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Recap: Opening & Canadian Galas

Two days down, ten to go!

On Wednesday, we launched this year's festival with a blast over at the Jack Singer Concert Hall. (If you weren't there, you can see the photos here!) We welcomed hundreds of film fans to our pre-reception, where buzz was building long before the movie, MAUDIE, even started. After speeches by our executive director Steve Schroeder, the film's cast and crew, and some words from our ATB sponsor and the Alberta Minister of Culture, the lights dimmed and the big screen was ablaze. The reaction on social media says it all:

We love that you loved it! And thanks for sharing the night with us! The party continued after the film, when the band The Nova Scotiables fiddled away the night for our guests as Big Rock helpfully supplied the beverages.

Well, last night was fun. Let's do it again tonight! @calgaryfilm #calgaryinternationalfilmfestival

A photo posted by Nova Scotiables (@novascotiables) on

On Day #2, we headed over to Theatre Junction Grand last night for our Canadian Gala, TWO LOVERS AND A BEAR. We also welcomed Kim Nguyen (director of the film), Matthew and Harold Millan (from STRONGER THAN BULLETS), Robert Cuffley (from our Closing Gala film CHOKESLAM) and others to the red carpet. Not to brag, but we even had an extremely special VIP (VIB?) last night:

Hanging with my new pal at #calgaryfilm for day 2 The Canadian Gala

A photo posted by Charles Netto (@ctothenetto) on

Once again, we had a packed house, and with the help of our programming manager Brenda Lieberman, Kim Nguyen closed the screening with a fantastic Q&A session.

Then the crowd headed through the doors to Workshop Kitchen + Culture for the after-party - full of mingling, hors d'oeuvres and a generous supply of Belvedere vodka and Big Rock beer and cider. Call it a wrap!

Just in time for the weekend, we've got some more great movies and Behind the Screen events for you to check out. It's almost too much to handle! Upstairs at the Globe Cinema today (Friday, 5:00 PM), Robert Cuffley and Kim Nguyen will be delivering a keynote speech about Canadian filmmaking. At the same time, downstairs, OPERATOR will be showing, with actor Martin Starr in attendance. These will be followed by the world premiere of STRONGER THAN BULLETS (with filmmakers Harold and Matthew Millan, Hammuda Abidia, and Erik Niel) and THE UNSEEN (with director Geoff Redknap and producer Katie Weekley). And don't forget HELLO DESTROYER and THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS at the same venue!

If you'll be at Eau Claire instead, the programmers recommend COMMAND AND CONTROL and SHORTS PROGRAMME 2 (which has Best of Shorts finalist MUTANTS and TIFF's Best Canadian Short BALCONY). If you plan on seeing ADULT LIFE SKILLS or BURN YOUR MAPS (with director Jordan Roberts attending), you should get there early - the advance tickets are sold out and it is rush line only!

For a full run-down of the day, check out this page on our website. Happy watching and we'll see you in the theatres!