We are pleased to announce that as a special treat for the Closing night of the 30th Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Academy Award-nominated songwriters Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois, along with their band (Nick Lashley & Kenneth Crouch) will be performing their Oscar nominated song, “Lost Stars” from Begin Again, preceding the screening of McFarland, USA.
Nominated this year for Best Original Song, Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois are the founding members of the 90s band The New Radicals. The group disbanded in 1999 following the success of their international hit “You Get What You Give,” turning down the pressures of fame. Prior to joining the New Radicals, Danielle was a Golden Globe nominated child actress best known for Archie Bunker’s Place and for being a member of the original Broadway cast of Annie. Since then Gregg has won a Grammy award, and Danielle has continued to write chart topping songs. After spending the last decade outside of the spotlight, they have resurfaced with their profound ballad, “Lost Stars.” The song captures essence of John Carney’s film and is performed at separate times by Adam Levine and Keira Knightley, representing the rise and fall of their characters’ relationship and career aspirations. Gregg is also credited with writing the score for the film.
Following the performance SBIFF will proudly present Disney’s McFarland, USA, Directed by Niki Caro and starring Kevin Costner and Maria Bello. Based on the 1987 true story, “McFarland, USA” follows novice runners from McFarland, an economically challenged town in California’s farm-rich Central Valley, as they give their all to build a cross-country team under the direction of Coach Jim White (Kevin Costner), a newcomer to their predominantly Latino high school. Coach White and the McFarland students have a lot to learn about each other but when White starts to realize the boys’ exceptional running ability, things begin to change. Soon something beyond their physical gifts becomes apparent—the power of family relationships, their unwavering commitment to one another and their incredible work ethic. With grit and determination, the unlikely band of runners eventually overcomes the odds to forge not only a championship cross-country team but an enduring legacy as well. Along the way, Coach White realizes that his family finally found a place to call home and both he and his team achieve their own kind of American dream.