(CSL) has announced the schedule for the Second Annual St. Louis International Children’s Film Festival (SLIFF/Kids (http://cinemastlouis.org/sliffkids-childrens-film-festival)), presented by PNC Arts Alive. PNC Arts Alive is a multi-year, $2 million initiative from The PNC Foundation that supports visual and performing arts groups with the goal of increasing arts access and engagement in new and innovative ways. SLIFF/Kids is one of only 10 St. Louis arts programs selected for a PNC Arts Alive grant in 2014.
“Arts Alive is at its heart a driver of economic development,” said Michael Scully, PNC regional president for St. Louis. “By encouraging the tremendous efforts to foster a vibrant and active arts scene in St. Louis, we are working to attract young talent, provide access to new audiences – including those traditionally underserved by the arts – and fuel the economic engine of the region.”
SLIFF/Kids features 19 film programs on the fest’s two weekends (Aug. 1-3 and Aug. 8-10). Venues include the St. Louis Public Library, COCA, Saint Louis Art Museum, Webster University, Lindenwood University, and Wildey Theatre (in Edwardsville, Ill.). All film programs are free. With the participation of both Lindenwood and Webster universities, Filmmaking Camps on live action and animation are held at the St. Louis Public Library’s Creative Experience on the fest’s weekdays (Aug. 4-8). And on Aug. 9, a full-day Workshop for teens on the Art of Animation is held at the Saint Louis Art Museum. Additionally, two Advanced Filmmaking Camps are offered from Monday-Friday, Aug. 11-15, for students who attended camp last year or who already possess experience in video production. The camps are free of charge; the animation workshop is $75.
The films screened at SLIFF/Kids include international and American-independent narrative features (both animated and live action) and shorts programs. Programs are pitched to children and young teens ages 6-16; some programs appeal equally to all ages, but others are designed to serve particular age ranges.
SLIFF/Kids kicks off on Aug. 1 at Webster U. with a laugh-filled program that features live music, clown performances, and a quartet of classic silent-film shorts by Charlie Chaplin, who made his debut on screen 100 years ago. The films include “Kid Auto Races at Venice” (Chaplin’s first appearance as the Little Tramp), “The Adventurer,” “Easy Street,” and “The Immigrant.” The Rats and People Motion Picture Orchestra’s Matt Pace accompanies the films on piano, and live clowning is provided before and after the films by Circus Kaput’s Oh My Gosh Josh.
The fest features two exciting guests – a pair of former St. Louisans now working in animation. Brad Schiff, supervising animator at LAIKA (“Coraline,” the upcoming “The Boxtrolls”), gives a behind-the-scenes look at the studio on Aug. 2, including a screening of LAIKA’s “ParaNorman.” Shawn Krause, supervising animator at Pixar Animation Studios (“Toy Story,” “Finding Nemo,” “Up”), is featured in three programs: a look behind the scenes at Pixar on Aug. 8, a workshop on animation on Aug. 9, and a screening of “The Incredibles” on Aug. 10. SLIFF/Kids’ other highlights include the Japanese animes “Patema Inverted” and “Welcome to the Space Show”: the animated films “Anina,” “The Boxcar Children,” “Boy and the World,” and “Nocturna”; the live-action films “The Black Brothers,” “My Dog the Champion,” and “Windstorm”; the classic “Mary Poppins” (celebrating its 50th anniversary); and a program of family shorts.