Atlanta-Area Director Wins Maverick Award at MethodFest 2009 and Heads North to Okanagan International Film Festival

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My Sixteenth Summer, a $1,000 feature from Atlanta, GA, was awarded the Maverick Award for Best Low Budget Feature Film at the 11th Annual Method Fest Independent Film Festival and is selected to screen at the Okanagan International Film Festival beginning April 22nd. First-time director Savvy Lorestani makes his international film festival debut among well-established independent filmmakers and seasoned industry professionals.

My Sixteenth Summer - Release Poster

This is such and amazing time for the cast and crew of My Sixteenth Summer. We were overwhelmed at finding out that we were nominated for the Maverick Award alone, but then to win the award was truly surreal.

My Sixteenth Summer, a $1,000 feature from Atlanta, Georgia, was awarded the Maverick Award at the 11th Annual Method Fest Independent Film Festival. The 2009 Barefoot Winery Maverick Award for High Quality in Low Budget Filmmaking win was especially significant for filmmaker Savvy Lorestani because MethodFest 2009 was his first film festival entry and his first directorial effort.

Lorestani says, "This is such and amazing time for the cast and crew of My Sixteenth Summer. We were overwhelmed at finding out that we were nominated for the Maverick Award alone, but then to win the award was truly surreal."

My Sixteenth Summer has also been selected to screen at the Okanagan International Film Festival beginning April 22nd. The acceptance into Okanagan marks Lorestani's international film festival debut.

My Sixteenth Summer is a coming-of-age film about the ups and downs of being 16-years-old. It centers around Samir (Ali Degan), an Iranian-American teenager struggling with all the pressures, highlights and disappointments of adolescence.

"A triumph of substance…Savvy Lorestani's intimate and no doubt personal "My Sixteenth Summer" feels very much like the work of a young master--parts early Linklater and Lucas…A small film that will hopefully launch a big career, "My Sixteenth Summer" is a movie worth remembering."-- Jonathan Hickman, EINSIDERS.COM

About My Sixteenth Summer:
Samir's summer is looking pretty bleak. His spoiled sister is back from med school, his fresh off the boat parents get more foreign every day and it looks like he's about to lose the girl of his dreams…to his best friend. In response, Samir ditches his high school friends and starts hanging out with a couple of twenty-somethings. But as Samir exchanges his adolescent woes for a look at the quarter-life, he starts to see that the other side of twenty isn't all its cracked up to be…And that maybe being sixteen isn't so bad.

About Okanagan International Film Festival Society:
The Okanagan Film Festival Society, founded in 1998, is a not for profit charitable organization, whose mission is to educate and promote the Canadian and International film industry through film screenings, competitions and professional industry workshops.

About MethodFest:
Named after a famous school of acting, The Method Fest is the only major film festival in the U.S. focusing on acting, celebrating breakout acting performances in story driven independent films. The Method Fest takes great pride in being a discovery festival, looking to help launch the works of young fresh filmmakers and to discover breakthrough performances by young, bold new actors. The festival has also taken great delight in sharing career-defining performances of established performers and in showcasing a few chosen well-known directors to screen at the festival.

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Nicole Keiter
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