Evening With Cloris Leachman Opens Festival on Feb. 17; Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers, Michael Feinstein, Peter Marshall In Concert; Films, Workshops Scheduled Through Feb. 26
Sedona AZ (February 2, 2017) – Gianfranco Rosi’s riveting documentary about the European migrant crisis, Fire at Sea, Raul Peck’s exploration of racism in America, I Am Not Your Negro based on James Baldwin’s unfinished manuscript, Remember This House, and a one-night screening of The Comedian, starring Robert De Niro, are only a few of the highlights of the 23rd annual Sedona International Film Festival, Feb. 17-26.
“An Evening with Cloris Leachman” will open the Festival on Friday, Feb. 17 at the Sedona Performing Arts Center (SPAC) when the Oscar- and Emmy Award-winning actress will receive the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award. Leachman also will introduce The Comedian, with Danny DeVito, Edie Falco, Charles Grodin, Harvey Keitel and Leachman, at 6 p.m. on Sunday, also at SPAC. The Festival will screen Leachman’s classic film, Young Frankenstein, on Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 3:10 p.m. at Harkins 6.
The full lineup of documentaries, full-length features, shorts and foreign films begins screening on Saturday, Feb. 18 at SPAC, Harkins 6 and the Mary D. Fisher Theatre. Single tickets for films go on sale Feb. 13. The full lineup of films and descriptions are online at www.sedonafilmfestival.com.
Three-time Grammy winner Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers will perform at SPAC on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m. Five-time Grammy nominee Michael Feinstein will bring his Ira Gershwin Program and Great American Songbook to SPAC on Friday, Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. TV and radio personality, singer and actor Peter Marshall will be on stage on Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 6 p.m. Separate tickets must be purchased for the performances by Hornsby and Feinstein. Festival passes provide admission to Marshall’s performance.
In between will be diverse lineup of films that were chosen from more than 1,000 entries submitted for consideration.
“Choosing the films we screen is among the most difficult challenges for our team because even those that don’t make the cut are terrific,” said Executive Director Patrick Schweiss. “If only we had more time, more screens and more space.”
Included in this year’s field of films are two produced by Sedona-based filmmakers, Bryan Reinhart and Ben Fama Jr. Reinhart finished producing and directing Born to Rewild, a three-year project of award-winning cinematographer Ed George, who tragically died during last year’s festival. The film follows wilderness ultratrekker John Davis who traveled 5,000 human-powered miles in eight months, from Sonora, Mexico to British Columbia, to bring awareness to the importance of connected wildlife corridors along the spine of the continent.
Fama’s documentary, A Reason to Believe, explores the psychology of belief and challenges the question, “why do we believe.?”
Other films in this year’s Festival include:
- A Planet Ocean, a documentary exploring how plastics, once they enter the oceans, break up into small particulates that enter the food chain where they attract toxins like a magnet.
- Good Fortune, the rags-to-riches story of billionaire John Paul DeJoria, entrepreneur, philanthropist and co-founder of the Paul Mitchell line of hair products. Narrated by Dan Akroyd, DeJoria’s life is a series of ups, downs from homelessness to financial security and back again.
- The Carer, staring Brian Cox as Shakespearean actor Sir Michael Gifford who is frustrated by his Parkinson’s disease and being cooped up in his country estate. Having ejected all previous would-be carers, his daughter spearheads an intervention with a young Hungarian with her own acting aspirations. What blossom’s between these two kindred spirits is a funny and heart-warming tale on the acceptance of one’s own mortality.
- The Happys, with Jeneane Garofalo, about 21-year-old Tracy who decides to leave her boyfriend after walking in on him with another man, only to return if he promises to marry her. Mark accepts her terms, but neither fully understands the sacrifices they have to make.
- Drawing Home, with Kate Mulgrew and Rutger Hauer, about a young East Coast debutante dating the most eligible bachelor in the world, John D. Rockefeller III in the 1920s. Her future seems set: a dream life in the upper echelons of society. But when she least expects it, she meets a young painter from one of the most beautiful places on Earth, the Canadian Rocky Mountains. As their attraction turns their lives upside down, they soon face a universal question: Can you find “home” in another person? Inspired by a true story.
- Broken Memories, a romantic drama that depicts the often-untold story of a caretaker for the elderly. Once estranged from his family, Levi (Ivan Sergei), has returned home to care for Jasper (Rance Howard), his father who suffers from Alzheimer’s. It’s the story of a father and son at a crossroads, one trying to remember everything and the other trying to forget.
- Wild Prairie Rose, the story of Rose Miller who returns to her rural hometown of Beresford, South Dakota to care for her ailing mother. Once there, she falls in love with a deaf man and must decide if she has the courage to follow her heart. Wild Prairie Rose is an examination of the changing roles of women in 1950s America and in the ways that people who have great differences can learn to communicate with one another.
- Real Boy, an intimate story of a family in transition as 19-year-old Bennett Wallace navigates early sobriety, late adolescence, and the evolution of his gender identity. His mother makes her own transformation from resistance to acceptance of her trans son. Along the way, both mother and son find support in their communities, reminding us that families are not only given, but chosen.
- Fanny’s Journey, a compelling period piece about a group of Jewish youngsters fleeing Nazi-occupied France in an inspired-by-fact WWII drama. The third feature from director Lola Doillon (In Your Hands, Just About Love). The film deftly portrays events through the eyes of its young protagonists.
Platinum All-Access Passes, Gold Priority Passes, 20-ticket and 10-ticket packages are on sale now. Packages, other than for full-time students, are available online at www.sedonafilmfestival.org or through the Festival Box office at (928) 282-1177. Student packages must be purchased through the Box Office and student ID’s are required.
For more information, visit www.sedonafilmfestival.org.