World Premiere of Michael Rapaport’s When the Garden was Eden — Celebrating the Glory Days of the New York Knicks — to Serve as Opening Gala
Program includes Tribeca Talks® Panel with Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield and Tribeca Drive-In®Screening of Next Goal Wins
The Tribeca Film Festival (TFF), presented by AT&T, has announced the lineup for the eighth annual Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival, sponsored by Mohegan Sun. The Sports Festival was founded to broaden the audience for independent film through stories about sports and competition and includes feature and short films, an outdoor screening, special conversations, and an ESPN Films 30 for 30 program on soccer. The Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival is a partnership between Tribeca Enterprises, the parent company of the Tribeca Film Festival, and ESPN Inc. The Festival, founded in 2006, is the premiere showcase for independent sports films. The 2014 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival will run during the 13th edition of TFF, taking place April 16 – April 27 at locations around New York City.
The world premiere of the 30 for 30 documentary When the Garden was Eden will serve as the gala premiere of the program on Thursday, April 17. In the film, Rapaport focuses on the glory days of the Knicks championship teams of the early 70’s and their larger impact through a series of interviews with storied figures such as Walt “Clyde” Frazier, Earl Monroe, Willis Reed, Bill Bradley and Phil Jackson.
“The best sports stories have the mythology, complexity and stakes that extend beyond extraordinary athleticism, making for great films. These stories have fueled the huge success of the Tribeca/ESPN sports film festival by bringing sports fans and moviegoers together over the last eight years,” said Genna Terranova, Tribeca Film Festival Director of Programming. “Rappaport’s When the Garden was Eden is a perfect example of a winning start to this year’s inspiring slate.”
“When The Garden Was Eden gives us an inside look at the captivating era when the New York Knicks were in their prime,” said ESPN Films Director of Development Libby Geist. “Premiering the film at the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival in the heart of New York City, with Michael Rapaport directing, couldn’t be more perfect.”
Says Rapaport, “As a native New Yorker and lifelong Knicks fan it was an honor to explore the Championship New York Knick teams. Those players have been a part of my vocabulary since I was a child…Walt Frazier, Earl Monroe and Willis Reed are ICONs of New York city and it’s been a privilege to be a part of re-telling the Knicks story. I also have at times been in awe and tears with the 30 for 30 series and being a filmmaker who has gotten a chance to tell a story for such a great body of films is a great honor…I could not be more excited for our film to premiere right in the center of New York City at the Tribeca Film Festival.”
Since its inception in 2006, The Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival has become the premier showcase for independent films about sports and competition. The titles that will screen as part of the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival includes not only the film on the championship Knicks of the early 70’s but also documentaries that explore stories of a champion’s quest to regain a title that was unjustly stripped from him; the worst soccer team in the world’s drive to succeed; an underdog flag football team that riffs on classic sports movies with a cartoonish comedic sensibility; the creation of a revolutionary, independent professional baseball team; the premier American cyclist’s attempts to overcome his top competitor; how some of the all-time greatest fighters used boxing to pull themselves out of poverty; a soccer superstar at the peak of his powers on the world stage; and Chile’s controversial qualification for the 1974 World Cup.
All of this year’s Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival films will screen at Tribeca Cinemas on Saturday, April 26. The films will also screen prior to April 26, throughout the Festival.
In addition to the film series, the Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival will present Sports Day as part of the Tribeca Family Festival Street Fair on Saturday, April 26. Sports Day offers fans an opportunity to engage in a variety of free, sports-related games and activities. In addition, some of New York’s most popular athletes, mascots and sports personalities will make guest appearances throughout the day. Sports Day is free and open to the public and will take place on North Moore Street, between Greenwich and West Streets, in Manhattan.
The following films are featured in the 2014 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival.
TRIBECA/ESPN SPORTS FILM FESTIVAL
- When the Garden was Eden, directed by Michael Rapaport. (USA) – World Premiere. Actor Michael Rapaport delivers an unabashed love note to the Knicks with this fast-moving tribute to the team’s glory days. Featuring interviews with Walt “Clyde” Frazier, Earl Monroe, Willis Reed, Bill Bradley, Phil Jackson and others connected to the team’s championship years, When the Garden was Eden is a snapshot of a colorful and volatile era in New York history and a testament to the breathless energy that defines the city and its sporting heroes.
The following Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival titles have been announced in their respective sections as part of the 2014 TFF film program:
- Intramural, directed by Andrew Disney, written by Bradley Jackson. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. There comes a time in every fifth-year senior’s life where they must either accept the impending ‘real world’ of jobs, marriage, and payment plans or shirk that responsibility in favor of playing the most glorious intramural football game your school probably doesn’t really care to see. In this full throttle and hilarious send-up of inspirational sports movies, director Andrew Disney harnesses every cliché and overused trope to tell the greatest (and only) intramural sports movie of all time. Featuring an ensemble cast including Kate McKinnon, Jay Pharoah, Jake Lacy, Beck Bennett, and Nikki Reed.
- Maravilla, directed and written by Juan Pablo Cadaveira. (Argentina) – International Premiere. A true underdog story, Maravilla follows Argentinian boxer Sergio ‘Maravilla’ Martinez, as he sets out to reclaim the title of Middleweight champion that was unfairly snatched from him in 2011 by Julio Chavez, Jr. Focusing on the rise of Martinez from penniless amateur to world champion and sporting celebrity, director Juan Pablo Cadaveira offers a fascinating glimpse into today’s boxing landscape, revealing the politics of the sporting profession that often places entertainment value over the sport itself. In English and Spanish with subtitles