NASHVILLE, Tennessee – March 16, 2011 – After getting a well-received work-in-progress screening last year, Shane Dax Taylor’s “Bloodworth” returns to Nashville to make its Southeastern U.S. Premiere on Opening Night presented by Bridgestone at the 2011 Nashville Film Festival (NaFF) presented by Nissan when it takes place April 14-21 at the Regal Green Hills Cinemas. “Bloodworth,” a film starring Kris Kristofferson as the titular aging musician returning home to Tennessee to a family collapsing under the weight of its own heritage, is adapted from the William Gay novel “Provinces of Night” by W. Earl Brown, and also stars Brown, Val Kilmer, Dwight Yoakam, Frances Conroy, Hillary Duff and Reece Thompson. It joins several other films announced today in the NaFF 2011 Special Presentations category, as well as films added to the World Cinema and competition categories.
“Terri,” by Azazel Jacobs (“Momma’s Boy”), the story of an orphaned, overweight 15-year-old boy in a small town struggling to find a place of acceptance in a world full of bullying peers and indignant adults, will close the Festival on April 21, with Jacobs expected to attend. Joining “Bloodworth” and “Terri” in Special Presentations are “Road to Nowhere” by director Monte Hellman (“Two Lane Blacktop”), who was the recipient of the Golden Lion at the 2010 Venice Film Festival; “Project Nim,” by James Marsh (“Man on Wire”); “The First Grader,” by Justin Chadwick (“The Other Boleyn Girl”) and “Submarine,” by Richard Ayod.
In the Music Films/Music City Competition presented by Lightning 100, NaFF has added “SING: The Hotel Café Tour Documentary,” by director Laura Crosta and the World Premiere of “Wish Me Away,” the poignant story of country star Chely Wright, who in 2010 came out as openly gay.
In the World Cinema category, the Tennessee premiere of Swedish directors Ola Simonsson and & Johannes Stjärne Nilsson’s “The Sound of Noise” rounds out a previously announced lineup of some of the finest cinema the world has to offer. For a complete list, please visit nashvillefilmfestival.org.
“We were honored to give festivalgoers a sneak peek of Taylor’s ‘Bloodworth’ last year, when it screened as ‘Provinces of Night,’ says NaFF executive director Sallie Mayne. “It makes attending the Film Festival a unique opportunity to not only see a great film, but also be a part of its evolution and see how directors and writers work within the medium. We’re also adding programming and events on Opening Night presented by Bridgestone that will give festivalgoers a plethora of options to celebrate the start of what’s going to be an outstanding eight days of film and community engagement.”
A complete list of Special Presentations and films added to the World Cinema category and Documentary, Narrative, Music Films/Music City and New Directors Competitions follows. Shorts were also announced today. Panels, jurors, music showcases and a complete schedule will be announced in the weeks ahead.
With the addition of these feature films – additional opening night, closing and special presentation films will be announced soon – NaFF will present 77 feature-length films, representing 29 countries.
Tickets for the festival go on sale to the general public on April 7. Members of the media wishing to apply for media credentials may do so now at nashvillefilmfestival.org/press > “Apply for Media Credentials.”
Nashville Film Festival is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation and receives funding from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Franklin Brooks Philanthropic Fund and William N. Rollins Fund for the Arts of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, Ann & Lance Krafft Charitable Lead Trust, The Memorial Foundation, Nashville Metro Arts Commission, Tennessee Arts Commission, and its generous patrons and sponsors.
NaFF 2011 Special Presentations and Added Films (Director(s) / Country(s) of Origin)
Bloodworth (Shane Dax Taylor / USA) OPENING NIGHT SELECTION
E. F. Bloodworth, patriarch of the disgruntled Bloodworth family, has wandered the world for forty years, leaving behind a wife and three sons. When he returns to Tennessee, he finds his wife aged and his sons filled with anger. E. F.’s grandson, Fleming sees what his family has become and is determined not to let the emotion that has driven his family to bitterness and distance define him. “Bloodworth,” adapted by W. Earl Brown from the William Gay novel, “Provinces of Night,” shows that no one has to be defined by limitations set by a family name and a heritage of resentment. Starring Kris Kristofferson, Val Kilmer, Dwight Yoakam, Frances Conroy, Hillary Duff, Reece Thompson and W. Earl Brown. SOUTHEAST US PREMIERE
The First Grader (Justin Chadwick / United Kingdom, Kenya)
Set in a mountain village in Kenya “The First Grader” tells the remarkable true story of a proud 84-year-old veteran of the Kenyan independence movement who is determined to seize his last chance to learn to read and write – and so ends up joining a class alongside six year-olds. Together he and his young teacher face fierce resistance, but ultimately they find a new way of overcoming the burdens of the colonial past. Starring Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge, Sam Feuer, Nick Reding, Vusi Kunene and Israel Makoe. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Project Nim (James Marsh / United Kingdom)
From the Oscar-winning team behind “Man on Wire” comes the story of Nim, the chimpanzee who in the 1970s became the focus of a landmark experiment which aimed to show that an ape could learn to communicate with language if raised and nurtured like a human child. Following Nim’s extraordinary journey through human society, and the enduring impact he makes on the people he meets along the way, the film is an unflinching and unsentimental biography of an animal we tried to make human. What we learn about his true nature – and indeed our own – is comic, revealing and profoundly unsettling. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Road to Nowhere (Monte Hellman / USA)
Directed by Monte Hellman, who was the recipient of the Golden Lion at the 2010 Venice Film Festival, “Road to Nowhere” follows a passionate filmmaker creating a film based upon a true crime. He casts an unknown mysterious young woman bearing a striking resemblance to the femme fatale in the story and finds himself drawn into a complex web of intrigue and obsession. From the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina to Verona, Rome and London, new truths are revealed and clues to other crimes and passions, darker and even more complex are uncovered. Starring Tygh Runyan, Shannyn Sossamon, Cliff De Young and Waylon Payne. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Submarine (Richard Ayode / United Kingdom)
Oliver Tate is a precocious, self-absorbed 15-year-old with two missions: to get laid before his 16th birthday and to prevent his mother from leaving his father for her dance teacher. Adapted from Joe Dunthorne’s novel and directed by British comedian, Richard Ayode (“The Mighty Boosh”), “Submarine” is an evocative, often hilarious tale of a young lad learning that to know truly know others, you have to first admit the universe doesn’t revolve around you. Starring Sally Hawkins, Paddy Consadine, Craig Roberts, Noah Taylor and Yasmin Paige. SOUTHEAST US PREMIERE.
Terri (Azazel Jacobs / USA)
Following up the success he had with “Momma’s Man”, Azazel Jacobs’ has created “Terri,” the story of an orphaned, overweight 15-year-old boy in a small town who struggles to find a place of acceptance in a world full of bullying peers and indignant adults. When Vice-Principal Mr. Fitzgerald, sees a bit of himself in the boy, the two establish a friendship that encourages Terri to consider life something to be enjoyed – not just endured. Starring Jacob Wysocki, John C. Reilly, Creed Bratton, Olivia Crocicchia and Bridger Zadina. TENNESSEE PREMIERE
Sound of Noise (Ola Simonsson, Johannes Stjärne Nilsson / Sweden)
Amadeus Warnebring is a member of a distinguished musical. He is also a tone-deaf police officer charged with tracking down a gang of guerilla percussionists who have composed and intend to play their latest anarchic work: Music for One City and Six Drummers. Warnebring has four movements – each progressively more avant-garde and more potentially dangerous to the livelihood of the city – to bring these musical terrorists to justice and earn the degree of respect he’s strived for his entire over-shadowed life. Starring Bengt Nilsson, Sanna Persson, Magnus Börjeson and Marcus Boij TENNESSEE PREMIERE
Narrative Competition presented by Bridgestone
Beyond the Steppes (Vnaja d’Alcantara / Belgium, Kazakhstan)
“Beyond the Steppes” tells the story of a woman’s forced journey to the steppes of Central Asia. Nina, a young Polish woman, is deported with her baby by the Soviet Army in 1940, to the deep hostile lands of the USSR, where she has to work in a sovkhoz under the control of the Russian political police. When her child becomes ill, she leaves on a search to find medications with a group of Kazakh nomads. The film draws the intimate and personal experience of this woman, as she’s forced into exile, struggling against the extreme conditions of this inhumane land. Starring Agnieszka Grochowska and Aleksandra Justa. US PREMIERE.
Curling (Denis Côté / Canada)
Set on the fringe of society, in a remote part of the Canadian countryside, “Curling” takes a keen look at the unusual private life of a father and his very sheltered daughter. Between his unremarkable jobs, Jean-François devotes an awkward energy to Julyvonne, attempting to shelter her from the influence of the modern world. The fragile balance of their relationship will be jeopardized when the world inevitably makes its way to her. Starring Emmanuel Bilodeau, Philomène Bilodeau and Sophie Desmarais. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Pig (Harry Barrial / USA)
A man wakes up alone in the middle of the desert with a black hood on his head and his hands tied behind his back. At death’s door, he is discovered by a woman living alone in the desert and is nursed back to health. Upon regaining consciousness, the man realizes he has amnesia, and has no idea who he is. His only clue, a piece of paper in his pocket with the name “Manny Elder” on it, sends him on a journey to Los Angeles to discover his past. But things and people are not what they seem and clues lead to something bigger and more unusual than the man could have ever imagined. Starring Rudolf Martin, Heather Ankeny, Keith Diamond and Ines Dali. WORLD PREMIERE.
Documentary Competition presented by Documentary Channel
Fambul Tok (Sara Terry / USA, Sierra Leone)
Victims and perpetrators of Sierra Leone’s brutal civil war come together for the first time in an unprecedented program of tradition-based truth-telling and forgiveness ceremonies. Through reviving their ancient practice of fambul tok (family talk), Sierra Leoneans are building sustainable peace at the grass-roots level — succeeding where the international community’s post-conflict efforts failed. Filled with lessons for the West, this film explores the depths of a culture that believes that true justice lies in redemption and healing for individuals — and that forgiveness is the surest path to restoring dignity and building strong communities. TENNESSEE PREMIERE
A Matter of Taste: Serving Up Paul Liebrandt (Sally Rowe / USA)
Paul Liebrandt is one of the most talented and controversial chefs in the food world and the youngest chef to have received 3 stars from the New York Times. He was 24. NY Times food critic, William Grimes, likened Paul to ‘a pianist who seems to have found a couple of dozen extra keys.’ Through Paul, the film reveals the creative process, the extreme hard work, long hours, and dedication it takes to be a culinary artist and have success in the cutthroat world of haute cuisine. Exploring the complicated relationships between food critics, chefs, and owners the film delves into the life of a dedicated young chef ahead of his time. TENNESSEE PREMIERE
My Life with Carlos (Germán Berger-Hertz / Chile)
When director Germán Berger-Hertz was only one year old, his father Carlos was brutally murdered by the Pinochet regime’s death squads. The deeply personal “My Life With Carlos” breaks 30 years of silence as the director pieces together fragments of his father’s life. Through interviews with uncles, friends, neighbors and political colleagues, Berger-Hertz reconstructs one man’s history – and unveils the truth behind a nation still recovering from a brutal past. TENNESSEE PREMIERE
New Directors Competition
Falling Overnight (Conrad Jackson / USA)
Twenty-four hours before life-threatening surgery, Elliot meets Chloe, an aspiring photographer who invites him to her art show. Scared and alone, Elliot welcomes the distraction. As the night descends, Chloe takes Elliot on an intimate and exhilarating journey through the city. But as morning approaches, and Chloe learns of Elliot’s condition, the magic of the night unravels and they must together face the uncertainty of Elliot’s future. Starring Parker Croft, Emilia Zoryan, Barak Hardley and Millie Zinner. WORLD PREMIERE.
The Off Hours (Megan Griffiths / USA)
Francine is a waitress whose liberation from her mundane existence is long overdue. In the restless world of the night shift at a highway diner, her life consists of casual encounters and transient friendships. As change begins to invade the quiet diner, Francine is reminded that it is never too late to become the person she was meant to be. Starring Amy Seimetz, Ross Partridge, Tony Doupe and Scoot McNairy. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Music Films/Music City Competition presented by Lightning 100
SING: The Hotel Café Tour Documentary (Laura Crosta / USA)
Over the years, the Hotel Café has become one of LA’s top music venues, a place to discover some of the hottest new stars on the Singer/Songwriter circuit. With verité footage, interviews, and performance footage, director Laura Crosta captures the friendship, fame, and fortunes that develop as these young artists take their acts on the road. The result is chaotic magic and unique performances that can never be captured again. Starring Gary Jules, Cary Brothers, Greg Laswell, Jim Bianco, Butch Walker, Ingrid Michaelson, Sara Bareilles, Joshua Radin, Dan Wilson, Meiko, Jessie Baylin, William Fitzsimmons, Rachael Yamagata, and Tom McRae. TENNESSEE PREMIERE.
Wish Me Away (Bobbie Birleffi, Beverly Kopf / USA)
“Wish Me Away” is the poignant story of Chely Wright, a country music star who in 2010 came out as openly gay. Emerging from a life of hiding, she exposes her truth to her family, fans and the country music world. Over a two year period, the filmmakers follow her process as she reveals more and more of her inner story, while capturing its impact on the outside world. WORLD PREMIERE