Ernest Hemingway’s 1950 best-selling novel “Across the River and Into the Trees” gets the bigscreen treatment and its world premiere and special screening in the final resting place of Papa Hemingway himself at this year’s Sun Valley Film Festival. Star Liev Schrieber will be in attendence at the fest’s opening night special screening, March 30, to participate in a post-screening Q&A moderated by Variety Feature Editor Malina Saval.
The Sun Valley fest runs through April 3 and, in addition to showcasing Schreiber, will honor Woody Harrelson, Amy Poehler and “Dopesick” showrunner Danny Strong. Robert MacLean, producer of “Across the River and Into The Trees,” is also expected to attend.
“Across the River and Into the Trees,” directed by Spanish director Paula Ortiz, is a film that resonates with the area’s rich cultural history in a way that cannot be understated. Hemingway’s gravesite in Ketchum, a short mile from the Sun Valley Lodge, is a pilgrimage site for Hemingway aficionados, English lit majors and kids in prep school tasked with pennning five-paragrah essays. It is a spot both solemn and inspiring,but one that also carries an air of touristy kitsh. To wit, Hemingway’s gravestone is decorated with gifts in memoriam ranging from tattered softcover copies of “A Farewell to Arms” to bottles of Maker’s Mark.
“Hemingway came to Sun Valley to hunt and fish, to write and socialize, and the area is forever tied to the legacy of this most quintessential of American novelists,” said Teddy Grennan, founder and executive director of the Sun Valley Film Festival. “We are thrilled to welcome the talent cast and crew from the including star Liev Schreiber to mark this special screening of ‘Across the River and Into the Trees,’ and to share it with Sun Valley locals as well as all of this year’s attendees.”
The last full-length novel that Hemingway published in his lifetime, “Across the River and Into the Trees” is a post-WWII drama that follows an American Army officer, Colonel Richard Cantwell (Schreiber), damaged both physically and mentally by the war, whose unraveling plans to spend a quiet weekend in Venice are upended by a chance encounter with a remarkable young woman.
The film also stars Matilda De Angelis, Danny Huston, Josh Hutcherson and Laura Morante.
Other highlights of the Sun Valley fest include National Geographic Documentary Films’ “Fire of Love,” directed by Sara Dosa, the cast of “Outer Banks” and the CNN documentary “Navalny,” which screens closing nbight.