Director’s dream began in a Cincinnati Catholic high school

Director Joe De Francesco and associate producer Wendy Drucker (Photo by Rose Pacatte)

Director Joseph De Francesco never forgot the impression that Stephen Vincent Benet’s epic 1928 Pulitzer Prize-winning poem made when he was a student at St. Gregory’s, a high school diocesan minor seminary in Cincinnati. There he found, and admittedly stole, a recording of the 1953 Broadway performed recitation of the poem by Tyrone Power, Judith Anderson, and Raymond Massey. It was adapted and directed by Charles Laughton. De Francesco still has the record. For his junior year, deciding … [Read more...]

San Quentin film highlights human redemption

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“’John Brown’s Body’ at San Quentin Prison,”  a movie about the making of a play inside San Quentin and starring San Quentin prisoners, premiered last October at the Mill Valley Film Festival in northern California just a few miles from the prison itself.  I felt honored to be in the audience with five of the former prisoners turned actors and their families present. All of the former prisoners had, at one time, been sentenced to life in prison, but have now been released. In … [Read more...]


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