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Sons of Italy® Endorses "Canvas," A Film About A Real Italian American Family

Press Contact: Kylie Cafiero, (202) 547-2900 kcafiero@osia.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. - September 17, 2007 ­ The Order Sons of Italy in America® (OSIA), the nation's oldest and largest organization for men and women of Italian heritage, has strongly endorsed "Canvas," a new film starring Joe Pantoliano and Marcia Gay Harden.

Inspired by writer/director Joseph Greco's own story, "Canvas" is a critically acclaimed portrayal of a family that fights mental illness with love, hope and humor. "A severe illness like schizophrenia can destroy a marriage, but in his film, Joseph Greco presents an Italian American husband and father whose values help save his family," says Philip Piccigallo, OSIA's executive director.

Academy Award winner Marcia Gay Harden stars as Mary Marino, a wife, mother and talented artist, who is struggling with schizophrenia. Emmy Award winner Joe Pantoliano plays her husband, John, who tries to help his wife while raising their 10-year old son, Chris, played by a gifted young actor, Devon Gearhart.

The OSIA endorsement came after Piccigallo reviewed the film earlier this year. "At last we see a movie about a real Italian American family," he says. "Joe Pantoliano's portrayal of John Marino is shaped by the love, loyalty and devotion to family that we believe is fundamental to Italian American values. We urge all our members and all people who want to see a moving story well told and well acted to see ‘Canvas.'

"Canvas" will open in mid-October in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Fort Lauderdale. To request a showing of "Canvas" in your city, contact Screen Media Films at www.screenmediafilms.net or Email: info@screenmedia.net.

To see the "Canvas" trailer and details about the film, go to: www.canvasthefilm.com

Established in 1905, OSIA has more than 600,000 members and supporters and a network of more than 745 chapters coast to coast. It works at the community, national and international levels to promote the heritage and culture of an estimated 26 million Italian Americans, the nation's fifth largest ethnic group, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. To learn more, visit OSIA on the Web at www.osia.org