Local filmmakers showcase talent in 3-day weekend

Almost everyone has heard of the Cannes, Sundance and Venice film festivals that happen every year, but they may not be aware of a festival that is about to begin its third annual run in Urbana. The Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center will be hosting its film festival this weekend.

The IMC Film Festival is a three-day long event that gives local filmmakers a chance to showcase their films and talent. Chris Lukeman, the film festival’s coordinator, said this festival allows local filmmakers to be recognized and displays their films to a large audience.

The festival will be running Thursday through Saturday, with each day catering to a different category of film.

Thursday’s kickoff of the festival, starting at 7 p.m., will showcase the talents of young directors and producers from Eastern Illinois University. The feature presentation of Thursday night will be “Revolting,” a comedy film about a struggling playwright attempting to write a sequel to his one-hit wonder.

The next night will focus on social justice documentaries. The documentary, “Enough is Enough: Locked up … Locked Out” by the group All of Us or None, shows how former legal convictions can follow individuals later on in life.

Aaron Ammons, the film promoter for “Locked Up … Locked Out” said he is very supportive of the IMC festival and its showings to help promote projects that may otherwise go unnoticed.

“I think showing our film at the festival will allow us to spread our information nationally and get the importance of our message out there,” Ammons said. “This festival is a perfect fusion of ideas to promote our film and get the message out to establish the humanity of people with felony conviction.”

For the third and final day, the IMC Film Festival will be offering a free film workshop to teach students of all ages about filmmaking.

“The workshop is a great opportunity for kids and young adults to work with local talent and discover more about filmmaking and their skills,” Lukeman said.

The festival Saturday will run from 2 p.m. to midnight, starting with the film workshop and ending with a comedy, science fiction and horror run. It will also feature UI alumna Kate Brickman’s film, “This Is My Journey,” which premiered at the Art Theatre in Champaign Tuesday, Sept. 6.

The IMC film festival has become more well-known throughout the Midwest, said Brian Dolinar, an organizing committee member for the festival. He said he has seen the IMC festival develop into what it is today.

“The fest is a way for us to highlight locally made films and nourish local moviemakers, and I think that’s what’s really unique about our particular fest,” Dolinar said.