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Two Phinney film artists will be in this year’s Local Sightings at Northwest Film Forum

In its 23rd year, Northwest Film Forum’s Local Sightings Film Festival will be hosted virtually due to COVID-19, thus introducing the entire world to over 135 short and feature films from throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Two of your Phinney neighbors will be included in this year’s Local Sightings at Northwest Film Forum. Steph Kesey will be showing her COVID-inspired film How To ___ and Julia Massey wrote, produced, and stars in Crosstown Villians. Click on the provided links to see info about the films and purchase tickets.

One of few festivals in the region of its kind, Local Sightings has gained a reputation for its strong programmatic design — which builds off of common themes rather than being hampered by the limitations of genre and promotes diverse media as a critical tool for public dialogue and engagement. 

“This year’s films convey a collective longing for connection amidst calls to action, while holding a mirror to the ever-intensifying absurdities of the current moment. Equal parts heart, hope, heresy, and humor,” muses NWFF Artistic Director Rana San. “The range of stories is simply stunning — a true reflection of the diversity and creativity of filmmakers in our region.”

The 2020 program intentionally centers BIPOC and LGBTQ+ artists, to stress how film and mediamakers traditionally underrepresented in mainstream media hold perspectives which are vital to furthering the important conversations of the current moment. Many of the program blocks will invite viewers to think deeper about the myriad ways in which virtual and “real” life blend, prompting them through related readings, participatory activities via snail mail, or shared interactive experiences, such as experiential surrealist games and online vision boards.

“We’ve spent the past half-year adapting our lives to virtual space, but our collective yearning for substantive interaction remains,” explains NWFF Executive Director Vivian Hua. “In addition to workshops and conversations with filmmakers, the spirit of Local Sightings called upon us to augment the digital experience with interdisciplinary points of connection and experimentation with the format of online festivals.”

The 10-day festival will also serve as a celebration for Northwest Film Forum’s 25th Anniversary, which will conclude with an interactive timeline of Film Forum memories and visual media, as well as a special Closing Night program curated by NWFF staff and board