At the Mahaiwe, 'Copperhead' a Civil War drama, bows Saturday


GREAT BARRINGTON -- Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center will present the Western Massachusetts premiere of "Copperhead," Ron Maxwell's new Civil War-era drama starring Billy Campbell, Peter Fonda, Augustus Prew and Angus Macfadyen Saturday evening at 7.

Maxwell ("Gettysburg," "Gods and Generals") will introduce the movie and answer questions following the screening.

"This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, and we are thrilled to share this brilliant film that sheds light on little-known historical events in the northeast. The screening and Q&A will be of interest to history buffs and film enthusiasts alike," Mahaiwe Executive Director Beryl Jolly said in a news release.

Based on the novel by Harold Frederic, Bill Kauffman's screenplay tells the story of Abner Beech, a stubborn and righteous farmer of upstate New York, who defies his neighbors and his government in the bloody and contentious autumn of 1862.

Raised in Clifton, N.J. -- son of a World War II veteran and his French war bride -- Maxwell studied filmmaking at N.Y.U. and made his first mark directing Sissy Spacek and William Hurt in "Verna: USO Girl," a television feature for which he was nominated for an Emmy. His first theatrical film, "Little Darlings" (1980), was a box-office smash that starred Tatum O'Neal and Kristy McNichol. Maxwell's additional feature film credits include "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia," "Parent Trap II," "Kidco" and a documentary study of the Nicaraguan Civil War: "In the Land of the Poets" (1987).

Ticket information is available through the Mahaiwe box office in person at 14 Castle St., by telephone at (413) 528-0100 or online at


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