Press Release: SFJFF36 Freedom of Expression Award

By June 21, 2016 SFJFF No Comments


Lear to be honored at 36th San Francisco Jewish Film Festival

San Francisco, June 21, 2016 – The San Francisco Jewish Film Festival (SFJFF), presented annually by The Jewish Film Institute (JFI), announced today that television writer, producer and political activist Norman Lear will be the 2016 recipient of the Freedom of Expression Award recognizing his decades of work in television and political activism. Lear will be in San Francisco on Sunday, July 24 at the Historic Castro Theater to receive the award following a screening of Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing’s definitive chronicle of Lear’s life, work and achievements, Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You. A live on stage conversation, moderated by former SFJFF executive director Peter Stein, with Lear will follow the screening.

“The Festival is honored to present this year’s Freedom of Expression Award to Norman Lear, who created groundbreaking television on most relevant issues of his times while speaking up for equality, freedom of speech and justice. His creativity inspired a new generation of television writers and his fierce advocacy of tolerance and compassion for others is needed now more than ever.” The film will make its Bay Area Premiere at the festival after a rousing response at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival where it made its World Premiere. Co-director Heidi Ewing will also be in attendance for the screening.

Since 2005, the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival has presented the Freedom of Expression Award annually to honor the unfettered imagination, which is a cornerstone of a free, just and open society. Past award recipients include Kirk Douglas, Theo Bikel and Lee Grant.

Additional screenings of Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You include: Monday, July 25 at 6:15PM at the CinéArts Theatre in Palo Alto; and Sunday, August 7 at 2:10PM at Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center in San Rafael. Buy Tickets

Freedom of Expression | Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You

Dirs. Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady / Norman Lear wrote, produced, created, and developed more than a hundred television shows. His legendary body of work includes such iconic programs as: All in the FamilyMaudeGood TimesThe Jeffersons; and Mary Hartman, Mary HartmanNow about to turn 94, this Jewish World War II veteran is the focus of the documentary Norman Lear: Another Version of You and the author of an autobiography, Even This I Get to Experience. The Festival is honored to present this year’s Freedom of Expression Award to Norman Lear, the television pioneer and founder of the advocacy organization, People for the American Way, whose passionate, inspiring involvement may be needed now more than ever.

Director Heidi Ewing and subject Norman Lear in person in San Francisco