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News: Charity Gala screening at The Family Friendly Film Festival in Manchester Saturday 16th August 2008

Artsline, 5 August 2008, 21:51


Please note that this event takes place in Manchester

Join us for a very special event raising money for Charley’s Fund for a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most common fatal genetic disorder to affect children worldwide.

There will be speeches from some very special guests(hopefully including the young filmmaker and some of the crew who made Darius Goes West happen), the world premiere of three short films that have been made by young disabled people from Greater Manchester, and a feature presentation – DARIUS GOES WEST: THE ROLL OF HIS LIFE.  This extraordinary, multi-award-winning documentary is a celebration of compassion, life and brotherhood. The film focuses on ability not disability. Darius is a typical teenager and instead of feeling sorry for him because he is terminally ill, viewers will love his sense of humour and share his excitement as he discovers America.
You will also have the opportunity to see the World Premiere of four short films made by disabled children from Greater Manchester at the Family Friendly Film School, and, of course, help us raise as much cash as we can for a very worthy cause.
The Bridgewater Hall
Saturday 16 August, 2-5pm
PG but most suitable for ages 8+
Tickets £3 adults, £2 children. Book at the Bridgewater Hall box office on 0161 907 9000
DARIUS GOES WEST: THE ROLL OF HIS LIFE Dir Logan Smalley, 2007, USA, 92mins
Where would you go if you’d never been away from home? What would you do if you didn’t have much time left? DARIUS WENT WEST!
Meet Darius Weems from Athens, Georgia, who was born with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). In 1989, Darius watched his older brother, Mario, pass away from the same disease at age 19. Soon after, he lost use of the muscles in his legs and began using a wheelchair. A group of his friends felt there was no need for his quality of life to disintegrate along with his muscles. So, they decided to take Darius, who had never seen a range of mountains, never dipped his toes into an ocean, and never crossed a state line on the adventure of a lifetime. After raising $60,000, this “band of brothers” rented a wheelchair-accessible RV and hit the road. Their three-week cross-country journey had one major goal: to reach Los Angeles and convince MTV’s popular show, “Pimp My Ride”, to customize Darius’s wheelchair. Along the way, they evaluated wheelchair accessibility at many of America’s major tourist attractions and raised awareness of DMD by holding over a dozen press conferences. They also found joy, brotherhood, and the knowledge that life, even when imperfect, is always worth the ride.
“Certain to stir hearts” – Variety
“A comical and poignant tale… Ulysses and Luke Skywalker have nothing on 15-year-old Darius Weems“ – Los Angeles Times
To book tickets, call the Bridgewater Hall on 0161 907 9000 or visit .
 Please call the Bridgewater Hall to book wheelchair spaces at the gala.
For more details about Charley’s Fund and Darius Goes West visit
For more details about The Family Friendly Film Festival visit
Leah Byrne

Family Friendly Manager, Arts About Manchester

Green Fish Resource Centre
46-50 Oldham Street
M4 1LE
t: 0161 234 2962
m: 07968701163

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