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By Nenad N. Bach | Published  09/28/2004 | Culture And Arts | Unrated


Screening of "Freedom from Despair" October 3, 2004


Please mark the following event on your calendar:

Sunday, October 3, 2004 at 12:00 noon:
Screening of Brenda Brkusic's incredible film "Freedom from Despair"
at St. Anthony's Parish Hall
712 N Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012

This highly acclaimed film is truly the story of all Croatians and the Croatian National Association (Udruga) is proud to sponsor the showing of this film. You will also be able to meet and speak to Brenda Brkusic in person. This is a fundraiser for Brenda to be able to continue promoting the film and to be able to make films in the future. No RSVP is required and there is no admission charge. If you think as highly of this film as we do your tax deductible donation will be gratefully accepted after the screening. For more information please visit (new reviews of the film, viewer quotes and photos from the Pula Film Festival in Croatia will be posted within the next week).

Please remember, if we support each other's events, not only will they be more profitable, they'll also be more fun! Zivili!!!

Milan Vukovic

Croatian National Association

A note from Brenda:
I want to sincerely thank everyone for their continued support and encouragement as I work to get Freedom From Despair shown in the American mainstream media. Your attendance at this screening will be crucial in gaining the support needed to go further with promoting the film and will mean so much to me and to all the people who told their life stories in the film. In two years with little funds, I tried to make a film that all would be proud of - a film that tells the Croatian story in an easy to understand, professional and entertaining format. The film festival acceptances and the great newspaper reviews have been a blessing. Croatians have laughed and cried while seeing their own stories represented on the screen - the film is a rollercoaster of emotions that I know each and everyone of you will relate to in some way. I am ecstatic to share the film with you and ask for your support in making this journey a success. I look forward to meeting all of you in Los Angeles.

With much love and respect,
Brenda Brkusic

Film producer, writer, director and editor, Brenda Brkusic was born in Chicago and moved to Los Angeles in 1999 to pursue her dream of working in the entertainment industry. Brenda has recently graduated with highest honors from Chapman University where she completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Film and Television Writing and Directing on an academic scholarship. At Chapman, she had experience as a production assistant, post production supervisor, script supervisor, and dance choreographer on various short films while also serving the film school as a part of the administration staff. She wrote, produced, directed and edited her senior thesis documentary Freedom from Despair, a feature which was shot in California, Chicago and Croatia during the summer of 2003. Due to her efforts, Brenda was awarded Chapman Film School’s Marion Knott Scholarship, which afforded her the opportunity to work one on one with Academy Award winning filmmaker David S. Ward, during post-production on Freedom from Despair. Brenda was then invited to her Alma Mater, Marymount College, to screen the film and speak to the students in a leadership series. Brenda was featured on PBS television for the Next Generation Filmmakers program as well as the PBS Real Orange news program where she was interviewed about the making of Freedom from Despair. Her writing about Croatia has been published in the Washington Times newspaper and her own story has been featured in numerous international magazines, newspapers, radio and television programs. Most recently she was interviewed on the LA radio program “Center Stage� which features award-winning independent filmmakers. Freedom from Despair has received rave reviews from KODAK, Hrvatsko Slovo newspaper, Vecernji List newspaper, and has been mentioned in the LA Times as a part of an article on the Dubrovnik International Film Festival. In addition to winning an award for Best Documentary, Freedom from Despair was recognized by Amnesty International, the largest human rights organization in the world, as one of the most important documentary films this year, and was invited to have a world premiere in their film festival at the Director’s Guild in Hollywood.

FREEDOM FROM DESPAIR - starring Michael York, John Savage, Beata Pozniak and Dennis Kucinich. Music by Nenad Bach.

Kodak review of the film:

Hrvatsko Slovo Newspaper review of the film:


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