BIFF This Year~ March 2-March 5
By Olivia Crist
It’s almost that time of year. Boulder International Film Festival is back and bigger than ever. Whether you are just visiting Boulder or are a local, be sure to come out and support film in Colorado March 2 through March 5! Boulder International Film Festival “attracts more than 25,000 film enthusiasts, media and industry each year and has been proud to host and celebrate some of films most talented artists, including award-winning actors Alec Baldwin, James Franco, Martin Sheen, Shirley MacLaine, Alan Arkin, Bruce Dern, Oliver Stone, William H. Macy, Peter Fonda, Blythe Danner, Maria Bello…Chevy Chase” and so many more! I was lucky enough to sit down and talk to Kathy Beeck, Co-Founder and Director of Boulder International Film Festival.
Interview with Kathy Beeck
O.C. – How did Boulder International Film Festival come to fruition?
K.B. – My sister and I founded it in 2005. We were filmmakers and had traveled to a lot of festivals. We decided that Boulder was a great place for a film festival and realized it didn’t have one, so we took the best elements of all those other festivals we were attending and put them into starting the Boulder International Film Festival.
O.C. – What do you think it is about BIFF that draws such an international audience?
K.B. – I think it’s the films and the programming, we also have a lot of fun things going on at the festival. We have a lot of parties, we do panels, we have call to action programs, a youth pavilion, we’re doing VR this year, virtual reality. But, the basis has always been great storytelling, we have the best films that are available in international cinema this time of year. That’s really the foundation of the festival. The program has been critically acclaimed over the years and continues to get better and better and this program is our best yet. In addition, Boulder itself is a great destination.
O.C. – What sorts of events can we look forward to during the festival?
K.B.- We always have a great singer/songwriter showcase, where we bring in talented singers and songwriters and connect them with the filmmakers and it’s also nice just to offer free music. We have tons of free music at all the parties, the singer/songwriter showcase and at the venues. We’re excited this year to even bring in some jazz experts to talk and or play before a few of our jazz films. We also have CineCHEF again, we have a great lineup of 8 fabulous chefs of Boulder’s big time restaurant scene. We have the youth pavilion again, which is free programming for kids all through out the festival.
This year we are doing something new, we are doing a virtual reality pavilion. It’s really an immersive experience and puts you in the middle of what’s going on. This will be free and open to the public, people can come all day Friday and Saturday over at Galvanize and experience that. We’re going back to Longmont again this year, we had a lot of interest there last year so we are happy to be expanding our program again there.
O.C.- So there is lots to look forward to it seems! I noticed there was some overlap between Boulder International Film Festival and Sundance, which is amazing, how much overlap can we expect this year?
K.B.- This year we’re screening three award winning Sundance films. For example, the winner of the documentary audience award was a film called “Chasing Coral” and we’re going to be screening that closing night, that’s also a local Boulder filmmaker. It is a fabulous film, so we are really looking forward to that and having a wonderful closing night.
Kathy Beeck was an absolute pleasure to talk to. It is clear that there is a lot to look forward to this year!
***Be sure to check out the BIFF website to find out more about tickets, the festival and events at www.biff1.com. ***