Based on the true events that occurred at Abu Ghraib in 2003, the
film is about a group of young soldiers thrown into a hellish environment,
with little but each other to help them cope with the challenges
American Jack Farmer leaves behind a fulfilling life to serve his
country in Iraq at the peak of the war on terrorism. Stationed at
the infamous Abu Ghraib prison, he is pushed to his limit as a daily
bombardment of insurgent mortar attacks continually threaten his
life. When an opportunity arises to work for the Military Police,
Farmer jumps at it and finds himself behind the walls of the infamous
Hard Site, a compound for the highest priority terrorists. He’s
introduced to the world of military intelligence by Sergeant Tanner,
whose harsh, and sometimes inhumane treatment of detainees raises
doubts within Farmer about the Army’s procedure.
will be speaking at the UCLA English Department's graduation ceremony
on Saturday, June 11, 6:30pm.
"Our alumni speaker is Sean Astin:
Sean Astin graduated from UCLA with a double major in American Literature
and Culture and History in 1997. He has performed in over 70 films
and television shows, from "The Goonies" to the more recent
"The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. Additionally, Astin works
in film and television as a writer, director, and producer while
also dedicating time to several charities, including the National
Center for Family Literacy.'
Astin and Elijah Wood were involved in the making of young Clay
Beabout's short film "Deep Blue Breath" which is now available
on DVD from the Make a Film Foundation, http://www.makeafilmfoundation.org.
It's a sweetly touching story written by and starring then 11-year
old Clay, and quite an amazing achievement for him. Clay suffers
from the rare VATER syndrome and has undergone dozens of surgeries.
Deep Blue Breath is about
where Clay's mind goes during his surgeries. Sean plays his father.
Elijah was one of Clay's mentors during the film making process,
and is featured in the "making of" documentary included
on the DVD.
You can purchase the
DVD from MAFF for a small donation. The film is being shown at various
small film festivals and won't be advertised on their site until
they are over, but you can email info@makeafilmfoundation for details
on purchasing it now.
petition to have Samwise in The Hobbit!
is returning to Middle-earth without his Sam and it simply isn't
right. Let Peter Jackson know that if actor Elijah Wood is going
to reprise his role as Frodo Baggins in The Hobbit movies then actor
Sean Astin who played Samwise Gamgee should be included, too. After
all, everyone knows that Frodo wouldn't have got far without Sam.
did a Q&A session with host Phil Cooke at the Biola Media Conference
in Studio City, CA last weekend. Along with other topics, they discussed
some of Sean’s acting experiences, including The Lord of the
Rings with director Peter Jackson.
he walks on the set, there is already an expectation for greatness,”
Sean said. After one particular scene, Jackson told Sean his acting
wasn’t believable, so they did another take. “I believe
that,” Jackson told him.
the topic of content creation came up, Sean expressed his dislike
for the term “content creator,” likening it to calling
Mozart a “note arranger.” A better term is “artists,”
also talked about the importance of having confidence in yourself
and in others. “My father told me that nobody is a chess piece
on a board and every single human being’s life has dignity
and value,” he said.
has always shown an interest in politics, campaigning for John Kerry
in 2004 and more extensively for Hillary Clinton in 2008. Now he
is focusing more locally, serving as campaign manager for Dan Adler,
who is running in a special election for US Congress from California
#36 district. Sean has accompanied Adler at forums and rallies,
and produced and directed several campaign videos. The election
is May 17.
Make A Film
Foundation (MAFF) http://www.makeafilmfoundation.org/ proudly presents
the world film premiere and red carpet gala benefit of “Deep
Blue Breath" starring Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings), Miguel
Sandoval (Medium), Natasha Gregson Wagner (High Fidelity), Ernie
Hudson (Oz, Ghostbusters), directed by Patricia Cardoso and introducing
Clay Beabout. The event will be held at the Writers Guild Theater
on Saturday, April 30th at 7:30 PM. Red carpet begins at 6 PM.
Blue Breath” was written by Clay Beabout when he was 11-years-old
and is based on his true-life experiences. Clay has a rare, life-threatening
disorder called V.A.T.E.R. Syndrome and will undergo his 40th surgery
days after the screening. On screen, while a medical team is battling
to save his life in surgery, Clay fictionally travels into the animated
world of his body to fight against characters that represent his
disease. Supporting Clay on screen is a star-studded cast including
Astin, who plays his father, and Hudson who performs as the voice
of Clay's nemesis. Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris (directors,
Little Miss Sunshine), and actor Elijah Wood (from the upcoming
film The Hobbit) were among the team members who mentored Clay through
the filmmaking process. Make-A-Wish Foundation introduced Clay to
Read more HERE.
On April 9, Sean hosted
the annual Kicks for CASA (court appointed special advocates) benefit
soccer tournament. CASA of Los Angeles actively recruits, screens
and trains volunteers to advocate on behalf of foster children.
The event, sponsored by the Kappa Alpha Theta chapter of Pepperdine
University, featured celebrity soccer games as well as a silent
auction and musical entertainment. Alas Sean's team lost, but the
money went to a good cause!
late March, Sean and his family met with Lois Lowry, author of “Number
the Stars” the book Sean is adapting for the big
the Stars" is based on the true story of a young
girl and her family who help Jewish friends escape from the Nazis
in Denmark in 1943.
Astins and Lowry met at the Getty Center in Los Angeles over tea.
In her blog,
Lowry writes: .. It was interesting to be in public with Sean, whose
face is well known because of the Lord of the Rings movies, and
to see the number of fans who come up to him and say, "Are
you..." "Could you possibly be..?" "Can you
sign my child's sweatshirt?" "Can I have my photo taken
with you?" and to see that he remains cheerful and gracious.
Fame could be a nuisance, I think.
also said: [Sean] and his wife have written a wonderful script that
is quite true to the book; they have spent time in Denmark doing
research and have made all of the preparations for the film...all
but the money-raising! And now they are hard at work on that.
the script is true to the book, then it will be wonderful indeed.
We hope the Astins complete their fund-raising soon and get this
important and moving story to the screen.
Photo courtesy of Lois Lowry
Astin is confirmed to appear in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit movies!
the full article. April Fool ;) ... but it would have been wonderful!
March 28, Sean gave a talk at the pre-conference reception for the
first Wounded Warrior Care Coordination Summit in Leesburg, VA,
outside Washington, DC.
summit "will draw leaders from across the public and private
sectors with the goal of improving the recovering care coordination
for wounded warriors and their families.
Coordinators work closely with wounded, ill or injured Service members,
families and their recovery team to develop a Comprehensive Recovery
Plan. This plan identifies Service member and family goals and the
resources they need to achieve them, such as assistive technology,
education, employment, or housing."
is Sean Astin's birthday! Sean Astin was born on February 25, 1971,
in Los Angeles, California. That makes him 40 years old today! Happy
Birthday Sean and we hope that all your wishes come true.
News Update, February 25, 2011.
Sean’s name has been attached to a couple of proposed movie
projects recently, though neither seems to be in production at this
“Hope Lost” will costar Josh Holloway and Evangeline
Lilly from the TV show “Lost.”
film is about Joe Baker, a computer security tech who dreams of
finding a special someone. But he gets more than he bargained for
when he meets Hope, a woman who has the secret to eternal youth
and enhanced perception. But after her untimely death, Joe gets
drawn into a secret war for wealth and power, uncovering a conspiracy
involving immortal beings.”
no word on what Sean’s role would be, but more information
on the movie and its creator can be found here:
Also in the
works is the sci-fi thriller "The Truth About the War in Heaven:
Declaration of War," the first of a proposed trilogy. Sean
is cast in the role of Minister Watkins, apparently one of the bad
cast includes Charles Dutton (Fortune in "Rudy") as Senator
Jerry Ames, Pat Boone as the voice of Heavenly Father, Donald Sutherland
as Governor Mason and Lindsay Lohan as Joyce.
The IMDB listing
and a detailed, if confusingly written, synopsis is here:
Meanwhile, “The Witches of Oz,” with Sean as the sprite
Frack, was delayed from the February 18 release date for an unknown
length of time. Information on the delay was posted by director
Leigh Scott here:
Finally, one Sean project has reached the small screen: “Robot
Chicken,” a stop-motion sketch comedy that airs on Adult Swim
channel. In a recent episode, Sean did the voice of Apple co-founder
and CEO Steve Jobs and of the comedian Gallagher in two separate
and very funny sketches. You can watch them here: