Big Island Film Festival calls for entries

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The call is out for entries in the Big Island Film Festival at The Fairmont Orchid Hawai‘i.

The 9th annual BIFF, acclaimed as one of the “coolest film festivals” by MovieMaker Magazine, will be held May 22-26, 2014.

Films being submitted for the festival are being accepted now through Feb. 1, 2014.

Specializing in narrative filmmaking, the “talk story”-style festival includes multi-location screenings, social events, networking opportunities, celebrity receptions, screenwriting workshops and free family films under the stars, said a festival release.


A closing night “Best of the Fest” features a top Hawaiian music concert and movies chosen by the audience from Festival entries. Last year’s celebrity honorees included Vincent Kartheiser, “Pete Campbell” on the award-winning drama “Mad Men,” and Kate McKinnon, featured player on the legendary TV show “Saturday Night Live.”

Narrative short films (30 minutes or less) and feature length (60 minutes or more) completed after Jan. 1, 2013, will be considered. Early deadline is Nov. 1, with lower fees at $50 for a feature, $40 for a short, and $30 for students; the regular deadline is Jan. 1, 2014, $60 feature, $50 short, $35 student; the final deadline is Feb. 1, 2014, $70 feature, $60 short, $40 student. Films shot in Hawai‘i or created by Hawai‘i filmmakers receive a 25% discount.

“Golden Honu Awards” will be presented to the Best Feature and Best Short in Family, Student, Animated, Foreign, Hawai‘i and Audience Choice categories at a special Awards Brunch on Monday, May 26, 2014.


Films honored at past festivals have garnered success: Last year’s feature winner, “Chasing Shakespeare,” starring Danny Glover and Graham Greene, continues to win acclaim at international film festivals, including AFI Cannes World Peace Initiative.

2012 films “Searching for Sonny,” “Qwerty,” “The Italian Key” and others have enjoyed success on film festival circuits, as have 2011’s “The Dead Inside,” “Uncle Melvin’s Apartment.”

The comedy “Get A Job,” by Maui filmmaker Brian Kohne, was screened in Spain during the Marbella Film Festival and other festivals around the world, and has been released on DVD.


“We are extremely proud to be taking the Big Island Film Festival … into its ninth year,” said a statement from Executive Director Leo Sears.

“We’ve watched filmmakers grow and mature into accomplished artists. We’ve seen technology coming within reach of more and younger filmmakers. We have mainstream celebrities, Hawaiian entertainers and chefs contacting us to offer their support and participation. We’ve reached a new level, and it gets better every year,” Sears said.

Sponsors also include the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority/Hawai‘i County Department of Research and Development CPEP, and Redeeming Light International Inc.

For submission rules and application visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com, or call 808-883-0394.

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