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Hawke to Receive Levantine Cinema Arts Award

Festival Line Up Includes Regional Premieres of Acclaimed Fall Releases The Artist, Coriolanus and A Dangerous Method

HOUSTON – Austin native, Ethan Hawke, whose career has spanned theater and film acting and directing as well as novel writing, will present his latest film, The Woman in the Fifth, for the first time in Houston at the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston. Hawke will receive the Levantine Cinema Arts Award from the festival, honoring his multifaceted career in the arts, which started at age 14.The screening at the Museum of Fine Arts Brown Auditorium on Saturday, November 12 at 7 PM will be followed by a conversation on his multifaceted career, moderated by film teacher and critic Joe Leydon.  If that is not enough, Hawke’s good friend, famed director of Slacker and Dazed and Confused, Richard Linklater will join Hawke the following day for a tenth anniversary screening of their 2001 collaboration, Tape, on November 13 at 1 PM at Edwards Greenway Grand Palace.  Also premiering in Texas at the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston are three major upcoming releases: the award-winning and critically acclaimed The Artist, Ralph Fiennes’ Coriolanus, and David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method.

Artistic Director Richard Herskowitz comments: “We’re thrilled to be bringing Ethan Hawke here with his close friend and collaborator, Rick Linklater. Linklater’sTape was a breakthrough performance for Hawke, and his phenomenal growth as an actor is on ample display in his new psychological thriller, The Woman in the Fifth. Rick Linklater launched our festival in 2009 with the opening night screening of Me and Orson Welles, and has been a supportive member of our honorary board ever since.”

Hawke is best known for his breakthrough supporting role in Dead Poets Society, in which he appeared alongside Robin Williams in 1989. Shortly thereafter, a movie that took place in Houston gained him critical acclaim – 1994’s Generation X drama, Reality Bites. A year later, he starred in Linklater’s romantic drama Before Sunrise, and later in the 2004 sequel Before Sunset. In 2001, Hawke was cast as a rookie police officer in Training Day, for which he received a Screen Actors Guild and Academy Award nomination in the Best Supporting Actor category. Other films have included the science fiction feature Gattaca (1997), the title role in Michael Almereyda’s Hamlet (2000), the action thriller Assault on Precinct 13 (2005), and the crime drama Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead (2007).

In addition, Hawke has appeared in many theater productions including The Seagull, Henry IV, Hurlyburly, The Cherry Orchard, The Winter’s Tale and The Coast of Utopia, for which he earned a Tony Award nomination. He made his directorial debut with the 2002 independent feature Chelsea Walls. In November 2007 Hawke directed his first play, Jonathan Marc Sherman’s Things We Want. Aside from acting, he has written two novels, The Hottest State (1996) and Ash Wednesday(2002).

Hawke’s film, The Woman in the Fifth – a thriller based on Douglas Kennedy’s novel – is directed by Pawel Pawlikowski and co-stars Kristin Scott Thomas. Hawke plays American writer Tom Ricks, who comes to Paris desperate to put his life together again and win back the love of his estranged wife and daughter. When things don’t go according to plan, he ends up in a shady hotel in the suburbs, having to work as a night guard to make ends meet. Then Margit (played by Thomas), a beautiful, mysterious stranger walks into his life and things start looking up. Their passionate and intense relationship triggers a string of inexplicable events… as if an obscure power was taking control of his life. Following the screening of The Woman in the Fifth, Joe Leydon will host a Q&A with Hawke, diving into the breadth of the actor/director/novelist’s career.

Finally, as part of the festivities surrounding Hawke’s appearance at the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston, Hawke will receive the 2nd Annual Levantine Cinema Arts Award, whichhonors a leading actor, director, or other creative artist who has stretched the boundaries of cinematic expression throughout an illustrious film career. The award is sponsored by Levantine Entertainment, a new motion picture development, financing and production company aiming to provide U.S. and worldwide audiences with high quality, socially conscious, and character-driven films.

Pamela Powers, president of Levantine Entertainment and a board member of the Houston Cinema Arts Society, comments, “Along with Cinema Arts Festival Houston, Levantine Entertainment seeks out filmmakers with wide-ranging artistic talents. Ethan Hawke’s impressive ventures in theater and literature, in addition to his well-known film acting, make him a perfect Levantine Cinema Arts Award recipient.”

Coriolanus is an action film about a banished hero of Rome who allies with a sworn enemy to take his revenge on the city. It is a 2011 film adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedy of the same namedirected by and starring Ralph Fiennes, who makes his directorial debut with this film. Shot mostly in Belgrade, Serbia, Coriolanus also features Gerard Butler and Vanessa Redgrave, among others. The film premiered Out of Competition at the 61st Berlin International Film Festival in February 2011 and it opened the 2011 Belgrade International Film Festival. It was also shown at the 2011 Hollywood Film Festival as well as the Toronto International Film Festival, where the audience gave it a standing ovation. Coriolanus will be release in U.S. by The Weinstein Company later this year.

A Dangerous Method is based on the turbulent relationships between fledgling psychiatrist Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender), his mentor Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) and Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley), the troubled but beautiful young woman who comes between them. Directed by David Cronenberg, the screenplay was adapted by Academy Award-winning writer Christopher Hampton from his 2002 stage play The Talking Cure, itself based on the 1993 non-fiction book by John Kerr, A Most Dangerous Method. The film premiered at The 68th Venice Film Festival, and made its U.S. Premier at the Telluride Film Festival in Telluride, CO on Labor Day weekend. A Dangerous Method is distributed by Sony Pictures Classics in the U.S. and will open in New York and Los Angeles on Nov. 23, with other cities following.

Spirited and delightful, The Artist is a director Michel Hazanavicius’ playful love letter to the movies’ early days and is a variation on an A Star Is Born-like relationship between a dashing Douglas Fairbanks-style star (Jean Dujardin) whose career wanes with the coming of sound and a dazzling young actress (Berenice Bejo) whose popularity skyrockets at the same time. Dujardin won the Best Actor Award at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, where the film premiered.  The film just recently received the audience award at the 2011 Hamptons Film Festival and the Founders Award at the Chicago International Film Festival. The Independent in London reports that, “The Artist is a film of extraordinary visual zest, humour and pathos…” With James Cromwell, Penelope Ann Miller and John Goodman as a definitive cigar-chomping studio boss.The Weinstein Company will be releasing The Artist in the U.S. in late November, in good time to position it for the Oscar race.

As previously announced, the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston also will feature many live musical and artistic performances, ranging from virtuoso violinist Philippe Quint to multimedia artist Miwa Matreyek. Additionally, the festival will feature several International films and guests, including such notables as Patricio Guzman (Chile), Zhu Wen (China) and Mahmoud Kaabour (Lebanon). This year’s festival highlights Texas films and filmmakers more than ever, screening Natural Selection by Houston native, Robbie Pickering and Art Car: The Movie. Further, the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston will screen its first 3D movie, PINA, adance film by great German director, Wim Wenders, the famed director of Houston-filmed Paris, Texas.

The 2011 festival is scheduled to take place in Houston from Nov. 9 to 13. Cinema Arts Festival Houston capitalizes on the city’s status as an international art city, collaborating with many of Houston’s museums, art centers, theaters, and cultural institutions.  Works are shown not only in traditional theatrical venues but also via interactive video installations, live music and film performances, and outdoor projections. Past festivals have featured guests Isabella Rossellini, Tilda Swinton, John Turturro, Richard Linklater, Alex Gibney, and Shirley MacLaine. The 2010 festival drew thousands of film enthusiasts and art lovers spread among over 40 screenings and events.

The full schedule and tickets to the 2011 Cinema Arts Festival Houston are available on the HCAS website at

ABOUT THE HOUSTON CINEMA ARTS SOCIETY Houston Cinema Arts Society is a non-profit organization created in 2008 with the support of former Houston Mayor Bill White and the leadership of Franci Crane. HCAS organizes and hosts the annual Houston Cinema Arts Festival, a groundbreaking and innovative arts festival featuring films and new media by and about artists in the visual, performing and literary arts.  The festival celebrates the vitality and diversity of the arts in Houston and enriches the city’s film and arts community. HCAS sponsors include the Crane Foundation, a grant from the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Levantine Entertainment, Houston First Corporation, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, Champion Energy Services, Amegy Bank of Texas, The Brown Foundation, Inc. and others. The project is also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Texas Commission on the Arts. The 2013 Houston Cinema Arts Festival was held Nov. 6-10. For more information, please visit HCAS at