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The Witness screening @ Hollywood Theatre

Food Fight! Vegan Grocery and Herbivore Magazine announce a complimentary screening for movie-goers of the multiple award-winning documentary, The Witness, on Tuesday, February 17, at 7 p. m. at The Hollywood Theatre in Portland. This screening will benefit Oasis Sanctuary. A $5 donation is suggested.

The Witness Highlights the Dramatic and Inspiring Personal Transformation of a
Tough Brooklyn Construction Contractor, Recipient of the Courage of Conscience Award
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

AWARD-WINNING DOCUMENTARY THE WITNESS TO SCREEN AT
THE HOLLYWOOD THEATRE ON FEBRUARY 17 at 7PM

Artist Peter Max says, "A short film with a big heart"
LOS ANGELES TIMES heralds "unique, indelible 43-minute documentary"

The Witness Highlights the Dramatic and Inspiring Personal Transformation of a
Tough Brooklyn Construction Contractor, Recipient of the Courage of Conscience Award

PORTLAND, OR, February 9, 2004 -Food Fight! Vegan Grocery and Herbivore Magazine announce a complimentary screening for movie-goers of the multiple award-winning documentary, The Witness, on Tuesday, February 17, at 7 p. m. at The Hollywood Theatre in Portland. This screening will benefit Oasis Sanctuary. A $5 donation is suggested.

The Witness has received strong support from the independent film community; it has been an official selection at 23 film festivals, garnering 10 awards, including Best Documentary Feature at the Brooklyn Film Festival, Best Documentary Award at the New Jersey International Film Festival, and Outstanding Breakthrough Documentary Award at CineWomen New York. It has had PBS broadcasts in Denver and Miami, and Lama's life has been chronicled in TV talk show host Montel Williams' book entitled A Dozen Ways to Sunday: Stories of Hope and Courage.
The Witness tells the inspiring and life-affirming story of Eddie Lama, a tough construction contractor from Brooklyn whose life went from one of despair and hopelessness to one of compassion and activism after a chance encounter with a kitten. Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist of the Los Angeles Times, Howard Rosenberg, said: "The Witness is one man's truth that cries out for mass exposure," which accounts for its extraordinary support from everyday people who have thus far held more than 150 community screenings in 42 states, in venues ranging from libraries and churches to college campuses and movie theatres, often with theatre owners donating the space for the events.

Lama is a 2001 recipient of the Peace Abbey's Courage of Conscience Award. Past honorees have included Mother Teresa and the Dalai Lama. Peace Abbey award presenter Mary Margaret Earl stated, "Eddie is a living miracle. A regular guy from Brooklyn -- who works construction and [babysat] his first cat to get a date -- has become a hero for the two-footed as well as the four-footed. He is inspiring others to follow their own conscience and change the world too."

Lama's remarkable change in consciousness is the basis of the film's ability to touch people of all ages and backgrounds. "In my lifetime, I have been both the oppressor and the oppressed, both the fomenter of discord and the advocate for peace, both the perpetrator and the victim," said Lama, as he accepted the Courage of Conscience Award. "But most significantly, I have been both the silence and the voice. It is the human voice that is the primary tool for change."

The Witness was produced by James LaVeck and directed by Jenny Stein, Co-founders of Tribe of Heart. Based in Ithaca, NY, Tribe of Heart is a non-profit organization that produces films and educational programs that empower the efforts of people who wish to teach compassion in their communities. The Witness is the first completed documentary of four in an anthology titled "Animal People."

For more information about The Witness, visit:  http://www.tribeofheart.org
For more information about Eddie Lama, visit  http://www.oasissanctuary.org
For more information about Food Fight!, visit:  http://www.foodfightgrocery.com
For more information about Herbivore. visit:  http://www.herbivoreclothing.com

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