The Way Nominated for Best Film at 2nd Annual Film Festival

LOS ANGELES – Today, organizers of the Life Fest Film Festival, the premiere showcase for films that honor the value of human life and the unique importance of each life, announced that actor/producer Martin Sheen will receive the 2012 Spirit of Life Award. Now in its second year, the Festival will be held May 5-6, at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

“Martin Sheen has been outspoken in his opposition to legalizing assisted suicide, a form of voluntary euthanasia, and his opposition to abortion,” said Brian Johnston, director of the Life Fest Film Festival. “Life Fest is seeking to affirm those stories and story tellers that reflect the unique value of the human experience and of each human life by providing a forum to films that highlight a very profound message: every life matters.  Martin Sheen’s willingness to ‘go against the zeitgeist’ and speak out for the value of each innocent life, is both brave and honorable.”

In a July 2003, interview with The Progressive, Sheen stated: “As a father and a grandfather, I have had experience with children who don’t always come when they are planned, and I have experienced the great joy of God’s presence in my children, so I’m inclined to be against abortion of any life…I don’t think abortion is a good idea.” In 2008, Sheen served as a spokesman for Washington state’s Coalition Against Assisted Suicide. In an ad campaign against Initiative 1000, which legalized assisted suicide in the state, Sheen observed, “People who are ill need real medical care and compassion, not lethal drugs.”

In addition to the Spirit of Life Award, Sheen’s most recent film, The Way, in which he co-starred with his son and the film’s director, Emilio Estevez, has been nominated for Best Film. According to the film’s website: “THE WAY is a powerful and inspirational story about family, friends and the challenges we face while navigating this ever-changing and complicated world. Martin Sheen plays Tom, an irascible American doctor who comes to France to deal with the tragic loss of his son (played by Emilio Estevez). Rather than return home, Tom decides to embark on the historical pilgrimage “The Way of St. James” to honor his son’s desire to finish the journey. What Tom doesn’t plan on is the profound impact this trip will have on him. Through unexpected and oftentimes amusing experiences along “The Way,” Tom discovers the difference between “the life we live and the life we choose.”

“Life Fest recognizes that entertainment professionals – actors, directors, writers, and producers alike – have a unique voice and powerful tools at their disposal,” Johnston added.  “We want to encourage them to follow Martin Sheen’s example by telling compelling stories that highlight the intrinsic value of life.”  


Life Fest Director Brian Johnston and Publicist Derrick Jones are available for interviews about Life Fest Film Festival. To arrange an interview, contact Derrick Jones at (323) 393-0674 or Members of the press are also welcome to cover the Festival. For a complete schedule of events and to register for credentials, please contact Derrick Jones.

About Life Fest Film Festival:

Now in its second year, the Life Fest Film Festival is dedicated to showcasing films that reinforce the intrinsic worth of innocent human life and the profound significance of each life.  Last year’s participants included Lamplight Entertainment director Jonathan Flora and his wife, actress Deborah Flora, actor/producer Clint Howard, actor Charlie Holliday, and actress Mell Flynn.  The Life Fest Film Festival will take place May 5-6, 2012 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

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