Durango Independent Film Festival is back
After pandemic hiatus, film fest returns for its 17th year with new energy
As divided as a country as we sometimes seem to be, at least we can all agree on one thing: the pandemic year sucked. But maybe, just maybe, we can agree one more thing, too: that losing out on all the fun things that filled our lives gave us newfound appreciation for them. You know, the whole “absence makes the heart grow fonder” thing.
At least that’s the vibe around the Durango Independent Film Festival this year, which returns after a pandemic-forced hiatus in 2021.
“There’s definitely some fresh energy going into this year,” Greg Weiss, hospitality coordinator for the festival, said. “Everyone is really excited to bring independent film back to Durango and be able to be in-person again.”
About two decades ago, Durango’s previous film festival ran into some financial trouble and disbanded, Weiss said. But some of that event’s core members still wanted to bring independent films to town, resulting in the creation of the DIFF. “It just kept growing.” Weiss said.
DIFF squeaked out a festival just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit in winter 2020. Last year, the event offered some online showings, just to keep the spirit alive. But 2022 marks the festival back in full force, with filmmakers from all over the country set to descend on town for the weekend.
Indeed, Weiss said that close to 50% of the films to be showed over the weekend will have directors and other representatives of the movie along with it. As a result, there are a ton of Q&A sessions planned after showings, as well as workshops and panels.
This year, too, the event will be held solely in downtown Durango, Weiss said, at the Animas City Theatre, the Durango Arts Center and at the two movie theaters in the Gaslight Twin Cinema near the Durango &?Silverton Narrow Gauge depot.
And there’s sure to be something for everyone, Weiss said, including outdoor/adventure films, documentaries and shorts as well as movies from local filmmakers.
From Thurs.-Sat. at 8:30 a.m., you can meet filmmakers over coffee and pastries at the R-Space at 734 E. 2nd Ave. On Friday, there’s a special screening of “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” with Ferris’ parents, actors Cindy Pickett and Lyman Ward, in attendance. And on Sunday, there are two panels – “Stories from the Front Lines of Filmmaking” and “Documenting Action of Film” – held at Outdoorsy, 934 Main Ave.
Weiss also said DIFF is one of the first film festivals to pick back up since the pandemic (the Sundance Film Festival had to cancel in January), which has also raised the energy level for this year’s event.
“People are ready to get back out there,” he said.
For information on tickets, prices and more details on the movies themselves, visit www.durangofilm.org.
Coffee Talk with Filmmakers, 8:30 a.m., R-Space, 734 E. 2nd Ave.
Keep the Cameras Rolling: The Pedro Zamora Way, 9 a.m., Gaslight 1
The 8th, 9:30 a.m., Gaslight 2
From the Hood to the Holler, 10:30 a.m., DAC
When Claude Got Shot, 11 a.m., ACT
Route One North, 11:30 a.m., Gaslight 1
The Berrigans: Devout and Dangerous, 12 p.m., Gaslight 2
Find Your Way Documentary Shorts, 1 p.m., DAC
Dark Cloud, 1:30 p.m., ACT
#KidsOnTech, 2 p.m., Gaslight 1
OUR almost completely true STORY, 2:30 p.m., Gaslight 2
Being Thunder, 3:30 p.m., DAC
Shorts Program #1, 4 p.m., ACT
That’s Wild, 4:30 p.m., Gaslight 1
Match Struck, 5 p.m., Gaslight 2
Acid Test, 6 p.m., DAC
Skiing shorts, 6:30 p.m., ACT
A River Out of Time, 7 p.m., Gaslight 1
Be The Change documentary shorts, 7:30 p.m., Gaslight 2
Coffee Talk, 8:30 a.m., 734 E. 2nd Ave.
Shorts program #2, 9 a.m., DAC
Find Your Way documentary shorts, 9:30 a.m., ACT
Marvelous and the Black Hole, 9:30 a.m., Gaslight 1
Strictly for the Birds, 10 a.m., Gaslight 2
HERE. IS. BETTER., 11:30 a.m., DAC
Out and About, 12 p.m., ACT
Be The Change documentary shorts, 12 p.m., Gaslight 1
Being Thunder, 12:30 p.m., Gaslight 2
George M. Cohan Tonight!, 2 p.m., DAC
Leftover Feelings: A Studio B Revival, 2:30 p.m., ACT
Mission: JOY, 3 p.m., Gaslight 1 & 2
Cultural Preservation Native Cinema Program, 5 p.m., ACT
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, 5:30 p.m., DAC
The Many Faces of Adventure Sports, 5:30 p.m., Gaslight 1 & 2
Keep the Cameras Rolling: The Pedro Zamora Way, 7:30 p.m., ACT
From the Hood to the Holler, 8 p.m., Gaslight 1
Human Spirit shorts, 8:30 p.m., DAC
Match Struck, 8:30 p.m., Gaslight 2
Coffee Talk, 8:30 a.m., 734 E. 2nd Ave.
Acid Test, 9 a.m., Gaslight 2
Effecting Change Native Cinema Program, 9:30 a.m., Gaslight 1
#KidsOnTech, 9:30 a.m., ACT
Family Program, 10 a.m., DAC
To Which We Belong, 12 p.m., Gaslight 1 & 2
Shorts Program #1, 12 p.m., ACT
Reel Learning, 12:30 p.m., DAC
Ferryman, 2:30 p.m., Gaslight 1 & 2
Buried, 2:30 p.m., ACT
Profiles of Independent Film, featuring David Dibble, 3 p.m., DAC
Leftover Feelings: A Studio B Revival, 5 p.m., ACT
Shorts program #2, 5 p.m., Gaslight 1 & 2
Route One North, 5:30 p.m., DAC
Human Spirit Adventure Shorts, 7:30 p.m., ACT
Dark Cloud, 7:30 p.m., Gaslight 1
Mission: JOY, 8 p.m., DAC
The 8th, 8 p.m., Gaslight 2
The Berrigans: Devout and Dangerous, 9 a.m., ACT
Shorts Program #3, DAC
Bloody Sunday: Stories from the Front, 11 a.m., Outdoorsy
The Many Faces of Adventure shorts, 11:30 a.m., ACT
Strictly for the Birds, 11:30 a.m., Gaslight 1
When Claude Got Shot, 12 p.m., DAC
Cultural Preservation Native Cinema Program, 12 p.m., Gaslight 2
Documentaries in Action, 12:15 p.m., Outdoorsy
That’s Wild, 2 p.m., ACT
Family Program, 2 p.m., Gaslight 1
Skiing Adventure Shorts, 2:30 p.m., DAC
George M. Cohan Tonight!, 2:30 p.m., Gaslight 2
A River Out of Time, 4 p.m., ACT
Out and About (sneak peek), 4:30 p.m., Gaslight 1
OUR almost completely true STORY, 5 p.m., Gaslight 2
HERE. IS. BETTER., 5 p.m., DAC