In addition to my role on the Kan-Kan team, I have a side gig as Assistant Programming Director for the Crested Butte Film Festival. Odd, I know, for a Hoosier to work for a film festival in the mountains of Colorado. I’ve been a programmer for many years, as well as a screener, juror and head of operations for several film festivals. When I switched to the producing side of things, it was hard not to peek behind the curtain at the film festivals my films were in, curious about operations and programming processes. In 2016, at the Crested Butte Film Festival, they noticed and before I knew it, was traveling out to that gorgeous, remote town several times a year to work on both the operational and programming sides of the festival. With the Kan-Kan keeping me plenty busy, I’ve now limited my role to just the programming side.

As with many film festivals this year, the Crested Butte Film Festival is all-virtual. Which means that you, too, can “attend!” This is the silver lining of 2020 – no matter where you are, you can “attend” film festivals all over the world. I’ve used it as a chance to experience festivals I’ve never before been to. It’s a lot of fun to see the mix of each festival’s film lineup. Another benefit is that CBFF is longer this year, September 25-October 4 – rather than its usual 4-day run, giving you more time to peruse the selection and watch a variety of films.

Crested Butte Film Festival’s Artistic and Programming Director, Michael Brody, a writer and filmmaker himself, curates a unique mix of short and feature films – both narrative and documentary. I can’t say we agree on every film – I’ve pushed hard for some films and think he’s crazy to select others – but every year, I commend the final lineup that he chooses. It’s always a thoughtful, varied mix of films. There’s a Youth Film section that is curated by a teen screening committee in Crested Butte, and, because it’s an active mountain town, the Outdoor Adventure film programs are always a hit. There are also Live Panels.

One can buy individual “tickets,” 5-pack passes, unlimited passes as well as student passes, all reasonably priced. They use the same film festival platform that Indy Film Fest and Heartland are using, but if you need it, there are FAQs and “How To” videos to navigate the purchasing and viewing processes, including how to get the film onto your TV!

So what to watch, you ask? Acclaimed films like There Is No EvilFirst CowBoys’ StateFirst Cow and Shirley  if you haven’t seen them yet. Kan-Kan Filmmaker Town Hall panelist Deia Schlosberg’s film The Story of Plastic. The Academy Award-winning short The Neighbors Window, as well as BurdenMossville, Inez & Doug & KiraOut Loud and Show Me What You Got are all strong and varied films, in my opinion, but you can’t go wrong. Experiment! Watch some shorts programs! There’s no commitment to watch a film all the way through, watch a film any time of the day and no annoying your seat neighbor if you leave the theatre early….. in all, if we have to be home, why not try out a virtual film festival.

Go to http://cbfilmfest.org/ for more info.

I’d love to hear what you think of the films you watch – drop me a line at louise@kankanindy.com. Happy watching!

Louise Henderson, Executive Director