Ten years. That's right, the Dam Short Film Festival is entering its tenth season! The 2014 event is scheduled for February 12th through 16th at the Boulder Theatre. (The magazine cover features the previous 9 festival posters averaged together.)
The Dam Short Film Society, which organizes the event, was founded in 2004 by Lee and Anita Lanier. The Society's board of directors has evolved over the years, with many local personalities helping out. Nicola Collins, Kae Pohe, Ihla Crowley, Art Lynch, and Leslie Paige (among others) have all contributed their talents. The festival was held at the American Legion hall for the first three years. Having outgrown the space, the festival soon switched to the Boulder Theatre. Since then, Miss Amy and Desi Arnaz Jr. have become an important part of the event (did you know that Desi often runs the light board during the screenings?).
Every year, the Dam Short Film Festival screens over 100 short films from all over the world. The same number of filmmakers travel to Boulder City. The films cover a wide range of subjects, styles, and genres. A special emphasis is placed on finding films that local audiences will enjoy and appreciate. It is perhaps the only film festival in the world that rates its film programs so that nobody is surprised by the film content.
Lee Lanier served as the festival’s director for many years. In 2012, John LaBonney became the festival's new director while Lee switched to the executive director position. John has brought many fresh ideas to the event and works tirelessly to improve the screenings, events, and film market.
The 2014 festival will screen approximately 140 short films arranged in twenty different programs. 2014 will be the first year the festival will run five days, allowing for a more relaxed schedule with more time between screenings. The official schedule is always announced on January 1st and can be found at damshortfilm.org along with ticket information. Aside from traditional film programs and special events such as panels, mixers, and parties, the tenth annual festival will present special retrospective screenings that feature the best films from the past ten years.