It’s been 10 years, and the best is yet to come
The 2017 Salem Film Fest is a big one for us. It all started rather quietly, as a question among a handful of people. Could we have a film festival in Salem? 10 years and nine successful festivals later, we are just a few months away from our 10th Salem Film Fest. Watch this space as we take a look back over the last decade, revisiting the challenges and successes of this all-volunteer, community- supported film festival. Anyone who has been a part of organizing this festival will tell you that it is a lot of work, requires a high level of dedication, and can frequently be somewhat harrowing. But is also intensely gratifying. As a member of the selection committee since the festival’s inception, I can tell you I’ve seen hundreds of documentaries over the past 10 years–not all of them easy to watch for various reasons. I’ve had many a coffee-fueled viewing session that ended in bloodshot eyes, a bit of heartburn, a sore tush, but also, a broader view of the world. And when people watch the films we choose and also emerge with new perspectives and new ways of thinking, it’s all worth it.
In the coming months, we’ll be posting a series of entries looking back. As part of this retrospective, you can expect to meet some of the organizers, filmmakers, and volunteers through their stories. They’ll tell us how they came to be a part of the festival and share some of their most memorable moments. But I don’t want to stop there. I would like to hear from you, our loyal patrons. How did you first hear about the Salem Film Fest? What attracted you to an all-documentary festival? What are your most memorable moments? What films will you never forget? If you have a story you’d like to share, email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The organizers and selection committee are already hard at work planning for the 2017 Salem Film Fest. Personally, I look forward to this time of year more than any other. I hope you are also looking forward with excitement to this year’s festival, running from March 2-9. Hope to see all of you there!