Olivia Wilde's DON'T WORRY DARLING To Open 38th Boston Film Festival

Festival features three World Premieres, Boston-filmed 'Peace Be With You' among shorts to be shown.

By: Sep. 22, 2022

Olivia Wilde's DON'T WORRY DARLING To Open 38th Boston Film Festival

"Peace Be With You," a short film by Emerson College graduates Colmcille Donston (writer/director) and Georgie Hess (producer) that was filmed entirely on location in Boston's Dorchester neighborhood, has been selected as part of the Boston Film Festival, which runs through Sept. 26.

The 38th edition of the Boston Film Festival (or BFF, from Sept. 22 through 26) accents social issues of environmental wildlife challenges and global warming while expanding for a showcase night of comedy screenings. The celebration will include three world premieres - "Bromates" (from executive producer Snoop Dogg), "The Wind & the Reckoning," and "Always, Lola" - plus the US premieres of "American Murderer" (starring Ryan Philippe and Idina Menzel) and "The Temptation of Trees."

Mystery-thriller "Don't Worry Darling" comes from star, director and co-producer Olivia Wilde, and stars singer Harry Styles and Florence Pugh. The film will launch the BFF on Opening Night, Sept. 22, and is then released nationwide the next day (Sept. 23).

"Peace Be With You" is about Sean, a doubtful eighth-grade confirmation student, and Mara, a sophomore who has sworn off religious practice, reconnecting after breaking a statue of the Virgin Mary. "Peace Be With You" is part of the BFF's Boston Filmmaker Short Program, with three other films. To watch the shorts package, go here: https://watch.eventive.org/bostonfilmfestival2022/play/632ba6554df22d0029810d1e

"Throughout the process of making 'Peace Be With You,' I found myself asking a lot of questions, not just about the usual production choices but the issues we were addressing in the film," said Colmcille Donston, who is now working in Los Angeles. "The film grew out of my experiences as an Irish-American who was raised as a Roman Catholic in Our Lady of Grace Church in Hoboken [NJ]. I never broke a statue, but I constantly questioned my faith and through those doubts I have since realized they are truly just a part of growing up."

Donston and producer Georgie Hess weren't afraid of pushing boundaries, but they did not want to be deliberately offensive. They also did not want to make a religious film. "When we finally wrapped the project and I was talking with the cast, crew, and Georgie, expressing my initial worries, I realized none of those concerns mattered," said Donston. "This is a story about the fear of growing up, and how religion can amplify doubt in one's self. We intended this film to be an honest account about how religion as a structure impacts us at a young age for better or worse."

Hess found extra challenges of being a producer during the Covid-19 shutdown. "Filming during the pandemic is always a struggle. We were grateful for all of the guidelines Emerson was able to implement, and also the strong relationship Emerson has throughout the various Boston communities that made filming in the Spring of 2021 possible," said Hess, a native of Wyckoff, NJ, who also is now working in Los Angeles. "The entire Dorchester community was so open and willing to work with us throughout those months and most especially St. Mary's Episcopal Church. Everyone working together not only to make this project but also to keep each other safe was how we were able to make this film a reality."

This year's BFF has a number of other local connections, including the dramatic film "Always, Lola" which provides some local New England color with star Roxy Striar, who is a native of Newton, MA. In addition, Court Crandall - the co-writer and director of "Bromates" - also is a native of Massachusetts and a graduate of the University of New Hampshire.

"Peace Be With You" stars Wade Gleeson Turner, Erin Malimban, and Bates Wilder, all from Greater Boston. Bates Wilder, a Boston native and Emerson College guest lecturer, is a familiar face with numerous screen credits including "Joy," "Mystic River," and "Kevin Can F**k Himself." Malimban is a recent acting graduate from Brown University, while Turner is a young actor starting his career in the Boston community. "Peace Be With You" has been selected for The Monadnock Film Festival, Los Angeles Lift-Off Film Festival, and has been nominated in The Scout Film Festival for Best Direction, Best Comedy, and Best Screenplay. The short was filmed entirely on location in Dorchester's Jones Hill section, notably in the historic St. Mary's Episcopal Church, 14-16 Cushing Ave., which is an active parish in the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts.

As part of the BFF's 2022-23 programmatic year, the Boston Public Library in Copley Square will dedicate its focus to threats on environmental and global issues, including climate change, social justice and activism. Other key areas include engagement of youth, work-force development and civic learning. Some of these themes are depicted in "The Temptation of Trees" and "The Power of Activism," which will be screened there.

For the first time, the BFF also will feature a night of comedy films on Sept. 23 at the Wilbur Theater, 246 Tremont Ave., in Boston's Theater District, with "Bromates." Three short programs will be included in the virtual program schedule on the Eventive platform and the participants will be announced on social media at Bostonfilmfestival.org.

Actors, directors and writers expected to attend include Jessica Lowe ("Bromates"), Asif Ali ("Bromates," "Don't Worry Darling"), Roxy Striar (a Newton, MA native, "Always Lola"), Court Crandall (a Massachusetts native, "Bromates") and Sheldon White ("Always, Lola"), Collin Compana ("Always Lola"), Jason Scott Lee, Lindsay Anuhea Watson and Henry Ian Cusick ("The Wind and the Reckoning").

Filmgoers and virtual viewers can access Click Here for more details and to obtain tickets.

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