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by Peter Knegt
May 21, 2013 1:19 PM
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AFI DOCS Sets Michael Stevens' 'Herblock' As Gala Presentation

"Herblock"
Michael Stevens' documentary "Herblock: The Black and the White" will make its way to next month's AFI DOCS festival as a gala presentation, it was announced today. The film -- which traces the career and influence of Washington Post cartoonist Herb Block -- will screen as part of the 11th edition of the revamped festival (it was formerly known as SilverDocs) -- which runs June 19-23.

Full press release below.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, May 21, 2013, WASHINGTON, DC – AFI DOCS presented by Audi announced today its gala presentation at the Newseum of the Washington, DC premiere of HERBLOCK: THE BLACK & THE WHITE written and directed by Michael Stevens and produced by George Stevens Jr.  The film, traces the career and influence of the most influential political cartoonist of the 20th century and the people who became his subjects during his 55 years at the Washington Post.  His work spanned thirteen presidents, contributed to the downfall of Senator Joseph McCarthy and President Richard Nixon and garnered three Pulitzer Prizes and the Medal of Freedom. 

In the film, Ben Bradlee, Tom Brokaw, Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, Jules Feiffer, Ted Koppel, Eugene Robinson, Tom Friedman, David Brooks, Gwen Ifill, Rick Hertzberg, Victor Navasky and Richard Cohen give first-hand accounts of Block's life and work.  Jon Stewart and Lewis Black explore the place of political satire in American life.  The filmmakers and many subjects are expected to be in attendance at the screening.

"It is an honor to celebrate HERBLOCK in the city he called home," said AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale. "AFI DOCS goal is to catalyze change through art, and this film is a powerful portrait of a man who symbolized this power across decades."

In addition to the gala screening, AFI DOCS will be hosting a Catalyst Session on the subject of Humor in Politics inspired by the film. George Stevens Jr., Co-Chair of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, Founder of AFI in the White House Rose Garden in 1968, Oscar and Emmy winning filmmaker and long-time producer of the Kennedy Center Honors will be among the featured panelists.

As previously announced, AFI DOCS presented by Audi (formerly Silverdocs) returns for its 11th edition June 19-23, 2013.  After a decade at the celebrated AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD, the festival will build upon the success of Silverdocs with a presentation of screenings and events at iconic venues on the National Mall and in the Penn Quarter area, as well as continue its full slate of programming at the American Film Institute's AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center.

Info on full programming, screening schedules, registration and passes will be released in the coming days and posted at AFI.com/AFIDOCS.

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