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Gabriel Meyers, Press Deputy Director 845-679-4265;
Ilene Marder, Press Director 845-246-1122

Films of the Hudson Valley to screen at

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Against the Current



(Woodstock, NY) August 24, 2009: Known for its ardent support of regional filmmakers and film production, the 10th Anniversary edition Woodstock Film Festival will again showcase a bevy of features and shorts made in the Hudson Valley or by local residents, from Sept. 30 - Oct. 4, 2009.

Working in conjunction with the Hudson Valley Film Commission (it's sister organization), the Woodstock FIlm Festival has worked since its inception to unite and strengthen the Hudson Valley film community, making the creation of many of these screen gems possible.

Against the Current (East Coast Premiere) a heartfelt drama directed by Peter Callahan (Last Ball), depicts a man, haunted by a tragic loss in his past, who is determined to swim the length of the Hudson River from Troy to New York City. Showcasing tour-de-force performances by Joseph Fiennes, Justin Kirk and Elizabeth Reaser, this beautiful film paints a unique portrait of the Hudson River and its surrounding countryside. The film will also be featured during the Hudson Valley Programmers Tour (from Troy to NYC) just after the Woodstock Film Festival (see

The Perfect Age of Rock 'n' Roll (East Coast Premiere) featuring Lukas Haas, Peter Fonda and Ruby Dee, was directed by Scott Rosenbaum and produced by Joe White. The story tells of a young musician, eager to avoid being a one hit wonder, returning home to unite with a former collaborator and childhood friend. "I have been a part time local of Woodstock for about ten years," says White. "There are few places where all forms of art can come together and flourish in harmony while maintaining integrity. As a filmmaker I have always admired the Woodstock FIlm Festival for its commitment to that integrity."

October Country (New York Premiere) portrays the hardships of blue-collar life in New York's Mohawk Valley. The documentary tells the story of a family haunted by war, teen pregnancy, foster care and child abuse. First time directors Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher's film uses rich visual metaphors and floats through multiple storylines to paint a portrait of a family: unique in their own right but representative of the struggles of America's working class.
Splinterheads (East Coast Premiere) is a romantic comedy that tells the story of Justin Frost (newcomer Thomas Middleditch) a lazy, good for nothing, who, while visiting the local carnival, falls for sexy carnie con artist Galaxy (Rachel Taylor), and begins to understand that there's more to life than doing nothing. Several scenes were shot locally in Pine Bush, New Paltz and High Falls, NY. The film was written and directed by Brant Sersen, whose last film, Blackballed: The Bobby Dukes Story was also filmed in the Hudson Valley.
Indicative of WFF's dedication to local filmmaking, the shorts line-up is also full of regional gems:
The 4th of July Parade (World Premiere) is a touching mother and daughter story shot all around the Hudson Valley in Woodstock, Saugerties, Kingston, Catskill. The film is directed by Miranda Rhyne. "Despite not knowing how to drive," she quipped. " I grew to know Ulster County and the surrounding areas quite well." When she was ten years old she was cast as the lead character in the Sundance Film Festival grand jury prize winning film "Angela" by director Rebecca Miller.
A Horse is Not a Metaphor by Woodstock resident Barbara Hammer received the prestigious Teddy Award for Best LGBT short film at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival. The film is a hopeful, multilayered experimental film with music by Meredith Monk that offers a first-person account of surviving—and thriving—with cancer. Barbara Hammer is a visual artist working primarily in film and video. She has made over eighty works in a career that spans fourty years and is considered a pioneer of queer cinema. She lives and works in New York City and Woodstock.
The Bell (World Premiere) based on the Emerson poem of the same name was diredted by Erik Weigel (El Camino) who spent the summer living in a Woodstock house once owned by famed American director Preston Sturges. The short film, which is narrated by Martin Sheen, stars local children and was filmed on location at the Woodstock Day School in Woodstock, NY.
Knife Point follows a family that crosses paths with a traveling salesman at the end of his rope. The short is directed by Delaware County native Carlo Mirabella-Davis and was filmed in East Meredith, Delhi, Oneonta, and Hamden NY. In addition to the crew, the lead actor Lev Gorn and Davis Hall have local connections. "It was a real community production," recalls Carlo. "Locals and neighbors let us shoot on their land, put up members of the crew and even the use of their goats for the end sequence. The Hudson Valley area is my muse, and I'm currently writing a feature film that will take place up there as well."
Love and Roadkill was directed by John David Allen and filmed entirely in Columbia County. The film was produced by Columbia County resident James Ivory (A Room With A View, Howard's End) and features local actor Bill Camp. The film captures a rare moment of reflection on life and death during an otherwise usual scenic ride through the countryside.

Music We Are, a documentary by Woodstock resident Mirav Ozeri, provides a rare look into the creative process of legendary jazz drummer Jack Dejohnette (2008 Grammy winner), Danilo Perez and John Patitucci as they create their latest album. The film was shot entirely in Catskill, NY.

OOOM: Out of Our Minds is a stunning, mythical and musical journey, occurring in three time periods. Conceived by musician Melissa Auf der Maur (Hole / Smashing Pumpkins) and birthed by Filmmaker Tony Stone (Severed Ways: The Norse Discovery of America) this mini epic is proudly self-produced and shot in the Hudson Valley on high definition video fueled entirely by solar power.
Stooge (World Premiere) by director Mickey Breitenstein, is relationships, monogamy and infidelity. The short film was shot in a barn , which was built in 1864 as part of the Elwyn Farm in Woodstock, NY. Will Lytle, the Director of Photography, is a Onteora Graduate and a former student of the Indie Program. Actor Aren Stirbl grew up and was part of the Youth Theater Program in Woodstock. Mickey Breitenstein was raised and schooled in Woodstock. He recently returned to the area after working in the film industry in Los Angeles for fourteen years.

Additional films featuring local talent or filmed locally will be included in the full 2009 WFF line-up to be announced in early September.

For more information, contact Ilene Marder or Gabriel Meyers at the WFF Press Office,

The 10th annual Woodstock Film Festival will take place September 30th-October 4th, 2009.  The 'fiercely independent' festival includes more than 150 films, panels, concerts and special events in Woodstock and the neighboring towns of Kingston, Rhinebeck and Rosendale. For more information visit

Celebrating its tenth anniversary, the Woodstock Film Festival premiers exceptional films; hosting the most talented emerging and established professionals in the movie industry; presenting A-list concerts, parties and panels, and creating stimulating, innovative programming year-round.

The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, 501©(3) organization whose mission is to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music and art-related activities that promotes artists, culture, inspired learning, and diversity.

For more information please call (845) 679-4265 or visit

P.O Box 1406, Woodstock, NY 12498 - (845) 679-4265 -