Cinequest 2008 — March 8 Maverick Spirit Awards Goings-On

 Danny Glover at the California Theatre (photo by Felipe Buitrago)img_8330_lr.jpg 

Hotel Montgomery’s itty-bitty Western Pacific Room was crammed with cameras, boom mics and more than 30 Cinequest and media representatives Saturday afternoon for a press conference featuring Maverick Spirit Award recipients Danny Glover and Bobby Moresco, among others. Cinequest Executive Director Halfdan Hussey gave a speech about the “palpable excitement” and “touching vibe” present in Cinequest this year.

Director Peyton Wilson, producer F.A. “Paco” Chierici and John “Buckethead” Cole were the first to take to the podium, toting their documentary Speed and Angels, which they claimed is basically “a chick flick about fighter pilots.” Next up were Karl Rove, I Love You co-directors Phil Leirness and Dan Butler and Young, Single and Angry director Richard Waterhouse, a group that boomed with laughter as they patted each other on the back. Producer and screenwriter Bobby Morescso was all pearly veneers answering press questions about his two most successful films, Crash and Million Dollar Baby.

Fresh off a plane from D.C., Maverick Spirit Award recipient Danny Glover was a half hour late to the conference. Asked about how he gets into character, Glover talked of the significance of internalizing a characters emotions and physicality, as well as emphasizing an actor not judging a character, but embracing the story. Known for his progressive political views and humanitarian work, Glover also spoke extensively about world-wide historical and current political issues, including his meeting Fidel Castro and his current directorial project, Toussaint, a film about the 18th-century slave rebellion that lead to the Haitian Revolution.

The moderated conversation/award presentation that Glover took part in at the California Theatre after the press conference was very Inside the Actors Studio. The actor conversed lengthily on his involvement in contemporary political and economic concerns, and even threw in a few personal stories about his grandmother and trips to Africa, all to the delight of the admiring crowd.

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