Monday, March 14, 2005

Festival Fever

I've been out of commission the last two weeks with some nasty bug--the one year I don't, and couldn't, get a flu shot...--and now I'm going to spend the next two months succumbing to festival fever. The most exciting news is that Columbus will have a film festival of its very own. The Deep Focus Film Festival kicks off the first weekend in May, and yours truly is thrilled to be on the programming committee. Details are scant right now, but work is underway for what should be one of the most exciting film events in town this year.

My festival binge will begin this weekend with two days at the Cleveland International Film Festival. Thanks to The Film Journal's Rick Curnutte I anticipate taking in nine or ten features as a representative of the online publication. Thanks also to Rick for hooking me up with a media pass for this year's Roger Ebert's Overlooked Film Festival. I've attended the last four,so I was disappointed to learn that I'd dragged my feet too long in waiting to purchase a festival pass. (The last one sold an hour before I called.) I figured that there was no hurry since the films hadn't been announced. Lesson learned.

The Ebertfest films still haven't been announced--what's the hold up?--although the intrepid Jarod Musgrave has done some nifty sleuthing to turn up one of this year's titles: THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA with the Alloy Orchestra. (I'm guessing that this is the Lon Chaney version.)

So, things should be picking up from what has been a relatively quiet (and dismal) time in filmgoing.

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