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Film producer to speak at CCU screening of film

October 13, 2006

Producer Frank DeMartini of Millennium Films will appear at a screening of his film "Mozart and the Whale" on Friday, Oct. 20 from 3 to 5:30 p.m. in Wheelwright Auditorium at Coastal Carolina University. The movie is free and open to the public.

DeMartini, whose current film credits include "The Black Dahlia" and "Journey to the End of the Night," will discuss "Mozart and the Whale" and other aspects of producing films in an interactive question and answer session following the film.

The film, starring Josh Hartnett and Radha Mitchell, is a dramatic-comedy inspired by the lives of two people with Asperger's Syndrome (AS), a form of autism. The pair's emotional dysfunctions threaten to sabotage their budding romance. Hartnett plays Donald, a good-natured but hapless taxi driver who loves birds and has a superhuman knack for numbers. Like many AS sufferers, he likes patterns and routines. When the beautiful but complicated Isabel, played by Mitchell, joins the autism support group he leads, his life and his heart are turned upside down.

All CCU freshmen were required to read a book dealing with autism, "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" by Mark Haddon, as part of the university's "Big Read" program. "The movie is a logical follow-up to the Big Read book as it depicts people with Asperger's syndrome trying to have a relationship. It's a love story of sorts and a life-affirming triumph of the human spirit," said Nelljean Rice, director of First Year Experience at Coastal.

DeMartini graduated from Touro College on Long Island, following undergraduate work at Syracuse University. From 1986 to 1997, he practiced commercial and entertainment law in Hollywood. He became a specialist in representing actors, writers, producers and directors, as well as representing all aspects of motion picture and TV production from development through financing and distribution. After serving as an associate producer on three independent features he produced "Motel Blue" starring Sean Young and Robert Vaughn, in 1999.

For more information, contact the Wheelwright Box Office at 349-2502.