results of the connections that people are making at the panels and workshops,” says Connors, who’s a filmmaker himself. “It is very rewarding for us to get that kind of feedback.”
This year's fest will feature special programming from several Yukon filmmakers, including Dawsonite Dan Sokolowski, whose experimental feature, Degrees North, will be re-edited and shown as a video installation at the Yukon Arts Centre Public Art Gallery, and Whitehorse's Daniel Janke, who will present a special performance based on Nell Shipman's 1923 silent film, The Grubstake.
The filmfest is by no means strictly for aspiring filmmakers, and there's plenty on offer for attendees just looking to catch a few good flicks. In keeping with the fest's northern-themed mandate, this year's lineup includes On The Ice, a feature-length mystery drama set in the Barrow region of Alaska; Happy People: A Year in the Taiga, a documentary about trapping in Siberia; and People of A Feather, which explores the relationship between the Inuit inhabitants of Belcher Island, Nunavut, and the eider duck.
There will also be plenty of films with more universal themes, including Andrew Bird: Fever Dream, a concert film, and, for the first time, two features presented in 3-D: Pina, a tribute to German choreographer Philippina "Pina" Bausch, and Cave of Forgotten Dreams, a historical documentary by acclaimed director Werner Herzog.
“I tried to get Werner Herzog as a guest, but he is far too busy,” says Connors, noting that the German director is on his list of ALFF dream guests. “But we've got a great lineup this year, and there's still lots of great guests.”
Though the fest has expanded beyond all expectations since 2003, the 10th anniversary will see it return to its roots somewhat, with a repeat screening of Atanarjuat and a guest appearance by its producer, Norman Cohn.
“It's still a great film,” says Connors, “and not just because it’s from the North.”
The Available Light Film Festival takes place Feb. 6–12, with screenings at the Yukon Arts Centre and The Old Firehall, in Whitehorse. For more information, visit alff.ca or call (867) 393-3456. Y