Arpa International Film Festival Goes Green

LOS ANGELES–The The Arpa Foundation for Film, Music, and Art (AFFMA) is set to hold its 11th Annual Arpa International Film Festival this year on Friday, October 24 at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. The film festival, which is Arpa’s marquee event, will run until Sunday, October 26, 2008. This year, the Arpa International Film Festival will be going green.

In an era when environmental concerns are on par with artistic undertakings, AFFMA is committed to staging an eco-friendly event. Founded in 1995 by Sylvia Minassian,

AFFMA’s new guidelines include using chlorine-free recycled paper for all promotion materials; proofreading marketing materials using Adobe PDF files rather than hard copies; and encouraging patrons to recycle program books and invitations.

AFFMA’s green agenda reflects the festival’s mission–to highlight forward-thinking Armenian and international filmmakers who cultivate understanding and global empathy by presenting films related to diaspora, war, genocide, dual-identity, exile, and multiculturalism. Through film screenings, as well as concerts, art exhibits, book signings, theater outings, and film benefits, AFFMA bridges the cultural divide by fostering dialogue among people of diverse ethnicities and lifestyles.

Outstanding student, local, and international screenings–including films from USC, UCLA, Art Center and CSUN–will be presented at the festival. Arpa’s Opening Night Premier will be J. Michael Hagopian’s final installment in his trilogy about the Armenian Genocide, titled “Caravans of Death.” Other highlights include an exclusive 90th birthday anniversary tribute to Rita Hayworth, featuring Rouben Mamoulian’s 1941 bullfighting epic, “Blood and Sand.”

43 films have been selected from 21 countries, including Armenia, Australia, Belize, Canada, China, Congo, Czech Republic, Ecuador, France, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Romania, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tobago, Trinidad, Turkey, UK, USA, and Venezuela. For the first time more than half the films (23 films) are related to Armenian culture.

A partial list of Arpa’s “2008 Official Selection” includes:

  • “Sela Maniyo” by Svetlana Darsalia, about the spiritual journey of artist Seta Manoukian
  • “Familiar Voices” with Mia Farrow
  • “The Morgenthau Story” by Apo Torosian
  • “The Witch of Portobello” by Tadeh Daschi
  • “The Flyboys” starring Jesse James, Steven Baldwin, and Tom Sizemore
  • “Armenia: An Open Wound” by Werner Weick
  • “Float” directed by Johnny Asuncion, produced by Hrach Titizian, and starring Ken Davitian
  • “Romans” by the Shammasian Brothers
  • “Behind the Scenes” by Alen Tarassians and Lara Sarkissian, featuring musician Gor Mkhtarian
  • “Armen” by Sherry Festekjian
  • “Strength and Honor” starring Michael Madsen and Richard Chamberlain

Each year, the festival recognizes individuals in the film industry with achievement and humanitarian awards. Past recipients include producer Howard Kazanjian (“Raiders of the Lost Arc”,

“Star Wars: Return of the Jedi”); producer Hank Moonjean (“Dangerous Liaisons”); Academy Award-nominated actress Shohreh Aghdashloo (“House of Sand and Fog”); Ryder Sound

C.E.O. Levon Chaloukian; Academy Award-nominated director Atom Egoyan (“The Sweet Hereafter”); actress Arsin?e Khanjian; producers Jim Hirsh and Robert Papazian (“Rome”);

producer Arthur Sarkissian (“Rush Hour”); filmmaker J. Michael Hagopian; director and journalist Carla Garapedian (“SCREMAERS”); and screenwriter Mardik Martin (“Raging Bull”).

Arpa’s 2008 honorees include Ted Braun who will receive the Armin T. Wegner Award for his film “Darfur Now.” “Beneath the Veil” actress Mary Apick will receive the Arpa Foundation Award; and actor Marco Khan will be named Breakthrough Artist of the Year for his performances in “10,000 B.C”, “Iron Man”, and “Don’t Mess with Zohan.” AFFMA is proud to salute these exceptional artists.

With debut screenings, panel discussions, and a star-studded Gala Awards Ceremony, the festival is gearing up to be one of the most anticipated events of 2008

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