MIFF to Host World Premiere of 35mm Restoration of Peyton Place

July 9, 2016

011A never-before-seen 35mm restoration print of Peyton Place will premiere at the Maine International Film Festival on July 13 at 6:00 PM. A new short film, On Location in Peyton Place, will screen with the feature, which will be followed by a special Q&A session with industry executives. The evening will conclude with a party at 18 Below on Silver Street. This Centerpiece Gala event is sponsored by Camden National Bank.

Shot on location in in Camden, Belfast, Rockland, Lincolnville, Rockport, and Thomaston, Maine in the ’50s and gorgeously brought to new life in this spectacular 35mm restoration on the eve of its 60th birthday, Peyton Place was nominated for nine Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, five Best Acting or Supporting Acting nominations and Best Cinematography.

According to MIFF Programming Director Ken Eisen, the restored version of Peyton Place “is a Maine treasure. We are honored that we can bring this restored gem back home for its debut.”

Schawn Belston, Executive Vice President of Media and Library Services for Fox Filmed Entertainment, and Michael Pogorzelski, Director of the Academy Film Archive at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences will introduce the film and participate in a discussion led by Willard Carroll, director of On Location in Peyton Place, after the screening.

Peyton Place premiered in Camden two days before going into general release on December 13, 1957 and became the second-highest grossing film of 1958, eventually taking in more than $25M in the U.S. The film adaptation of this salacious novel was not without its own controversy – on April 4, 1958, star Lana Turner’s daughter Cheryl killed her mother’s abusive lover, mobster Johnny Stompanato, and was placed in Juvenile Hall. The press coverage of the subsequent investigation boosted ticket sales by 32%.

Tickets for Peyton Place are $14 and are available on this website.

Actress Lori Singer to be honored with film retrospective and present her new film, God Knows Where I Am

July 5, 2016

Lori Singer in Short Cuts

Lori Singer in Short Cuts

MIFF 2016 will honor iconic actress Lori Singer with a film retrospective and present her new film God Knows Where I Am on July 10 at the Waterville Opera House. Singer will screen four films at MIFF, including her fan favorite Footloose on July 14 at the Waterville Opera House, as well as Robert Altman’s masterpiece, Short Cuts, and Alan Rudolph’s film noir Trouble in Mind.

Her new film, the award winning God Knows Where I Am, is the story of Linda Bishop, a well-educated wife and mother who had long battled severe bipolar disorder, and the extraordinary events that lead to her death. As her journal is sensitively read—by Lori Singer—poetic and beautiful images, filmed at the actual site of events, augment her inner journey. The film is an exquisite eulogy to a tortured spirit, as well as a searing commentary on our mental health system. Singer has received rave reviews for her inspired performance from The Atlantic, The Hollywood Reporter, Cinema Axis, Now and Toronto Film Scene, a performance that has been called “astonishing,” ”stunning,” and “inspired.”

“We are honored that Lori can be with us for the entire week and that she’ll be screening so many of the films audiences love dearly,” said programming director Ken Eisen. “From her haunting performance in God Knows Where I Am to her energetic triumph in Footloose, we’re going to see her multifaceted talent on rare display.”

Lori Singer will screen the following films while at MIFF:
Trouble In Mind – July 9 at 6:30 pm, Waterville Opera House
God Knows Where I Am – July 10 at 12:30 pm, Waterville Opera House
Short Cuts – July 12 at 2:45 pm, Railroad Square Cinema
Footloose – July 14 at 9:30 pm, Waterville Opera House

MIFF Presents the 2nd Annual World Filmmakers Forum

June 29, 2016

VJSuaveBringing together filmmakers from three continents, the Maine International Film Festival will – for the second year in a row – offer audiences a glimpse inside the creative process of acclaimed international filmmakers.

Throughout the 19th annual film festival, filmmakers from Uruguay, Brazil, South Africa, and Mexico will show their work and discuss their creative process and the state of international film. The World Filmmakers’ Forum was launched as a pilot program at MIFF 2015 with funding provided by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts Art Works program. While MIFF has always been committed to presenting international films and to bringing international guests to the festival, organizers say that the NEA grant allowed them to expand the effort. According to Festival Director Shannon Haines, “The World Filmmakers’ Forum was such a huge hit at last year’s festival that I made a promise to the audience on Closing Night that it would become an annual programming element of the festival, and we are certainly delivering on that promise this year.”

“This is an amazing opportunity to bring in current, exciting filmmakers from across the globe to present their work to our audience,” said programming director Ken Eisen.

Joining MIFF for the World Filmmakers’ Forum in Waterville are:

  • Fernando Epstein of Uruguay, who will screen Neon Bull on July 10 & 11 and 25 Watts on July 12
  • Pia Marais of South Africa, who will screen Layla Fourie on July 9 & 10, and The Unpolished on July 9
  • VJ Suave of Brazil (Ygor Marotta and Ceci Soloaga), who will screen their animated Digital Folklore as part of MIFFONEDGE at Common Street Arts from July 8-17 and will also take their art to the street with tricycle projector performances on Opening Night and at other times TBA
  • Alejandra Marquez Abella of Mexico, who will screen Semana Santa on July 14 & 15

MIFF to present Mid-Life Achievement Award to actor Gabriel Byrne

June 16, 2016

Gabriel_ByrneThe Maine International Film Festival (MIFF) will present its annual Mid-Life Achievement Award to actor Gabriel Byrne at a special ceremony held at the Waterville Opera House on the evening of July 15. Most recently, Byrne was nominated for a 2016 Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in the Broadway production of Long Day’s Journey Into Night.

“We are thrilled to honor Gabriel Byrne with the 2016 Mid-Life Achievement Award,” said MIFF programming director Ken Eisen. “Gabriel is a truly brilliant actor with a career that spans over four decades and includes over 100 film, stage, and TV credits. We can’t wait to welcome him to MIFF.”

Byrne has appeared in over 35 feature films, including Excalibur, Miller’s Crossing, The Usual Suspects, and Stigmata. Byrne co-wrote The Last of the High Kings and has also produced several films, including the Academy Award-nominated In the Name of the Father. One of Byrne’s most identifiable roles is that of Dr. Paul Weston in the HBO drama In Treatment, for which he won a Golden Globe Award and was nominated for two Emmy Awards and two Satellite Awards.

The award presentation will be held after a screening of The Usual Suspects, a neo-noir mystery crime thriller directed by Byran Singer and written by Christopher McQuarrie, on Friday, July 15 at 6:30 p.m. at the Waterville Opera House. Tickets are $14 and are now available online. The film centers on five criminals (played by Gabriel Byrne, Kevin Spacey, Benicio Del Toro, Kevin Pollak, and Stephen Baldwin) who meet in a police lineup and decide to pull off a heist together. Byrne will be in Waterville July 14 and 15 with screenings of Miller’s Crossing, Jindabyne, and Louder Than Bombs. 

Robert Benton, Oscar-Winning Director/Screenwriter, to be honored with MIFF Lifetime Achievement Award

June 14, 2016

Benton headshotThe Maine International Film Festival will present Robert Benton, Oscar-Winning Director/Screenwriter, with a Lifetime Achievement Award on July 10 at the Waterville Opera House. Benton, best known for films including Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), Bonnie and Clyde (1967) and Nobody’s Fool (1994), is a three-time Academy Award winning director and screenwriter who has directed eight different actors in Oscar-nominated performances. Benton has collaborated closely with Maine-based Pulitzer-Prize winning novelist and screenwriter Richard Russo, earning an Oscar nomination for Best Writing for his screenplay based on Nobody’s Fool. The two also co-wrote the 1998 film Twilight, starring Paul Newman, Susan Sarandon, and Gene Hackman, and Russo went on to dedicate his Pulitzer-winning novel Empire Falls to Benton in 2002.

To honor the acclaimed director/screenwriter, MIFF will be screening the following Benton films: Kramer vs. Kramer, Nobody’s Fool, The Late Show and Bonnie & Clyde. The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented at the screening of Nobody’s Fool on Sunday, July 10 at 6:30 p.m. at the Waterville Opera House, and Richard Russo will also be in attendance to assist with the award presentation. Tickets to the award ceremony and screening are available online. Benton will be in Waterville July 9 -10.

“It’s an immense pleasure and honor to welcome Benton to MIFF to accept a richly-deserved Lifetime Achievement Award, and to share his films with us,” relayed MIFF Programming Director Ken Eisen.