Nantucket, MA (May 25, 2023) – The Nantucket Film Festival® presented by Bank of America® (NFF)
announced additional films, Signature Programs, and special guests for the 28th annual edition, which will
run June 21-26.
American journalist and veteran television news anchor Brian Williams is set to return as host of the 2023
Screenwriters Tribute presented by Bank of America on Saturday, June 24th, celebrating this year’s
honorees Nicole Holofcener, Jenny Han, and Ken Burns & Lynn Novick. Williams is the former anchor of
NBC’s Nightly News and MSNBC’s The 11th Hour with Brian Williams. Honoree Nicole Holofcener will be
presented with the Screenwriters Tribute Award by actress and comedian Michaela Watkins, who is
featured in Holofcener’s latest film, YOU HURT MY FEELINGS, also screening at NFF. Previously
announced presenters include Lola Tung, who stars in THE SUMMER I TURNED PRETTY, who will give Han
the New Voices in Television Writing Award, and Dyjuan Tatro, who is a subject of the documentary
COLLEGE BEHIND BARS, will introduce Burns & Novick’s Special Achievement in Documentary Storytelling
Award presented by A&E Indie Films.
NFF will host its annual Morning Coffee With…® presented by Inquirer & Mirror and Faraway from Thursday,
June 22nd through Sunday, June 25th at the Sister Ship garden once again. The Sunday panel will be a
special extended Screenwriters State of the Union, focusing on the ongoing writers strike.
“Over the past 28 years, it has been a great privilege to honor, support, and cultivate talented writers and
storytellers in film and television at our Festival. Now the industry once again finds itself at a critical
juncture, and we want to offer NFF as a platform for these artists to have this conversation,” said Jaclyn
Rose Wohl, Festival Producer.
“It is with great excitement that we are able to share the final additions to our well-rounded programming,
including our Signature Programs, specifically announcing our inaugural Screenwriters State of The Union,
honoring screenwriters and storytellers who are key pillars within the entertainment industry; as well as
new film selections; and special guests attending this year’s Festival including the American Vanguard in
music, food and film with Joan Baez, Ruth Reichl, Ken Burns and Lynn Novick,” said Mystelle Brabbee,
Executive Director. “ At the Screenwriters Tribute, we welcome back to the stage our old friend and superb
host Brian Williams and look forward to welcoming Michaela Watkins, Lola Tung and Graham Greene to
help us celebrate the films and television shows they are in.”
With support from ReMain Nantucket, the Nantucket Film Festival will present Ruth Reichl + The Politics of
Food, a special evening to bring together people invested in the lands they farm and the food that is
brought to the table. The panel will feature local leaders who are collaborating and innovating to solve
issues that are at the heart of the local food system. The event will be a fundraiser for Sustainable
Nantucket and Nourishing Nantucket. “We are grateful to our friends at the Nantucket Film Festival for
elevating the conversation around food systems and food insecurity on the island through their
programming,” said Cecil Barron Jensen, executive director of ReMain Nantucket. “Along with affordable
housing, food insecurity is one of the foremost issues here on Nantucket today. Continued collaboration
between farmers, makers, chefs and community members is essential for solving these challenges.”
Following the panel, NFF will present a Nantucket Chef’s Tasting featuring beloved chefs who source food
locally. Featured chefs will include Seth Raynor (former Chef and Owner, The Boarding House and The
Pearl), Mayumi Hattori (Chef and Co-Founder, Pip & Anchor), Gabriel Frasca (Chef and Owner, Straight
Wharf Restaurant), Dylan Wallace (Owner, Eat Fire Farm & Eat Fire Farm), Joe Ranstatler (Chef De Cuisine,
Dune Restaurant and Bar), Emil Bender and Sean Fitzgibbon (Hang Ten Raw Bar), Mark Yelle (Chef and
Owner, Nantucket Catering Company). Each chef will design a specially prepared dish using the best of
NFF also announced additional Signature Programs, including an In Their Shoes® conversation on
Thursday, June 22nd with singer, songwriter, musician, and activist Joan Baez, who is attending the Festival
to support NFF Opening Day Film JOAN BAEZ I AM NOISE. The conversation will be led by journalist,
author, and special correspondent for Vanity Fair magazine Maureen Orth and will focus on Baez’s
remarkable career over the past 60 plus years.
On Saturday, June 24th the Festival will also hold the annual Women Behind The Words conversation
presented by J.Crew, focused on gender disparity in films and television. The discussion will be moderated
by Ophira Eisenberg and will feature Allison Williams (GET OUT, M3GAN), Nicole Holofcener, Michaela
Watkins, and others. The event offers fresh perspectives to the conversation along with stories from the
Sophie Barthes will receive the Maria Mitchell Visionary Award for the Opening Day Film THE POD
GENERATION which she wrote and directed and which stars Emilia Clarke and Chiwetel Ejiofor. The
Roadside Attractions distributed feature takes place in the not-so-distant future, amid a society madly in
love with technology, when a tech giant offers couples the opportunity to share their pregnancies via
detachable artificial wombs. Named after Maria Mitchell, the Nantucket native who was the first woman
inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, this inaugural award is given to a female
filmmaker who stretches innovative boundaries and comes with a $5000 cash prize.
Following a screening of HAIL TO THE BREADSTICKS! comedian, TV writer, and Cowlitz Indian tribal
member Joey Clift will host the conversation Native American (Mis)representation, which will look at Native
American representation from sports mascots and stoic Indian stereotypes to the acclaimed series
RESERVATION DOGS. Panelists include Academy Award-nominated Oneida actor Graham Greene
(DANCES WITH WOLVES, THE LAST OF US), Dinè writer Allie Redhorse Young (Protect the Sacred), Apache
musician Stevie Salas (RUMBLE: THE INDIANS WHO ROCKED THE WORLD), and writer/director Donick
Cary (HAIL TO THE BREADSTICKS!, HAVE A GOOD TRIP).
Adding to the previously announced slate of feature film programming, the Festival will also be screening
the narrative features DRIFT, directed by Anthony Chen and starring Cynthia Erivo and Alia Shawkat, and
distributed by Utopia Releasing; and Screen Media Films’ MAGGIE MOORE(S), directed by John Slattery
and starring Nick Mohammed, Jon Hamm, and Tina Fey.
In addition, NFF has announced the jury members for the 2023 Tony Cox Screenplay Competitions. The
Film Screenplay Jury includes Sophie Barthes, writer and director of THE POD GENERATION; Christian
Blauvelt, executive managing editor at IndieWire; and Michael Yuchen Lei, NFF 2022 Tony Cox Feature
Screenplay winner and the writer and director of REFRAME, screening within the Festival’s short film
program. The Episodic Jury includes Joey Clift, whose writing credits including Netflix’s SPIRIT RANGERS,
Cartoon Network’s NEW LOONEY TUNES, and PBS’s MOLLY OF DENALI; executive producer Opus
Moreschi, working previously on The Colbert Report and The Late Show With Stephen Colbert in various
roles, including on-screen as “McGnaw the Gluten-Free Beaver;” and vice president of television for Likely
Story Miriam Mintz, whose credits include the second season of Amazon’s MODERN LOVE and Netflix’s
LIVING WITH YOURSELF.
The 28th Annual Nantucket Film Festival runs from June 21-26, 2023. Festival passes and ticket packages
are currently on sale now on the festival’s website (www.nantucketfilmfestival.org).