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Updated: Nov 2, 2019

STATEN ISLAND, NY - In preparation for this year’s Veterans Day, the Staten Island Film Institute (SIFI), has partnered together with Historic Richmond Town (HRT) to present the Staten Island Premiere screening of the documentary film The Field Afar: The Life Story of Father Vincent Capodanno.

Tickets can be purchased HERE.

As Staten Islanders, many are familiar with Father Capodanno’s name from the boulevard, but are unaware of his incredible and heroic life story. Filmmakers Tim Moriarity and Jake Ehrlich of New York discovered this story and worked together with Father Capodanno’s family members and those who served alongside him to tell his story with accuracy, honor, and emotion.

Vincent Capodanno was born in Staten Island, New York, in 1929. He grew up the youngest of ten, hearing tales of adventure from his older brothers who had served in WWII. After the war ended, Vincent dreamt of his own service in distant lands and eventually became a Maryknoll missionary. He was assigned to serve in a remote region of Taiwan and was quickly embroiled in the politics of the region as it was a relative flashpoint for the cold war. After he was inexplicably transferred out of his post, he decided to leave his Maryknoll position to become a chaplain to the Marine Corps during the Vietnam war.

After arriving 'in country,' Fr. Capodanno quickly earned the nickname, the “Grunt Padre,” because of his service to the soldiers and his willingness to subject himself to the same dangers and hardships as the infantry around him. He put himself in harm's way in some of the fiercest fighting in Vietnam. This is the account of those who knew him and fought alongside of him. This is the story of the lives he touched and influenced on his way to winning the Medal of Honor.


Two Staten Island screenings of the film will take place on Saturday, November 9th at 1PM and 3PM at the Courthouse at Historic Richmond Town. Outside of the Courthouse before the first film screening at 12:30PM, SIFI has arranged a Veterans Honor Ceremony together with the Staten Island chapters of Rolling Thunder, Blue Knights, Rotary Club, FDNY, and the NYPD - complete with a motorcycle procession, bagpiper, and a prayer led by local clergy. "This is a story and ceremony close to my heart, and those in our organization", said Rich Marchese V.P of the Staten Island Film Institute. "...and as a Staten Islander it's even more important to share and promote positive stories about our past and culture, especially when it involves our brave Veterans".

Tickets for the film screening are only $10 for general admission and can be purchased online HERE.

To learn more about the Staten Island Film Institute, and International Staten Island Film Festival, join our mailing list and follow us on Facebook and Instagram so you never miss an update. www.SIFILMINSTITUTE.org

  • SI Film Institute

Updated: Oct 13, 2019

STATEN ISLAND, NY - Staten Island has been featured on the big screen for generations, playing home for some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters including DONNIE BRASCO (1997), SCHOOL OF ROCK (2003), HOW TO LOSE A GUY IN 10 DAYS (2003), THE GODFATHER (1972), EASY MONEY (1983)...and the list goes on!

It’s time for Staten Island to recognize and honor these great accolades and create a pathway for current and aspiring filmmakers and storytellers to be recognized and rewarded right here on the island. Introducing the Staten Island Film Institute: a 501c(3) organization dedicated to the promotion, preservation and the enrichment of independent cinema through community and professional development programs that reinforce the cultural awareness and artistic process of filmmaking.

The organization was founded by a group of like-minded creative Staten Islanders who have joined together to create this mission. The founding board come from a diverse background of experience, industries, and trades but share one common interest: they love movies! The institute will function year-round presenting historic and premiere film screenings across Staten Island at some of the most beloved venues: Historic Richmond Town, Snug Harbor, St. George Theater, College of Staten Island, and others. In addition to screenings, the Institute will present world-renowned film and media arts workshops to give creators (of all ages) the upper edge and access to local quality education and training resources. No longer will you have to travel to Brooklyn or Manhattan for the opportunity to be educated or recognized in this ever-growing industry.

In addition to the year-round film screenings and workshops, the Institute will host much needed and long-desired Industry Networking and Mixer Events - providing current and aspiring artists of all Film/TV and Media trades the opportunity to mingle, connect and networking with actors, artists, agents, press, studios, production companies and more! Keep an eye on our events page to see what’s next!

The Staten Island Film Institute is proud to officially announce and present, as the center of its mission and programming, the International Staten Island Film Festival! An island-wide 3-day fall film festival presenting and honoring storytellers from across the Island, NYC, Country and the Globe! Filmmakers, film lovers, special guests, industry pros, and celebrities will be flocking to the island in numbers Premiere their films and walk the red carpet. Official festival dates and film submission information will be released in the coming weeks and available on our website and social media @sifilminstitute. The slated dates for the Inaugural Festival are October 2020.

As a not-for-profit organization, the Institute welcomes volunteers to join our initiative and continue to grow this mission globally. Joining the SIFI team is the perfect opportunity to be surrounded by the industry and continue to grow your network while also helping move a great mission forward. High School and College students are encouraged to APPLY NOW for our year-round internship program; Learn filmmaking, production, marketing, and more! We also encourage and invite businesses, organizations and corporations of all sizes and backgrounds to join us as partners and sponsors to present your brand to this vibrant and engaged community! The Staten Island Film Institute is proud to present and offer a multitude of sponsorship and partnership benefits to support and get involved.

To learn more about the Staten Island Film Institute, and International Staten Island Film Festival, join our mailing list and follow us on Facebook and Instagram so you never miss an update. www.SIFILMINSTITUTE.org

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