The 13th Traverse City Film Festival is now one for the books. It may be the first TCFF that isn’t “the best festival yet”™ since Michael Moore was away, opening a show on Broadway(!), but we sent him Break a Leg messages, and enjoyed the incredible films he picked and the times he was able to call in and introduce movies.
But we hope you had a good festival nevertheless, whatever that means to you: marathoning 25 movies without a break, taking the family to an Open Space film, being introduced to virtual reality by your teen at The Woz, enjoying your first dinner and a special movie night out in far too long, volunteering 40 hours and meeting some of the best people you’ll ever know, or meeting interesting people from all over the world at the festival.
Whatever TCFF was for you, we hope you experienced some of the magic and unique spirit that TCFF Volunteers, Sponsors, and Friends create by so freely giving of themselves. Our phenomenal volunteer photographers and videographers captured it in still and moving images so you can relive the festival.
And it’s always interesting to review the stats, because each year, they are jaw dropping. Over 120,000 admissions attended 229 screenings of 115 feature films and 66 shorts in our 13th year. A volunteer force of 1,600 volunteers, led by 360 volunteer managers, sold 80 percent of available tickets to these screenings and events, of which 142 were sold out and only three were significantly delayed.
We drank 9,838 drinks, ate 8,650 popcorns, 3,984 candies, and 1,747 sandwiches in beautiful, historic venues that this year included two new temporary theaters: Central High School Auditorium and Kirkbride Hall at the Village.
We hope you were able to attend some of the films in the Travel Ban series and hear from filmmakers from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, including Asghar Farhadi, who won an Oscar this past year for “The Salesman.” Maybe you bumped into America’s favorite film critic and historian, Leonard Maltin, on Front Street. Or perhaps you spoke with Mariska Hargitay about the Audience Award winning Best Doc, “I Am Evidence,” at one of the most powerful Cinema Salon sessions we have ever hosted, or saw one of the festival’s other brilliant and unforgettable award winners. And if you missed the great Gilbert Gottfried, look for his handprints in the TCFF Walk of Fame, coming soon.
Now we need to ask you to help us one last time this year, because it truly takes a village to make something as special and meaningful as this festival.
1. If you have not already done so, please renew or become a Friend of the Film Festival. It’s so important to the festival — if you renew before September 1, you can join for half price and get to purchase tickets a week before the public next year, plus lots of other great benefits. But best of all, for as little as $40, you will become part of the festival’s essential financial backbone.
We could not do all of the free and low cost things we do without our Friends program. Friends give us Open Space, the Kid Fest, The Woz, $5 Film School Classes, $12 tickets, visiting filmmakers, great films from all over the world, and the best venues of any festival around. If you believe in what the festival does for our area, and for the world of cinema that extends far beyond our borders, please vote with your membership. Just click here to join or renew.
2. Please help us continue to improve the festival by filling out our post-festival survey. Every year, our best ideas come from you. We need your thoughts, and we do read each and every survey.
Thank you for your support, and for enjoying Traverse City and the movies with us this year. We hope to see you next year, July 31 – August 5, 2018.