Norman Maclean Festival to Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of "A River Runs Through It"

Three-day festival features Tom Skerritt, film's producer and creative team in Seeley Lake and Missoula


August 10, 2017

Photo provided

Tom Skerritt

Tom Skerritt and other members of the creative team from Robert Redford's film, "A River Runs Through It" will highlight the three-day In the Footsteps of Norman Maclean Festival Sept. 8-10 in Seeley Lake and Missoula. Released in 1992, "A River Runs Through It" won an Oscar for cinematography (Philippe Rousselot), Oscar nominations for its direction (Robert Redford), musical score (Mark Isham) and screenplay (Richard Friedenberg), and created an explosion in the popularity of fly fishing in general and Montana in particular. No other film in American history has boosted in-state tourism more than Redford's film did for Montana and for that reason the Montana Film Office is a presenting sponsor of the Festival.

Tom Skerritt played the Reverend Maclean, and will share how the film impacted his life and career during the Sept. 10, 1 p.m. program at The Wilma in Missoula. Jean Maclean Snyder, Norman's daughter, will recount how Redford courted her father to win the rights to bring his novella to the big screen, and how she advised both Redford and the screenwriter Richard Friedenberg. Snyder stated, "Bob Redford did a brilliant job of transforming a story that relies heavily on its lyrical language, not its flashy action, into a compelling movie that still captures audiences twenty-five years later."

Friedenberg will be present to share the particular challenges of working with Redford to translate Maclean's story to his Oscar-nominated screenplay. Filming this iconic story created particular challenges in production as well and Patrick Markey, the film's producer, will be present to show clips and describe how the production team solved those issues.

Maclean's grandsons Noah and Jacob Snyder each played a role in the film's production and will share their memories. "A River Runs Through It" will also be screened following these presentations.

The Sunday morning program begins at 9:30 a.m. at The Roxy Theater in Missoula and features Dennis Aig's 1994 film "Shadow Casting, the Making of a River Runs Through It" (60 minutes) and a presentation of production photos from the filming by John Bailey, Fly Fishing Consultant for the film.

This festival is presented by Alpine Artisans and the Montana Film Office and funded in part by grants from Humanities Montana, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, Montana Department of Commerce, Seeley Lake Community Foundation, Montana Film Office, Citizen's Alliance Bank and the National Endowment for the Arts. Information on Festival events and ticket sales is at

For further information contact: Jenny Rohrer at 406-754-0034 or


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