Saturday, June 24, 2017 This Week's Paper

Tacoma welcomes Destiny City Film Festival this weekend

// Fest runs July 31-Aug. 3 at Blue Mouse Theater

With an already blossoming season of great Tacoma summer festivals in full swing, the last weekend of July goes out in style with The Destiny City Film Festival. This first year film festival will take place throughout the weekend at the Blue Mouse Theatre in Proctor, where the Proctor Arts Fest will be taking place Aug. 2.

“In its inaugural year, Destiny City Film Festival is proud to bring award-winning films to Tacoma, and to connect our community with the power of storytelling,” comments Emily Alm, founder and director. The weekend is packed with a lineup of 29 great films by international and local filmmakers.

Tacoma Weekly caught up with Alm to find out more on this exciting showcase of films.

Tacoma Weekly: What are some of the films that attendees can see at the festival?

Emily Alm: The inaugural DCFF will open at 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 31, with the new indie hit, “Warren,” which tells the story of an aimless 20-something who reconnects with his ex-girlfriend and discovers the importance of breaking free from the norm and following his dream.

The festival will be in full swing for the weekend, featuring enthralling short film packages, thought-provoking documentaries such as “Damnation” and “I Am Big Bird,” hilarious comedies such as “Arlo and Julie” and local films “B.F.E.,' ”Frink” and “Look Up In the Sky.”

The festival will wrap up at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 3 with a special presentation of the award-winning film “Copenhagen,” the story of William who, on his journey to discover his roots, meets the exuberant and youthful Effy, and the two set out on an adventure to find his grandfather.

TW: Which films are by local filmmakers in the line-up?

Alm: The makers, Arthur Rains-McNally and Ashley Cozine, of “Loon Up In the Sky” live and work in Tacoma, and their film is one of the stand-out local shorts to come out recently. It is part of a web series, so everyone can look forward to seeing the story unfold further in additional episodes.

“Frink” is the filmmaking debut for writer/director Phillip Nelson from Seattle. The cinematography and succinct plot made “Frink” stand out, and I'm excited to have Phillip be able to see his film on the big screen for the first time.

TW: There is a free screenwriting workshop on Aug. 2 of the festival. Is this for any level of screenwriters? What might an attendee of this workshop have access to or experience?

Alm: The free screenwriting workshop is open to anyone no matter how much screenwriting or general writing experience they have. This workshop will specifically focus on "writing with pictures," which means that Brian McDonald (award-winning writer/director from Seattle) will describe to the audience how to tell a story visually, without relying on dialogue, and to "think in pictures" to become better equipped to write a screenplay that will become a compelling film.

TW: Will any of the filmmakers be present during the festival for a meet and greet or Q&A of any kind?

Alm: Yes, there will be six filmmakers present at the festival. Some are local such as “B.F.E.,” “Frink,” “Look Up In the Sky” and “Sixnineteen” and others come from across the country, like “Arlo and Julie” and “Baxter.” There will be Q&As with our guests immediately following each screening. 

TW: What are your hopes for the festival in future years?

Alm: I want DCFF to inspire local filmmakers through the films we program, and the events we organize, and to hold them to a higher standard – something I truly believe they deserve. I'm very excited about what lies ahead for filmmaking and storytelling in Tacoma, and about generating more support for those that contribute to that community.

Passes and individual movie tickets are available for purchase now. An all-access VIP pass admits you to all films during the festival and are $65. The Destiny City Film Festival punch cards admit you to four films for $20. Tickets and passes can be purchased during normal business hours at the Blue Mouse Theatre, 2611 N. Proctor St., or online at