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AFF’s Opening Night Selections include Richard LaGravenese presenting The Last 5 Years & the US Premiere of The Humbling

IMMEDIATE RELEASE Austin Film Festival’s Opening Night Selections include Richard LaGravenese presenting The Last 5 Years and the US Premiere of The Humbling Jon Stewart and Maziar Bahari to present Rosewater as 2014 Closing Night Film Edward Zwick to Receive “Extraordinary Contribution to Film” Award Austin, TX – September 30, 2014– Austin Film Festival (October 23-30), the premier film festival recognizing writers’ and filmmakers’ contributions …

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Austin Film Festival’s Opening Night Selections include
Richard LaGravenese presenting The Last 5 Years and the US Premiere of The Humbling

Jon Stewart and Maziar Bahari to present Rosewater as 2014 Closing Night Film

Edward Zwick to Receive “Extraordinary Contribution to Film” Award

Austin, TX – September 30, 2014– Austin Film Festival (October 23-30), the premier film festival recognizing writers’ and filmmakers’ contributions to film, television and new media, released today their Opening Night and Closing Night selections, the 2014 Extraordinary Contribution to Film Award Recipient, and new programming announcements.

Austin Film Festival’s Opening Night Film will feature the US Premiere of Barry Levinson’s The Humbling on Thursday, October 23rd.  Based on the Philip Roth novel, The Humbling follows an aged and addled actor (Al Pacino) and his affair with a much younger woman (Greta Gerwig).

Also kicking off AFF’s 21st anniversary, writer/director Richard LaGravenese will present the Jason Robert Brown musical adaptation of The Last 5 Years starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.

Jon Stewart and Maziar Bahari will present Stewart’s directorial debut, Rosewater, as the Closing Night Selection on October 30th. Rosewater is based on the New York Times best-selling memoir Then They Came for Me: A Family’s Story of Love, Captivity, and Survival, written by the BBC journalist Maziar Bahari.

Edward Zwick will accept the Extraordinary Contribution to Film Award at the 2014 Austin Film Festival Awards Luncheon, held at the Austin Club on Saturday, October 25th.  Previous honorees have included Jonathan Demme, Ron Howard, Danny Boyle, Oliver Stone, Sydney Pollack, John Lasseter, Frank Darabont, and Robert Rodriguez.

Zwick’s directorial credits feature About Last Night, Courage Under Fire, The Siege, The Last Samurai, Blood Diamond, Defiance and Love & Other Drugs, and the Academy® Award winning films Glory and Legends of the Fall. Along with Marshall Herskovitz, Zwick created The Bedford Falls Company, and produced the critically acclaimed television series My So-Called Life, Relativity, the Emmy Award winning television series, thirtysomething, and the Emmy Award and Golden Globe award winning series Once and Again. Other producing credits include I Am Sam, Traffic, and Shakespeare in Love. Zwick most recently directed and produced Pawn Sacrifice starring Tobey Maguire, Liev Schreiber, and Peter Sarsgaard. Zwick will also be joined by frequent collaborator Winnie Holzman (creator of My So-Called Life) for a conversation on their work in television on Sunday, October 26th.

Luke Wilson joins the 2014 Retrospective series, presenting The Pope of Greenwich Village. Austin Film Festival’s Retrospective series allow guest programmers to present works that have inspired their careers.  The Pope of Greenwich Village will be programmed alongside Wilson’s short film Satellite Beach, which he wrote, directed, and starred in, with producers also in attendance.

Scott Haze will present The Sound and the Fury, James Franco’s adaptation of the William Faulkner novel.

Austin Film Festival’s annual staged script-reading will feature the comedy Flarsky, by Dan Sterling (writer The Office, Girls, The Interview) in a live event co-presented by The Black List on Sunday, October 26th.

Click here to access the full Festival & Conference Schedule

ABOUT AUSTIN FILM FESTIVAL:

Widely known as “The Writers Festival,” Austin Film Festival is a non-profit organization dedicated to furthering the art, craft, and business of filmmakers and screenwriters. AFF is funded and supported in part by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts, City of Austin Economic Growth & Redevelopment Services Office/Cultural Arts Division believing an investment in the Arts is an investment in Austin’s future.  Badges and passes are available for purchase online at www.austinfilmfestival.com or by phone at 1-800-310-FEST.

Austin Film Festival provides many local, regional, and national arts organizations and businesses with a creative platform to showcase their services through programming collaborations as well as highlighting Austin’s visibility as a thriving film community.  AFF’s 2014 partnerships include:

Jon Stewart and Maziar Bahari will present Stewart’s directorial debut, Rosewater, as the Closing Night Selection on Thursday, October 30th in association with the Austin Film Society. Austin Film Festival is also pleased to partner with organizations such as AGLIFF, The Alice Kleberg Reynolds Foundation, Austin Way, The Black List, The Harry Ransom Center, Houston Cinema Arts Society, Nickelodeon, KD College, The New Movement, On Story, Seed & Spark, Texas Book Festival, The Texas Observer, Whole Foods Market, The Wittliff Collections, The Writers Guild of America West, The Writers Guild of America East, and The Writers Guild Foundation for the 2014 Festival and Screenwriters Conference.

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Staff Picks: Hardy

Feeling extremely busy, exhausted, and emotionally spent from all the hard work we’ve been putting into the festival, all I wanted to do was hit the gym for a much needed stress relief session. Instead, I opted for a quiet night on the couch with my husband, watching and scoring films for the festival.

 

Allison Kindred | 09.28.2014
Welcome to our 2014 Festival Staff Picks column! We’ll be posting some first looks at Festival Films to look out for on the 2014 Film Schedule. Check back to the AFF blog for new Staff Picks each week!

 

 

 

Hardy

Feeling extremely busy, exhausted, and emotionally spent from all the hard work we’ve been putting into the festival, all I wanted to do was hit the gym for a much needed stress relief session. Instead, I opted for a quiet night on the couch with my husband, watching and scoring films for the festival.

Right from the start of Hardy, I felt a sense of empowerment and inspiration as Heather “The Heat” Hardy runs across the Brooklyn Bridge. I might be too busy to get myself to the gym but if anything was going to inspire me to push myself- it was this story!

A must see during the festival, you’ll find yourself constantly rooting for Hardy to win. The film left me inspired to walk into my next challenge with the same confidence and drive.  Fight is the overall theme to this story. Fight in the physical sense- she is an aspiring professional female boxer- but also the fight to push yourself. Fight for what you want in life and in your dreams. Fight to give your loved ones a better life then you. Fight for your relationships. Fight to be the first. The best. The only one. And the fight to keep going…

If you need any kind of push or confidence boost, Hardy should be on your schedule. A wonderfully told story about a girl who doesn’t stop or give up! I found myself punching my way through the film and ready to get in the ring!

- Allison Kindred, Development Director

Want to add Hardy to your Schedule? Click here to add to your schedule.

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Staff Picks: WildLike

In short….I loved this film. Let’s put aside for just a moment the stunning shots of Alaska’s majestic landscapes. Ignore the “zen-like” moments of hiking into the Alaskan wilderness, surrendering to moments of silence and solace. Forget that the filmmakers painted a mesmerizing picture of nature and humankind in complete harmony.

Michelle Randolph | 09.24.2014

Welcome to our 2014 Festival Staff Picks column! We’ll be posting some first looks at Festival Films to look out for on the 2014 Film Schedule. Check back to the AFF blog for new Staff Picks each week!

 

 

 

 

WildLike

In short….I loved this film.  Let’s put aside for just a moment the stunning shots of Alaska’s majestic landscapes. Ignore the “zen-like” moments of hiking into the Alaskan wilderness, surrendering to moments of silence and solace. Forget that the filmmakers painted a mesmerizing picture of nature and humankind in complete harmony. Yes, I love this film for all those reasons, but let’s just forget all that for a minute. What the writer and director Frank Hall Green managed to do with this movie is take a subject that is far too common, to far too many people and reinforce the characteristics of enduring hope, healing  and reconnection in its highest forms. It doesn’t hurt that the audience gets to revel in the beauty of actress, Ella Purnell as the troubled lead character Mackenzie or in seasoned actor Bruce Greenwood as the loner backpacker turned unlikely father figure with scars of his own. For me, this film embodies the very essence of what  beautiful storytelling can do, which is impact  and impart a sense of belonging to something bigger than ourselves, the human condition.

-Michelle Randolph, Outreach Coordinator

Want to add WildLike to your Schedule? Click here to add it to your schedule!

 

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Staff Picks: The Suicide Theory

I believe in fate. Sometimes you don’t care for a particular genre of film, but then a co-worker suggests you check it out. Maybe they just chose it at random, or maybe you were meant to watch it. Either way, this is how I approached The Suicide Theory.

Marcie Mayhorn | 09.24.2014

Welcome to our 2014 Festival Staff Picks column! We’ll be posting some first looks at Festival Films to look out for on the 2014 Film Schedule. Check back to the AFF blog for new Staff Picks each week!

 

 

 

The Suicide Theory

I believe in fate.  Sometimes you don’t care for a particular genre of film, but then a co-worker suggests you check it out.  Maybe they just chose it at random, or maybe you were meant to watch it.  Either way, this is how I approached The Suicide Theory.

The title alone gave me the creeps  – I myself have no theories on suicide.  But upon hearing it was about a hit-man hired to kill a man who can’t commit suicide himself, I found my interest growing stronger.  What followed was 98 minutes of my expectations being surpassed, and ultimately, enjoying a film I wouldn’t have otherwise sought out.  This film is an incredibly well told story of how the choices we’ve made in the past touch the lives of others, and how fate is ultimately the bigger part of one’s future.  All of this, of course, told in a unique, raw way.

Consider adding this film to your schedule.  If anything, it will give you a new way to think about how lucky you are to be alive.  And who knows — maybe it will also make you believe in fate a little more.

- Marcie Mayhorn, Conference Coordinator

Want to add The Suicide Theory to your Schedule? Click here to add it to your schedule!

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