A new film festival in downtown Charlotte gets underway this weekend. WKAR’s Jamie Paisley brings us more about this festival which doesn’t mind if a few seams are showing.
Getting any project off the ground can be an ordeal in itself. Just ask the creators of this weekend’s Threadbare Mitten Film Festival taking place in Charlotte this weekend.
"Absolutely. Brand new thing." explains Dan Kofoed, organizer of this weekend's inaugural Threadbare Festival. "'Cause Michigan has a robust festival circuit already. But it seemed like there was an opening for something that was tailored a little more specifically and a little more oddly than your standard film festivals. We're not going to be showing your independent coming-of-age dramas. That's not what we're here for. We're here for some of the odder stuff. The things that can kinda slip through the cracks of the more established festivals. We want to be there and scoop it up."
And a lot of the films that will be screen for the Threadbare Mitten Film Festival are going to be taking place in downtown Charlotte in a great partner with the arts: The Windwalker Gallery.
"Yes, the Windwalker is kinda where this whole thing came about." says Kofoed. "It's just -- it's such a beautiful space and really kinda the heart of the creative community down there. It saddens me that not enough people from outside of Charlotte actually make the trip to see what they have there and what they're doing there, so hopefully we can get a few more people kind of involved in what they're creating as well."
Despite the majority of the Threadbare Mitten Film Festival taking place at Windwalker, the opening night is just going to be down the street at the Eaton Theatre.
"Yes, which is a classic, historic downtown theater. You can't ask for a better venue to show movies in."
For Friday’s opening night of the Threadbare Mitten Film Festival at the Eaton Theatre in downtown Charlotte, it’s a hodge-podge of choices, and Dan Kofoed says that’s by design.
"We're going to have a mix there, a proper mix. Try and give people a little hint of the various genre pools that we're dipping into with the films. So it's hopefully fairly representative of the styles of films that we're going to be getting."
And once you have that base layer of what you might see at the Threadbare…
"With our festival, we have the program blocks broken up by genre. So with a lot of film festivals, everything's kind of mixed. You have a feature film and a short film leading into it. We're going to have a block of your bloody horror movies. We're going to have a block of your absurdist comedies, crime noir, the road run movies."
There is even a time slot where student films can get a toehold into what it’s like to be part of the Film Festival crowd.
"One of the things that we wanted to do when we created the festival was to bring in the academic community and the student filmmakers and give them an encouraging place to start with the festival process," says Kofoed "because that is a large part of being an independent filmmaker is working through the system and garnering acclaim on the festival circuit. We do have an hour and a half of just Michigan student film productions that we're going to be opening Saturday with at the Windwalker. And a lot of those filmmakers are going to be in attendance, so we'll be able to chat with them. Sit down and have coffee with them afterwards if you want to kinda pick their brains about the process more."
Speaking of a glimpse behind the process, since this is the first year of the Threadbare Mitten Film Festival, if Dan Kofoed could go back in time and give himself some advice, what would it be?
"I would have started about a month earlier than I did."
But then again, as Leonard Bernstein said: "To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.”
The Threadbare Mitten Film Festival opens Friday night in downtown Charlotte at the Eaton Theatre then transfers down the street to the Windwalker gallery all day Saturday.
Click here for information about the Threadbare Mitten Film Festival, including a full roster of the genre films scheduled, or do a facebook search for Threadbare Mitten.