The Tribeca Film Festival, founded eight years ago in the wake of the September 2001 terrorist attacks, is again trying to lift the morale of a city in crisis. Organizers, mindful of the U.S. recession, rising New York joblessness and a shorter roster of sponsors, have tried to include more comedies and uplifting stories for the April 22 to May 3 event and maintain free events such as outdoor movie screenings. The outdoor films have always been a powerful and fun community event, and so Tribeca's drive-in outdoor cinema is here to stay.
We are doing our part to help restore confidence, hope and inspiration during a time of uncertainty, Jane Rosenthal, a producer and co-founder of the festival, said in an April 9 interview. Arts and culture is certainly one way to do that.
This year's festival reflects the economic reality. The slate of feature films is down to 87 from 120 last year and 157 in 2007. Some of last year's signature sponsors, including General Motors Corp.'s Cadillac, Target Corp. and Yahoo! Inc., don't appear on this year's roster.
Unemployment in New York City, at 8.1 percent, jumped a record 1.2 percentage points in February from January to reach the highest level since October 2003, the state Labor Department said last month. The city may lose 250,000 more jobs before the recession ends, Comptroller William Thompson estimated in March, out of a working population of 3.67 million.
Although it's a thinner, leaner festival this year, I think it'll be an even stronger program, Rosenthal said. Hopefully you can look to movies for inspiration and hope and to build trust in humanity again.
That was the motivation in December 2001, when Robert De Niro, Rosenthal and her husband Craig Hatkoff announced the festival in the aftermath of the attack on the World Trade Center and a drop in local filming activity. Since then, the Tribeca Film Festival has taken its place as a legendary film event, and has become a staple New York experience. It's outdoor movie screenings attract thousands of locals and visitors alike, giving the New York community the opportunity to join together in a celebration of film.
Excerpt from "Tribeca Festival Bets Woody Allen Will Boost Event (Correct)" by Sarah Rabil. Read full article at: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601088&sid=a4Wrnr2T2orQ&refer=muse