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TFF '09: Restored and Rediscovered

This year's Restored and Rediscovered series sheds new light on classic stories that shaped the first century of cinema.

This year's Restored/Rediscovered section explores and celebrates screened or newly-restored versions of films that shaped the first century of cinema. This year, the presentations include Inherit the Wind, a still-relevant, explosive 1960s courtroom drama by Stanley Kramer that pitted Creationists against Evolutionists; a restored print of Variety, the sexually-charged, controversial 1984 indie by Bette Gordon that challenged established notions about feminism and pornography; and a screening of The Boys in the Band, a seminal piece of queer cinema. In conjunction with the latter, the Festival will present a special work-in-progress screening of—and discussion around—Making the Boys, a documentary about the genesis of the film (and the play that preceded it).

David Kwok, Director of Programming, explains, “Restored/Rediscovered brings the cinema of the past into the present. We hope that cinephiles and long-time fans of these works will enjoy seeing them again as they should be seen—on the big screen—and new audiences will have the chance to discover them in the proper environment. In addition to two well-known classics, of particular note this year is our presentation of two works from Bette Gordon: one past and one present. A newly restored print of her influential Variety screens in this section, while her newest work—Handsome Harry—plays in Narrative Competition. She's also featured in Blank City, Celine Danhier’s documentary about independent cinema in NYC.”


Making the Boys in the Band

The Boys in the Band
Directed by William Friedkin and written by Mart Crowley

Making the Boys
Directed by
Crayton Robey

In commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, we are pleased to present two programs celebrating the seminal film The Boys in the Band, a cultural watershed that still resonates today. Join us for a free screening of the 1970 film—directed by William Friedkin and written by Mart Crowley, based on his groundbreaking play that debuted one year before Stonewall. (The Boys in the Band print courtesy of CBS Broadcasting, Inc.)

We also welcome to the Festival a special work-in-progress version of Making the Boys, directed by Crayton Robey. This documentary features the many people involved with the original stage play and film, including Crowley and Dominick Dunne, as well as Edward Albee, Robert Wagner and Paul Rudnick. After the screening there will be a discussion with Robey, playwright/screenwriter Mart Crowley, and other special guests.


Inherit the Wind

Directed by Stanley Kramer, written by Nedrick Young, Harold Jacob Smith
(USA, 1960)

Nearly a half-century ago, an all-star cast (including Spencer Tracy, Fredric March, and Gene Kelly) and director brought this fictionalized version of the infamous 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial to the big screen. Join us as we revisit this modern classic in recognition of Charles Darwin’s 200th birthday as well as the 150th anniversary of the publication of his seminal (and to some, still controversial) On the Origin of Species. Sponsored by Alfred P Sloan Foundation.




Directed by Bette Gordon, written by Kathy Acker
(USA, 1984)

In Bette Gordon's newly restored, pioneering indie narrative about voyeurism from a female perspective, a young woman (Sandy McLeod) works as a ticket taker in a porn theater, and her curiosity leads her to shadow a male patron. This film features an unparalleled collaborative team of downtown artists from the early 1980s, including composer John Lurie, cinematographer Tom DeCillo, writer Kathy Acker, photographer Nan Goldin, and actor Spalding Gray. Variety was shot on location in New York City at the now bygone landmarks of the Variety Theatre, Fulton Fish Market, and Yankee Stadium, as well as an edgier incarnation of Times Square.


The 2009 Tribeca Film Festival is officially announced!

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The 2009 Tribeca Film Festival opener will be Woody Allen's Whatever Works



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