CARIS' PEACE


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Director: Gaylen Ross with Rebecca Nelson
Producers: Gaylen Ross, Rebecca Nelson, Steve Skrovan, Andrew Ford, Lewis Black

“The first time I met Caris Corfman after her one-woman show at the Flea Theater, she looked - almost stared - into the very backs of my eyes as I told her how I enjoyed her performance. She was flattered and incredibly gracious….The second time I met Ms. Corfman, she again stared and responded graciously. But she had no idea who I was. It was exactly five minutes later.” David Carr, New York Times

Caris' Peace tells the story of New York theater and film actress Caris Corfman, a brilliant graduate of the Yale School of Drama on the brink of stardom, acting opposite Ian Holm in the dramatic film Dreamland or in the original Broadway cast of Amadeus with Ian McKellen and Tim Curry.

As the result of a brain tumor, Caris was left without short-term memory. Robbed of her ability to learn, recall and recite lines, or even to know what play she’s in, Caris was swiftly forced to recognize that her career was over.

Filmed over 10 years, Caris' Peace documents hertriumphant and deeply moving return, against all odds, to the New York stage with a one-woman show. Told with remarkable humor and wit, with friends and colleagues actors Tony Shalhoub, Kate Burton and political comedian Lewis Black, it is an extraordinary journey of courage and never giving up hope.

Among those voices included in the film are Kate Burton (actress), Tony Shalhoub, (actor/Monk), Lewis Black, (playwright and political comedian /The Daily Show), Eric Overmyer (playwright, television producer and writer: Law and Order/Homicide), Yusef Bulos (actor), Nancy Giles (actress, comedian, commentator CBS Sunday Morning), David Carr (New York Times writer and columnist), Dr. Barry Gordon (Professor of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins University), and Brad Watkins, theater director.


Awards and Festivals


    Official Selections of:

  • Hamptons International Film Festival
  • Cleveland International Film Festival
  • Heartland Film Festival
  • Santa Fe Film Festival
  • Williamstown Film Festival
  • Buffalo International Film Festival
  • Rainier Independent Film Festival
  • L-Dub Film Festival
  • Carmel Art & Film Festival


  • Featured film of the Brainwave Film Series, Rubin Museum of Art
  • Winner, Best Documentary Feature, Athens International Film Festival
  • Winner, Best Documentary Feature, L-Dub Film Festival
  • Honorable Mention, Calgary “Picture This” Film Festival


"Unforgettable" is a critical cliche, but there is no other way to describe the power and the pathos of "Caris' Peace," the story of actress Caris Corfman and her struggle to return to the stage following a series of operations that robbed her of the ability to form new memories… Gaylen Ross captures its rawness and grace, preserving the riveting, affecting performance forever, even as it slips from Caris' mind as she takes her bows.Andrea Simakis, Cleveland Plain Dealer
"Unforgettable documentary about Caris' determination to on some level reclaim the very soul of who she was by attempting to mount, against almost unthinkable odds, a one-woman show with the help of her friends and peers….Seriously. If you don't find yourself moved by Caris' Peace, then I suggest you check your pulse.Richard Propes, The Independent Critic
"Powerful documentary about struggle and success that I wholeheartedly love and recommend. Brad Watkins, Rebecca Nelson, and Gaylen Ross showed the true meaning of friendship and support in getting Caris Corfman back onto the stage, if just for a moment. Thank goodness the journey was captured in this documentary.Chale Nafus, Austin Film Society
"There are circles of friendships and pieces of lives and morphing toward peace in this lovely documentary about an inspired performer who is dealt a tough hand and rises to reclaim her place on stage."Martha Wade Steketee, Urban Excavations