The reach of the Albany FilmFest, now in its third year, was evident Friday night from the first filmmaker that Patch met at the opening night gala at the Community Center.
Rachel Linehan, a 17-year-old junior from Pinnacle High School in Phoenix, Ariz., had flown in Friday morning with her parents, Dennis and Elizabeth Linehan.
She discovered the Albany FilmFest when looking for a venue to exhibit her 17-minute drama, The Inspiration of Charlotte Burke, about a girl who learns that art is not meant for revenge.
So she applied and was accepted for the festival, which focuses on short films and really short films.
The films will be screened at the Community Center today, Saturday, from noon to 8 p.m. Admission is $5, and the schedule can be found on the Albany FimFest website.
"I was looking for a film festival because I wanted to get this one out there," said Linehan, who's been making films since she was 11. "I saw this one. I thought it was really cool and a good fit."
The festival invites entries from any age from across the United States.
The opening night party turned the Community Center's main hall into an intimate, softly lit space with comfortable chairs, live music, and wine and food offerings from many Albany area restaurants tastefully arrayed buffet-style on small tables around three sides of the room.
The festival is run by the City of Albany, KALB Community TV, Albany’s Community Media Access Committee and a dedicated corps of volunteers.
Winners are chosen in seven categories:
- Narrative Short: (30 minutes or less)
- Documentary Short: (30 minutes or less)
- Animated short: (30 minutes or less)
- Tiny Movies:. (3 minutes or less) The 2011 winner was 49 seconds long. Cell phone videos welcome.
- My Own Private Albany: (30 minutes or less)
- Youth, 6-12: A film in any of the above categories. You will be judged with your peers.
- Youth 13-17 (or high school senior): A film in any of the above categories. You will be judged with your peers.
The opening night party illumination credit went to 4F Lighting.
The providers of food and drink were
- Little Star Pizza
- Mangia Mangia
- Eunice Gourmet
- Bua Luang
- Nicasio Valley Cheese Company
- Sumo Sushi
- Grazzy Burgers
- Rendez-Vous Cafe Bistro
- Kim's Cafe
- White Lotus
- Suzette Crêpe Café
- Kermit Lynch
- Blacksmith Cellars