The Oneota Film Festival (OFF), now in its fifth season, will be held Friday, February 28 through Sunday March 2, 2014. The mission of the Festival is to address “the issues of our time.” Oneota Co-op, which has supported the festival in the past, is again the primary sponsor.
The 2014 Festival expands again with more films, more events, more filmmakers, and more submissions. In addition to screening critically acclaimed independent films, it will feature guest filmmakers and discussion panels that include experts and members of the local community.
This year’s Festival, which is bringing award-winning films from around the nation and the world, will for the first time intersect with two other events in Decorah: The Ethnic Arts Festival on Luther College Campus and KDEC’s Annual Home Expo held at Decorah High School. The OFF film schedulewill allow audiences from all events to attend portions of each. In addition, besides screening films in its major venues on the Luther campus, OFF will screen films at T-Bock’s Upstairs throughout the Festival and the Decorah High School on Sunday, March 2.
The intention of the OFF board of directors is to integrate the Festival with downtown businesses and audiences at the Ethnic Arts Festival.
“The Oneota Film Festival board welcomes film suggestions from you,” according to OFF Director Erika Kambs. “If you have a film that you would like to see screened at the 2014 Festival,please submit it for consideration online at oneotafilmfestival.org/2014-films/. Suggestions are acceptedthrough January 15, 2014.
To be considered for submission, films must be released in 2012 or after. Selected films are primarily documentaries not widely accessible through Netflix, YouTube or other mass sources.
This year the festival also will feature a set of films produced by area 7th-12th grade students through The Oneota Film Festival Micro Seminar hosted by Arthaus. Instructor Cade Loven, University of Iowa graduate infilm and video production, leads theseminar.
The festival also accepts film submissions from independent filmmakers. According to Erika Kambs, filmmakers can submit their films for judging through their website oneotafilmfestival.org. These films are eligible for the “Best of Fest” award.
Judges this year are Andy Hageman, Luther College Assistant Professor of English; Dr. Salma Monani, a professor from Gettysburg College and juror for the Tinai Eco Film Fest; and Hunter Weeks, a nationally known documentary filmmaker whose work has been screened at Oneota Film Festival.
Following the final set of films on Saturday, March 1, audiences are invited to participate in the Filmmakers Reception at T-Bock’s Upstairs. Light appetizers showcasing local and organic ingredients by Mattias Kriemelmeyer, Executive Chef at the Water Street Café, will be featured. Cash bar and soft drinks will be available.
“This is sure to be a destination weekend for the Decorah community,” Kambs said. To learn more about OFF, how to get involved or to become a member, go online at oneotafilmfestival.org.