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Saturday, June 21, 2008

George Martin rocks

SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Retired NFL great George Martin will conclude his historic cross-country “a Journey for 9/11” www.ajourneyfor911.info walk to benefit thousands of ailing Ground Zero rescue and recovery workers in a ceremony at 10:00 AM PT, Saturday, June 21, in San Diego, CA. When he crosses the finish line at Embarcadero Park North on the banks of the city’s downtown district, Mr. Martin will have trekked 3,003 miles on foot and raised several million dollars in cash, in-kind contributions and pledged medical services for seriously ill 9/11 workers from all 50 states.

The finish line ceremony, open to the public, will be attended by scores of police officers, firefighters, EMTs, 9/11 workers, NFL players and others. Mr. Martin has completed all but 4.5 miles of his Journey, which he will walk on Saturday morning.

Co-captain of the Super Bowl XXI NY Giants championship team and now an AXA Equitable executive, Mr. Martin started walking west from the George Washington Bridge in New York City on September 16, 2007. He is likely the first African-American professional athlete to walk coast-to-coast for charitable purposes. Over the past nine months, the humanitarian encountered rainstorms in the Northeast, the freezing temperatures and driving winds of the Great Plains and, more recently, the mountains and desert heat of the Southwest.

“I look forward to concluding this part of our Journey’s mission, and am grateful to have had the opportunity to take on this challenge,” said Mr. Martin. “While this has been a difficult undertaking, it has also been wonderful to see our nation on foot while raising awareness about the plight of these 9/11 workers. These heroes need our collective support. Many who answered our nation’s call for help now cannot even walk up the steps in their own homes due to severe respiratory and other ailments. Some are dying. They deserve our help.”

Although the walking portion of the Journey is concluding, Mr. Martin plans to continue his efforts to help Ground Zero rescue and recovery workers obtain adequate health care. “This is truly a national problem,” says Mr. Martin, who noted that more than 10,000 people who live outside of the New York metropolitan area are enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Registry, including people from all 50 states. “It’s simply unacceptable to me that these brave, selfless individuals from across the country are not getting all the medical assistance they need.”

The Medical Problems of Working at Ground Zero

Mr. Martin, on leave from his position as vice president of sports marketing at AXA Equitable in New York, is raising funds to provide medical monitoring and healthcare for 9/11 responders who are suffering from chronic bronchial disease, leukemia and other cancers, post traumatic stress disorder and other serious medical conditions stemming from their service at Ground Zero after the attacks of September 11, 2001. Three major medical institutions are matching in healthcare services all the money donated by the Journey.1

Medical studies indicate that working at Ground Zero led to serious, long-term medical problems for tens of thousands of 9/11 responders.

* A study by Mt. Sinai Medical Center found that nearly 70 percent of the 40,000+ 9/11 responders have suffered lung disease and other health problems.
* One in five has low lung capacity, five times the normal rate.
* One in eight developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (Source: NYC Department of Mental Health and Hygiene).
* The rate of those developing asthmatic conditions after exposure to Ground Zero is 12 times the normal adult rate.

In October 2007, Mr. Martin walked through Washington, DC, where he met with several members of the U.S. Congress who are advocating legislation for additional funding for 9/11 healthcare programs. For more information, visit: http://maloney.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=146 8&Itemid=61. (Due to its length, this URL may need to be copied/pasted into your Internet browser's address field. Remove the extra space if one exists.)

For more information on the status of federal 9/11 healthcare legislation, visit: http://maloney.house.gov/documents/911recovery/backgroundmemo.pdf

About George Martin, the Route and the Journey Team

George Martin was a star defensive end and co-captain of the Super Bowl XXI Champion New York Giants (1986). During his 14 NFL seasons (1975-1988), the longtime Giant scored eight touchdowns -- seven of them as a defensive lineman, which set an NFL record that stood until 2007. Mr. Martin is a former president of the NFL Players Association.

On a Journey for 9/11, Mr. Martin has passed through portions of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. Now 55 years old, the retired NFL great has lost more than 40 pounds since he began his trek. In addition to walking, he has visited schools, fire houses, police stations, government offices, and other places where he raises awareness about the plight of Ground Zero workers.

For his charitable efforts, Mr. Martin was named one of ABC News’ 2007 “Persons of the Year,” received the prestigious Heisman Humanitarian Award, and was recognized with an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey for his lifelong commitment to community service.

Donations

To make a tax deductible financial donation, mail a check to “a Journey for 9/11,” c/o Valley National Bank, P.O. Box 707, Wayne, NJ 07474-0707, or call 800-889-8038. Contributions can also be made online via www.ajourneyfor911.info.

Support from Business, Medical, Education, Sports and Charitable Community

Sponsors of the Journey include AXA Equitable; Fairleigh Dickinson University; Best Western International; MBT Physiological Footwear; Intelligent Design; United Parcel Service; Bear Stearns; Proskauer Rose LLP; Proforma Associates; Nike; Tana Seybert Printing; Hunter Douglas; the New York Giants; the National Football League; the National Football League Players Association; General Motors; Sprint; World Wrestling Entertainment; Big Blue Travel; CV Technologies; ESRI; KeySpan Energy; Lou Hammond Associates; MAN Etc., Inc; Nautilus; SJI Associates; S& L Services; Sunoco and Valley National Bank. Beau Dietl & Associates is providing security for the Journey. Philanthropists Joseph H. and Dr. Carol F. Reich have made a substantial donation as well.

1 Hackensack University Medical Center (NJ), North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health Systems (NY) and the Mt. Sinai Medical Center (NY) will match in medical services the total funds Mr. Martin’s Journey donates to the hospitals.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Still Single

Yes, hard to believe, I know.

I think I am going to order a wife from overseas. Any thoughts on the best country from which to order. I think Argentina is having sales this week.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

NYC PictureStart Winners, June 08

12th NYC PictureStart Winners and Entries

WINNERS ARE IN:


Jury:


Best Film: Carissa, dir. David Sauvage


2nd Place – Cupcake, Dir. Sean McPhillips (Special Jury Prize)


3rd Place: La Combinaison, Dir. Serge Adam



Best Actor: Benoît Thévenoz, La Combinaison


2nd Place: Ezra Miller, Busted Walk


3rd Place: Mike Consolmagno, Cupcake



Best Actress: Sara Jaye, Leave You in Me


2nd Place: Kinna McInroe, Cupcake


3rd Place: Agnieszka Pekala, Alicja Wonderland



Best Cinematography: La Combinaison




Audience:



Best Film: Busted Walk, dir. Steven Tanenbaum


2nd Place: Carissa, dir. Sean McPhillips


3rd Place: The Maple Leaf, dir. Real Sprague



Best Actor: Ezra Miller, Busted Walk


2nd Place: Markie C., The Maple Leaf


3rd Place: Joe Lisi, Joe Mover



Best Actress: Christina Broccolini, And The Winner Is…


2nd Place: Kinna McInroe, Cupcake


3rd Place: Melissa Wolfklain, Saturday Night At Norms




Best Short Screenplay


Knocksville, Written by Josef Lemoine

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The Puffy Chair


My expectations weren’t very high, to be sure. I have had spotty success with so-called festival movies like The Puffy Chair. But I was cruising the Sundance channel, and I saw it was on and recorded it.

Went back to watch it today, and I was very pleasantly surprised. Its easily as strong as most independent films, with good acting and camera work that definitely adds to the momentum of the movie. It has some painfully funny scenes, suspense (really!) and good dramatic tension. The writing (I didn’t get the feeling that it was improvised to any great extent, though I could be wrong – it happens once in a while) is terrific. The whole movie just works as a movie. The story is surprising (for a festival-type film) in that it is told in a very traditional three act structure, and despite the lack of stars and effects, that structure and the strength of the material.

Very strongly recommended, and if someone can explain to me what “mumblecore” is, I’ll be very appreciative.

The Puffy Chair


Grumps.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

12th NYC PictureStart Film Festival




WWW.PICTURESTARTFILMFESTIVAL.COM

FREE ADMISSION

You are cordially invited:

June 2 and 3, Retreat Lounge, 37 West 17th St. (between 5th and 6th Ave) New York, NY. 6:30PM each nite. Trains to Union Square (less than five minute walk).

FOUNDER, GREGORY SEGAL, AWARD WINNING PRODUCER HAROLD, MY BROTHER, TAKE THE BRIDGE, AND THE INSURGENTS

HOSTED BY ACTRESS ADI ORTNER

Judges:

JURY CHAIRMAN: GUY JACOBSON, Writer/Producer, HOLLY (st. Ron Livingston, Udo Kier); President, Priority Films

TERRY LEONARD, Producer, STEPHANIE DALEY (st. Amber Tamblyn); BACKSEAT; HOUNDDOG (st. Dakota Fanning, Robin Wright Penn)

JAYCE BARTOK, Actor/Writer/Producer, THE CAKE EATERS (dir. Mary Stuart Masterson, st. Kristen Stewart); THE STATION AGENT (actor); SPIDERMAN (actor); SUBURBIA (actor)


OFFICIAL SELECTIONS: (Screening times randomized for fairness in audience voting)

Day One

Night #1

Joe Mover, (16m), Drama, dir. Lev Gorn, Gabe Fazio
Murdering Mama's Boy (17m) Drama, dir. Katherine Cunningham-Eves
Whirleybird (12m) Experimental, dir. Danielle Corches
October 19, 2007 - October 22, 2007 (17m), Drama, dir. Sebastian Pardo
Cupcake (7m), Comedy, dir. Sean McPhillips
Leave You In Me (19m), Drama, dir. Dutch Doscher
27,000 Days (10m), Experimental, dir. Naveen Singh
Busted Walk (13m), Drama, dir. Steven Tanenbaum
Getting Out (5m), Animation/Horror, dir. Ian Topple

Night #2

And the Winner Is... (5m), Comedy, dir. John Andrew Gallagher
La Combinaison (12m), Thriller, dir. Serge Adam
Saturday Night At Norms (25m), Musical, Dir. Kellen Blair
The Maple Leaf (17m), Drama/Thriller, Dir. Real Sprague
Carissa (22m), Documentary, Dir. David Sauvage
Alicja Wonderland (20m), Thriller, Dir. Martin Gauvreau


And an encore showing of the Grand Jury Prize Winner, Best Short Film, from the 11th NYC PictureStart Film Festival

Son (17:30) drama, dir. Daniel Mulloy, drama

SCRIPT FINALISTS (Announcement of Winner Only):
The Invisible Detective in Pain Au Chocolat , Adam Wright
The Masked Man, Dan Smith
Knocksville, Josef Lemoine
Procession, Beth Spitalny
Stranger, Jennifer Razon


EVENT PRODUCER: JOHN SAWYER
EVENT CO-PRODUCERS: DAVID NEWMAN, EMILY TURNER AND NICK CHAKWIN