Volcano Sends Tribeca Producers on Winding Journey to New York

Actors TJ Griffin, left, Timmy Creed and Paul Courtney in the movie "My Brothers." The producers, stuck in Europe because of travel delays caused by the Icelandic volcano, are taking a circuitous route from Dublin to New York for the premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. Photographer: Pat Redmond/Image Net via Bloomberg

Producers Rebecca O’Flanagan and Rob Walpole are taking a circuitous journey from Ireland to New York for the world premiere of their movie “My Brothers” at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Travel disruptions caused by Iceland’s volcano left the pair with this grueling itinerary: ferry across the Irish Sea from Dublin to Holyhead, Wales; drive almost 400 miles to Dover, England; ferry across the English Channel to Calais, France; drive more than 900 miles to Madrid; fly to Bogota, grab a connecting flight to Miami and then a jet to New York.

O’Flanagan and Walpole were in Spain yesterday when they e-mailed their schedule to Tribeca officials. If all goes as planned, the producers will arrive in New York tomorrow with their film so it can be shown the following day at the festival. (The movie, directed by Paul Fraser, is about three Irish brothers seeking a replacement for their dying father’s broken watch.)

While Tribeca handles travel for its directors, most producers make their own arrangements. The festival has been scrambling to help some filmmakers stuck in Europe and Asia.

“It’s been kind of hectic,” said spokeswoman Tammie Rosen of Tribeca Enterprises, the festival’s parent company. “We have films from 38 countries, so people are coming from all over.”

Fourth Shrek

Rosen said she expects all the directors scheduled to attend Tribeca to make it, though some may arrive late.

The festival starts tonight with the world premiere of “Shrek Forever After,” the fourth film in the animated series about a green ogre. The first “Shrek” movie in 3-D, it features the voices of Mike Meyers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz and Antonio Banderas. The film opens in U.S. theaters on May 21.

Documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney has three entries at Tribeca: “My Trip to Al-Qaeda,” based on Lawrence Wright’s one-man show about the rise of Islamic terrorism; a rough cut of an untitled film on former New York governor Eliot Spitzer, who resigned because of a sex scandal; and a segment on cheating sumo wrestlers in “Freakonomics,” a multidirector adaptation of the best-selling book about the relationship between economics and human behavior.

Robert Duvall, Colin Farrell, Vanessa Redgrave and Renee Zellweger are among the big-name actors in films at the festival, which runs through May 2.

Duvall, Zellweger

Duvall stars in “Get Low” as a 1930s Tennessee hermit who arranges his own funeral, and Farrell plays an Irish fisherman who catches a mermaid-like creature in Neil Jordan’s “Ondine.” Redgrave and Amanda Seyfried star in the romance “Letters to Juliet,” while Zellweger and Forest Whitaker are featured in the road movie, “My Own Love Song.”

Islam and the Middle East play a prominent part in several films, including Josh Appignanesi’s “The Infidel,” about an adopted Muslim who discovers that his birth mother is Jewish.

Ahmed Ahmed’s “Just Like Us” follows a group of standup comics on a Middle East tour. In “The Space Between,” written and directed by Travis Fine, a flight attendant (Melissa Leo) takes care of a Pakistani-American boy after their flight is grounded in Texas following the 9/11 attacks.

The Tribeca festival was co-founded by Robert De Niro to help rebuild lower Manhattan after 9/11.

Bloomberg LP, which owns Bloomberg News, is a festival sponsor. Tickets and information: +1-866-941-3378; http://www.tribecafilm.com/festival/tickets

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