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Before G-d Acquired for US Theatrical Release
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Opening New York
at Film Forum
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Please contact: James
Lewis, mPRm Public Relations
NEW YORKER FILMS
New York, May 9, 2001 - Dan Talbot, President of New Yorker Films, announced today the acquisition of Simcha Leib Productions' TREMBLING BEFORE G-D, a ground-breaking feature documentary that shatters assumptions about faith, sexuality, and religious fundamentalism that marks the feature length directorial debut of Mr. Sandi Simcha DuBowski. New Yorker Films has acquired all US rights to the film and plans a fall platform release.
The deal was negotiated by Talbot, Michael Roban of Kauffman & Roban and Lynda Hansen of Lynda A. Hansen & Associates. "We are very excited to be distributing this provocative, original work which explores very fresh territory, " said Talbot.
TREMBLING BEFORE G-D is built around intimately-told personal stories of Hasidic and Orthodox Jews who are gay or lesbian. The film portrays a group of people who face a profound dilemma - how to reconcile their passionate love of Judaism and the Divine with the drastic Biblical prohibitions that forbid homosexuality.
"TREMBLING BEFORE G-D is an extremely challenging film that took six years to birth and I am thrilled to have it in the firm hands of New Yorker, a legendary distributor whose commitment to the best of foreign cinema and films that matter is unparalleled," said DuBowski. "With their 25 years of distribution smarts and the enormous nationwide base of support built over the film's six years of creation, Trembling Before G-d will have an exciting and aggressive theatrical push."
In addition to critical acclaim, TREMBLING BEFORE G-D garnered the most prestigious international award for gay and lesbian cinema, the coveted Teddy Award for Best Documentary at the 2001 Berlin International Film Festival, where it screened in the International Forum for New Cinema. The ground-breaking documentary will also be screened this year at the Jerusalem, Karlovy Vary, Pusan, Sydney and Melbourne Film Festivals and has been invited to be the closing night film of the 2001 Human Rights Watch Film Festival in June.
The film has been embraced by audiences at every festival it's played including those at its premiere in competition at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival where the filmmaker and Rabbi Steve Greenberg, the first openly gay orthodox rabbi, successfully hosted the first ever Shabbat at Sundance. Also at Sundance, the filmmaker organized an unprecedented Mormon-Jewish gay dialogue.
Shot over five years in Brooklyn, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, London, Miami, and San Francisco, TREMBLING BEFORE G-D is an international project with global implications that strikes at the meaning of religious identity and tradition in a modern world. For the first time, this issue has become a live, public debate in Orthodox circles - what emerges is a loving and fearless testament to faith, survival and the universal struggle to belong.