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Dear Lemon Lima
Directed by
Suzi Yoonessi
USA / 2009 / 87 minutes

East Coast Premiere
Screening Times and Venues:
Upstate Films I
10/03/2009, 4:00PM
Tinker Street Cinema
10/04/2009, 11:00AM
Being thirteen is not easy, as Vanessa, a quirky Alaskan girl, can attest to. Her daydreams of a life filled with candy hearts, rainbows and ice cream come to an end when her beloved Philip breaks up with her. She decides that the best way to win his heart back is to enter the school's Snowstorm Survivor competition, gathering up a group of misfits to be on her team. As she trains for the competition, bonds with her team, and confronts unexpected challenges, Ness finally begins to embrace her heritage.

In both style and script, Suzi Yoonessi has crafted a film that expertly captures the inner thoughts of a teenage girl. With strong performances from the entire cast, including newcomer Savanah Wiltfong and WFF friend and Oscar® nominee Melissa Leo, the film is just as sweet as the ice cream cones it features. Teenage girls will both relate to and be inspired by Vanessa as she learns to embrace her individuality. (Emily Suttmeier)

Suzi Yoonessi premiered her short film "No Shoulder," which was filmed in the Hudson Valley, at the 2005 Woodstock Film Festival. She returned to WFF in 2006 with "Bomb," which she produced (also in the Hudson Valley) for director Ian Olds and came back again in 2007 with the short version of "Dear Lemon Lima."

Yoonessi received the Jerome Foundation's New York Media Arts Grant for "Vern" (2004), which she wrote, directed, and produced. "Vern" is in the permanent collection of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and is being distributed by the National Film Network. Yoonessi's short version of "Dear Lemon Lima," received a Jerome Foundation NYC Media Arts Grant and an All Roads Foundation Grant. The feature script of "Dear Lemon Lima," was recognized by Tribeca All Access Connects, IFP No Borders Market, Film Independent Screenwriters and Producers Lab, and Film Independent Directors Lab.

Yoonessi associate produced the Cannes and Sundance award-winning "Me And You And Everyone We Know" (2005), written and directed by Miranda July, with Gina Kwon for IFC Films & Film Four.

Yoonessi received her BFA from San Francisco Art Institute, and her MFA from Columbia University where she was a recipient of the FMI Directing Fellowship.

Cast/Featuring: Savanah Wiltfong, Shayne Topp, Melissa Leo, Beth Grant, Elaine Hendrix, Meaghan Jette Martin, Vanessa Marano, Zane Huett, Eleanor Hutchins
Producer(s): Melissa M. Lee, Jonako Donley
Director(s): Suzi Yoonessi
Screenwriter(s): Suzi Yoonessi
Cinematographer(s): Sarah Levy
Editor(s): Mara Farrington, Matthew Linnell
Composer(s)/Music: Sasha Gordon
Sound Editor(s): Julia Shirar, Kent Sparling

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