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Vino Veritas-On VOD And ITUNES

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Vino Veritas Poster Courtesy of Jo Films

If you had an opportunity to drink a wine that makes you tell the truth, no matter what, would you  dare?  This is the premise of the film, “Vino Veritas,” on Halloween night, the lives of two couples head down a collision course under the influence of a Peruvian wine brewed from the toxic skins of blue dart tree frogs. “Lauren” superbly played by Heather Raffo is bored with her suburban life and yearns for the carefree and dare devil days before the children. In the opening scene we can feel her desperation to have more in her life as her husband “Phil” played by Brian Hutchison is made painfully aware of his inadequacies in the marriage.  The couple have a yearly pre-dinner ritual of having drinks and hanging out  before they go the masquerade ball with their neighbors,”Ridley”played by Brenard White and “Claire” played by Carrie Preston who Lauren tags as” the perfect couple.”

Claire, Phil and Lauren partake of the ghastly brew as Ridley who is a medical doctor is horrified that they would take such a risk and refuses to indulge in this ridiculous adventure. With that said I recommend that you watch this film and be prepared to journey with these couples as things that should be left unsaid are exposed. This film is brutal, honest, funny and very human. In the end one must question the things that make our lives complete and question what makes us happy.

Synopsis:

Some people need the truth to live. Others not so much. On Halloween night, the lives of two suburban couples unravel forever under the influence of a Peruvian wine brewed from the toxic skins of blue dart tree frogs. This tribal elixir effectively reduces all inhibitions to nothing, and soon friendships and relationships are revealed to be not quite what they seemed to be. By turns brutally funny, wickedly honest, and unashamedly human, Vino Veritas, is the filmic equivalent of a bobsled ride down Mt. Everest…on a moonless night…during a blizzard. Just hang on, and hope for the best.

CARRIE PRESTON (“Claire”)

Carrie won an EMMY and was nominated for a Critics’ Choice Award for her recurring guest star work on The Good Wife. Quoted as a “scene stealer” by the New York Post, she has been working on her recurring role in, Person of Interest, as well as her starring role as Arlene Fowler, the red-headed sassy waitress in the Golden Globe and EMMY-nominated HBO series, True Blood.

This past year, she was seen in A Bag of Hammers, with Rebecca Hall and Jason Ritter, opposite Jennifer Connelly and Ed Harris in Dustin Lance Black’s What’s Wrong with Virginia? and In Sironia starring Jeremy Sisto, which premiered at the Austin Film Festival.

Carrie obtained an acting diploma from the prestigious Juilliard School. It was her breakout Outer Critics Award nominated turn as “Miranda” in George C. Woolf’s Broadway production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest with Patrick Stewart that led her to her big screen debut as one of the two sexy, Southern bridesmaid sisters in the Julia Robert’s blockbuster My Best Friend’s Wedding. She went on to win roles in major television series such as Lost and Desperate Housewives along with notable turns in Duplicity with Julia Roberts and Clive Owen, Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, the Oscar nominated Transamerica, as Felicity Huffman’s sister, Alan Ball’s Towelhead opposite Aaron Eckhart, and the critically acclaimed independent film, That Evening Sun, with Hal Holbrook.

Other film credits include Guinevere with Stephen Rea and Sarah Polley, Woman Wanted with Holly Hunter and Kiefer Sutherland, and Stepford Wives with Nicole Kidman and Robert Redford’s The Legend of Bagger Vance.

Television guest appearances include Private Practice, Numbers, The Inside, Arrested Development, Wonder Falls, Law And Order: Criminal Intent, Law And Order: SVU, Sex and the City, Spin City, Union Square, Significant Others, and Trinity.

A crucial role as “Ophelia” in Hamlet 16 years ago at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival is where Carrie met her husband, Emmy Award winning actor Michael Emerson. Since then, the two have starred together in the movies Straight Jacket, Grace & Glorie, and The Journey.

Other theater credits include – Broadway: Festen and The Rivals. Off-Broadway: Antony and Cleopatra (Public Theater), Cycling Past the Matterhorn, Chaucer in Rome (Lincoln Center), Boys and Girls, Freedomland (Playwrights Horizons), Straight-Jacket (Playhouse 91), and The Libertine (Theatre Row).

Carrie is also a director and producer with her own production company, Daisy 3 Pictures. Films include 29th and Gay, Ready? OK!, and, most recently, That’s What She Said, starring Anne Heche. TWSS made its world premiere at Sundance, was acquired by Phase 4 Films, and is currently available on DVD.

HEATHER RAFFO (“Lauren”)

Heather is best known as the writer and solo performer of the Off Broadway hit, 9 Parts of Desire, which details the lives of nine Iraqi women. For her creation and performance of 9 Parts and its national and international tour, Heather garnered many awards including a Lucille Lortel Award, and the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn and Marian Seldes-Garson Kanin playwriting awards, as well as Helen Hayes, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League nominations, for outstanding performance.

Heather opened 9 Parts of Desire in August 2003 at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh. It later moved to the Bush Theatre in London’s Off-West End where critics hailed it as one of the five best plays in London in late 2003. Its Off Broadway premiere was at the Manhattan Ensemble Theatre, where the show ran for nine months and was a Critics Pick (of the New York Times, Time Out and Village Voice) for over twenty four weeks in a row. In 2009, Heather created a concert version of the play for The Kennedy Center with renowned Iraqi maqam musician, Amir El Saffar.

9 Parts of Desire has been performed all over the U.S. and was one of the top five produced plays of the 2007-2008 American theater season. It has had international productions/translations in Brazil, Greece, Sweden, Turkey, Malta, France, Iraq, Egypt, Israel, Scotland, England and Canada. Publications are by Northwestern University Press and Dramatists Play Service as well as a number of anthologies.

Currently, Heather is developing a libretto for an opera commissioned by the Annenberg Foundation which will be featured at Kennedy Center’s International Theater Festival in March 2014. The opera details the life of a US Marine who served in Fallujah in 2004 and relates the haunting experiences of identity and belonging for both veterans and their families as well as Iraqis.

Heather’s recent acting credits include: Food and Fadwa, (world premiere New York Theater Workshop); In Darfur (world premiere The Public Theater, Delacourt); Palace of the End (Drama League Nomination -Epic Theater Center); Seven (Skirball Center, London’s House of Lords, Aspen Ideas Festival); The French Lieutenant’s Woman (world premiere Fulton Opera House); Over The River and Through the Woods (John Houseman); Off Broadway/National Tour of Macbeth (Lady Macbeth), The Merry Wives of Windsor (Mistress Page) and The Rivals all with The Acting Company. Regionally with the Old Globe Theater: Romeo and Juliet (dir. Daniel Sullivan); Othello (dir. Jack O’Brien); As You Like It (dir. Stephen Wadsworth); Macbeth (dir. Nicky Martin).

BERNARD WHITE (“Ridley”)

Bernard’s film credits include Captain America: Winter Soldier, It’s Kind Of A Funny Story, American Dreamz, The Matrix: Reloaded And Revolutions, Land Of Plenty by Wim Wenders, Quarantine, Raising Helen and Alvin and The Chipmunks: The Squeakquel. Bernie is proud to have worked with the late director Paul Leder, starring in six of his feature films

On television he has had recurring roles on HBO’s Silicon Valley as well as Touch and Castle. He has guest starred on The Good Wife, NCIS Los Angeles, The Event, The Defenders as well as such classic shows as ER, JAG, The West Wing, The Practice, NYPD Blue, LA Law, Murder She Wrote, Highway To Heaven, 227, Knight Rider, Knots Landing, General Hospital and Santa Barbara.

On the New York stage Bernard has starred in Blood and Gifts at Lincoln Center directed by Bartlett Sher, Landscape of the Body at the Signature directed by Michael Greif, Sakharam Binder and Blithe Spirit directed by Maria Mileaf. He performed in the stage adaptation of Wings of Desire at Toneelgroep Amsterdam and the American Repertory Theatre.

He has done two seasons at the Williamstown Theater Festival and one full season at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Bernie is the founder of three different theatre companies in Los Angeles: The Franklin Field, Plymouth and Silent H. He has written and has seen staged over 10 plays.

BRIAN HUTCHISON (“Phil”)

Brian made his 2001 Broadway debut in Tom Stoppard’s, The Invention of Love, produced by the Lincoln Center Theatre. Since then, he has appeared in many Broadway productions including Man & Boy, Proof, Looped, with Valerie Harper, and the critically acclaimed, Exit the King, in which he played the armor-clad ‘Guard’ alongside Geoffrey Rush and Susan Sarandon.

Off Broadway, he has received excellent reviews for his work at several New York production companies that specialize in premiering original plays. With the Manhattan Theatre Club he starred in Regrets, Spirit Control with Jeremy Sisto, and in the comedy-drama, From Up Here opposite Julie White. At Playwrights Horizons he was featured in Go Back to Where You Are and People Be Heard. Other notable off Broadway performances include, Oh the Humanity …and Other Exclamations with Marisa Tomei at the Flea Theater, and, Can’t Let Go for the Keen Company.

Over the years Brian has appeared on regional theaters in the north-east on such prestigious stages as the Huntington (Boston), the Kennedy Center (DC) Westport Country Playhouse (CT) Williamstown Theatre Festival (MA) Pittsburgh Public, and the Yale Repertory Theater (New Haven).

Originally from Pittsburgh, Brian received a BA from Lafayette College before going on to earn his MFA in Dramatic Arts at the Old Globe/University of San Diego. Right after receiving his degree, he was asked to return to the Old Globe to take major roles in All My Sons and, Blue/Orange.

Sarah Knight
Sarah Knight
 DIRECTED BY SARAH KNIGHT 

Vino Veritas is Sarah Knight’s narrative feature debut.  She is currently developing the romantic drama, Inthe Land of Fire & Ice, with writer, David MacGregor, to star Academy Award nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo. Her project, Shady Creek, was a finalist for the 2008 Sundance Creative Producing Initiative and Film Independent Fast Track programs.  Her 35mm short, Qiana (director, screenwriter, producer), premiered at Angelika 57 in Manhattan and won acclaim at several film fests as did her first 35 mm short, Abstinence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder (director, writer, co-producer). Other films include the internet cult hit, Survivor in da ‘Hood (director, co-writer).

Production Designer JACOB HEGER Costume Designer CARLOS BROWN Editor MARK SULT Director of Photography JOHN BEYMER Co-Producers JOHN BEYMER, BARBARA BRUNO, SKIPPER MARTIN Produced by SARAH KNIGHT, DAVID MACGREGOR, CHAD BISHOFF Written by DAVID MACGREGOR Directed by SARAH KNIGHT

Stills: Courtesy of Jo Films
Brian Hutchison as Phil and Heather Raffo as Lauren
Brian Hutchison as Phil and Heather Raffo as Lauren
Heather Raffo as Lauren
Heather Raffo as Lauren
Carrie Preston as Claire
Carrie Preston as Claire
Carrie Preston as Claire, Bernard White as Ridley and Heather Raffo as Lauren
Carrie Preston as Claire, Bernard White as Ridley and Heather Raffo as Lauren

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