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Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema


Idyllwild, California

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  1. February 20th, 2013 at 02:43 | #1

    We’ve just started our 2013 Film Festival journey, and are so happy that the Idyllwild CinemaFest was the first festival where we were honored to be an Official Selection.

    Idyllwild is an astounding little village, and the community is a magnet to artists – painters, poets, musicians…and filmmakers. The organizers, Steve Savage and Phil Calderone are filmmakers in their own right. They love film, and it shows with the care and dedication they invest in this gem of a festival. The entire community gets involved during festival week. The restaurants, hotels and local businesses open their arms to all who visit. I got MY t-shirt!

    The Rustic Theatre is a classic old theatre – like the ones I went to as a kid to see a western or horror flick. With updated sound and projection, it was the perfect venue to screen the festival films. The festival is in January so the theatre is bit on the chilly side, but they provide blankies for all who come! Cozy!

    They also screen films at a venue called AstroCamp, an awesome planetarium that makes seeing a film an otherwordly experience.

    The awards ceremony was fun and casual, with some of the local restaurants remaining open for after-parties and industry shmoozing. The cast and crew from our little movie – POSEY starring Sally Kirkland (who won Best Actress) – hung out at Cafe Aroma for a late night dinner (and champagne, graciously provided by Steve Savage!).

    Idyllwild CinemaFest is a great festival, but more than that, if you are lucky enough to have your film screen there, it’s more like a mini-holiday in the snow-capped mountains of Idyllwild – Southern California’s best kept secret!

    Good luck!

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  2. CJ
    September 16th, 2010 at 10:35 | #2

    I’ve been to about 10 film festivals total, and IIFC has still held up as my favorite.

    Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema was founded by film director (and Idyllwild local) Stephen Savage. He started it in 2010, so although it’s only had one year record, it has continued to be raved about by the 2010 attendees.

    What makes it so special is the town. Idyllwild is a destination spot, hidden in the forrest-covered mountains above Palm Springs in Southern California. You have to take a windy (albeit newly paved) road overlooking some cliffs to get you to Idyllwild, but once you’re there, you’re in safe hands.

    There’s only one movie theatre, The Rustic Theatre, a quaint, 1-screen, cozy theatre. Not sure how old it is, but the sound and projection is top-notch.

    The whole town of Idyllwild prides itself in supporting the arts, and you will see all the locals participating in whatever mixer or event is going on. It’s a great support to any filmmaker who feels like they didn’t promote their screening enough. You are guaranteed to have an audience at IIFC.

    Back to the festival organizer, Mr. Savage. I’ve never seen a more passionate and PRESENT organizer. Even though there are many other people organizing the festival, Savage always has the last say and he’s always available to talk to. I’ve been to many festivals where you may never get a chance to talk to the organizer, let alone, have dinner with them, but Savage is the socializing king. He’ll be at every event and talk to everyone there.

    I know this festival will go far, but a part of me wants to keep it an “insider secret” just because it’s SUCH a gem. I share this good news with you other filmmakers in hopes that you’ll share it with people who truly cherish films and the heart and soul put into them. After all, the best things you can take from a film festival are the people you meet.

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