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By Film Threat Staff | July 25, 2006

The 11th Annual Stony Brook Film Festival received accolades from filmmakers and audience alike, as the 1000+ seat theatre was filled to capacity for all features and shorts.

One of the highlights of the Stony Brook Film Festival’s weekend was the participation of John Putch, actor, director and writer, who attended the New York Premiere of his film Mojave Phone Booth along with his friends and filmmaker colleagues, writer Jerry Rapp, actress Christine Elise McCarthy, and cinematographer Keith J. Duggan, SOC. The film is based on a real phone booth that existed for years in the Mojave desert.

Putch (Valerie Flake, Pursuit of Happiness, Mojave Phone Booth) led a seminar on Saturday afternoon called —Making an Anti-Hollywood Movie for Under $40 Grand.” The candid, eye-opening session was filled with information for filmmakers about the making of Mojave Phone Booth for a fraction of the cost of a Hollywood film.

Among the many recognizable faces in Mojave Phone Booth, many of whom are colleagues and friends, were Steve Guttenberg, David Deluise, and Annabeth Gish.

Manual of Love (Manuale d’Amore) was represented by Luigi DeLaurentiis, producer, who welcomed the full house, and Professor Gioacchino Balducci, Suffolk County Film Commissioner and professor of Italian and Film Studies of Stony Brook’s Department of European Languages and Literatures. Manual of Love is one of three in the Festival and was preceded by a tasting of Italian wines and food.

A panel of experts discussing “Film Production and Distribution of Independent American and Foreign Films” included Rebeca Conget, VP of Theatrical Distribution, New Yorker Films; Stuart Strutin, President of Panorama Entertainment; Jason Leaf, Co-President of Avatar Films; and Michael Gunther, President of Triboro Pictures, and was moderated by Professor Gioacchino Balducci.

Saturday, Stony Brook Film Festival saw the World Premiere of The Memsahib, written, produced and directed by Kruti Majmudar, and the East Coast Premiere of Johan, directed by Nicole Van Kilsdonk, a Dutch film.

Short films shown over the weekend included Tycho’s Nova, directed by Soo Jin Hwang; Full Disclosure, directed by Douglas Horn; Iris, directed by Ben Kim; and Transgressions, directed by Valerie Weiss.

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