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Death, Taxes… and Chocolate! will screen at the Los Angeles edition of the NYIIFVF

Holistic practitioner and former geologist turned screenwriter Dr. Andrea Levinson today announced that her first independent film “Death, Taxes… and Chocolate! will screen at the Los Angeles edition of the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival (NYIIFVF).

The dark comedy will play at the Laemmle Sunset 5 theater (8000 Sunset Blvd.) in Los Angeles on Saturday July 19, 2008 at 6PM. The film has been very well received by film critics and has already earned major nominations for “Best Screenplay” as well as a “Best Director” nod for co-writer and director “Bud” Dowdey.

Adapted by Dr. Levinson from her 2005 play, “The Death By Chocolate Club,” and produced, directed and co-written by Dowdey, the film is an indie dark (chocolate) comedy and romance interwoven with an expose of US health agencies’ bias towards conventional health care and the commercial targeting of baby boomers and senior citizens. The movie will delight chocolate lovers everywhere! The subject matter is current, thought-provoking, has worldwide appeal and caught the attention of several buyers at the 2008 Marche Du Film, Cannes.

Levinson interviewed seven of her very witty friends and created six characters for the story including an engineer, a turkey farmer, natural medicine doctor, teacher, boat captain and a former CIA Agent who now sells insurance. Most of the story takes place on a yacht (Levinson’s real healing office), where the six friends take charge of their own destiny and devise a plan to avoid the pitfalls of aging.

In a recent interview with Independent Film Quarterly, Levinson explains the crucial catalyst for the film, which she executive produced, “Being totally disabled for four years and losing everything, including custody of my children because of my conventional health care, changes your perspective on life. I became a Doctor of Natural Medicine so others wouldn't have to go through what I did. An estimated over 300,000 Americans are killed and even more are harmed by their health care each year. My mother died from her Chemotherapy, not cancer; yet for the second time my practice was shut down for teaching nutrition to my patients. In my dispair, I wrote the original play that became the movie "Death, Taxes... and Chocolate!" The film encompasses many of the events I had to endure as a doctor of holistic medicine including the fear of going to work. If the Berlin Wall can fall, we Americans need to make the AMA and the FDA held accountable for the failure of health care in this country today,” added Levisnon.

The film takes place mainly in New Bern North Carolina and boasts stunning cinematography and a compelling, original soundtrack by various local musicians including Andrea and Phil Owens, Margaret Rose, Chantal Hallatschek and Glen Kolleda.

Here’s what the critics are saying:

“One Sweet Movie”
-Charlie Hall - New Bern Sun Journal

“Finally a movie that makes you think!”
-Michael Sterling - Richmond Times

“I'm used to working with people who are widely published, widely produced, prolific award-winners. I encourage them to write stories that are useful to the social fabric. I was touched by the honesty and sincerity and truth of (Andrea's) story. She was saying 'this is my gift'. Sweet Jesus... She pulled it off!”
-Mark Woods - New River Dramatists

“I am very impressed by “Death Taxes… and Chocolate!” It is important and informative yet darkly funny. The film also has beautiful cinematography, a clever script and a great cast. Dr. Levinson is talented, passionate and not certainly afraid to take risks. Audiences will enjoy the film and we really look forward to giving the film the exposure it richly deserves.”
-Stuart Alson (Publisher of Independent Film Quarterly)

The much-anticipated Los Angeles summer edition of The NYIIFVF will run from July 17 – 24 at the Sunset Laemmle 5. NYIIFVF is a competitive event that screens the latest indie films from all around the globe.

Film Tickets are priced at $12 and can be purchased at Press and distributors can obtain an all-access pass by faxing a request on company letterhead to (702) 361 6309 (attn. Nicole Holland).

For further information about “Death Taxes and Chocolate, please go to


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