Rossland and area youth will be making their way to the Royal Theatre in Trail this weekend as the U19 Film Festival comes to town.
Filmmakers from the entire Kootenay region were invited to submit their films to the festival, with the only stipulation that they be between the ages of 10 and 19.
“We had 26 films submitted from the region, including Nelson, Cranbrook, the Beaver Valley, Rossland and Trail,” says Rachael Roussin, from the Rossland Council for Arts and Culture, who along with KAST is sponsoring the event.
A youth planning team, made up of youth from Trail and Rossland helped plan the festival.
“So basically they helped to outreach the film submissions and helped screen the films that are going to be submitted and designed the final program,” she said. “That’s been a big part of planning this film festival.”
There are seven categories which include cash prizes, as well as a People’s Choice award and Judges’ choice award.
“So the youth that did submit films have a lot of opportunity to win cash prizes and actually the grand prize of the judges’ choice is a Canon camera, she said.
“Our most popular category this year has been the sports adventure category. Most of them are skiing or snow sports, but the quality and caliber of the sports adventure category are very high, very professionally made films.”
Roussin said that the majority of the films are sports oriented films which is expected given the area’s passion for the outdoors.
She did say that she hoped to see more submissions for the other categories in the other categories.
Speaking from the view of the RCAC, Roussin said this is an important annual festival to the West Kootenay area.
“A lot of the events and initiatives in this area tend to be sports oriented, so this is just a great opportunity to get them involved in filming and more of the arts and culture,” she said. “It’s a big event for them.”
Planning for the event has been ongoing since September.
“The U19 Film Fest is actually the third part of a three part film extravaganza hosted by the RCAC and KAST,” she said. “It all began with the filmmaking workshops that we hosted in the fall.”
They hosted four filmmaking workshops in the fall to provide youths with the tools to make the films they will now be showcasing.
That was followed by the Real Youth Film Festival in November.
She said that was to showcase international youth-made films, and provide inspiration.
The coming film fest is the pinnacle of all those events.
“Bring all of your tools and they’ve had the entire school year to make their films, so this is the grand finale,” she said.
Rossland has quite a few submissions in the festival.
In the documentary category, Caelum Scott will be showing “Dunny 2” about a grade 6/7 Dunny art project.
Scott also has “Reading Books” in this category, about students reading in the library who burst into song when the librarian leaves.
Mackenzie Flood entered “The Creatora,” which teaches viewers about a raven creature and its way of life.
In the animation category, Flood’s entry “Life of the Night,” is about what happens when you leave the room. “Love of Lollie,” also by Flood is about a creature versus a lollipop.
James Klemmensen is showing a short stop-motion animation made for film class called “Shoes.”
In the environment category, Klemmensen has “The Moments Snow Gives Us.”
This film highlights moments that without snow we would not have.
In the drama category Flood presents “Madeline’s Musical” about Madeline, who’s life turns into a musical.
In the sports category, Liam Barnes presents “Surge Freerun: Year One” about a self-taught group of freerunners from Rossland.
Liam Stevens and George Hogarth are showing their film “Make it, Ride it, Love it” about building, then riding a bike.
“SweetDreams” by Klemmensen is a short ski/snowboard film featuring Kelly Humpherys, Arlo Stevens, Ian Fry and Jade Smith.
Roussin said the youth are pumped to see the festival come together.
The RCAC has hosted the film festival for many years.
Roussin said they do this because of a mandate to support arts and culture for a wide audience.
“The festival is an important celebration as it provides an opportunity for youth who are involved in the arts to have their work taken seriously,” she explained.
This is the first year that the RCAC has partnered with KAST, which she called a natural partnership for a film festiva;.
“They can help with the technology and youth outreach as they have the very successful youth program GLOWS,” she said.
“The RCAC operates on a shoestring and is a grassroots society. Partnerships make more things possible.”
Categories include: sports, drama, documentary, animation, and environment.
The shows start at noon and run until 4 p.m. at the Royal Theatre in Trail. Tickets are $5, which includes food and entertainment.