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by Peter Knegt
June 3, 2009 7:02 AM
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"Answer Man" To Lead In Stony Brook's 14th Fest

Four world premieres, three U.S. premieres, six East Coast premieres and 14 New York premieres will be among the 37 feature and short films presented during the 14th Annual Stony Brook Film Festival, which runs from Thursday, July 23 through Saturday, August 1 at Staller Center for the Arts at Stony Brook University.

The 10-day festival will open with the New York premiere of John Hindman's Sundance alum "The Answer Man," which stars Jeff Daniels, Lauren Graham, and Lou Taylor Pucci. Written and directed by Hindman, the comedy follows a reclusive author of a best-selling spiritual book (Daniels) who is pursued for advice by a single mother (Graham), and a man fresh out of rehab (Pucci).

The festival will close out with the New York premiere of "The Little Traitor," set in Palestine in 1947, just before Israel becomes a state. Alfred Molina stars as a British officer who finds a little boy out on the street after curfew.

Other festival highlights include the World Premiere of "Tickling Leo," written and directed by Jeremy Davidson, and produced by his wife, actress Mary Stuart Masterson. The film stars Eli Wallach, Lawrence Pressman, Daniel Sauli, Annie Parisse, Ronald Guttmann and Victoria Clark, as well as the East Coast Premiere of "Rosencrantz & Guildenstern is Undead," a vampire comedy and starring Jake Hoffman (son of Dustin), in a story "featuring sexy vampires, the Holy Grail and Hamlet." Sean Lennon composed the score for the film, which also stars Devon Aoki, John Ventimiglia, Kris Lemche, Ralph Macchio, Jeremy Sisto, Joey Kern and Waris Ahuwalia.

Additionally, the fest announced World Premieres of "Blindness-Saramago in China," a documentary from China directed by Xilin CHEN that "grapples with the concept of intellectual property rights," and "Life is a Banquet," which filmmaker Jonathan Gruber says "is the first ever about actress and entertainment giant Rosalind Russell." Using words taken from Ms. Russell's autobiography, the film's narration is by actress Kathleen Turner.

For a complete schedule, and film passes, visit the festival's website.

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