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Can't-miss Film Fest


Courtesy of Think Film

One of the best crime movies in recent memory is the jewel-heist-from-hell masterpiece, Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead. If you missed Devil this winter, you’re in luck—it’s being featured at this month’s California Independent Film Festival in Livermore. Devil’s producer, Michael Cerenzie, will be honored as the festival’s Maverick Award winner before a screening of the film, which stars Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, Albert Finney, and Marisa Tomei.

In true indie fashion, Cerenzie, 37, toiled to get the movie produced for six years before Sidney Lumet, the man behind such classics as 12 Angry Men, Network, Dog Day Afternoon, and The Verdict, agreed to direct. Cerenzie says working with Lumet was a dream come true. “The first movie my mom took me to see was [Lumet’s 1974 classic] Murder on the Orient Express.”

The festival runs April 16–20 and will showcase independent features and shorts at Livermore’s Vine Cinema and area wineries. Films include actress Mary Stuart Masterson’s directorial debut, the quirky ensemble drama The Cake Eaters, as well as Alice Upside Down, a family film starring High School Musical’s Lucas Grabeel. Special events include a celebrity poker tournament that will feature Playboy playmates, stars from America’s Most Smartest Model, and Leave It to Beaver actors Tony Dow (Wally Cleaver) and Ken Osmond (Eddie Haskell).

To read an interview with Michael Cerenzie, check out Pete’s Popcorn Picks blog at www.diablomag.com. For California Independent Film Festival tickets and event information, call (925) 558-2797 or go to

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