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Sedona Film Festival presents Northern Arizona premieres of acclaimed new films

Sedona AZ (June 6, 2012) – The Sedona International Film Festival is proud to present two award-winning and critically-acclaimed films at its Mary D. Fisher Theatre: “Saviors in the Night” and “The Standbys”. Both films will show June 19-22 at the festival’s arthouse theatre venue in West Sedona. These screenings mark the Northern Arizona premieres of both films.

SAVIORS IN THE NIGHT

“Saviors in the Night” is the award-winning epic drama based on the memories of Marga Spiegel. In her narrative, published in 1965, she describes how courageous farmers hid her, her husband Menne and their little daughter Karin from 1943 until 1945, thus saving them from deportation to the extermination camps in the East.

The film is the story of farmer Aschoff, his wife, his daughter and their friends and relatives — all from the German region of Westphalia. These farmers together saved the lives of the German-Jewish Spiegel family.

Menne Spiegel was a friend, a horse trader they trusted, a decorated fellow veteran of WW1. In early 1943 — just before the last deportation of Germany’s remaining Jews to the death camps — Menne desperately searches for a place to hide his family. He turns to farmer Aschoff.

Aschoff knows that no one comes back alive from what is called ‘the East’ – the camps. Although he is a patriotic German, a member of the Nazi Party, and the father of a Wehrmacht-soldier fighting on the Eastern Front, he never hesitates when confronted by Menne. He simply says yes.

That is how the true story of the survival of the Spiegels starts. “Saviors in the Night” tells the story of how. The film stands as a memorial in honor of these silent heroes. German farmers — whose German sons fought and died in Hitler’s armies — had the extreme courage and humanity to save those whom they were told to consider unworthy. The film is a triumph of the human spirit and a testament to the compassion of human beings to one another.

THE STANDBYS

Audiences get a rare peak behind the curtain of some Broadway productions in the new, critically-acclaimed audience sensation “The Standbys”.

Every night on Broadway, dozens of the best performers aren’t on stage. They are backstage, standing by, ready to go on at a moment’s notice. The unique and challenging lives of Broadway’s Understudies and Standbys are revealed in this evocative and original behind-the-scenes documentary.

“The Standbys” follows a variety of undiscovered performers for several years through their ups and downs, struggles and triumphs, onstage performances and private lives. When these Standbys are finally given the chance of a lifetime, anything can – and does – happen. Never-before-heard stories from industry insiders and celebrities reveal the unimaginable struggles these under-appreciated performers endure as they wait in the wings for their shot at a dream that may never come true.

Go behind the scenes to find out why these performers don’t want anyone to know they’re understudies or standbys. How do they master a role with few or no rehearsals, costumes, or props? What is it like to see someone else receive audiences’ admiration while struggling against the stereotype that you’re second best? What happens when they get the call to “go on”? What are the chances are that they will ever succeed to become a Broadway star? And which stars were once themselves understudies or standbys? The answers will surprise and entertain you!

“Ultimately this isn’t a film about Broadway – it’s about each one of us who has been the person supporting the “lead”, who has worked tirelessly without acknowledgement from anyone, and who has a dream that we worry may never come true,” said director Stephanie Riggs. “These ‘Standbys’ represent the passion, the fear, and the hope in all of us who do so much more than just stand by.”

Both films will be shown at the Mary D. Fisher Theatre June 19-22. Showtimes for “Saviors in the Night” will be 4 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday; and 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday. “The Standbys” will show at 7 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday; and 4 p.m. on Thursday and Friday.

Tickets are $12, or $9 for Film Festival members. For tickets and more information, please call 928-282-1177. Both the theatre and film festival office are located at 2030 W. Hwy. 89A, in West Sedona. For more information, visit: www.SedonaFilmFestival.com.