Legendary actress Blythe Danner (Meet The Parents) will attend the Sarasota Film Festival this year with the Closing Night Film, I’ll See You In My Dreams. Danner, who will also receive the festival’s Impact Award this year, stars in the Brett Haley-directed feature. Haley will also attend the Sarasota event.
The festival will also open with Time Out of Mind, a feature about homelessness starring Richard Gere (Chicago, An Officer And A Gentleman). Director Oren Moverman, who seven years ago came to SFF with the Opening Night film The Messenger, will be in attendance as well.
The Sarasota Film Festival this year will run from April 10-19.
Mark Famiglio, president of the Sarasota Film Festival, said homelessness will be a major theme explored by the festival this year. Other films, to be announced at an event this weekend, will further explore the topic. “It’s so important to this community right now,” he said.
I’ll See You In My Dreams stars Danner as a widow affected by a series of events that force her to renew an engagement with the people and world around her. The film also stars Martin Starr, Sam Elliott, Malin Akerman, June Squibb, Rhea Perlman, and Mary Kay Place. Bleeker Street will release the film in May.
Time Out of Mind, which also stars festival regular Jena Malone (Stepmom, The Messenger), follows the life of a homeless man trying to reconnect with his estranged daughter. IFC Films will release the film in September
Michael Dunaway, the festival’s new programming director, said both the Opening and Closing Night films should reinforce Sarasota’s reputation in the festival world. “I’m thrilled to be able to showcase these two significant films for my first year at the festival,” said Michael Dunaway, Director of Programming. “They place the Sarasota Film Festival in a competitive spotlight and tastefully frame our diverse lineup.”