Full Slate And Special Guests Revealed For DC's 2016 G.I. Film Festival

The Nation's Capital has a lot of film festivals, each with their own theme. There are so many that it's hard for any of them to truly stand out, but if there's one that absolutely does it's the G.I. Film Festival, which returns to DC for its 10th year.  Regarded as "Sundance for the Troops", this year's festival runs from May 21st-29th and has revealed a powerful slate of films geared towards our servicemen and women. Here's a list of just a few highlights...

·         Overall, the festival will feature 77 films, red carpet events, celebrity meet-and-greets, comedy, music after parties and more.
·         On Saturday night, May 21, the festival will launch with Gary Sinise and his Lt. DanBand in a concert to be held at the Howard Theater in Washington, DC.
·         On Wednesday night, May 25, GIFF will host a 30th anniversary screening of the classic military film TOP GUN, with scheduled guest actor Val Kilmer. (Location: Angelika Film Center in Fairfax, VA). Then bring your leg warmers and parachute pants for 80's after party (Location: Black Finn in Fairfax, VA).
·         On Sunday night, the festival will close with a special screening of the heroic feature film 13 HOURS. Special guests will include cast members from the film (Location Angelika Film Center in Fairfax, VA).

On top of all that there will be a special advance screening of X-Men: Apocalypse for the Wounded Warriors, with a special message by Bryan Singer. Also, the festival will host the world premiere of the feature film Range 15 starring William Shatner, Sean Astin, and Danny Trejo, with an afterparty to follow.

To purchase tickets and see the full schedule, check out www.gifilmfestival.com.  You can find the festival trailer and complete film lineup below.

GIFF Trailer 2016 Final from GI Film Festival on Vimeo.

Sunday, May 22 (U.S. Navy Memorial Theater)

5/22, 12:15 p.m.
US Premiere
Bo Brinkman, 94m, Narrative Feature

A WW2 veteran destined for life in a retirement home escapes his difficult family situation and embarks on a cross-country adventure to find the last remaining members of his B-17 bomber crew with the help of a beautiful accomplice.

5/22, 2:30 p.m.
East Coast Premiere
Mike Rott, 69m, Documentary Feature

In many ways, retired Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson (USAF) was fighting a fierce battle before, during and after his days as a Tuskegee fighter pilot (Red Tail) in World War II. Jefferson, 92, was shot down during a mission and spent nine months in Stalag Luft III, a Nazi P.O.W. camp, and location of 'The Great Escape.' When liberated by Gen. Patton's 3rd Army, Lt. Col. Jefferson unknowingly became an eye witness to the atrocities at the Nazi Concentration Camp.....Dachau. This film is a fascinating account of bravery, perseverance, and character. When he wasn't fighting for his country, Jefferson was battling racism in his country.

5/22, 4:20 p.m.
East Coast Premiere
Rebecca Murga, 13m, Narrative Short

After being hit, a U.S. soldier flashes back to her Guatemalan childhood and the dangerous 2,000-mile journey she took to reach the American border.

Tuesday, May 24 (Embassy of Canada)

5/24, 6 p.m.
World Premiere
Maria-Nicole Miriklis, 15m, Documentary Short (International)

Around a campfire, three infantry veterans candidly talk about their experiences in Kandahar. Relying on helmet camera footage from their tour, the film contrasts the here and there, delivering an unforgettable insight into the warrior psyche.

Wednesday, May 25 (Angelika Film Center)

5/25, 7:00 p.m.
Special 30th Anniversary Screening
Tony Scott, 110m, Narrative Feature

As students at the United States Navy's elite fighter weapons school compete to be best in the class, one daring young pilot learns a few things from a civilian instructor that are not taught in the classroom. Special guest: Val Kilmer

Thursday, May 26 (Angelika Film Center)

5/26, 7:00 p.m.
Advance Screening
Bryan Singer, Approx. 120m, Narrative Feature

With the emergence of the world's first mutant, Apocalypse, the X-Men must unite to defeat his extinction level plan. Stars: Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy

Friday, May 27 (Angelika Film Center)

5/27, 12:00 p.m.
East Coast Premiere
Paul Kakert, 61m, Documentary Feature

During Nixon’s policy of Vietnamization, 26 US troops are caught in the transition. After surviving a brutal 3-day siege, 21-year-old Special Forces Captain William Albracht leads a daring escape and evasion past thousands of enemy troops. This is their story. Told by the men who survived. In their own words.

5/27, 5:30 p.m.
Washington, DC Premiere
Justin D. Roberts, 94m, Documentary Feature

No Greater Love explores what an Army Chaplain learned from his group of soldiers; soldiers that come from all kinds of backgrounds, races, and religions. It addresses what helped them come together and even be willing to die for one another.

5/27, 8:30 p.m.
World Premiere
Ross Patterson, 95 min, Narrative Feature

A group of veterans wakes up after a night of partying to find out that the zombie apocalypse has spread across the United States. Together, they must fight their way across the country to find a cure for the outbreak and restore freedom before it's too late. Stars: William Shatner, Sean Astin, Danny Trejo. Special guests: Cast members from the film.

5/27, 8:15 p.m.
Special Screening
Craig Gillespie, 117m, Narrative Feature
Coast Guard makes a daring rescue attempt off the
Saturday, May 28 (Angelika Film Center)

5/28, 10:00 a.m.
Washington, DC Premiere
Tyler Trumbo, 15m, Documentary Short

As a child, Patrick Humphrey had no idea his father became a spy for the US government. Frogman delves into the sacrifices and burdens of a family where keeping secrets became part of the job and explores how much we can really know someone through the stories we inherit.

5/28. 10:30 a.m.
World Premiere
Sara Vladic, 98m, Documentary Feature

The Legacy Project tells the fate of the World War II heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis using exclusively first-person accounts. The last crew and their families share gripping stories of kamikaze attacks, invasions, a secret mission, and ultimately a devastating torpedo attack that killed three-fourths of the crew. The survivors recall the five days they spent floating alone in the Pacific Ocean, their miraculous rescue, and how they fought together to clear their captain's name.

5/28, 12:45 p.m.
GIFF Premiere
Joseph Cahn, 104m, Documentary Feature

A reluctant, anti-Nazi German Platoon Leader, who became a POW is recruited by his captors to be a U.S. Government agent, then finds a career with a small U.S. company owned by Orthodox Jews.

5/28, 3:15 p.m.
Washington, DC Premiere
Tom Donahue, 88m, Documentary Feature

The U.S. military faces a mental health crisis of historic proportions.  Thank You for Your Service takes aim at our superficial understanding of war trauma and the failed policies that result.

5/28, 5:40 p.m.
GIFF Premiere
Larry Brand, 78m, Narrative Feature

Equal parts performance narrative and multimedia documentary, BEYOND GLORY tracks Stephen Lang's ten year odyssey performing his acclaimed one-man show telling the true stories of eight real life Medal of Honor Recipients from the WWII, Korean, and Vietnam Wars. Special Guest: Stephen Lang.

5/28, 7:45 p.m.
East Coast Premiere
Ted Martland, 13m, Narrative Short

An acting class becomes an unexpected battle for a young combat veteran.

Sunday, May 29, 2016 (Angelika Film Center)

5/29, 10:00 a.m.
World Premiere
Luke Holton, 37m, Documentary Short

Adventurmentalism mirrors an emotional testimony of living in South East Alaska after fleeing from broken conventional lives in Mequon, Wisconsin and Reno, Nevada. The film’s goal is not to focus primarily on the personal aspect of our stories, but rather a powerful aspect of art and film as therapeutic tools. 

5/29, 10:30 am
East Coast Premiere
Fred Koster, 104m, Documentary Feature

The true heroic story of friendship between American Military Legend, John Ripley and one of South Vietnam's most decorated Heroes, Le Ba Binh and their fight against communists during Vietnam War and the aftermath of fall of Vietnam as Ripley goes home to divided America while Binh's imprisoned in a re-education camp.

5/29, 1:00 p.m.
U.S. Premiere
Tom Getty, 96m, Narrative Feature

A US Marine is framed for a deadly terrorist bombing. He must set out and find the terrorists actually responsible.

5/29 p.m. 3:30 p.m.
GIFF Premiere
John Davies, 58m, Documentary Short
HEROES ON DECK reveals the little-known story of how more than one hundred WWII aircraft ended up on the bottom of Lake Michigan and their link to US victory in the Pacific.

5/29, 6:30 p.m.
Special DVD Release Screening
Michael Bay, 144m, Narrative Feature

As an American ambassador is killed during an attack on a U.S. compound in Libya, a security team struggles to make sense out of the chaos. Special Guests: Cast members Pablo Schreiber and Dominic Fumusa as well as Benghazi heroes John "Tig" Tiegen, Mark “Oz” Geist and Kris "Tanto" Paronto.