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General Motors aids Women in Film efforts

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"I wholeheartedly identify with a group like Women in Film," said Nia Vardalos, "because I am a woman and I have a Blockbuster card."

Vardalos hosted the reception for an initiative between WIF and General Motors, held at Universal Studios' Globe Theatre, which had been transformed into a multimedia environment highlighting women in film, women in cars and cars in film. There is a pretty long history of all three.

Vardalos thanked the GM sponsors for assistance with the new WIF programs, adding, "You have always been a part of my family because nothing says Greek immigrant more than a black Cadillac proudly parked on the lawn."

The programs will include a college-lecture series, film-festival presences, an L.A. film-finishing school, a New York film-preservation project, public-service programs, as well as scholarships, mentorships and grants, and a WIF International Summit in L.A. this fall.

Sharon Lawrence, "House of Sand and Fog" Oscar nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo and WIF president Iris Grossman were also on hand.

When Vardalos bid good night to the packed house, she said, "Let me remind you about the gift bag. Oh, don't pretend you don't care. I know you're all hoping there will be a Corvette keychain inside."

— Elizabeth Snead and Joel Stratte-McClure, Los Angeles Daily News