Contact: Leah Loftin |  LLKENT PR | (917) 434-9941

Maria Irene Fornes is one of America's greatest playwrights and most influential teachers, but many know her only as the ex-lover of writer and social critic Susan Sontag. The visionary Cuban-American dramatist constructed astonishing worlds onstage, writing over 40 plays and winning nine Obie Awards. At the vanguard of the nascent Off-Off Broadway experimental theater movement in NYC, Fornes is often referred to as American theater's "Mother Avant-Garde." When she gradually stops writing due to dementia, an unexpected friendship with filmmaker Michelle Memran reignites her spontaneous creative spirit and triggers a decade-long collaboration that picks up where the pen left off.

The duo travels from New York to Havana, Miami to Seattle, exploring the playwright's remembered past and their shared present. Theater luminaries such as Edward Albee, Ellen Stewart, Lanford Wilson, and others weigh in on Fornes's important contributions. What began as an accidental collaboration becomes a story of love, creativity, and connection that persists even in the face of forgetting.

WINNER! Audience Award, Best Documentary
Frameline42 Film Festival

"A story of spontaneity, creativity, genius and madness. It showcases the life, inspiration and virtuosity of Fornes." 
- Miami Herald

"Memran's documentary is as untraditional and unpredictable as the woman herself. In it, Memran manages to take us through Irene's extraordinary life, while capturing the essence of what made it extraordinary ---          all while transitioning into an impressive artist in her own right." 
 - NBC News Latino

"The film's overarching theme of life's ephemeral nature paired with the deep friendship and vital creativity that percolates between this young writer-turned-filmmaker and the iconic playwright offer a much-needed and refreshingly loving take on aging and illness."
- Artburst Miami

"A tender exploration of Fornes' life and the meaning of memory." 
- Cond├ę Nast's them

"Fabulous. The Rest I Make Up is as inspiring as its subject." 
- San Francisco Bay Times   

Maria Irene Fornes Marathon
August 27 at T he Public Theater

In celebration of the works of Fornes and the documentary on her life (appearing at MoMA Aug 23-29), a 12-hour Maria Irene Fornes Marathon will be held at The Public Theater on August 27. Spearheaded by acclaimed director JoAnne Akalaitis, the Marathon pays tribute to the plays of Fornes with staged readings directed and performed by some of NYC's most notable theater luminaries.

This event is free. Ticketed audience entry times will be scheduled throughout the day. For more information visit
For press inquiries and screeners contact:
Leah Loftin at  or (917) 434-9941

For more information about the film:  or

For more information about showtimes, tickets and Q&As:
About WMM:
From cutting-edge documentaries that give depth to today's headlines to smart, stunning films that push artistic and intellectual boundaries in all genres, Women Make Movies (WMM), a non-profit feminist social enterprise based in New York, is the world's leading distributor of independent films by and about women. Our Production Assistance Program assists women directors with their productions from concept through completion with fiscal sponsorship, consultations and other technical assistance. We work with creative, ground-breaking films which win awards at festivals around the world. Films and filmmakers we have supported have been nominated for or won Academy® Awards in 12 of the past 13 years.