The 14th annual Heartland Film Festival is right around the corner, Oct. 13-21, which means Indianapolis will soon play host to filmmakers from around the world as Heartland once again recognizes some of the year's most Truly Moving Pictures. Heartland President Jeffrey L. Sparks announced the winning films and event lineup at the annual Crystal Heart Awards Announcement Celebration last Thursday. A record 23 films were selected as award winners from 558 submissions for best meeting Heartland's mission. Four of these 23 films have Indiana ties, including: The Innocent
(Indianapolis filmmaker Michael Husain), Knock Knock
(Indianapolis student filmmaker Jaron Henrie-McCrea), Pearl Diver
(filmed in Goshen, Ind.) and Thin Ice
(by two Taylor University students).
Special guests this year include director Ken Kwapis (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
) and Carroll Ballard (The Black Stallion, Fly Away Home
), and actress Dakota Fanning, along with the premiere of DreamWorks' Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story
, starring Fanning, Kurt Russell and Kris Kristofferson.
The 2005 festival will bring nearly 40 films to Indianapolis - boasting a wide variety of dramatic, animated and documentary films, two world premieres, one U.S. premiere, a student Academy Award Gold Medal winner, a four-time Crystal Heart Award winner, a "Classic Crystal Heart Award Winners" sidebar and much more.
"We're excited about each of the films and the talented filmmakers who will be a part of this year's festival. We know our audience will discover some of the most inspired storytelling we've had to date," Sparks said. "There is something for all ages and tastes in this exciting lineup."
The cash prizes and Crystal Heart Awards will be presented at the annual Crystal Heart Awards Ceremony on Saturday, Oct. 15 at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. The public will have an opportunity to view the winning films from Oct. 14-20 at AMC Castleton Arts, AMC Greenwood Park 14 and the Indiana History Center in the Frank and Katrina Basile Theater.
Besides great films, this year's festival boasts an exciting program of events for everyone.
Heartland's Opening Night Event on Oct. 13 features an appearance by one of the hottest actors in Hollywood - Dakota Fanning - along with director/screenwriter John Gatins and a premiere of DreamWorks' Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story
at the IMAX Theater. Kurt Russell (Sky High, Miracle
), Dakota Fanning (War of the Worlds, Man on Fire
) and Kris Kristofferson (Blade I
) star in this drama about a father who, for the love of his daughter, sacrifices almost everything to save the life of an injured racehorse and bring the promising filly back to her former glory. Dreamer
producers Mike Tollin and Brian Robbins will be honored with the Saab Pioneering Spirit Award at the Crystal Heart Awards Gala for their creative spirit in filmmaking and for supporting Heartland's mission. Tollin and Robbins have won two Heartland Truly Moving Picture Awards for Coach Carter
and three Crystal Heart Awards for Hardwood Dreams, Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream
and Hardwood Dreams: Ten Years Later
The festival closes Oct. 21 with a special screening of Warner Bros.' Duma
at the Indiana History Center with special guest director Carroll Ballard (The Black Stallion, Fly Away Home
) scheduled to attend.
Tickets for screenings and special events went on sale Sept. 9. For more information and to purchase tickets, the public should visit www.heartlandfilmfestival.org
or call Heartland's toll-free ticket line at 1.866.HFF.1010.