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Cancer film charity premiere brings veteran actor to WNY

A chance meeting during a national funeral directors’ convention brings a Hollywood movie veteran to the Southtowns this weekend for a special charity premiere of the feature film, “Getting Grace,” about the relationship between a funeral director and a teen faced with terminal cancer.

Actor Daniel Roebuck, who plays the funeral director, and Madelyn Dundon, who portrays the teen, will take photos with filmgoers and answer questions after the showing, which starts at 7 p.m. Saturday at St. Francis High School, 4129 Lake Shore Road, Athol Springs.

Roebuck played the prosecutor in more than 60 episodes of the 1980s and '90s TV show “Matlock.” His movie appearances have included the 1993 version of the “The Fugitive” and “We Were Soldiers.”

“I’ve talked to him several times and he’s a really down-to-earth guy,” said Charles Castiglia, owner of  Lakeside Memorial Funeral Homes. “He wants to do something to make a difference with this film.”

Castiglia led arrangements for the premiere, his latest effort to provide greater perspective on death and grieving. He hosts annual cremation seminars, holiday gatherings and butterfly releases for those who have lost loved ones – and his funeral home in West Seneca serves as the site for monthly meetings of the Holistic Health Alliance of WNY.

Proceeds from the showing of “Getting Grace” will benefit the Courage for Carly Fund at Roswell Park Alliance Foundation.

Castiglia helped organize a VIP reception for the two film stars from 4 to 6 p.m. at Lakeside Memorial in Hamburg before the showing. Tickets for the VIP event cost $75; movie tickets cost $10. Both are available online at


Twitter: @BNrefresh@ScottBScanlon

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