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A Conversation With Director Joel Zwick

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  The Palm Beach International Film Festival, which opens tomorrow evening with the US/Scottish film STONE OF DESTINY, will give local film buffs and visiting film professionals a rare look inside the workings of the film industry courteosy of Festival honoree Joel Zwick. Zwick, who was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1942, cut his early teeth as a writer/director/producer for television, directing episodes of such popular television series as Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy,...

STONE OF DESTINY Opens Palm Beach FF

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STONE OF DESTINY, the latest film from actor-turned-director Charles Martin Smith, will open the 2009 edition of the Palm Beach International Film Festival on Thursday, 23 April. The film, a US/Scottish co-production, retells the fascinating and true story of four young Glaswegian students who, in 1951, outwitted the British authorities in their successful attempt to take back the Stone of Scone - a beloved symbol of Scottish pride. The adventure comedy stars Robert Carlyle (TRAINSPOTTING), Pete...

The Link Between Politics And Pageants...

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The link between politics and beauty pagaents is tantalizingly explored in the documentary film AND THE WINNER IS......, which will premiere at this week's Palm Beach International Film Festival. While contemporary politics (not only in America) is often more a popularity contest than one of substance (our current President to the contrary), the premise of the film is an audacious and delicious one. AND THE WINNER IS....documents the small town of Centerville’s bold decision to elect its next ...

STONE OF DESTINY Opens Palm Beach FF

user
  STONE OF DESTINY, the latest film from actor-turned-director Charles Martin Smith, will open the 2009 edition of the Palm Beach International Film Festival on Thursday, 23 April. The film, a US/Scottish co-production, retells the fascinating and true story of four young Glaswegian students who, in 1951, outwitted the British authorities in their successful attempt to take back the Stone of Scone - a beloved symbol of Scottish pride. The adventure comedy stars Robert Carlyle (TRAINSPOTT...

The Link Between Politics And Pageants

user
  The link between politics and beauty pagaents is tantalizingly explored in the documentary film AND THE WINNER IS......, which will premiere at this week's Palm Beach International Film Festival. While contemporary politics (not only in America) is often more a popularity contest than one of substance (our current President to the contrary), the premise of the film is an audacious and delicious one. AND THE WINNER IS....documents the small town of Centerville’s bold decision t...

Robert Redford To Receive Owens Award

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  Robert Redford has won many hats in his nearly 50 year career: leading man, Oscar-winning director (ORDINARY PEOPLE), social activist and founder of the Sundance Film Institute. However, it is his acting that will be honored next week at the San Francisco International Film Festival, where he will receive the Peter J. Owens Award at the Festival’s Tribute Gala. In addition, the notoriously publicity-shy Redford will appear at a public onstage tribute at the Castro Theatre in a ...

LA MISSION To Open San Francisco FF

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  San Francisco, April 18-------The 52nd San Francisco International Film Festival (23 April – 7 May) will open with local director Peter Bratt’s LA MISSION, a powerful story about the ties of family and responsibility set in the city’s Mexican-American community. The film, which stars Benjamin Bratt, Erika Alexander and Jeremy Ray Valdez, had its premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and was made, in part, with monies from the Scene in San Francisco financial rebate pro...

Celebrating North America's Oldest Film Festival

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  San Francisco, April 17----- While it is common these days for every city, resort and college town to have its own international film festival, it is San Francisco, the glittering city in North California, that can make the singular claim of having hosted North America’s first on-going film festival event. Launched in December 1957, the San Francisco International Film Festival was the first event to offer a mix of international cinema, the first stirring of th...

LA MISSION to open San Francisco FF

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The 52nd San Francisco International Film Festival (23 April – 7 May) will open with local director Peter Bratt’s LA MISSION, a powerful story about the ties of family and responsibility set in the city’s Mexican-American community. The film, which stars Benjamin Bratt, Erika Alexander and Jeremy Ray Valdez, had its premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and was made, in part, with monies from the Scene in San Francisco financial rebate program that the local film commission has ...

Celebrating North America's Oldest Film Festival

user
While it is common these days for every city, resort and college town to have its own international film festival, it is San Francisco, the glittering city in North California, that can make the singular claim of having hosted North America’s first on-going film festival event. Launched in December 1957, the San Francisco International Film Festival was the first event to offer a mix of international cinema, the first stirring of the American Independent movement and a smattering of serious-mi...

SILVERDOCS Announces 2007 Award Winners

Sunday, June 17---------After a stimulating and chockful of quality program of 100 films from 42 countries over 5 days (not to mention panels and master classes at the parallel International Documentary Conference), SILVERDOCS: AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival announced its distinguished award winners at ceremonies at the AFI Silver Theater on Saturday evening. Winning filmmakers received over $55,000 in cash, goods and in-kind services. Award winners will have special repeat screenin...

The Fog Of War In The Middle East

 Sunday, June 17-------At the risk of being a moth-eaten cliche, the term "fog of war" is now routinely used to describe a state where political, strategic and moral choices in areas of conflict become shaded by the exigencies of human response to violence and an abandonment of an ethical compass that determines policy and behavior. This "fog of war" has certainly descended on the chaos that is now unfolding in the Middle East, both in the five-year conflicts in Afghanistan...

Religion, Politics And Film: An Explosive Combination

 Saturday, June 16----------With religion and core beliefs the source of both comfort and conflict in the modern world, SILVERDOCS wisely decided to dedicate a special section of the Festival to an exploration of the unique role of religion in social and political discourse. Dubbed BEYOND BELIEF: RELIGION, POLITICS AND FILM, the program has presented a provocative series of films and panel discussions. “The documentary form, which takes personal stories and launches them into the public are...

An Embrace Of Film and Music

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Saturday, June 16-------One of the most popular sidebar sections at SILVERDOCS is the Best Music Documentary competition. This marriage between cinema and synchopation uses visual technique to give a deeper understanding of how music is evolving and the artists whose passion and commitment to expanding their art can either lead to personal tragedy or personal triumph. This year, six excellent films are competing, covering a wide range of musical styles and visual temperaments. Judging the films...

SILVERDOCS Sets An Example By Going Green

Saturday, June 16-----SILVERDOCS: AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival is setting an example by being one of the first such festival events to actively try and reduce its carbon footprint and demonstrate how it can run its Festival efficiently with an eye towards energy conservation. This reporter, when told that the Festival wanted to encourage visitors to use public transporation to come from the Airport to the DC suburb of Silver Spring, was happy to do his part (although the Festiv...

Sundance Institute Documentary Lab

Friday, June 15-------With the accent on documentary production, financing and distribution here at SILVERDOCS, an announcement from the Sundance Institute regarding their own documentary lab initiative is particularly relevant. With many of the SILVERDOCS film having received their world premieres at the Sundance Film Festival in January, it is clear that Sundance has a large role to play in the development and disemination of non-fiction material.The Sundance Institute announced today the se...

International Documentary Conference Offers Vital Information

Friday, June 15------With more than 100 films to catch in a scant five days, it could be assumed that film screenings are the most important element of SILVERDOCS. However, for visiting and local filmmakers, media professionals and government/social organization reps, the parallel International Documentary Conference is where the meat of this event really lies. A series of information panels, master classes and discussions have been assembled that cover a multitude of topics.....from new sources...

Ten Films Compete For Sterling Award

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 Friday, June 15------The Main Competition section of SILVERDOCS consists of 10 documentary features, all competing for the coveted Sterling Award. The films represent some of the most innovative, provocative and compelling non-fiction films of the year. Jurors determining the prizes include: Liesl Copland, head of acquisitions of Red Envelope Entertainment, the newly created original content division of Netflix; Matt Dentler, the Producer of the South by Southwest Film Conference & Festiva...

Demme Day At SILVERDOCS

Thursday, June 14---------Thursday is Demme Day at SILVERDOCS, with Oscar-winning director Jonathan Demme being honored and screenings of both new and celebrated non-fiction works from the veteran director. Demme is one of the few Hollywood directors who is equally at home in fiction films and in the documentary arena. In a career that now spans four decades and includes nearly 50 feature films and television programs, nearly 25% of Demme's output has been in the non-fiction world, as either...

Pitching For Humane Society Grant of $10,000

Thursday, June 14-------Protecting the rights of animals used in films is a primary concern for the organization Animal Content In Entertainment (ACE), a program of the Humane Society of the United States. This year, ACE is teaming with SILVERDOCS to offer a grant of $10,000 for a documentary film designed for theatrical, television or new media distribution that highlights animal issues. This morning, six lucky finalists had an opportunity to pitch their projects to a panel of film and animal r...

Emerging From A Deep, Dark Sleep

  Wednesday, June 13-------We've all seen it in the movies.....a man or woman who has been in a deep coma suddenly wakes up and becomes a kind of savant about the thin line between life and death. It is fascinating stuff, and never more compelling when it happens in real life, and not just to Robert De Niro in the film AWAKENINGS. Four patients who made the incredible transition from comatose to consciousness are profiled in the film COMA, directed by award-winning documentarian Liz Garbus....

Darfur Documentary To Premiere This Evening

Wednesday, June 13--------On the first official day of screenings, SILVERDOCS: AFI/Discover Channel Documentary Festival presents a powerful documentary on the conflict in the Darfur region of the Sudan....one of the most pressing humanitarian crises in the world. THE DEVIL CAME ON HORSEBACK, by award-winning filmmakers Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern, is a searing exposition of the violence and tragedy of the genocide in Darfur. The film is seen through the eyes of a solitary American witness...

SILVERDOCS Opens With Portrait of A Musical Legend

Tuesday, June 12-------The fifth annual SILVERDOCS: AFI/Discovery Channel Documentary Festival opens this evening with the DC Premiere of PETE SEEGER: THE POWER OF SONG, a loving portrait of the musical living legend, directed by Jim Brown, who profiled Seeger and his 1950s/1960s singing group The Weavers in the award-winning 1982 film THE WEAVERS: WASN'T THAT A TIME. PETE SEEGER: THE POWER OF SONG, executive produced by television legend and political activist Norman Lear, interweaves the ...

SILVERDOCS 2007: An Overview

Monday, June 11-------In a mere five years, SILVERDOCS has emerged as one of the most important and provocative showcases of non-fiction media in the world. With support from both the American Film Institute and Discovery Communications, the event, barely a toddler in festival terms, has become an industry prime mover. Its parallel International Documentary Conference, a series of information panels and master classes, attracts nearly 1000 visiting filmmakers, commissioning editors and programme...

2007 FESTROIA Award Winners

Sunday, June 10------The 23rd edition of FESTROIA: Festival Internacional de Cinema came to a dramatic close last evening as awards were announced in a dozen categories at the concluding ceremonies of the Festival in the Forum Luisa Todi in the coastal resort of Setubal, Portugal. BORDER POST, a wry political satire set in a small border post on the Yugoslav-Albanian border in 1987, won the Golden Dolphin as Best Film of the Festival. The film, written and directed by Rajko Grlic, also won a Sil...

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