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Please join us for a screening of "Fly Away" followed by a Q&A with Director/Writer Janet Grillo and Cast Members Jr Bourne and Reno. The event will be Wednesday, November 16th at 7:00 Pm at the Nyit Auditorium on Broadway, 1871 Broadway (Between 61st and 62nd Streets), New York City.Made as a SAG Ultra-Low Budget Independent film, and shot in 14 days, "Fly Away" premiered as 1 of 8 out of 2000 submissions in Dramatic Competition at the influential South by Southwest Film Festival (SXSW) in Austin, Texas, this March. "Fly Away" immediately opened afterwards, in limited theatrical engagement in key cities, to rave reviews.The complex portrayals of a single mother and her severely Autistic teenager daughter (Beth Broderick and Ashley Rickards, who does not actually have the disorder), in collaboration with a talented ensemble (Greg Germann, Jr Bourne and Reno), were widely lauded by major critics, as "exceptional…remarkable…first rate… »
- firstname.lastname@example.org ()
Ashley Rickards turned 19 in May, and she has a lot to celebrate this year. In March, her film "Fly Away" premiered at the South by Southwest Film Festival, earning Rickards raves for her portrayal of Mandy, a 16-year-old autistic girl. Written and directed by Janet Grillo and co-starring Beth Broderick as Mandy's mother, the film is now available on DVD, with 10 percent of the profits going to Autism Speaks.Currently, Rickards can be seen in a wildly different role on MTV's scripted series "Awkward." She stars as Jenna Hamilton, a teenage wallflower who finds herself becoming the talk of her high school after an accident is misconstrued as a suicide attempt. The irreverent series follows Jenna's journey as she finds her place in the high school hierarchy. "It's a very inspiring and empowering journey for anybody, not just young girls," Rickards notes. "The subjects we touch on in the »
- email@example.com (Jenelle Riley)
"It was able to balance delving deep into philosophy and science, still maintaining wonderful heart and soul. It's the story of Dr. Ellie Arroway [Jodie Foster] who, since she was just a girl, was always interested in contacting faraway lands.
"[Director] Robert Zemekis did such a wonderful job in bringing this story to life. His shots took my breath away. My favorite scene was when Ellie is in the [court] hearing after her journey and is being questioned about her experience. Jodie Foster's acting is so superb; it's just a wonderful scene, in a wonderful movie."
- Mark Rabinowitz
Christina Hendricks, Dermot Mulroney, and Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) have joined the coming-of-age comedy Struck by Lightning. Written by and starring Chris Colfer (Glee), the pic recently began principal photography under the steady hand of director Brian Dannelly (Saved!) and is told in flashback from the perspective of a young man (Colfer) who was struck and killed by lightning. Per the press release, the guts of the film will document his "exploits as he blackmails his fellow senior classmates into contributing to a literary magazine he's publishing." In addition to the cast already mentioned, Struck by Lightning also stars Angela Kinsey (The Office), Allie Grant (Weeds), Ashley Rickards (Fly Away), Polly Bergen (Desperate Housewives), and Brad Henke (Choke). A lot could be riding on the film for Colfer as it's both his feature debut and, as we reported yesterday, he isn't expected to return for season 4 of the show that made him a semi-household name, »
- Jason Barr
Autism is a tough topic to tackle on film. Not only do you run the risk of upsetting folks by misrepresenting the condition, but if you take it too far, drowning the viewers in the severity of the disorder, the film loses its entertainment value. Well, writer-director Janet Grillo has found a happy medium and that makes her first feature film, Fly Away, not only an honest and moving telling, but an enjoyable one, too. The film stars Beth Broderick as Jeanne, the mother of an autistic child, Mandy (Ashley Rickards). Not only must Jeanne raise Mandy on her own, but ensure she’s getting the proper clinical attention and treatment, »
- Perri Nemiroff
Emotional and involving yet also clear-eyed and with a cool wisdom, Janet Grillo’s Fly Away is a sharply observed and strongly acted tale of a mother learning to allow her autistic teenage daughter to transition into the adult world. Beth Broderick plays Jeanne, a single mom with her own home-office corporate consulting business. Ashley Rickards is her daughter Mandy, and the two have a tight, well-ordered relationship, with Jeanne trying to grow her business during the day while Mandy attends a special needs school. But when Mandy begins a series of violent outbursts at that school, Jeanne’s almost preternatural composure begins to crack.
Exploring not just autism from a mother’s perspective but also the struggle all of us have to maintain our own identities and emotional lives amidst all that life throws at us, Fly Away has a remarkably sagacious insight into all of its characters. The »
- Scott Macaulay
Nobility counts for so much in people and so little in movies. Director Janet Grillo's "Fly Away" is an exceedingly noble film. I admire its commitment to autism education even while I admit I did not like it very much. Its heart is in the right place, and I'm sure it was a labor of love for Grillo and for many in her cast and crew.
It is the story of mother's struggle to care and provide for her autistic daughter, Mandy. She's 16 and despite medication and her mother's constant attention and hard-work, her behavior isn't improving. Mandy's too much of a handful for her public school teachers, who continually press mom Jeanne to get Mandy into a full time care and education facility while Jeanne fights like the Dickens to keep her family together.
That, along with a warm and optimistic love story between Jeanne and a man »
- Matt Singer
The challenges of autism have inspired many great films, from the often-quoted classic Rain Man to the Austin-made Temple Grandin. This isn't surprising, because while autism can be devastating, the successes of autistic people can be very inspirational. Their stories are tailor-made for powerfully dramatic movies.
Fly Away is an example of how autism's challenges can translate into interesting cinema. The low-budget indie, which played SXSW this year, is the story of single mother Jeanne (Beth Broderick) and her teen daughter Mandy (Ashley Rickards), whose severe autism impacts their lives in both expected and unexpected ways. While Fly Away is uneven, it's a mildly entertaining and poignant depiction of living with autism.
Mandy has reached a point in her life where Jeanne must make some difficult decisions about the girl's future. Now an adolescent, Mandy still behaves like a young child at times, throwing tantrums and demanding her way. But »
- Don Clinchy
One of the great elements of Catherine Hardwicke's films throughout the years has been a sense of place and community, whether it was the loose-knit family of orphaned Southern California skaters in "Lords of Dogtown," the tenuous, hard-won relationship between the warm-hearted vampire clan of the Cullens and the occasionally chilly human population of Forks, Washington in "Twilight" or even in her latest film "Red Riding Hood," where Amanda Seyfried's titular character goes from beloved daughter and belle of the town to an outcast whose societal freefall after her encounter with the big bad wolf feels particularly cruel given how strongly the director sets up the world around her.
So there's little surprise that Hardwicke's "Director's Workshop" Saturday afternoon at SXSW, which is fast becoming a home away from home for the helmer who went to the University of Texas' School of Architecture after growing up in the Texas bordertown of McAllen, »
- Stephen Saito
Courtesy of SXSW A scene from “Fly Away”
It’s been 81 years since Virginia Wolff published her famous essay, more than 20 since I read it, and even more before I followed her advice that “a woman must have a room of her own, if she is to write.”
When my mother was my age, she considered the best part of her life as behind her. When my grandmother was this age, considered herself “old.” And my great-grandmother most certainly was. »
- Janet Grillo
With the 2011 SXSW Film Conference and Festival kicking off a week from tomorrow in Austin, indieWIRE is releasing its first slate of SXSW filmmaker interviews, as part of the "Meet the 2011 SXSW Filmmakers" series, that spotlights directors with films in this year's Narrative Competition, Documentary Competition and Emerging Visions lineups. Today's first crop include Janet Grillo's "Fly Away" (Narrative Competition), Vikram Gandhi's documentary "Kumaré" (Documentary Competition) and Guy »
By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: We have a little bit of time to process the extensive South By Southwest film line up, which was unveiled by festival programmers earlier this week. This year’s event, scheduled to take over beautiful Austin, Texas from March 11 to 19, will showcase 130 features including 60 world premieres, 12 North American premieres and 16 U.S. premieres.
“SXSW prides itself on taking chances, sifting for films that are the seedlings of the next generation of must-see artists,” said Film Conference and Festival Producer Janet Pierson. “This year’s line up is full of emerging voices and filmmakers who transcended the resources they had on hand, often with an alchemist’s touch.”
As we prepare to bring you exclusive coverage from Austin, I went ahead and singled out the 15 films I’m most looking forward to seeing while in town. The descriptions were provided by the SXSW press team, »
- Sean O'Connell
In the first purchase of the upcoming SXSW Film Festival, New Video has acquired Janet Grillo's "Fly Away." New Video plans to give the film a limited theatrical run through its Flatiron Film Co. on April 26, with a focus on digital, cable VOD and DVD distribution. "Fly Away" is Grillo's feature debut and one of the eight titles in SXSW's narrative feature competition. "Fly Away" will make its world »
Eight films competing in feature category at Austin gathering include story of one man and his boat and film set in an La flat
With its focus on new and up-and-coming film-makers, Austin's SXSW is perhaps the least ostentatious of culture festivals. Perhaps there's something in the Texas water, for the newly announced competition lineup also features a number of movies that adopt a "less is more" approach.
Of the eight films that will vie for the top prize in the narrative feature section, Chris Eyre's A Year in Mooring is about a man (Josh Lucas) and his boat, Terry McMahon's Charlie Casanova takes place mostly in a bar and hotel, and Matt D'Elia's American Animal is a two-hander set in a Los Angeles flat shared by a terminally ill eccentric and his room-mate.
- Ben Child
The South by Southwest Film Festival announced its feature film line-up Wednesday, piling heaps of cinematic goodness on an already stellar program that includes Jodie Foster’s The Beaver, Duncan Jones’ Source Code, Ti West’s The Innkeepers, Conan O’Brien’s tour documentary, and the latest Simon Pegg-Nick Frost comedy, Paul, with Seth Rogen.
I’m extremely excited, even if I’m already having flashbacks to intense sleep deprivation. Like the last two years, I’ll be on the ground covering as much of the festival as I can within the packed 9 days of screenings, »
- Jeff Leins
‘Tapping into the cultural zeitgeist,’ at SXSW 2011
Austin, Texas – The SXSW 2011 Feature Film Lineup was unveiled Wednesday afternoon. The festival lineup will consist of 130 features, in nine full days of programming, promising to deliver a film-going experience unlike previous years.
With a reputation for taking chances on relatively unknown filmmakers, the SXSW panel of judges carefully picked 130 films from 1,792 feature-length film submissions, (1,323 U.S. and 469 international). The program consists of 60 World Premieres, 12 North American Premieres and 16 U.S. Premieres.
The main competition categories return with eight Narrative Features, and eight Documentary Features, both competing for their respective Grand Jury Prize. New for films in competition this year, are awards for screenplay, editing, cinematography, music, and acting.
(The Midnighters and SXFantastic feature sections, along with the short film program, will be announced next week.)
Here are a few of the Features to be screened, among many others.
The Beaver (World Premiere)
- Albert Art
Readers of Sound On Sight can be sure that we will indeed be covering the SXSW Film Festival once again. As previously reported, Duncan Jones’ latest film Source Code is opening the festival and there will also be premieres for the documentary Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop, Greg Mottola’s Paul, and Jodie Foster’s The Beaver. Now the full line-up has been announced it is incredible.
Hit the jump to check out the line-up, and be sure to visit our site during the event.
The 2011 SXSW Film Festival runs from March 11 – 19th in Austin, Texas.
SXSW Film Announces 2011 Features Lineup
Austin, Texas – February 2, 2011 – The South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference and Festival is thrilled to announce the features lineup for this year’s Festival, March 11 – 19, 2011 in Austin, Texas. The 2011 lineup continues the SXSW tradition of tapping into the cultural zeitgeist, highlighting emerging talent and breakthrough performances and supporting first-time filmmakers. »
South by Southwest, lovingly abbreviated to SXSW, for those who don’t know, is one of the premiere geek film festivals held in the United States. Always held in Austin, Texas, this year it runs from March 11-19, and it’s definitely one to watch out for. The official lineup has been revealed on the festival’s site, and you can take a look at part of it below.
It’s a pretty exciting assortment of movies set up for those lucky enough to attend, going across the board in terms of genre and profile. Below you can see the Narrative Feature Competition and the Documentary Feature Competition. The Headliners, over at the site, features some of the bigger films, such as Paul, Source Code (the opening night premiere), Win Win and The Beaver. Take a look at those below, and the rest over at the link above.
Narrative Feature »
- Nick Newman
South by Southwest Film is delighted to present the features lineup for the 2011 Film Program. We’re excited to share all this amazing, cutting edge filmmaking talent with the world.
Find the complete lineup here, and take a peek at our Feature Competitions:
Narrative Feature Competition
Director & Writer: Aimée Lagos
A Year in Mooring
Director & Writer: Matt D’Elia
Charlie Casanova (Ireland)
Director & Writer: Terry McMahon
Director & Writer: Janet Grillo
Director & Writer: K. Lorrel Manning
Director & Writer: Robbie Pickering
Small, Beautifully Moving Parts
Directors & Writers: Annie J. Howell & Lisa Robinson
Documentary Feature Competition
Director: Sally Rowe
The City Dark
Director: Ian Cheney »
- Melissa Howland
Released today, the South By Southwest Film Conference and Festival has announced the features lineup for this year’s fest, which will take place March 11-19 in Austin, Texas.
130 features (consisting of 60 world premieres, 12 North American premieres and 16 U.S. premieres) will screen this year from a record-high 1,792 feature-length films submitted to SXSW producer Janet Pierson and her team.
Highlights include opening night film Source Code, from Duncan Jones (Moon), Jodie Foster‘s The Beaver, Greg Mottola‘s Paul, Sundance Grand Prize doc winner How to Die in Oregon, Errol Morris‘ Tabloid, Victoria Mahoney‘s Yelling to the Sky, Azazel Jacob‘s Terri and a special screening of Catherine Hardwicke‘s Red Riding Hood.
See the complete lineup below. The Midnight and SXFantastic sections will be announced with the shorts program next week.
Narrative Feature Competition
Director & Writer: Aimée Lagos
Four young lives. One night. One terrifying event. These 96 minutes will change everything. »
- Jason Guerrasio
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