The 2023 Newport Beach Film Festival Opening & Closing Night

September 21, 2023

The highly anticipated 2023 Newport Beach Film Festival (NBFF) has just revealed exciting details about its upcoming edition. Kicking off on Thursday, October 12, the festival's opening night will feature the Los Angeles Times Envelope screening of "The Absence of Eden," directed by Marco Perego and starring the talented Zoe Saldaña. This event will take place at Edwards Big Newport.

Continuing the cinematic journey, the festival will conclude on Thursday, October 19, at the Port Theatre, showcasing Focus Features' "The Holdovers," directed by the esteemed Alexander Payne. 

It's the 24th edition of this renowned film festival, promising an extraordinary in-person experience from October 12-19, presenting a dazzling array of 91 films from various corners of the world.

A highlight of the festival will be the presence of filmmakers for a moderated interview preceding the screening of "The Absence of Eden." This gripping film revolves around an ICE agent, portrayed by Garrett Hedlund, grappling with the ethical complexities of border security, and an undocumented woman, played by Zoe Saldaña, striving to escape a ruthless cartel. Their paths intertwine as they collaborate to rescue an innocent girl, resulting in a compelling narrative.

"The Absence of Eden" has been skillfully produced by Julie Yorn and Marco Perego, nominated for an Academy Award. Notably, it's a collaborative effort involving Robert Kravis and Karl Herrmann under Pioneer Pictures, Alexandra Milchan (also an Academy Award nominee), Martin Scorsese, and Rick Yorn, all serving as executive producers. Additionally, Zoe Saldaña’s Cinestar Pictures, Ingenious Media, Ashland Hill, Sycuan Tribal, Ruben Islas, Jolene Rodriguez, and Stanley Preschutti are part of this remarkable production.

On the other hand, "The Holdovers" portrays the story of a grumpy instructor, played by Paul Giamatti, at a New England prep school who finds himself staying on campus during Christmas break to look after a few students left without plans. As the tale unfolds, an unlikely connection forms between the instructor and a troubled yet intelligent student, brilliantly portrayed by newcomer Dominic Sessa. The film also delves into a bond with the school’s head cook, grieving the loss of a son in Vietnam, portrayed by Da’Vine Joy Randolph. Directed by Alexander Payne and produced by Mark Johnson, Bill Block, and David Hemingson, the film features executive producers Chris Stinson, Tom Williams, Andrew Golov, and Thom Zadra.

The 2023 Newport Beach Film Festival is all set to be a cinematic extravaganza, promising world premieres, award contenders, engaging nightly special events, and insightful conversations with filmmakers. Notable films announced for the Centerpiece and Spotlight categories include "A Whole Life," "Double Blind," "Frontiers," "Honey Sweet," "Freelance," "Fingernails," "Gentleman," "Woken," "In the Name of the Father," "May December," "Monster," "NYAD," "Only the River Flows," "Radical," "Rustin," "Second Act," "The First Day of My Life," "Verdigris," "Live," and "Without Her."

For film enthusiasts and attendees, tickets to the Opening Night Film and Gala are available at $225, and for the Closing Night Film and Gala at $145. The gala events are exclusively open to attendees aged 21 and older. To secure your spot and explore the complete lineup, including festival passes and ticket details, visit the official festival website at NewportBeachFilmFest.com. It's an event you wouldn't want to miss, promising an immersive cinematic experience and a delightful celebration of the art of film.


Miguel’s Jr. Unveils New Santa Ana Location

September 21, 2023

Miguel’s Jr. is excited to announce the opening of its 22nd quick-service restaurant and fifth location in Orange County on Tuesday, September 26th. Conveniently situated near the Santa Ana Metrorail station at 1766 East McFadden Ave. in Santa Ana, the new restaurant will serve Miguel’s Jr.'s delightful homestyle Mexican dishes daily. 

Whether you choose to dine in, take out, hit the drive-thru, or place an online order, they’re here to serve you from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sundays.

This spacious 3,200-square-foot restaurant will feature indoor dining options as well as a convenient drive-thru, providing a delectable way to savor authentic Mexican cuisine even when you're on the move. It's an excellent choice for the entire community, as well as commuters seeking breakfast, lunch, and dinner options on both weekdays and weekends.

For the latest updates on Miguel’s Jr. and to stay informed about its grand opening, please visit MiguelsJr.com.


Crush It Harvest Festival, The Estate Yountville

September 20, 2023

Experience the essence of the fall harvest in wine country with a weekend getaway to The Estate Yountville, where the second annual Crush It Harvest Festival awaits. Mark your calendar for Saturday, Sept. 30, and Saturday, Oct. 7, from 11 a.m. to sundown each day at the West Pavilion lawn of The Estate Yountville.

Indulge in the best of the Napa Valley with Crush It, featuring wine tasting, a sumptuous BBQ prepared by The Estate's culinary experts, grape stomping, live music, lawn games, kids' face painting, and picturesque photo opportunities. Discover a variety of fine wines from renowned award-winning wineries and small production craft vintners (additional cost, 21+ wristbands required).

Tickets for the Crush It Harvest Festival are priced at $100 per person and include unlimited BBQ delights, grape stomping, and a commemorative t-shirt. A la carte food and beverages will be available separately. Children aged 4 to 12 can join the fun for $65 per person, which includes food, grape stomping, and a t-shirt. Special stay packages are also available, offering admission to Crush It and Grape Stomp access for two guests.

Find The Estate Yountville at 6481 Washington St, Yountville, CA. For complete details about the Crush It Harvest Festival and to secure your reservations, visit theestateyountville.com.

The Estate Yountville stands as the ultimate Napa Valley luxury destination, perfectly situated in the heart of wine country and celebrated for its walkability. The property offers 191 rooms across two distinct hotels, Vintage House and Hotel Villagio, along with The Villa, a private 5-bedroom residence. Additional amenities include three restaurants, a bar, a world-class spa, a fitness center, shopping options, versatile wedding and meeting venues, and breathtaking views of the surrounding vineyards. 

small-productionAs a recipient of the 2020 Trip Advisor Traveler’s Choice Award and an annual holder of the AAA Four Diamond Award, The Estate Yountville is dedicated to delivering an unmatched experience to its guests. For further information, visit theestateyountville.com.

Greer's OC
Blogger | Journalist

Since 1993, Greer has been writing about fashion, dining and trends in Orange County, as a popular columnist for the Los Angeles Time Community Newspapers (Daily Pilot, Coastline Pilot and HB Independent) and now as founder of Greer’s OC.


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