Introducing the Chicago International Social Change Film Festival

So, I founded a film festival. Yes, a film festival.

This concept came to me about two years ago when everyone was still punch drunk off of “change you can believe in” and how the world needed to be better. I started thinking about all of the things I was working on: social entrepreneurship, teaching, and film, and I saw an interesting synergy that I haven’t seen anywhere. There are documentary festivals, human rights festivals, but there were not many festivals on SOCIAL CHANGE. In fact, through all of my research, I could only find one. Film is one of those transformative mediums where every scene and every frame may result in a different interpretation. It’s powerful. With the digital age, and the ease of shooting high quality projects becoming cheaper and cheaper, there is an new demographic of people creating cool and interesting films. This is the age of global storytelling.

Our goals are to:
    • Give a voice and exposure to issues that are relevant to our communities
    • Foster discourse regarding social issues
    • Increase the profile of films and filmmakers who produce films that promote social change.
    • Provide a unique way for companies to show their support for communities and the arts.
    • Create a forum where unconnected networks can be leveraged to increase positive exposure and expand the brand recognition of all parties.

The film festival presents an opportunity for the audience and the filmmakers to have productive dialog in a film forum designed to heighten public consciousness. Another goal is to have a cultural platform on the international level so that the audience is able to screen feature-length, short films, documentary, and student works.
Chicago is the perfect place for this experience. Most of our high ranking government administration have Chicago roots, we are a Top 3 media market, we have a diverse population, and a business community that are attacking these issues from a profit and non-profit standpoint. Not only will we reach out to filmmakers, we will include the business, academic, and technology communities so that we can figure out collaborative solutions to the social ills that affect our communities.
When thinking about partnering up with someone, I had to think of someone that embodied much of the foundation for what I wanted the film festival to be.  I didn’t have to look far. One of my best friends, Todd Belcore, is a Staff Attorney at the Sargent Shriver Center for Poverty Law, among other impressive credentials for affecting change at a local level. I’m excited to work with him on this initiative and we will make some noise. I can’t wait. In fact, Todd posted on the White House’s website about the impetus for the film festival.
Here are the slides from our presentation on Wednesday:

One response to “Introducing the Chicago International Social Change Film Festival

  1. Pingback: My 2011 Year in Review | These two cents by Emile Cambry Jr

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