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12 Weeks to Whistler Film Festival

The Whistler Film Festival (WFF) began their 12 Week Countdown last week with a great celebration at Big Rock Brewery. Held over the first week of December, the WFF combines an esteemed film competition with an intimate industry Summit that in 2015 attracted 13,332 attendees including 855 industry delegates. Phenomenal!

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Over the years, WFF has established an impressive track record for launching the careers of local filmmakers and delivering well-deserved recognition to new films. Earning a reputation as a filmmaker and film lover’s haven, WFF is showing a more promising line-up then ever before.

Featuring hearty canapes and food stations, host bar, brewery tour and tasting, entertainment and an auction and raffle, the evenings festivities include special guest appearances, toasts to industry friends, and an official unveiling of some films and talent you can expect to see at this year’s WFF festival.

Fundraising for the Whistler Film Festival

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Auction and raffle offerings included an array of experience packages sure to satisfy film fans and adventure seekers alike. Proceeds raised support Whistler Film Festival’s 2016 programs for Canadian talent, including our industry initiatives, labs and festival.

From the esteemed 2016 line-up, the grand opening celebration attracted two of the headlining actors: Duane E Howard of The Sun At Midnight and Julia Sarah Stone of The Space In Between.

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The Sun At Midnight is a beautiful tale about the survival of a native man in the far north. Starring both Duane E Howard and Devery Jacobs, Howard took the stage and the audience listened intently when he spoke of his upcoming role and how he prepare for the role – mentally and physically. Howard is known internationally for his major role in The Revenant, alongside mega-star and environmental activist, Leonardo Di Caprio.

Upon acceptance of this new casting, it was clear to Duane he was no longer working with a major director and stars with a macro budget. Instead, Howard knew that this next role would bring new challenges, excitement and a micro budget. When asked why he would go from a major motion picture to a low-budget independent picture, Howard breezily replied, “I’m an actor, it’s what I do.”

No sooner did these words leave Howard’s mouth, did the audience explode in applause and uproar. Howard had earned the respect of every filmmaker and film lover in the room with these 7 simple words.

Taking up the lead role in The Space Between, is the 18 year old, Julia Sarah Stone. Acting since she was 12 years old, Stone is no freshman on the movie set. Carrying with her an impressive portfolio of leading roles, supporting roles, and acting credentials, Stone is a presence for weary souls. When asked what we can expect from her upcoming role in The Space Between, Stone replied, “this film is a stunning ‘right of passage’ that will warm and thrill any weary travellers’ soul.”

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Other personalities of note at the Countdown Event include Canadian favourite Gabrielle Rose (The Birdwatcher, The BFG and If I Stay), Sam and Kailey Spear (The Mary Alice Brandon File), and Mary Galloway (Kevin Spacey Foundation’s Artist of Choice Canadian film winner, Unintentional Mother).

To learn more about the full Whistler Film Festival line-up for 2016 and Summit information visit their website.

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