Florida State University will present the world premiere of the Iraq War documentary “Apache Warrior” as the marquee film for its seventh annual Veterans Film Festival on Oct. 5.
“Apache Warrior” takes the audience into the cockpits of a squadron of Apache attack helicopters during the opening of one of the largest invasions in U.S. history. The film was produced with actual flight-combat footage and attack-gun tapes taken from multiple cameras.
“The film shows the powerful bonds that develop within a military unit, and that’s the kind of awareness the FSU Veterans Film Festival brings to the campus community,” said Chris Schoborg, a Navy veteran and current director of the FSU Veterans Student Union.
The screening, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5, at Ruby Diamond Concert Hall, 222 S. Copeland St.
Co-directors David Salzberg and Christian Tureaud will participate in a question-and-answer session with the audience following the screening.
“We researched hundreds of hours of footage and during that process recovered several of the attack-gun tapes, which allowed us to tell the story of this incredible and historic mission,” Salzberg said.
Documenting the initial surge into Iraq in March 2003, “Apache Warrior” highlights the adaptability, courage and selflessness of the Apache pilots and their crews during this “deep attack” mission.
“The audience will feel the chaos and horrors of air combat and, in the process, witness real valor under the most hellish of conditions,” Tureaud said.
Salzberg and Tureaud also will be honored with FSU’s annual Student Veterans Torchlight Award for Outstanding Filmmaking for the third consecutive year. The pair was honored with the same award for their documentaries, “The Hornet’s Nest” (2015) and “Citizen Solider” (2016).
The film festival heightens awareness of veterans’ issues among the campus and local community and is generating growing respect within the film industry nationally. Each of the festival’s first six films has been nominated for numerous awards, including Academy Awards. In addition to “Citizen Solider” and “The Hornet’s Nest,” the previous marquee films were “Hell and Back Again” (2011); “The Invisible War” (2012); “Which Way is the Front Line from Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington” (2013); and “Last Days in Vietnam” (2014).
Paul Cohen, executive director of the College of Motion Picture Arts’ Torchlight Program, secured the rights to this year’s film.
“The College of Motion Picture Arts Torchlight Program is honored to welcome back these two devoted filmmakers David Salzberg and Christian Turead to FSU for the world premiere of ‘Apache Warrior,’” Cohen said. “Our relationship in supporting their filmmaking these past years and being the first to present their newest documentary has illuminated the FSU Veterans Film Festival’s position among contemporary filmmakers.”
Reb Braddock, dean of the College of Motion Picture Arts, agreed.
“We are thrilled to be the first to publicly screen this film,” Braddock said. “This is an incredible way to celebrate our student-veterans while also educating our students and the entire Tallahassee community.”
Tickets are free for the screening of “Apache Warrior,” although a ticket is required for entrance. Tickets may be picked up in advance at the FSU Fine Arts Ticket Office, 540 W. Call St., or on the day of the screening at Westcott Plaza.
Visit vetfilmfest.fsu.edu for the “Apache Warrior” trailer and more information on the Florida State University Veterans Film Festival.