What happens when 617 theater operators, film distributors, film festival folks and service providers get together in the mountains? A collision of idea sharing, educational seminars, film screenings and replenishment of creativity. It’s the Art House Convergence.
The idea of the Art House Convergence (AHC) was born twelve years ago when a group of film exhibitors were brought together at the Sundance Film Festival as part of the Sundance Institute’s Art House Project. For two years, this small group met at the Sundance Film Festival to discuss independent film and independent film exhibition. In 2008, the group expanded and hosted the first Art House Convergence conference, with 25 attendees. By 2013, attendance reached 350, including several international art houses. The film festival folks joined and expanded the scope of the convergence. Celebrating the AHC’s 10th anniversary this year was great and here’s some cool things we learned about:
Keeping it Weird: Midnite Movies at the Coolidge – a session about programming movies at midnight and what types of films work in this time-frame and how it creates its own film culture!
Repertory Programming Case Studies – it was great to learn how others program repertory films (which can be better described as classics). These films need to be seen on the big screen – and programmed thoughtfully.
How to Be an Ally – a lively discussion on how we can be inclusive to all members of our community at our art houses.
We also got to screen two films that are premiering at Sundance (yes – before Sundance – which is good, because the tickets pretty much gone). Colossal – a film about a girl, a guy, a giant monster and a giant robot. We love a great story and it had this! Jason Sudeikis and Anne Hathaway star. We also saw foreign language film, Frantz – a lovely story set in 1919 about love and forgiveness where a young German who grieves the death of her fiancé in France meets a mysterious Frenchman who visits the fiancé’s grave to lay flowers. These two films couldn’t be farther apart, but both were fun. One special treat was the renowned film critic, Leonard Maltin, led a discussion after the screening of both these films. Maybe you’ll see them at The Cary soon.
We’re bringing back a lot of great information and a notebook full of new ideas!