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The Secret Life of Bees Charleston Film Premiere to Benefit the Lowcountry Initiative for the Literary Arts

For Immediate Release

The official movie posterPress Contacts: Kristin Matthews, 566-2116 kristinmariematthews@hotmail.com or Marjory Wentworth, 971-6930, marjwpub@bellsouth.net

Thursday Oct. 16 at 7:00 P.M. at The Terrace Theater, 1956 Maybank Highway, James Island (Tickets available on a first-come first-served basis, while supplies last)

Reception Following at The Harbour Club, 35 Prioleau Street, downtown Charleston.

Reception Tickets

$100 Post-Screening Reception with author Sue Monk Kidd. First 200 Reception ticket buyers receive priority admittance to October 16 screening. Others will receive a ticket for the theatrical release of the film at The Terrace Theater.

Reception tickets available starting Sept. 1 at Blue Bicycle Books, 420 King St., 843-722-2666

More Infomation ...

Charleston, SC ... On October 16, 2008, the Charleston premiere of the upcoming film The Secret Life of Bees will take place at the Terrace Theatre, followed by a reception at the Harbour Club. The film is based on the 2002 best-seller The Secret Life of Bees, authored by Charleston resident and LILA Board member Sue Monk Kidd. Ms. Kidd will be attending the Charleston premiere screening of the film The Secret Life of Bees and the reception following at the Harbour Club.

The Secret Life of Bees, was written for the screen and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood, and stars Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson Alicia Keys, and Sophie Okonedo. It will be released nationally on Friday, October 17 by Fox Searchlight Pictures. The film makes its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 5.

"Of all the events surrounding the opening of the movie, I look forward most to the one in Charleston," said author Sue Monk Kidd. "Since we moved here a decade ago, I've been creatively inspired by the beauty, the landscapes, the cultural richness and rhythms of life in this place. Practically the first thing I did upon arrival here was to write The Secret Life of Bees. So, to attend a 'Charleston Premiere,' surrounded by friends and family and to have the event benefit something as wonderful as LILA-- will be the best of celebrations."

Proceeds from the Charleston reception will go towards LILA's fund-raising goal of $30,000 to support the "Poets in the Schools" program, LILA's ongoing public school initiative. The initial goal is to continue funding the Burke High School poetry class and literary magazine, now in its third year with private funding. Its first two years were funded through a Center for Partnerships to Improve Education at The College of Charleston. Future plans include launching similar efforts in under-served elementary schools in Charleston.

LILA's long-term goal is to establish an endowment fund that will ensure the future of these literary initiatives that are proven to improve language and writing skills of young people. LILA is already making a difference at Burke, and seeks assistance to make its commitment to the school both enduring and significant.

LILA is thrilled to announce a generous donation from The Rigney Fund at The Coastal Community Foundation to support the Poets in the Schools Program at Burke High School. The Rigney Fund will support the program for the duration of its third year, academic year 2008 2009.

About LILA

The Lowcountry Initiative for the Literary Arts (LILA) is a literary outreach organization established in 2004 under the auspices of the College of Charleston. Its mission is to nurture and promote the literary arts in South Carolina. A 16-member board of directors -- authors, poets, editors, teachers, and local supporters of literature work to fulfill LILA's mission. They are supported by LILA's Board of Advisors, made up of some of the South's most distinguished and well-known authors and literary figures, including Sue Monk Kidd, Pat Conroy, Dorothea Benton Frank, and William Louis-Dreyfuss.

LILA's Accomplishments

In recent years, LILA has:

  • Obtained a $50,000 grant from the College of Charleston's "Centers for Partnership to Improve Education", which launched the Burke High School Writers' Roundtable in the fall of 2006. This in-school program teaches ninth grade students how to write poems and produce their own literary magazine "For the People Who Deserve a Voice".

  • Co-partnered with the Charleston County Library in September 2007 to receive a $20,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to sponsor "The Big Read" a one-city/one-book campaign to read Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God.

  • Won two $2,000 grants from the NEA through the SC Humanities Council to organize "Poetry Out Loud" (a high school poetry recitation contest) in 2007 and 2008.

  • Offered free writing workshops through Charleston County Libraries.

  • Offered college student internships in community outreach via the Gibbes Museum of Art, the Poetry Society of South Carolina, and the College of Charleston's Center for Partnerships to Improve Education.