The Calgary International Film Festival

in Calgary on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. (Photo by {photog/The Press)

in Calgary on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. (Photo by {photog/The Press)

filmmakers alike will have the chance to catch local and internationally directed films with this year’s Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF).

Running from Sept. 24 to Oct. 4, the festival is held annually in multiple downtown locations and presents a unique opportunity for international and local talent to be brought together..

The festival features a diverse and far-flung billing. Films such Shim Sung-Bo’s Sea Fog (2014), and Gabriele Salvatore’s Invisible Boy (2014), hail from Korea and Italy, respectively..

With such a varied selection, Steve Schroeder, executive director of the CIFF, said bringing both international and local filmmakers together “allows for local talent to see how their story compares on a wider context.”.

It can also inspire filmmakers and has, in the past, presented opportunities for film collaborations..

Thomas Robert Lee, director of the film Empyrean, said it is important for “[as a species, we need to come together, challenge each other and continue to raise the bar.”.

“You can’t separate how the audience benefits and how the filmmakers benefit,” said Schroeder..

“Unlike movies coming out of Hollywood or coming to the big screen, audience members can actually interact with the filmmakers and ask them questions.”.

Schroeder said the CIFF works as a bridge for the filmmakers and viewers, assisting artists with finding their audience — and if they can connect the two, they consider their mission fulfilled..

Lee had attended the festival for nearly a decade before he participated as a filmmaker and said the whole festival has a positive vibe around it. He’s honoured to be a part of the CIFF..

The arts also have something to gain from the festival by bringing in new cultures, perspectives, and ideas through film..

The festival also brings new and emerging filmmakers to the attention of the general audience..

Lee claims all the festivals including the CIFF work together to enrich Calgary culturally and said that every year the festival gets bigger, expressing that the festival is a great way to see films you may not get to see normally..

“In a society, it’s important to have artists because the artist expresses the societies voice,” Schroeder said..

“For Calgary to be known in the world we must have artists”.

Tickets are available for sale at their website (calgaryfilm.com). You can purchase ticket bundles or if there’s one particular film you’re looking so see you can buy them for individual movies.

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