Ron Rollet, Festival Artistic Director
(609) 425-3777


October 16 - Academy award winner Susan Sarandon receives the first ever New Jersey Governor's Award for Outstanding Contribution to Jersey Arts at the Cape May NJ State Film Festival November 15 to 17.

Governor James McGreevey will present the award at Cape May’s Congress Hall.

Sarandon, a graduate of New Jersey’s Edison High School, headlines the 2nd annual film festival in Cape May. She'll be honored at the Film Festival Opening Night Gala November 15th for her achievements as a New Jersey film artist who has brought both intelligence and integrity to every role.

Through her efforts as a spokesperson for the Discover Jersey Arts initiative, Ms. Sarandon has helped improve public awareness of the important role New Jersey has played in the arts and that the arts play in New Jersey.

Susan Sarandon’s career blossomed with her fearless portrayal in “Bull Durham” and then skyrocketed with her Oscar-nominated performances in “Thelma and Louise,” “Lorenzo’s Oil,” “The Client,” and “Atlantic City” and her Academy Award-winning and SAG Award winning role as Sister Helen, a nun consoling a death-row inmate, in “Dead Man Walking.”

The appearance by the Governor and Susan Sarandon highlight a weekend packed with an impressive collection of New Jersey films and filmmakers in this, the second year of the Cape May NJ State Film Festival. The festival's headquarters this year is the newly restored Congress Hall, on Cape May's oceanfront.

“People in the film industry have been calling this the ‘miracle festival’ and ‘the little festival that could,’” said Ron Rollet, the festival’s founder and artistic director, “because of the incredible growth and attention that we have received in just a year.” The secret? “Focusing on New Jersey films and filmmakers,” answered Mr. Rollet, a film writer and director who lives in Cape May Point, “that’s what makes us unique and worthwhile.”


Sarandon's three new films, released this fall, top the film festival's feature presentations during the day on Saturday. "The Banger Sisters," with Goldie Hawn and Geoffrey Rush; "Moonlight Mile" with Dustin Hoffman and "Igby Goes Down" with Jeff Goldblum will be screened at Hoyt's Cape May Beach 4 Cinema. It will be the first local screening of “Igby” and "Moonlight Mile."

Local Mummer fans have a special treat in store for them: the festival has chosen to present as one of its “Festival Feature Selections” the New Jersey premiere of "STRUT!" a film about the Philadelphia Mummers, also shot in North Wildwood, the Mummers' summer home. Also on the schedule: young New Jersey star Allison Bertolino from Mays Landing to talk about her experiences in making this year’s "The Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood."


In addition to the feature films, the festival will present an all day screening of short fiction, animated and experimental films and documentaries by over fifty New Jersey filmmakers.

This year the festival hosts several of independent film’s most important producer/distributors, among them John Hart, of Hart-Sharp Entertainment (“Boys Don’t Cry,” “You Can Count on Me”), and Greg Williams, CEO of Lot 47 Films (“L.I.E.,” “Fast Runner”). Each will introduce one of his films before it is shown (Greg Williams has chosen “Scotland, PA,” a comedic MacBeth in modern times) and will appear on the panel of a workshop, “Distribution Alternatives for Independent Filmmakers,” on Saturday.


Sunday's Cinema Cafe brunch features several short films presented by the filmmakers themselves, including the hilarious “Escaping Jersey” by Jan Marlyn Reesman, “Corona” by John Columbus, a moving “memory” film recently chosen by MOMA to open its Documentary Fortnight series in December, and a tribute to New Jersey animator John Schnall.


Tickets are available by calling the Cape May NJ State Film Festival at: (609) 884-6595.

For a complete schedule of events for the November 15-17 weekend, see the Cape May NJ State Film Festival's website at:

This program is made posssible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, and by a grant from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.



Back to Cape May NJ State Film Festival


Susan Sarandon
in Moonlight Mile