Media Contacts: Mark Sullivan / Nick Scurfield On the Mark Communications 713-978-5050





HOUSTON – Houston Cinema Arts Society today announced that the 2012 Houston Cinema Arts Festival (HCAF) will take place November 7 – 11. The 2012 event marks the debut of HCAF as a “walkable” film festival, centering on venues in Downtown Houston and the Museum District and featuring partners within easy access of the Metro Rail Red Line, such as Sundance Cinemas Houston, Hotel ICON, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and Levantine Entertainment.

“We are excited to announce Houston Cinema Arts Festival’s new partnership with Sundance Cinemas Houston for our 2012 festival,” said Trish Rigdon, Executive Director of Houston Cinema Arts Society. “Teaming with Sundance Cinemas to host screenings in two theaters at their new downtown location will provide our attendees with an easy way to experience more of the festival.”

Sundance Cinemas Houston, which opened in November 2011, is located at 501 Texas Avenue in the Bayou Place dining and entertainment development. Sundance Cinemas Houston brings the finest selection of art, independent, foreign and documentary film programming to the Bayou City. It features eight theaters as well as the Sundance Bar and an art gallery. In addition, the concept of Sundance Cinemas raises the bar among movie theaters with exciting facilities that feature excellent presentation, reserved seating, upscale amenities, and value-added customer services, all in a comfortable environment.

Just a few short blocks away from Sundance Cinemas Houston is Hotel ICON, another first-time partner of Houston Cinema Arts Festival. Sponsoring accommodations for movie stars, producers and directors as well as the festival’s kick-off event in October, Hotel ICON will serve as one of the hubs of the 2012 movie fest. Hotel ICON is part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, the fastest-growing brand under the Marriott umbrella. The Autograph Collection is composed of high-personality and boldly independent hotels, each carefully selected for its distinctiveness, style and synchronicity with unique travel interests.

Continuing as a Featured Presenting Partner for the third year is Levantine Entertainment. In addition to its important sponsorship of the festival overall, the company also hosts the Levantine Entertainment Cinema Arts Award, which was awarded to Isabella Rossilini in 2010 and to Ethan Hawke in 2011.  In addtion, Levantine co-hosted the 2011 Festival presentation of Mahmoud Kaabour’s  Grandma, A Thousand Times (Teta Alf Marra).  Levantine brought this magical realist portrait of Kaabour’s grandmother to the attention of festival organizers and also provided support in bringing Kaabour to Houston.

“Houston Cinema Arts Festival could not be more proud of its long-standing and significant partnership with Levantine Entertainment,” Rigdon effused. “We are immensely grateful for Levantine’s support, guidance and ambition to help us make the festival better every year.”

Levantine Entertainment is a Motion Picture Finance, Development and Production Company that predominantly creates compelling, socially responsible films with cross-cultural sensibility and an international flare often focused on the interaction between the Western world and The Orient region of the Middle East.  Levantine develops scripts and partners in conjunction with experienced filmmakers to create high quality entertainment targeted to Western audiences.

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