By Film Threat Staff | March 29, 2006

Robert Altman will be Saluted at the Sarasota Film Festival during the final weekend of the 8th annual event where his latest film, the Picturehouse release of Garrison Keillor’s A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION, will be presented as the Closing Night Film.

“We are so honored to have Robert Altman join us in Sarasota for our Closing Night presentation,” said SFF Executive Director Jody Kielbasa. “The Festival, and the Sarasota community, are thrilled to host the incredibly talented Mr. Altman, who so deservedly received The Honorary Academy Award®, to honor ‘a career that has repeatedly reinvented the art form and inspired filmmakers and audiences alike.’ We couldn’t agree more with the Academy.”

Throughout its 10 days, the Festival will present the programs and events that have become favorites of the community as well as critical successes throughout the film industry. Among them are the Women’s Voices Film Screenings, a program of films by, for and about women; and An Evening With…, an intimate film screening and conversation from amongst the Festival’s distinguished artists. At the 2006 event, there will be two Evenings With…: filmmaker, writer, and opera director, Werner Herzog, whose non-fiction films will be screened throughout the festival, and one of America’s most prominent art photographers working today, Tina Barney. Festival audiences will also be treated to World Cinema Film Screenings and the World Cinema Celebration, a day devoted to films from around the world, capped the presentation of the World Cinema Master Award to Werner Herzog and a wild street party featuring food and music from around the globe. Luncheon Under The Banyans at the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is an elegant luncheon honoring the life and work of a special Festival guest. This year’s honoree is EMMY and SAG winner, Allison Janney who will be joined by castmates Jason Ritter and Mary Badham to receive the Ensemble Acting Award for the film OUR VERY OWN; Night Of A Thousand Stars, Dance, guests will dine and mingle with the stars and guest filmmakers from the evenings Spotlight Films. Among this year’s guests will be Felicity Huffman from TRANSAMERICA; William H. Macy from EDMOND; Michael Traeger & Joe Pantoliano from THE AMATEURS; and Mary Harron from THE NOTORIOUS BETTIE PAGE. In honor of that film, burlesque will be the theme of the night, complete with stars from Los Angeles’ top burlesque club, the 40 Deuce Club. And following the Closing Night’s Tribute Dinner, the Festival will host its Late Night Wrap Party. Loosen your tie, let down your hair and be prepared for anything at this event with a special performance from The Brazilian Girls. This party brings the 2006 Festival to a close in the wee hours.

For more info, visit the Sarasota Film Festival website.

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