The finishing plans and touches are being put into place for Friday’s opening night of this years’ Victoria Film Festival.
Since 1995, the event has been at the centre of cinematic arts on Vancouver Island, with a legacy of showcasing a diverse selection on the big screen.
“We have a variety of films that we bring in and we like to mix it up and I think we want people to know it’s not quite what they expect,” said Kathy Kay, Director of the Victoria Film Festival
And from once humble beginnings, the Victoria Film Festival now one of the largest film festivals in the country.
Over the years the event has drawn big names like Game of Thrones’ Aiden Gillen and Trailer Park Boys’ Cory Bowles. This year, Bill Nighy is in town. Nighy is known for, among many other roles, his work as Davy Jones in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
But the island film festival also prides itself on supporting Canadian filmmakers.
“Fifty per cent of our program is Canadian. We feel it’s important to celebrate Canada,” said Kay.
And this year, the festival is book-ended by two Canadian films.
Friday night showings kick off with a number of films, including American Woman, directed Canadian female filmmaker Semi Chellas.
“She was the show writer for Mad Men, she’s been a scriptwriter forever. She’s done some other series, so she’s quite a catch to get her to come up. And this is her actual first feature,” said Kay.
The festival closes with Haida Modern, a portrait of artist Robert Davidson, bridging two cultures and weaving artwork and activism.
As for all the films in-between? Expect a mix of everything: from vibrant, innovative indies, to entertaining mainstream movies on the big screen.
Victoria Film Festival kicks off Friday night, running through to February 16th. Tickets and more information are available here.