38th NaFF set to reel in Music City

The Rites of Spring are upon us and without a doubt one of the most famous and revered of events in the city is the Nashville Film Festival held every spring at Regal Green Hills Cinema. 

Film geeks and professionals from around the country will descend upon Nashville for eight entertaining days April 19-26 in order to screen festival entries four state-of-the-art theaters at the popular venue...celebrated for being one of the only places in much of the state that will screen popular independent films.

Events connected to the festival, including the opening night party atop BMI’s Nashville headquarters, will spread out around the city inviting all Nashvillians to join in the fun.  

“Each year, Nashville Film Festival’s role in the local, national and international film communities and place among the top film showcases in the world is further established,” said Brian Gordon, NaFF artistic director. “Our artistic integrity has always been our top priority, and this year makes it clear that we can attract excellent films of all kinds that offer great quality, appeal and discussion, drawing filmgoers to a one-of-a-kind experience in Nashville.”

"MY SECRET RECORD or How I Learned to Stop Worrying & Love the Biz," a documentary focused on singer-songwriter and international recording star Rob Thomas, will open the festival, with Thomas, his wife Marisol Thomas and director Gillian Grisman attending the screening. The documentary traces the creative process and aggressive marketing campaign of Rob Thomas’s Billboard history making solo debut "Something to Be." Featuring a cast of superstars and “A-listers" — including Carlos Santana, Alicia Keys, John Mayer — we are given extraordinary access into the world that manufactures rock stars and hits for mass consumption.

The World Premiere of "AMERICANIZING SHELLEY," a film by director Lorraine Senna ("Sopranos;" "Northern Exposure") featuring Beau Bridges and a star-making performance by Namrata Singh Gujral is a “Pygmalion”-like romantic comedy set in Los Angeles about a wanna-be Hollywood player (Brad Raider) who attempts to “Americanize” an Indian girl (Gujral) from the Himalayas. This film will provide the perfect triumphant close to the festival.

Other highlights of this year’s festival include the Irish film "SMALL ENGINE REPAIR," which tells the heartfelt tale of four men – one of whom is an aspiring country singer – who hang around an engine repair shop in a small Northern Ireland country town. The film’s soundtrack includes contributions from Bobby Bare, Jr., John Prine, Todd Snider and the Silver Jews.  Director Niall Heery will attend the screening.  Director John Laurence’s documentary "I AM AN AMERICAN SOLDIER," covers the highs and lows of a year in the life of one battalion from Ft. Campbell, Kentucky as it trains for and is then deployed to Iraq. Laurence and several Ft. Campbell soldiers will attend.

Among its more anticipated offerings are Saturday and Sunday morning films especially for kids, sponsored by "Nashville Parent" magazine and retailer Target. This year, the popular Animal Band takes its “Imagination Dance” show to the big screen for a unique cinema experience that will captivate children ages three and up as well as their parents.

“This year’s edition is our most diverse lineup yet. We look forward to Middle Tennessee eagerly responding and the film world taking further notice of our festival,” Gordon said.

Tickets have been on sale online since March 19, including the All Festival Laminate good for all films, panels/workshops, opening and closing galas and the awards reception, tickets to individual films, workshops and panels, as well as ten-pack and three-day passes.

Popular films often sell out, so avoid disappointment buy your tickets in advance www.nashvillefilmfestival.org or at the NaFF Box Office, which opens onsite at the Regal Green Hills lower level on Wednesday, April 18 from 1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online any time March 19 – April 26 and will be held at will call at the NaFF box office. All ticket sales are final and the festival does not offer refunds, exchanges or substitutions. 

For more information and a complete list of events and screenings please visit www.nashvillefilmfestival.org.

Photo courtesy of Jose Cuervo

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