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  • 4/30/08

    Independent Lens’s 2007–2008 Season Concludes With the Unforgettable True-Life Thriller Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story

    Airs nationally on Thursday, June 19 at 10 PM

    Visit the companion Website >>

    (San Francisco, CA)—The Emmy Award–winning PBS series Independent Lens concludes its 2007–2008 season with a thriller as terrifying as any Hollywood blockbuster. ABDUCTION tells the true story of Megumi Yokota, a 13-year-old Japanese girl abducted on her way home from school in 1977. For 20 years, her desperate parents had no idea what had happened to her or if she was even still alive. Then one day, the whole world learned the shocking truth. Complete with bizarre twists and an outcome no one could ever predict, ABDUCTION is a heartbreaking, tantalizing mystery full of spies and international intrigue that is still being unraveled today. Hailed as an “extraordinary work of narrative mastery” by the Los Angeles Times and “engrossing” by The New York Times, ABDUCTION has won six festival awards and has been shown in 22 countries, including Japan, where its theatrical release lasted more than 25 weeks. Written, directed and produced by Chris Sheridan and Patty Kim, and executive produced by Jane Campion (The Piano), ABDUCTION will air nationally on the PBS series Independent Lens, hosted by Terrence Howard, on Thursday, June 19, 2008, at 10 PM (check local listings).

    To learn more about the film and the issues, visit the companion website for ABDUCTION at Independent Lens online. Get detailed information on the film, watch preview clips, read an interview with the filmmakers, and explore the subject in depth with links and resources. The site also features a Talkback section for viewers to share their ideas and opinions. ABDUCTION’s companion website launches in May 20, at pbs.org/independentlens/abduction.

    About the Filmmakers Chris Sheridan and Patty Kim (writers/directors/producers) are a husband and wife directing team. They are award-winning former National Geographic filmmakers. They have also produced work for PBS, CBC, NBC and CBS, among others. Kim and Sheridan have worked and filmed in northern Africa, Asia, South America and even a mile and a half underwater in an uncharted region of the Pacific Ocean. Their documentary Destiny, about the unusual life and legacy of a young photojournalist murdered by a mob in Somalia, won a top prize at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival in 2004. They honeymooned in the Arctic and consider Mongolia an ideal home. Sheridan began his career as a newspaper editor in Montreal. Kim’s first job was as a weathercaster (she’s still convinced there’s a 60 percent chance of showers for the weekend). ABDUCTION is their first independent feature-length documentary film.

    Jane Campion (executive producer) is one of the world's foremost filmmakers. Campion is best known for her 1993 Oscar®-winning film The Piano, starring Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel and Anna Paquin. Campion made history that same year when she became the first female director ever to win the Palme d'Or at Cannes. She has worked with some of the world's finest actors, including Nicole Kidman in Portrait of a Lady, which also starred Barbara Hershey, John Malkovich, Sir John Gielgud, Shelley Winters, Viggo Mortenson and Christian Bale. More recently, she directed Holy Smoke, with Kate Winslet and Harvey Keitel, and In the Cut, with Meg Ryan, Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Although known primarily as a narrative filmmaker, she admits to being a great fan of documentary film. She is based in New Zealand and Australia.

    About Independent Lens Independent Lens is an Emmy® Award–winning weekly series airing Tuesday nights at 10 PM on PBS, hosted by Terrence Howard. The acclaimed anthology series features unforgettable stories about unique individuals, communities and moments in history. Presented by ITVS, the series is supported by interactive companion websites and national publicity and community engagement campaigns. Independent Lens is jointly curated by ITVS and PBS and is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, with additional funding provided by PBS and the National Endowment for the Arts. The series producer is Lois Vossen. Visit pbs.org/independentlens.

    CONTACT: Voleine Amilcar, 415-356-8383 x 244, voleine_amilcar@itvs.org Mary Lugo, 770-623-8190, lugo@negia.net Cara White, 843-881-1480, cara.white@mac.com