Michael Moore’s Traverse City Film Festival, celebrating its ninth year, runs July 31 through August 4 in Traverse City, Michigan. The running theme of the festival is “Just Great Movies,” and this year’s program lineup boasts over 150 films, with a record number of industry guests invited. Kicking off the fest is Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmine,” while Brit documentarian Michael Apted will appear in person with “56 Up.”
Apted’s entire “Up” series will screen, which is indicative of the festival’s commitment to repertory cinema as well as more recent films. Classics such as saucy Mae West-starrer “She Done Him Wrong,” Busby Berkeley-choreographed showstopper “Gold Diggers of 1933” and a special screening of 1925’s “The Phantom of the Opera,” starring Lon Chaney and live-accompanied by the Alloy Orchestra, screen alongside hits from this past year’s international festival circuit, such as Saudi Arabia’s first woman filmmaker Haifaa Al Mansour’s “Wadjda” and Oscar-nominated high-seas adventure “Kon-Tiki.”
The festival closes with Jerusha Hess’ romantic comedy “Austenland,” starring Keri Russell as a Jane Austen obsessive who spends her life’s savings on a Regency-era themed resort indebted to the beloved author.
Media-savvy documentarian Moore, who won the Oscar in 2003 for his doc “Bowling for Columbine,” is the festival founder, president and a programmer. To his credit, in 2007 he bought and renovated the State Theater in Traverse City, which he runs as a hugely successful non-profit indie. (Here’s how he did it.)
You can check out the entire lineup, plus ticket info, here.