Boise Film Festival puts spotlight on local talent

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The third annual Boise Film Festival, scheduled to take place at Jack’s Urban Meeting Place (JUMP), brings professional and aspiring filmmakers to downtown Boise for a four-day event, Sept. 21 to 24. Like the building in which it is hosted, the festival offers a little bit of everything for attendees, including a range of local, national and international films.

“It is open to everyone to enjoy, but with a focus on Idaho,” said Melinda Quick, filmmaker and executive director of the festival.

This year 42 films were selected from over 100 submissions. The central location at JUMP means people will not have to choose between films they wish to see, as they had to do in the past.

The event includes awards, shorts and feature screenings, panels, Q&A with attending filmmakers, as well as various breakout sessions with local production teams. The panels will explore virtual reality, Idaho, youth and women in film.

“[The panel] is a great way to show how strong the community here is,“ Quick said, with regard to Idaho in film. “It is a tradition, it’s what we’re known for and it’s starting a lot of dialogue about where we’re going.”

Among the attendees is Chad Miller, the founder and manager at Cinema Machine Management, and Bonnie Bruckheimer, a well-known producer and advocate for women in film.

“More women are getting in front of the camera,” Quick said of the festival’s Women in Film panel, referencing Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Gal Gadot and more. “It inspires people to speak up and its important that people think film is a way to address issues and inspire change.”

Recognizing that breaking into the film industry can be challenging, Quick encourages students to acquire a combination of knowledge, vulnerability and experience outside the classroom.

“Get out there, don’t make excuses. Reach out and do what you want to do,” Quick said.

The festival encourages collaboration, education and networking, while bringing attention to the growing film community in Idaho and the Treasure Valley. In this light, the festival hopes to raise funding for film projects in the future.

“[I am] excited to see it happen – all these people coming together because we have a shared interest,” Quick said. “You can feel the energy.”

There are three types of passes to the event and anyone can purchase tickets for individual screenings and panels. Details can be found on the festival website,

Student film screenings are free for students with their IDs. Quick also said volunteers for the event are still needed and are offered a free pass in return.

Quick described the local film community as “a pot of flowers – everything is growing and thriving in different ways, but now we all need to grow toward the sunlight.”


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Hi, my name is Evan Fishburn and I am a Copy Editor for the Arbiter. I am a senior majoring in English Literature. I have always loved reading books, newspapers, and magazines. For this year, I hope to provide quality and creative editing.

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