October 2015 News


AIFF's annual REEL to ROGUE fundraiser and Varsity World Film Week were a great success—check out some photos below. We're offering two special gifts for Early Bird Members; don't miss out! The long-awaited reveal of our official 2016 artwork is here, the Film Festival Flashback features AIFF08 and AIFF09, and the latest Sponsor Spotlight highlights SOPTV. Call for Entries are open and submissions are rolling in, including for the LAUNCH student film competition. Read on for the details.
 

IN THIS ISSUE:

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Join us for our 15th Anniversary

Become a member by November 15, and receive a free gift!


Fall is in the air and we've kicked off the AIFF16 Membership drive. To celebrate our 15th anniversary, April 7-11, 2016, we have a couple of great gifts for new and returning members who sign up before November 15. Details below.

Membership benefits include advance ticket ordering before the general public, $1 discount on (additional) film festival tickets, first entry to theaters, discounts on year-round screenings, and more. As a small nonprofit arts organization, ticket sales cover only a portion of our annual operating expenses. Member support makes the presentation of our 5-day annual festival possible, and supports the presentation of independent film year round. And don't forget, a portion of your membership is tax-deductible.

Become an Early Bird Member and Catch a Special Gift!


A Unique Tote Bag Just for You

Sign up for a Director Pass or above by NOVEMBER 15 and we’ll give you a beautiful, sturdy, one-of-a-kind eco-friendly canvas bag made in Ashland by our sponsor, the Deluxe Awning Company.
 

A Movie Ticket For You and a Pal

Everyone who signs up for a Friend through Fan Pass by NOVEMBER 15 will be entered into a drawing to win 2 vouchers for any movie at Coming Attractions Theatres. There will 10 lucky winners!
 

Ready to sign up?

Renew or become a new member online now. Thank you for your support!
 

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2016 Artwork


For the third year in a row, we are fortunate to have an original oil painting by Gabriel Mark Lipper as our cover art. Warmly depicting the concessions area in the lobby of the art-deco Varsity Theatre, the rich palatte of colors invites you to enjoy an abundance of independent film...and some popcorn!

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Varsity World Film Week!

The 26th Annual Varsity World Film Week, co-presented by AIFF and Coming Attractions Theatres, Inc. took place October 2-8, 2015. We're thrilled to say attendance was up 40% from last year. Many of you took advantage of the awesome Passport discount cards, so you could see at least six films during the week.
Enthusiastic, engaged crowds filled the theaters to enjoy live music from the New Autonomous Folksingers, to meet our visiting filmmakers—Jeremy Teicher, director of Tall as the Baobab Tree and Beth Harrington, director of The Winding Stream, and to join Elizabeth Giamatti, co-director of A Woman Like Me, for her wonderful Skype Q&A.

Big shout out to Marla Estes for her lively workshop about The New Girlfriend—what a great turnout at Standing Stone. Most of all, thanks to YOU for supporting the nonprofit AIFF, while coming out to see great cinema from around the world!

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REEL to ROGUE Fundraiser

The fourth annual REEL to ROGUE took place Thursday, October 1st at the Ashland Springs Hotel. The internationally inspired four-course dinner was created by Larks Catering, and saluted the films of Varsity World Film Week. Thanks to all who attended, won auction items, got an amazing bottle (or three) in the Wine Grab, and generously donated to GiveFilm and Filmmaker Travel. Special Thanks to MC Jim Teece, auctioneer Steven Wall, AZ Catering and Events, and all our party volunteers.

View a full gallery of fabulous party photos on our blog.

Did you miss the fundraiser? You can still make a tax-deductible donation directly to the nonprofit Ashland Independent Film Festival? Please visit ashlandfilm.org/donate or call us at 541-488-3823.
Photos by Alex Georgevitch: (top l-r) Kathryn Thalden, Wendy Seldon, Will Sears, Barry Thalden; (middle l-r) Coming Attractions Theatres’ John Schweiger, Lee Fuchsman, Kolby Schooley, Kim Lane, Al Lane; Dena Matthews, Candace Turtle, Cathy Dombi, Jim Teece; (bottom l-r) Francesca Amery-Bayberry Inn, Helen Rosen, Peter & Jean Linington, and Rob Joseph; Jeremy Teicher, Richard Herskowitz, Sean Sullivan

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SOPTV


Read our next Sponsor Spotlight all about SOPTV.

Serving Southern Oregon and Northern California, SOPTV is our local PBS member station and a leader in promoting local programming in educational and informational media. Along with such well-known nationally produced PBS shows as the PBS NewsHour, Charlie Rose, and Sesame Street, SOPTV carries and creates local programming, including The Jeffersonian (a collaboration with the advanced video class at Southern Oregon University) and Stories of Service, about U.S. military veterans. Read more...

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AIFF Receives Ashland Chamber of Commerce Service Business of the Year Award


So honored and so grateful to receive the Ashland Chamber of Commerce Service Business of the Year Award. Especially grateful to Jim Teece for his moving speech and never-ending loyalty and support of ‪AIFF‬. As Executive Director Cathy Dombi said, this award is because of our volunteers and we share it with you all!

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LAUNCH Your Story and Watch Your Film Take Flight

Do you have a great story to share?

  • Are you a student—Elementary, middle, high school, or college undergraduate?
  • Do you live in Coos, Curry, Douglas, Jackson, Josephine or Klamath counties in Oregon; Del Norte or Siskiyou counties in California?
  • Have you made a film that is 5 minutes or less?
  • Made a film that was completed in 2015 or before our January 15, 2016 deadline?
  • Made a film by yourself or with friends? Some adult help is OK, but over half the film must be student-produced.

Then you are eligible to enter the free Launch Student Film Competition.

  • No entry fee—it’s FREE. Fill out the Launch Entry Form today! Have a question? Check out our Launch FAQs. Watch winning films from past festivals on our website. The deadline to submit is January 15, 2016.
 

Introducing the PridePrize*

  • To celebrate diversity, identity, and discovery through the art of film, we now offer a special prize for outstanding student-made films that speak to the LGBTQ+ experience. All regional student filmmakers, grades 9-12 and college undergrads, are eligible for the $500 PridePrize if:
    • You are eligible for the LAUNCH competition
    • Your film complies with LAUNCH guidelines
    • Your film is LGBTQ+ themed
*Made possible by a generous gift from the LGBTQ Juvenile Justice Fund of the Equity Foundation.
 

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As we approach our 15th Anniversary next April, we thought we'd take a peek into the past with highlights from all the previous Ashland Independent Film Festivals. Next up: 2008 & 2009.

The 7th AIFF — April 3–7, 2008

AIFF received its first grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to bring filmmakers to town. Our special guests were stellar too, both Academy Award winners! Legendary documentarian Albert Maysles received the Lifetime Achievement Award and charmed all of Ashland. We screened three of his greatest films: The Gates, Gimme Shelter, and Grey Gardens. And Rogue Award honoree Helen Hunt brought her feature film, Then She Found Me—her directorial debut—co-starring Colin Firth and Bette Midler. Colin Firth also starred in When Did You Last See Your Father.

Festival favorites Anne and Gary Lundgren screened their first feature film, Calvin Marshall, and then moved to Ashland shortly thereafter, where they went on to make the wonderful short "bumpers" we show before every film during the festival! Don't forget to catch their latest feature film Black Road, now playing at the Varsity Theatre, and coming soon to a theater near you. Other highlights included Patrick Creadon’s I.O.U.S.A.; Academy Award-winning documentaries Taxi to the Dark Side (by Alex Gibney) and Freeheld; and the ever-popular Young@Heart.

The 8th AIFF — April 2–6, 2009

Prolific animator and Oregon-born Bill Plympton received the Artistic Achievment Award, while popular film critic Elvis Mitchell was given a Rogue Award. Mitchell showed off all his talents, presenting his documentaries The Black List: Volumes One and Two—his series of interviews with prominent African American politicians, writers, artists and media figures—and acting as our Awards Presentation host and MC.

Features included Kelly Reichardt's delicate Wendy and Lucy, starring Michelle Williams, and Plympton’s full-length animated Idiots and Angels. Influential documentaries such as Food, Inc., The English Surgeon, and Prom Night in Mississippi highlighted our strong documentary slate. Oscar-nominated shorts included the winner, Smile Pinki, from director Megan Mylan (who was born in Salem), and The Final Inch by Portland filmmaker Irene Taylor-Brodsky. Other popular documentaries were All Together Now about the collaboration of the Beatles and Cirque du Soleil, and Automorphosis by Harrod Blank (son of Les Blank) about art-car enthusiasts. Dozens of incredible and ornate cars lined Main Street during the festival!

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