Robert Duvall to headline Film Fest

Virginian Robert Duvall will head down from Warrenton to pick up the Virginia Film Award and screen his 1997 film, The Apostle, at this year's spiritually themed Virginia Film Festival, fest director Richard Herskowitz announced today at the Music Resource Center.

Herskowitz unveiled special guests and events for the 19th festival, this year with the subject "Revelations: Finding God at the Movies," which runs October 26-29. The lineup includes lots of locals and lots of Swedes, opening with Derek Sieg's Swedish Auto, which was filmed in Charlottesville behind Mel's on West Main Street. Paul Wagner will screen his new documentary, The God of a Second Chance, as will locals Brad and Kent Williamson, who will present Rebellion of Thought.

Local ashram Yogaville joins the fun, sponsoring a multi-denominational light-a-candlethon for world peace October 26 at the Charlottesville Pavilion, and a screening of Five Masters of Meditation October 29 at the ashram in Buckingham.

Other celebs attending the fest include actor Liev Schreiber, who will screen his directorial debut, Everything Is Illuminated; child actor William Moseley of The Chronicles of Narnia fame, who will present that film; novelist/screenwriter Michael "The Player" Tolkin with his film, The Rapture; and punk preacher Jay Bakker, son of Jim and Tammy Faye.

The complete festival schedule will appear online Thursday, September 28, and tickets go on sale Friday, September 29.

1 comment

The word among local film lovers was they were trying to woo Morgan Freeman into a guest appearance, although Duvall is certainly an equally superb score for the festival. Schreiber and Tolkin are also terrific additions.

On the downside, the schedule seems a little spotty this year. Not exactly a packed slate. And why the move from Culbreth over to Newcomb Hall?

Does anyone else think the festival organizers artifically (andf unfortunately) restrict themselves by choosing excessively esoteric themes? Four years ago the theme was "wet," prompting one local wiseass to wonder if they would be screening porn.