Key West Film Festival returns with big names

Elizabeth Berkely starred in 'Showgirls.'
Elizabeth Berkely starred in 'Showgirls.'

Cinema fans can view more than three dozen films and meet everyone from directors to actors to critics during the 2015 Key West Film Festival, scheduled for Wednesday through Nov. 22.

Screenings are set for the San Carlos Institute at 516 Duval St., the Studios of Key West at 533 Eaton St. and the Key West Theater and Community Stage at 512 Eaton St.

As well as nonstop afternoon and evening film showings, the festival features multiple presentations and question-and-answer sessions with filmmakers, stars, critics and industry insiders.

The opening night highlight, titled "Spotlight," chronicles the Boston Globe's real-life investigation into alleged abuse in the Catholic Church. It is followed by a question-and-answer session led by Washington Post film critic Ann Hornaday with two journalists whose work inspired the film.

Thursday's spotlight film is the Florida premiere of "Papa," recounting a journalist's experience being mentored by legendary author Ernest Hemingway during the Cuban revolution. The associated Q&A session features director Bob Yari and actress Joely Richardson, who portrays Hemingway's wife Mary.

Friday's scheduled spotlight shines on "Janis: Little Girl Blue," a documentary about rock icon Janis Joplin directed by Oscar-nominated Amy Berg. Best known for "Deliver Us From Evil," Berg and Joplin's brother Michael Joplin are to appear in the post-screening Q&A. A concert by Green River Ordinance complements the film.

Other highlights include the 20th anniversary screening of "Showgirls," a satiric take on Las Vegas show business culture that became a cult classic. Director Paul Verhoeven is to star in the Q&A accompanying the film and receive the festival's Golden Key Award for Career Achievement.

Also scheduled are documentaries ranging from "Hitchcock/Truffaut" to "Indian Point" and LGBTQ films such as "Tab Hunter Confidential" and "Out to Win," directed by Sundance alumnus Malcolm Ingram.

Selections by Florida Keys filmmakers include Mike Marrero's "Fried Pickles" and Quincy Perkins' "The Little Fireman," while the Keys' literary heritage is explored in Carey Winfrey's "Writers on Bicycles."

The festival lineup also includes the 2015 Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour, filmmaking workshops and panels, a student film showcase and a beachside awards ceremony and dinner.

For the event schedule and ticketing, go to