2011 Steinbeck Festival "Friends and Foes" Expands to Include Live International Simulcasts and a Hollywood "Villains Panel"

Top Quote Just Announced: The National Steinbeck Center's annual Festival has expanded to include the "The Villains Panel: Bad Guys and Why We Need Them". End Quote
  • Salinas, CA (1888PressRelease) July 28, 2011 - The National Steinbeck Center's annual Steinbeck Festival continues its newly established tradition of creating partnerships with local organizations and with "Cities of Letters" around the World. To view these and other exciting events, go to www.steinbeck.org. Tickets are available by phone at 831- 775-4721.

    In its first collaboration with the Monterey County Film Commission, the National Steinbeck Center presents "The Villains Panel: Bad Guys and Why We Need Them" as the Saturday evening event of its 31st annual Festival with a no-host bar featuring Poppy Wines.

    On August 6 from 8-9:30pm, several award-winning film writers and producers will join together to celebrate villains in literature and film and to explore the human impulse to create "us" and "them." The panel will be moderated by Susan B. Landau, the head of Thompson Street Entertainment and the Executive Producer of dozens of films including Road, Movie, the Great American Songbook (hosted and narrated by Michael Feinstein), Princess of Thieves, An Ideal Husband, and Cool Runnings.

    The four panelists include:
    Walon Green has written more than 20 feature films such as Sorcerer, The Border, Eraser, Dinosaur, and Hi Lo Country. As a writer/executive producer of episodic television drama, his credits include Hill Street Blues, NYPD Blue, ER, and Law and Order.

    These days, David Milch is perhaps best known for creating the hit HBO television drama Deadwood, but his career in TV began as a writer for Hill Street Blues and, later, he was a co-creator of NYPD Blues. A former lecturer in English at Yale University, he runs RedBoard Productions.

    David Peoples-the writer of Blade Runner and Unforgiven-and his wife Janet Peoples have numerous writing credits. Their films, as writer or co-writer of both documentaries and features, include Leviathon, Day after Trinity, Hero, Salute of the Jugger, and Twelve Monkeys.

    The Villains Panel will be held at the National Steinbeck Center; ticket prices: $18 non-members/$10 members. Wine will be available for purchase before and after the event, sponsored by Poppy Wine.

    Also for the first time, the Festival's Salinas audience will be transported to three international cities during this year's festival through three live simulcast events with Cairo, Egypt; Johannesburg, South Africa; and Bruton, Somerset, England.
    Live from Cairo, Egypt!

    Graphic Novel & Democracy: Friend or Foe? Egyptian artist Magdy El Shafee went to court under the regime of ousted Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak for speaking openly about corruption in Cairo through his graphic novel, Metro. This book describes a young Egyptian's despair at the corruption and lack of opportunity in Egypt, and tells the tale of his plot to rob a bank. El Shafee and his publisher were put on trial with the charge of offending public decency, and Metro was banned in Egypt. Now the tables have turned. Metro will be published in English in 2012 by Metropolitan Books, an imprint of MacMillan. Iman Hamam interviews Magdy El Shafee in this live simulcast from Cairo, exploring the ways that, even in an environment of government oppression, the graphic novel gives voice to current concerns and the making of friends and foes. Sunday, August 7, 10:00-10:45am at the National Steinbeck Center.

    Live from Johannesburg, South Africa!

    Join California-native Erika Koss in Salinas for a live simulcast discussion with David Levey, a University of South Africa English Studies Professor, as they explore a poignant literary friendship of two treasured novels-Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath (1939) and Alan Paton's Cry, the Beloved Country (1948). They will highlight both novels' plea for justice, focusing on some reasons why this South African writer was so inspired by Steinbeck's classic book. Saturday, August 6, 11:30am-12:15pm at the National Steinbeck Center.
    Live from Bruton, England!

    Live from the Land of the Round Table! Join us for a live simulcast conversation with residents of Bruton, Somerset, the English town where Steinbeck lived in 1959 while working on his translation of Mallory's stories of King Arthur and his noble knights. Meet Sally Vallins, who typed Steinbeck's manuscript; John Vallins, a master at Kings School who met Steinbeck many times; John Mole, who, as a young boy, visited Steinbeck and wrote a poem about these meetings; and Andy Pickering, a local lecturer and Steinbeck enthusiast. Sunday, August 7, 9:00-9:45am at the National Steinbeck Center.
    To view other Steinbeck Festival Fringe Sites including Nairobi, Bhutan, Sydney, and Aracataca, download the full-color brochure at Steinbeck.org. Sunday events are free to residents of Monterey County with museum admission as part of Community Free Day.

    Join us at the National Steinbeck Center for the 31st annual festival, "Friends and Foes." Tickets available by calling (831) 775-4721.

    Press Contact: Marci Bracco (831) 747-7455

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