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‘Winter in the Blood’ Movie Premieres in Missoula Saturday

winter in the blood publicity still
Chaske Spencer, in the role of Virgil First Raise. (Michael Coles, Ranchwater Films 2013)
Missoula’s Roxy Theater will be the site of the Montana premiere of the film “Winter in the Blood,” based on the James Welch novel.

Montana filmmakers Alex and Andrew Smith, along with principal cast members, will attend the two screenings Saturday July 20 at 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The cast includes Chaske Spencer (see photo), Lily Gladstone and Dana Wheeler-Nicholson.

Winter in the Blood was filmed along the Montana Hi-Line in Chinook and Havre, and on the Fort Belknap and Rocky Boy reservations. It’s the story of a young Native American man “who embarks on a wild and darkly comic odyssey.”

The film was made its debut to audience acclaim at the Los Angeles Film Festival last month. The Smiths felt it was “important to bring this iconic Montana story home to a Montana audience.” In a news release from the Montana Film Office, the Smith brothers said they will introduce each screening at the Roxy and will lead a question and answer session after each screening.

Also at the event Saturday will be co-writer of the screenplay Ken White and members of the musical group Heartless Bastards, the Texas rock band that created the film score.

The Smith brothers also filmed “The Slaughter Rule” in Montana in 2002. Andrew Smith is an associate professor at the University of Montana School of Media Arts.

The Roxy Theater is at 718 S. Higgins in Missoula.

A Montana screening tour will be scheduled this fall, according to the news release.

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