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Academy Award-nominated “After the Wedding” to kick off

10th anniversary Festival

SONOMA, Calif. (February 1, 2007) – The 10th Anniversary Sonoma Valley Film Festival (SVFF) today announced its first official film selection, After the Wedding, which will also play as opening night film for the 2007 Festival. This acclaimed new Danish film has just been nominated for a 2007 Academy Award® for Best Foreign Film.

A second film confirmed for SVFF, the short film Recycled Life, has also been tapped for an Oscar, indicating that this intimate festival set in the heart of wine country is quickly becoming a major player in the national film acquisitions circuit. Additional film selections will be announced in the coming weeks.

“This year’s selection of films is quickly shaping up to be our most exciting program in our ten year history,” said SVFF Executive Director Marc Lhormer. “Our mission is to support and nurture talented filmmakers — in an environment of incredible indulgence and relaxed interaction between audience and artist. We are thrilled to showcase Susanne Bier’s explosive follow-up to her film Brothers, which touched audiences so deeply during our 2005 festival.”

After the critically acclaimed and award-winning Brothers, Susanne Bier now presents the drama After the Wedding – an intense story about family. Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale) plays Jacob who works at an orphanage in India, and this film follows him on a gripping journey back to his home in Denmark where he reencounters his first love.

“The Sonoma Valley Film Festival is an ideal venue to showcase our new film,” said Susanne Bier, director of After the Wedding. “This unique film festival is known for being an incredible place for independent filmmakers to showcase their work, with strong industry attendance and passionate audiences.”

Also selected for the 10th anniversary film festival is Recycled Life, directed by Leslie Iwerks. The Academy Award-nominated short film is a dramatic and touching story of thousands of adults, children, and generations of families who have been living and working over the last sixty years in the Guatemala City Garbage Dump, the largest and most toxic landfill in Central America.

Set in the heart of California’s historic and lush Wine Country, named one of America’s “Top Ten Best Vacation Film Festivals,” and called a “cinematic magic carpet ride” by IFC News, the Sonoma Valley Film Festival prides itself on providing every filmmaker unique opportunities to mingle with breakthrough artists and industry leaders in one of the most intimate, unpretentious and indulgent settings in the world.

Sponsored by Entertainment Weekly and FOOD & WINE magazines, the Sonoma Valley Film Festival offers all of the excitement, media exposure and stars of larger festivals without the hectic atmosphere or distracting handlers.

The Festival will also celebrate its special 10th Anniversary event in 2007 with a star-studded tribute to two-time Academy Award®-winning director John Lasseter. This special evening will feature a look back at Mr. Lasseter’s groundbreaking career, from visionary independent to entertainment industry powerhouse as the world’s most popular cinematic storyteller. The evening will also feature guest appearances and toasts from Mr. Lasseter’s friends and creative collaborators, including many of Hollywood’s most celebrated actors, writers, directors and industry leaders.

To recognize outstanding achievements in filmmaking, films selected for competition at the Sonoma Valley Film Festival have the chance to win over $10,000 in cash and prizes for prestigious jury and audience awards. Prize packages, which continue to be enhanced and enriched, will grow as the Festival approaches. Sonoma presents over 75 independent films annually, including feature length narratives, documentaries, shorts, and student films.

For more information or to book festival passes, visit

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