While the Nashville Film Festival still has three days before NaFF 2016 concludes on Saturday, April 23, their official Red Carpet arrivals will come to a close Thursday, April 21. Day 8 of the festival will feature filmmakers representing seven featured films making their way down the Red Carpet.
Among the filmmakers appearing on NaFF’s final Red Carpet of 2016 will be Jesse Moss, director of “The Bandit”, a documentary about Burt Reynolds and best friend, stunt double and one time roommate, Hal Needham. Moss will walk the Red Carpet at 5:15, just prior to “The Bandit”‘s 6 p.m. screening on Thursday, April 21.
“The Bandit”, produced by CMT Docs (“Urban Cowboy: The Rise and Fall of Gilley’s”, “Johnny Cash: American Rebel”), gives audiences a behind-the-scenes glimpse at not only an often-hilarious friendship between one of the 1970’s biggest box office draws and his friend, but also focuses on the making of the mega-hit 1977’s action/comedy, “Smokey and the Bandit”.
For those not versed in all things “Bandit”, the doc reveals that while Reynolds’ popularity was enough to get the feature film project greenlit, having his best pal/stuntman Needham direct proved a bit more challenging.
Needham also went on to direct a number of Reynolds’ other vehicles like “Canonball Run” (I and II), “Stroker Ace” and of course “Smokey and the Bandit II”, as well as a series of mid-90s made-for-TV “Bandit” reboot films starring Brian Bloom. Having passed away in 2013, before the documentary went into production, Needham is seen in archival footage and fondly remembered throughout the doc by new interviews with his son, David Needham.
Reynolds, who in recent years has experienced health issues and rumored financial woes, is as engaging, charming and blushingly candid as ever in segments filmed exclusively for the doc. Reminding audiences of his superstar status, he’s also seen in all his Hollywood sex symbol glory via vintage footage including his now-classic encounter with Barbara Walters, as well as a number of clips from his early film and TV appearances.
Set to screen before capacity crowd, “The Bandit” will debut at NaFF on Thursday, April 21 at 7 p.m. and will screen a second time on Friday, April 22 at 2:30. Click Here for tickets.
Making “The Bandit”‘s Southeast US premiere even more enjoyable, NaFF will follow the documentary’s debut by presenting the subject of the doc, the 1977 feature film, “Smokey and the Bandit” on the big screen, in its entirety at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 21. Click Here for tickets.
As for the aforementioned remaining Red Carpet arrivals, they are as follows:
“Tamago” Red Carpet Time: 5:00 p.m. Premiere Time: 6:00 p.m. On the carpet: Koji Hirano (Director), Mayu Tsuyuzume (Cast)
“The Bandit” Red Carpet Time: 5:15 p.m. Premiere Time: 6:00 p.m. On the carpet: Jesse Moss (Director)
“Curtain” Red Carpet Time: 5:30 p.m. Premiere Time: April 16, 9:45 p.m. On the carpet: Jaron Henrie-McCrea (Director/CoWriter), Carys Edwards (CoWriter/Producer)
“Maskoun” Red Carpet Time: 5:45 p.m. Premiere Time: April 18, 9:30 p.m. On the carpet: Sharif Abdunnur (Co-Director, Co-Author, Producer), Krystle Houiess (Co-Director, Co-Author, Producer)
“He Hated Pigeons” Red Carpet Time: 6:00 p.m. Premiere Time: 7:30 p.m. On the carpet: Ingrid Veninger (Director), Adam Davis (Live Score Musician)
“American Epic” Red Carpet Time: 6:30 p.m. Premiere Time: 8:00 p.m. On the carpet: Attendees not known at press time
“Inside Scarlett” Red Carpet Time: 6:45 p.m. Premiere Time: 9:45 p.m.On the carpet: Carter Mays (Writer/Director), Monica Mejia (Producer), Joe Lallement (Producer), David Jordan (Producer), Isabelle Gardo (Cast), Kevin Flood (Cast), Billy Helmstetler (Cast)
Click Here to purchase tickets to these and all films screening during Day 8 of the Nashville Film Festival. Can’t make the festival debut of “The Bandit”? You’ll have a chance to catch it on CMT when it premieres later this summer. Click Here for updates and more information.
If you’ve enjoyed this preview of Day 8 of Nashville Film Festival, be sure and click the ‘subscribe’ tab located near the close of this article to sign up for free email alerts whenever new content is published, or check back tomorrow for details about my selections for Day 9’s must-see films.