The Daily Mash-Up

Sunday, November 29, 2015 This Week's Paper
Tacoma Selected to Host FILM FORWARD

Sundance Institute and the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities has announced that "FILM FORWARD: Advancing Cultural Dialogue" will host free public screenings of eight films for the first time ever in Tacoma. These films are: Town of Runners, the Light in Her Eyes, Chasing Ice, the Loving Story, Bones Brigade, Valley of Saints, Beasts of the Southern Wild, and Under the Same Moon. The film tour will take place Sept. 3 – 7, with moderated discussions following each screening, and filmmakers Julia Meltzer (The Light in Her Eyes) and Jerry Rothwell (Town of Runners) will be present on Sept. 4 and 5.

FILM FORWARD is a partnership of Sundance Institute and four U.S. federal cultural agencies: the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, and The Institute of Museum and Library Services. It is a touring program that offers film screenings, workshops and discussions designed to foster dialogue and cross-cultural understanding.

“Truly a community effort, the City of Tacoma’s Arts Program is partnering with the Grand Cinema, Washington State History Museum, Tacoma Public Library, Tacoma Public Schools, Metro Parks, University of Washington-Tacoma, University of Puget Sound and more to present this robust and insightful program,” said Tacoma Arts Administrator Amy McBride. “There is no cost to see any of these screenings and everyone is welcome. In particular, we would love to see those who are new to independent film, students and the local filmmaking community come out and attend.”

“My job as a filmmaker is to tell truthful stories about the world. I am hoping The Light in her Eyes will help audiences gain a greater understanding of women's roles and rights within conservative Islam, especially now while the Middle East is undergoing great change.” said Meltzer. “I am excited to meet audiences in Washington through the FILM FORWARD program and participate in a dialogue about universal themes that unite and affect us all.”

“Town of Runners is a film about opportunity, which is a theme that connects audiences from Ethiopia to Washington state,” said Rothwell. “From growing up in Kenya, to living in the United Kingdom, to filming around the world, I have come to realize how film can be a powerful medium to discuss global issues. I look forward to using Town of Runners as a catalyst for conversation.”

Sundance Institute staff members traveling with the program are: FILM FORWARD Director Meredith Lavitt, FILM FORWARD Manager Jacqueline Carlson and Sundance Institute Social Media Manager Royale Zeigler.

For a full schedule of events in Tacoma, visit

Following FILM FORWARD’s visit to Washington, upcoming destinations include: Bosnia & Herzegovina (Sept. 19 - 25); and Maine (Sept. 30 - Oct. 4). Completed programs this year include California, Mexico, Colombia, China, Taiwan and Puerto Rico.

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