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Three exciting initiatives for 2019-20
148 backers pledged $41,385 to help bring this project to life.
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$41,385

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We're the Ashland Independent Film Festival, and we're not just an independent film lover's spring destination.

Three Major Projects expand in 2019-20:

  • For the first time in our 20 year history, we are adding cash awards to support the work of winning filmmakers in up to four categories at April's Ashland Independent Film Festival.
  • Our third Varsity World Film Week, October 4 -11, 2019, offers new events and an extraordinary collection of 13 international films assembled by AIFF artistic and executive director Richard Herskowitz.
  • We're building our education programs, including Teen Press and OLLI's Continuing Education courses for adult learners, which further our mission to celebrate the diversity of human experience through the art of independent film.
Filmmaker Asher Jelinsky holding 2019 jury and audience awards for narrative short film "Miller and Son"

Our New Prizes for AIFF Juried Awards in Four Categories

We're also adding four special rewards to recognize your support of filmmakers in the categories of documentary features, documentary short, narrative feature and narrative short and to honor the best juried films in each category with up to a $5,000 award. This is an exciting opportunity for you to directly support our festival and the ongoing work of talented and committed independent filmmakers.

"From a thousand submissions, about a hundred make it into our program, and ultimately just four films win our highest jury honors. That award means a lot to filmmakers who have given their all to these projects, but, let’s face it, a generous cash prize to help start their next film would be even sweeter," said Herskowitz. "We want to start building a treasure chest to help make our competition section stronger and more beneficial to indie filmmakers, and this Kickstarter campaign, in addition to supporting our growing education programs and World Film Week event, will help make that possible."

Varsity World Film Week

AIFF artistic and executive director Richard Herskowitz has assembled an extraordinary collection of 13 international films for October's Varsity World Film Week here in Ashland, OR.

We’re providing rewards for backers that will bring you inside information and special access to the films of both World Film Week and next spring’s AIFF, and to the parties where you’ll mingle with directors and actors. 

With the support of our Kickstarter backers, we plan to grow Varsity World Film Week into a fall festival that equals the prestige and energy of our main festival, with more opportunities to engage with films and filmmakers. 

“By bringing to Southern Oregon the voices of filmmakers from Mexico, Kenya, Israel, Egypt, and seven other countries, we are helping to broaden our viewers’ cultural horizons, utilizing cinema’s capacity to be an ‘empathy machine’ that transports spectators inside the perspectives of others," said Herskowitz. 

We're thrilled this year to bring Sarah Hoch, the executive director of the Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF), to Ashland on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Sister City connection between Ashland and Guanajuato, Mexico. Contributors will have the opportunity to meet Sarah at our opening night dinner and/or after-party at Mezcal, attend a screening of short films produced by GIFF, and enjoy a  performance by Guanajuato-born guitarist Jordon Tapp. Alternatively, you can meet Seattle-based director Eric Becker and grunge music legend Bobby Whittaker at our closing night screening of Return to Mt. Kennedy, at a dinner with the filmmakers at Cucina Biazzi, or the “Grunge Karaoke” after-party at Jefferson Spirits!

Ashland students, with filmmaker George Nierenberg, attending a screening of his film "No Maps on My Taps" through our School Group Tickets program.

Expanded Educational Programs

Your generous pledge also will permit us in 2020 to expand the student community we serve in education programs which further our mission to celebrate the diversity of human experience through the art of independent film.

We provide education programs for youth through our Launch student filmmaking competition, School Group Tickets, Festival in the Schools, Teen Press, and Family Day at ScienceWorks programs. And we are enriching audiences of all ages through our TalkBacks and OLLI Goes to AIFF sessions, along with the many Q&A’s with visiting artists that illuminate the methods and the urgent convictions behind the making of independent films.

Thank you for supporting AIFF and Independent Films

The Southern Oregon Film Society, DBA Ashland Independent Film Festival, is a 501 (c)3 not-for-profit corporation. Your generous contribution is tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.

Risks and challenges

Our programs will proceed in 2019-20, but with a successful Kickstarter campaign we'll have the funds to further build our two existing initiatives and support the top four juried filmmakers at our April 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    Website thank you at ashlandfilm.org

    Your name on our Ashland Film Festival website

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    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    The Insider List

    Be the first to hear about must-see films, get field notes from our artistic director Richard Herskowitz and his team of screeners as they seek the best films for our April festival, and discover links to recommended indie film readings and screenings. Our 2019-20 Insider List is a must for any independent film lover. PLUS, a thank you at ashlandfilm.org

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    Preview Night Screening at Home

    We're videotaping our September 30th preview event with AIFF Artistic and Executive Director Richard Herskowitz, and making it available to you with a secret Vimeo password. See preview clips and hear about our 13 can't-miss international films.
    Also includes a website thank you and our Insider's List with a year's worth of updates from Richard and his team of screeners. Perfect for fans of independent and international films!

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    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Juried Award for Filmmakers: Contributor

    We’re building an award treasure chest to help indie filmmakers pursue their next dream. Our goal is to raise $40,000 for four film category awards at the April 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival. Your name will be on our website, in printed materials and onscreen at the Awards Night Dinner. Note: 50-percent of your award contribution supports our artistic team's behind-the-scenes work to bring the very best independent films to our audiences.

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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    Signed Limited Edition 2020 AIFF Print

    David Piches, who created the artwork depicting an aerial view of downtown Ashland for our 2020 festival poster, will sign limited edition 11” x 17” prints of the original artwork.

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    Pledge US$ 260 or more About US$ 260

    Signed Limited Edition 2020 AIFF Print

    NEW! We've been asked to create a full-sized edition of Sacramento artist and architect David Piches's original work and here it is! Piches, who created the artwork depicting an aerial view of downtown Ashland for our 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival poster, will sign 50 limited edition 18” x 24.5” prints of the original artwork. These are unframed gallery quality prints you'll want to add to your collection!

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    Pledge US$ 300 or more About US$ 300

    Opening Night Big Package for 2

    You and a guest are invited to our Oct 4 opening night dinner for World Film Week at Ashland's elegant new Mexican restaurant, Mezcal, where you will join us in honoring our special guest, Sarah Hoch, executive director of the Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF). Your gift also includes tickets to the night’s screening of short films produced by GIFF and an after-party with live music by Guanajuato-born musician Jordon Tapp. PLUS Insider blog and website thank you.

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    Pledge US$ 350 or more About US$ 350

    Closing Night Big Package for 2

    You and a guest are invited to our Oct 11 closing dinner for World Film Week at Ashland's Cucina Biazzi, where you’ll be joined by the makers of Return to Mt. Kennedy and the leaders of AIFF and Coming Attractions Theatres. You'll also get tickets to the Return to Mt. Kennedy screening at the Varsity and the Grunge Karaoke after-party at Jefferson Spirits! PLUS you’ll receive the Insider List, and a website thank you.

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    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Ssh! Secret screenings with Richard

    We think our artistic director Richard Herskowitz is the best movie maven in the festival business. We also know he has THE best seats in town for private movie screenings, and this is your only chance to grab one. Richard previews films before they reach any silver screen, and with this reward you and a guest will be invited to his home theater in Ashland with a maximum of 6 other film lovers, for wine, popcorn, a private screening and illuminating conversation. Dates in 2019-20 by mutual agreement.

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    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Director Credit in Bright Lights

    We'll give you a Director credit in the welcome slides we're sharing on the Varsity's screen prior to every Varsity World Film Week screening, PLUS a Passport to all 13 VWFW films PLUS an AIFF Director membership for 2020, which includes tickets to see 24 AIFF films. You get to reserve your film tickets early, and attend three exclusive festival parties for free.

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    Pledge US$ 2,500 or more About US$ 2,500

    Juried Award: Lead Donor

    Directly support the work of independent filmmakers at the 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival with new awards for Juried films. We'll name you as a Lead award donor on our website and festival materials, and at the April 19 Awards Gala to which you and a guest will be invited. (Gala includes a fabulous dinner.)

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    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    Juried Award: Primary Donor

    Support the work of independent filmmakers at the 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival and we’'ll name you as a Primary award donor on our website and festival materials and at the April 19 Awards Gala, to which you and a guest will be invited.(Gala includes a fabulous dinner.)

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    Pledge US$ 6,000 or more About US$ 6,000

    AIFF 2020 VIP Access

    Get VIP access to the 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival. You and a guest will enjoy two 2020 Executive Producer memberships, which allow you to skip the lines and walk directly into our theaters, get you a private consultation with the artistic director on your festival selections, reserved seats for any pre-selected film in our schedule, invitations to exclusive festival parties and the private filmmaker hospitality suite, and a downtown parking space!

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    Pledge US$ 10,000 About US$ 10,000

    Name a Juried Award: Benefactor Donor

    Directly support the work of AIFF and one outstanding filmmaker at the 2020 Ashland Independent Film Festival with a $5,000 award in one of four categories (the other half of your contribution will support the artistic team’s work in selecting and bringing the awards competition films to Ashland). We'll offer you the option to direct your support to the categories of Documentary, Documentary Short, Narrative or Narrative Short films. We'll name you as the award Benefactor on our website and festival materials and at the April 19 Awards Gala, to which you and a guest will be invited. With a $10,000 annual commitment to AIFF of three or more years you may choose to name the award for yourself, for another honoree or for a company, and we will invite you to the stage at our awards gala in April to present a check to the winning filmmaker.

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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    Opening Night Big Package for 1

    You're invited to our Oct 4 opening night dinner for World Film Week at Ashland's elegant new Mexican restaurant, Mezcal, where you will join us in honoring our special guest, Sarah Hoch, executive director of the Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF). Your gift also includes tickets to the night’s screening of short films produced by GIFF and an after-party with live music by Guanajuato-born musician Jordon Tapp. PLUS Insider blog and website thank you.

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    Reward no longer available 6 backers
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Funding period

- (17 days)