Film festival adds free programming, extra day

Melissa Crowe By Melissa Crowe

March 1, 2012 at 5:03 p.m.
Updated Feb. 29, 2012 at 9:01 p.m.

Before the first film has even been screened, Victoria Texas Independent Film Festival is making itself bigger and better for the inaugural weekend.

Executive Director Anthony Pedone announced an extended lineup, featuring six free films, a partnership with Victoria College's Johnson Symposium Center and an extra day added to the weekend event.

"I just want people to have the opportunity to experience independent film," Pedone said. "This is about introducing people to independent film and letting them see how cool it is."

The festival is now scheduled for March 22 to 25 at the Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts and Victoria College. Tickets start at $10 for individual films. Weekend passes cost $99. Tickets are available at the Welder Center.

The free films, screened throughout the weekend feature love stories about Texas barbecue and beer, stories of Texas culture, and a psychological thriller.

Pedone anticipates more announcements, including nine additional films and a third venue coming up in the future.

"I knew that it could get this big and I know it can get bigger," Pedone said. "What we're doing - already making movies, attracting other film makers to come here - it's great to know it's about the films."

Christine McCarthy, shorts program director, said the additional programming "takes the gamble out of it" for people who do not want to or financially cannot spend $10 or $20 on a film they have never heard of.

"The whole purpose of this is to share art with a community that would not have access to it otherwise," she said. "A day of free access makes sure everybody is included."

While McCarthy would not give a personal recommendation, she said the added programming enhances the festival's already varied lineup.

"We try to have a little something for everyone," McCarthy said. "No film is going to make everybody happy. Do a little homework, you know what you like."



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