Kamloops Film Festival kicks off 21st year | Kamloops News | iNFOnews

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Kamloops Film Festival kicks off 21st year

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March 02, 2017 - 2:30 PM

KAMLOOPS - Downtown Kamloops may just look like Hollywood North this weekend.

The 21st annual Kamloops Film Festival is set to begin today, March 2, with headliners like Moonlight and The Salesman attracting eyes.

Festival Chair Dušan Magdolen says the 10-day event is hoping to attract about 5,500 people this year, as attendance numbers have steadily grown for the past few years.

"We’ve been on a real growth spurt... the last few years," Magdolen says. "In the last five years we’ve close to doubled our attendance from 2,800 to about 5,200 last year."

Magdolen says high attendance numbers last year could have been attributed to the 20th anniversary, but he says people are starting to see the festival is offering more than it may seem.

"A lot of people are really liking the overall line up this year," he says. "I would say it’s the strongest lineup we’ve ever had."

The lineup includes 22 feature films, including two Oscar winners and six Oscar nominees.

"Moonlight which won best picture (at the Oscars), eventually after the fiasco there, we have that in our line up," Magdolen says. "We have six Oscar-nominated films now, two of them are winners. There’s also The Salesman which won the foreign language film. There’s lots of comedies and lighter stuff that people really like… it is relatively even across the board."

He says although the festival always tries to have B.C. and Canadian films, it wasn't a tough decision to include many Canadian films in the lineup this year.

"We have three B.C. films this year, almost 50 per cent Canadian films and that’s not just because... it’s a Canadian film," Magdolen says. "We try and show the best films we can. There are really good films coming out of B.C., there are really good films coming out of Canada."

Although you can watch a movie from just about anywhere now, Magdolen says many people still enjoy the community feeling of the film festival.

"There is still a need for people to be part of a community, to be part of something and I think definitely the last few years we’ve really tried to add to the festival and make it more of an event and an experience beyond just the films," he says. "We’ve got parties and the red carpet, so we really wanted to make it something outside of the film, something you want to be a part of, something you don’t want to miss out on."

He says the level of professionalism the Kamloops Film Society brings to the event makes it feel like there is a little piece of Hollywood right here in our city.

Purchase tickets or view the film schedule here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ashley Legassic or call 250-319-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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