnathon Schaech, Seymour Cassel, Nicolas Gonzalez and Sonia Braga.

TWO SONS OF FRANCISCO, 2005, Brazil

Director: Breno Silveira

Producer(s): Luciano Camargo, Leonardo Monteiro deBarros

Based on the true story of the singing and songwriting duo Zezé di Camargo and Luciano, “Two Sons of Francisco” depicts the rags-to-riches story of this Brazilian musical sensation, who have sold more than 22 million albums worldwide. The film chronicles the lives of the two brothers and their family, who, similar to the legendary Loretta Lynn, Ray Charles and Ritchie Valens, rise from poverty to fame.

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