Each year the Silent Film Festival invites a contemporary film director whose work exemplifies a love for cinema history to pick a film from our program to present. Past years' directors have been Guy Maddin, Terry Zwigoff, and Pete Docter, who have graced the festival with wonderful presentations of their selections.
We are thrilled that Alexander Payne has accepted our invitation this year, taking time out from his busy schedule (Payne just wrapped his latest picture THE DESCENDANTS with George Clooney; and is in pre-production with a new feature, tentatively title FORK IN THE ROAD) to appear at the festival.
Payne, the director of CITIZEN RUTH, ELECTION, and SIDEWAYS, grew up watching silent films that he sent away for from the Blackhawk Films collection. Our invitation was just the excuse he needed to spend the weekend in San Francisco immersing himself in masterpieces from the silent era. Payne hasn't yet made the selection of the film he will present, but we will keep you posted!
The festival takes its motto very seriously: True art transcends time. Toward that goal, we put much thought into the musical accompaniment, and to the special guests who introduce select programs. We are pleased to welcome one of our biggest supporters, Leonard Maltin, back to the festival. Leonard will be on hand throughout the festival and onstage for several programs.
As a very special treat, musician Jonathan Richman, who has just translated the poetry of Pier Paolo Pasolini for City Lights Press, will introduce the rare 1915 Italian title IL FUOCO on Friday, July 15.
And, we welcome back last year's Silent Film Festival Awardee and Academy Award winner Kevin Brownlow, who will present our Sunday Amazing Tales from the Archives program: "Kevin Brownlow on 50 Years of Restoration."
More information about this year's San Francisco Silent Film Festival can be found at http://www.silentfilm.org/event-home.php