New film festival society formed to celebrate local filmmaking

Central Alberta-made films and filmmakers will be celebrated at a new festival planned for October. The Central Alberta Film Festival Society was recently formed in Red Deer with the intention of launching an annual festival of locally-made films of all genres.

Central Alberta-made films and filmmakers will be celebrated at a new festival planned for October.

The Central Alberta Film Festival Society was recently formed in Red Deer with the intention of launching an annual festival of locally-made films of all genres.

The non-profit cultural organization aims to support and promote filmmakers and visual artists from this region, said festival director Naeem Rabbani, who made documentary shorts about social issues such as suicide and domestic violence in his native Pakistan, as well as Holland.

A main event will be held in Red Deer during film festival season in October, but the group will also plan year-round activities that include special screenings, talks, workshops and lectures.

Rabbani said the local film group has the support of several local businesses, including Carnival Cinemas owner Bill Ramji, and would like to reach out to the Red Deer College film community, as well as individual filmmakers across the region.

“We are interested in providing a forum for people from all walks of life to engage in critical dialogue mainly through moving images and visual expressions.”

CAFF will hopefully bring together those interested in engaging with film “as a means of artistic expression and a catalyst for change,” he added.

An introductory meeting will be held from 6-8 p.m. on March 16, 2016 at West Point Conference Centre, 6852-66th St. in Red Deer. Anyone interested is invited to come and hear a couple of local filmmakers speak about their upcoming projects and why they want to collaborate with CAFF.

Rabbani, who moved to Canada five years ago, would like to expand Red Deer’s artistic offerings. CAFF will help local artists “through breaking the cultural silence and… sustaining a cultural momentum in Central Alberta.”

For more information, please call 403-302-8200.