The Los Angeles Film Festival, presented by the Los Angeles Times
is an event held annually in June (lasting for 10 days) in downtown Los Angeles, California. The Los Angeles Film Festival
began as the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival (LAIFF) in 1995. The first LAIFF took place over the course of five days in a single location: historic Raleigh Studios in Hollywood. In 1996, the LAIFF expanded to include the Directors Guild of America. The LAIFF ran for six years, until it was absorbed by Film Independent (formerly IFP/LA) in 2001. At its height, the LAIFF attracted 19,000 attendees. Today, the Los Angeles Film Festival attracts more than 90,000.
It showcases independent, international, feature, documentary and short film
A film, also called a movie or motion picture, is a series of still or moving images. It is produced by recording photographic images with cameras, or by creating images using animation techniques or visual effects...
s, as well as music video
A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...
With an attendance of more than 90,000 people, it screens more than 100 feature films. The event also includes world premieres, panels and seminars, and free outdoor screenings.
The Festival features programs including the exclusive Filmmaker Retreat
- hosted by a veteran film director. In 2010, the Filmmaker Retreat was hosted by Kathryn Bigelow.
In addition to feature films, it also screens short films created by high school students and has a special section devoted to music videos.
Films submitted to the Festival are reviewed by Film Independent's programming department, which evaluates each film, looking for the best in new American and international cinema.
In 2011, the Festival showed over 200 films, music videos and shorts from over 30 countries.
Awards are given out in the following categories at the conclusion of the Festival:
- Filmmaker Award for Best Narrative Feature (award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $15,000)
- Filmmaker Award for Best Documentary Feature (award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $15,000)
- Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature
- Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature
- Audience Award for Best International Feature
- Outstanding Performance in the Narrative Competition
- Best Narrative Short Film (award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $5,000)
- Best Documentary Short Film (award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $5,000)
- Best Animated/Experimental Short Film (award carries an unrestricted cash prize of $5,000)
- Audience Award for Best Short Film.
The Los Angeles Film Festival was begun in 1971 by Gary Essert, as the Los Angeles International Film Exposition
Filmex was an annual Los Angeles film festival held in the 1970s and early 1980s. It was the predecessor of the American Film Institute's Los Angeles International Film Festival...
). Essert remained the festival's director until 1983.
In 1995, it became the 5-day Los Angeles Independent Film Festival
[LAIFF], which ran annually at the Directors Guild of America
Directors Guild of America is an entertainment labor union which represents the interests of film and television directors in the United States motion picture industry...
Building in Hollywood, California until 2001, when it was absorbed by Film Independent (formerly IFP/Los Angeles).
In 2006, the Los Angeles Times (www.latimes.com) became the festival's title presenter.
In 2010 the festival was moved to the Regal Cinemas at the L.A. Live complex in downtown Los Angeles, with additional screenings at several other downtown venues including the Downtown Independent, Orpheum Theatre (Los Angeles, California) and the REDCAT
Opened November 2003, REDCAT is a contemporary arts center that is an extension of CalArts campus, and serves as the professional presenting arm of the Institute...
Theater (below the Walt Disney Concert Hall). The festival also has a long tradition of screenings at the open-air John Anson Ford Amphitheatre
The John Anson Ford Amphitheatre is a 1421-seat performing arts theatre in Los Angeles, California. The theatre is owned and operated by the County of Los Angeles, and run through a three-way partnership between the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the Department of Parks and Recreation, and the...
in Hollywood. Free screenings are scheduled at California Plaza, in conjunction with Grand Performances, 7+Fig and at Nokia Plaza.
At its height the LAIFF attracted 19,000 attendees. Today the Los Angeles Film Festival attracts over 90,000 visitors.
The Los Angeles Film Festival is a qualifying festival in all categories for Film Independent Spirit Awards. The Festival is also a qualifying festival for the short films categories of the Academy
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is a professional honorary organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of motion pictures...
It has received grants from the Academy since 2005.