The US Premiere of the film Stronger will be an intimate, invitation-only screening held in Boston on September 12, 2017. (The film, based on the book of the same name, will open widely in the US on September 22, 2017). Stronger is the inspiring true story of Jeff Bauman, an ordinary man who captured the hearts of his city and the world to become a symbol of hope following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Jeff, a 27-year-old, working-class Boston man who was at the marathon to try to win back his ex-girlfriend Erin (Tatiana Maslany). Waiting for her at the finish line when the blast occurs, he loses both his legs in the attack. After regaining consciousness in the hospital, Jeff is able to help law enforcement identify one of the bombers, but his own battle has just begun. He tackles months of physical and emotional rehabilitation with the unwavering support of Erin and his family. It is Jeff’s deeply personal account of the heroic journey that tests a family’s bond, defines a community’s pride and inspires his inner courage to overcome devastating adversity. Filled with raw emotion, humanity and humor, Stronger is the inspirational real-life story of the man who became the living embodiment of “Boston Strong.” The film also stars Academy Award® nominee Miranda Richardson and is directed by David Gordon Green.
The filmmakers have decided the most fitting place for this Boston audience to experience the film would be at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. The US premiere will be held in the same Spaulding gym where Jeff Bauman and other Boston Marathon bombing survivors worked on their recovery. This space also plays itself in the film, and the premiere will be utilized to bring deserved attention to the work done at Spaulding and to inspire additional support of its mission. The audience will be composed mainly of friends and family of the Baumans, the filmmakers, the stars of the film, and representatives of the public servants who helped so many the day of the bombings and the medical personnel who saved lives and supported the recovery of the survivors.
Co-President, Roadside Attractions
"Growing up in Brookline, I am well-acquainted with Spaulding’s significance as one of the foremost rehabilitation institutions in the world. We are proud to bring the US Premiere of Stronger home to Boston and present it in the exact same space where Jeff Bauman and other survivors worked so hard on their recovery. Jeff’s story is inspirational and we expect this to be a powerful experience for all who attend.”
2013 Boston Marathon Bombing Survivor
"Spaulding has been such a large part of my life for the past four years that having the US Premiere of Stronger there feels so right to me. Although watching the film on that big screen will be such an emotional rollercoaster, it comforts me to know that I will be surrounded by the people who have been such a big part of my recovery – the doctors, nurses, friends and family. I gotta say it will be a wild trip watching the film in the exact same spot where I learned to walk again!" The site of the premiere is known as the new Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown; this facility opened on April 27, 2013, just 12 days after the Boston Marathon bombings. Spaulding treated 32 of the most catastrophically injured survivors who suffered from burns, shrapnel damage and limb loss. Sixteen of the survivors treated had amputations, including Jeff Bauman who was one of three individuals who lost both limbs due to the bombing. The last marathon survivor to complete their inpatient stay was discharged in late August 2013 and many survivors, including Jeff, continued on with Spaulding receiving outpatient therapy for several years. Survivors were treated by a large, physician-led multi-disciplinary team and underwent a rigorous course of physical, occupational and speech therapy, nursing and wound care, and psychological support.
President, Spaulding Rehabilitation Network
“Jeff’s story of courage and determination has inspired and educated the public about the obstacles and challenges that people with disabilities face each day. Spaulding is proud to host the US premiere of Stronger in the same location Jeff received his rehabilitation care as a way of giving the event the deepest meaning and significance. Many of the clinicians, people and fellow patients Jeff encountered during his time at Spaulding participated in the filming. We feel this is an extraordinary opportunity to honor this special time of healing in our city’s history and to raise awareness of the critical role of rehabilitation medicine to help people of all abilities find the strength.” In 2015 the filmmakers of Stronger approached Spaulding with a commitment to honor the courage of everyone involved in the moving events following the tragedy and to share Jeff’s story in an honest and respectful way. Allowing the filming to take place in the same places where Jeff’s long road to recovery took place presented a unique opportunity to share his story as well as to further Spaulding’s mission of empowerment for the patients and families served by the network. Many of the caregivers and patients Jeff has known through his care and peer mentorship at Spaulding were directly involved in the scenes filmed at the hospital.
ABOUT SPAULDING REHABILITATION HOSPITAL
Founded in 1971, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston is one of the largest rehabilitation facilities in the United States, and is ranked the 4th top rehabilitation hospital in the country by U.S. News & World Report. As the official teaching hospital of the Harvard Medical School Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R), Spaulding is at the forefront of research in advances in rehabilitative care. Spaulding’s main campus is a 132-bed facility in Charlestown which is a national model for environmental and inclusive design. With a wide range of inpatient programs and 25 outpatient centers throughout Eastern Massachusetts, Spaulding strives to continually update and improve its programs to offer patients the latest, high-quality care through its leading, expert providers. Spaulding is one of the few hospitals in the U.S. to be awarded the prestigious Model Systems designation in all three areas of care—Spinal Cord Injury, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Burn Injury—selected by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research. A teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, Spaulding has been recognized for fostering the #1 residency program in the country for research output by Doximity Residency Navigator. For more information, please visit www.spauldingrehab.org.
ABOUT ROADSIDE ATTRACTIONS
Since its founding in 2003, ROADSIDE ATTRACTIONS films have grossed over $300M and garnered nineteen Academy Award® nominations. Roadside has released such critical and commercial hits as Manchester by the Sea, Beatriz at Dinner, Love & Friendship, Hello My Name is Doris, Mr. Holmes, Love & Mercy, A Most Wanted Man, Dear White People, The Skeleton Twins, All Is Lost, Mud, Winter’s Bone, The Cove, Arbitrage, Margin Call and Super-Size Me. Its upcoming slate includes David Gordon Green’s Stronger starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Tatiana Maslany and Miranda Richardson; Todd Haynes’ Wonderstruck, starring Julianne Moore, Oakes Fegley, Michelle Williams and introducing Millicent Simmonds; Bethany Ashton Wolf’s Forever My Girl, starring Alex Roe, Jessica Rothe, Abby Ryder Fortson, Travis Tritt, Judith Hoag and John Benjamin Hickey; Sally Potter’s The Party, starring Cillian Murphy, Patricia Clarkson, Kristin Scott Thomas and Timothy Spall, among others; and Jon and Andrew Erwin’s I Can Only Imagine, starring Dennis Quaid, Cloris Leachman, Trace Adkins, Priscilla Shirer, and Broadway’s J. Michael Finley.
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