The newly restored Garden Theater in Frankfort, Michigan, 30 minutes southwest of Traverse City, will debut an international film festival October 23–25. The 2009 event will feature the best films from prestigious film festivals from around the world. The Garden Theater’s mission is to screen exceptional cinema offerings in addition to first run films. The 2009 inaugural festival will begin this legacy.

Confirmed films in the inaugural festival include:

  • Adam, a comedy / drama film directed by Max Mayer: Winner of the Tribeca Film Festival’s Alfred P. Sloan Prize
  • Away We Go, directed by Sam Mendes, featuring Jeff Daniels, Allison Janey and Maya Rudolph.
  • Adventureland, a comedy film directed by Greg Mottola: Featured in the Sundance Film Festival 2009
  • The Dinner, a comedy film directed by Karchi Perlmann: Winner of the Palm Springs Film Festival “Best of the Festival” Award and Winner of the Venice Film Festival
  • Man on Wire: Winner of 2008 British Independent Film Award for “Best Documentary”
  • Trouble the Water,  a documentary film directed by Carl Deal and Tia Lessin:  Winner of the 2008 Sundance Film Festival’s “Documentary Grand Jury Prize”
  • The Commandant, a 12 minute film directed by Stephen Pell: Winner of the Grand Rapids, MI Film Festival “Audience Choice Award”
  • Séraphine – a drama directed by Martin Provost (French, 2008): Winner of seven awards including Best Film at the 2008 César Awards

Eight to 10 films, most of them feature length, will be included in the festival, with many of the titles shown multiple times over the three-day weekend.

Find more information about the line-up at

Tickets to the Garden Theater Film Festival in Frankfort are $35 per person for the weekend or $8 per film. The Garden Theater is located at 301 Main Street, Frankfort, MI 49635.

The Garden Theater was recently purchased by a community-based ownership group of families motivated to restore the theater to its original glory of the Art Deco period of the 1920’s. It was built in 1923 and has been in continuous operation since that time. Sponsorships are available for the Film Festival for between $100 and $500. Businesses and individuals interested in involvement may contact by phone at 231-631-0575,

More Benzie County Resources

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