Michigan Governor Kicks Off Traverse City Film FestivalJeff Daniels Receives Michigan Filmmaker Award
Traverse City, MI (July 31, 2006) - Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm joined Traverse City Film Festival founder and Oscar-winning filmmaker Michael Moore in downtown Traverse City Monday to officially open the second annual event. Hundreds of festival-goers and local officials watched as the Governor honored Michigan actor and filmmaker Jeff Daniels with the festival's first Michigan Filmmaker Award.
The ceremony marked the beginning of a weeklong celebration of "Just Great Movies" on the shores of Grand Traverse Bay, with 68 movies shown throughout the festival. Over 30,000 tickets have already been sold, far outpacing last year's event. Many tickets still remain for the outstanding lineup of films.
A six piece live band playing songs from "The Music Man" opened the festival's opening night film, "Pittsburgh,"starring Jeff Goldblum. The movie's director, Chris Bradley, was on hand for the screening. Also marking the opening day was a free student workshop led by Moore and Terry George, director of "Hotel Rwanda."
Michigan's own Jeff Daniels was introduced to most of the nation's viewing audience as Flap Horton in the James L. Brooks classic, Terms of Endearment. Daniels has since starred in dozens of successful films, including Dumb and Dumber, The Squid and the Whale, and Good Night and Good Luck. Daniels keeps his roots deep in Michigan as founder of the Purple Rose Theatre Company in his hometown of Chelsea, Michigan. The Purple Rose is a nonprofit professional theatre featuring Midwestern actors, directors, playwrights and designers.
About the Traverse City Film Festival
The Traverse City Film Festival is a charitable, educational, non-profit organization committed to showing "Just Great Movies" and helping to save one of America's few indigenous art forms - the cinema. In its second year, the Traverse City Film Festival has already become one of the biggest film festivals in the Midwest. With its 50,000 admissions in summer 2005, the festival pumped an estimated 5 million dollars into the local economy. Founded by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Michael Moore and co-founders, local photographer John Robert Williams and New York Times best selling author Doug Stanton, the festival brings films and filmmakers from around the world to northern Michigan, creating a level of excitement one local paper said was "the best thing to happen here since the Ice Age left us Lake Michigan."
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Ribbon cutting: L to R: Festival Co-Founder Doug Stanton; Michael Moore; Former Michigan Governor William G. Miliken; Jennifer Granholm; Festival Co-Founder John Robert Williams. Photo Credit: Gary Howe.
"Hotel Rwanda" director Terry George discusses his filmmaking experiences with high school and college students at the festival's free student workshop. Photo Credit: John Russell.