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“Survivorman” to participate in Lewiston Auburn Film Festival

Les Stroud, known better to television audiences around the world as “Survivorman” for his show by the same name, joined the board of directors of the Lewiston Auburn Film Festival (LAFF) Monday to announce his involvement in the LAFF2013.

“I’m thrilled to be coming in to participate in this year’s festival,” said Stroud via Skype from Las Vegas, joining the media and others in attendance. “I’m looking forward to meeting everybody and seeing the film.”

The latest incarnation of the festival will be held April 4-7, 2013 in various venues throughout Lewiston and Auburn. It is the third year for the event, which attracted 1,200 people from more than a dozen states in its second year.

Considered the pioneer of reality survival television, Stroud will be receiving LAFF’s Executive Producer Award given to a person who exemplifies the spirit of filmmaking without boundaries. On “Survivorman,” Stroud ventures into some of the harshest climates with little more than a camera and a couple of basic survival tools to illustrate how viewers can stay alive even in the worst of circumstances.

Stroud will also be making a rare Maine appearance with his band, The Campfire Kings. An accomplished blues musician, Stroud is seen on every issue of “Survivorman” playing the harmonica. He also wrote and performed the theme song for the program.

Stroud will kick-off the festival with a book signing at Prose Gallery, which will be opening at 223 Lisbon Street in Lewiston in mid-March.

On Friday, April 5, the world premiere of “The Peloton Project,” a documentary following a group of cyclists from Calgary, Alberta, Canada to the Dempsey Challenge in Lewiston. Following a VIP cocktail reception, the film will be screened and a post-film celebration will be held. Personalities from the film and members of the production team are expected to be in attendance.

Executive Producer Patrick Dempsey of the television show “Grey’s Anatomy” has been invited to attend.

“We are excited and honored to share these stories with the world,” said Ramsey Tripp, film director of “The Peloton Project.”He said he decided to shoot the film from a very personal point of view, rather than as a detached observer.

Saturday and Sunday, April 6 and 7, will feature more than 75 films from around Maine, the U.S. and the world in more than a half-dozen venues in Lewiston and Auburn. One pass will get filmgoers into all films, many of which will include question-and-answer sessions with the directors.

LAFF2013 will also feature its annual Awards Ceremony and Gala Dinner on Saturday night, April 6. Celebrating the best of the festival, it’s a chance for filmmakers and film lovers to interact in a unique environment.

New to the film festival this year will be the student film competition. Semifinal rounds will be held at University of Southern Maine’s Lewiston Auburn College campus on Jan. 12 and Feb. 9, with finalists in those rounds competing at the film festival on April 6.

Also, returning to the festival is the director for “You Can’t Kill Stephen King,” which made its world premiere at the 2012 festival, winning People’s Choice award for Best Feature Film. It’s been a busy year for Monroe Mann, as his film has been picked up for distribution in 11 countries and as it has made its way around the festival circuit.

A lawyer by day, he’ll be providing the ins and outs of how his movie made it through distribution channels in a presentation sure to be of interest to filmmakers.

“I feel great about the program we’ve put together this year,” said LAFF chairwoman Sandra Marquis. “We’ve got a few more surprises planned, but wanted to let people know it’s going to be another banner year for the festival.”


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