The Siouxland Film Festival is put on annually by the Siouxland Institute of Film. The festival features short films, 15 minutes in length or less. The submissions are narrowed down to the finalists who are shown at the festival. Attendees vote for their favorites, and one goes home with the Siouxsie award.
According to their web site, siouxlandfilmfestival.org, the Institute of Film is comprised of board members Gary Lipshutz, John Carter, Margot Chesebro, Dan Dykstra, Patrick Blaine, Rick Mullin, Tom Bottaro, and Thomas Ritchie. Their goal is to promote film, encourage young filmmakers, and to bring films to the Orpeum theater. They have put together the Siouxland Film Festival for the last 9 years. The film festival is sponsored by several local businesses.
There are two categories that filmmakers can submit to; shorts and local. Short films can be submitted by filmmakers residing anywhere. Films have to be 15 minutes or less in length and be made in the calendar year immediately preceding the festival. For the local category filmmakers must reside in Iowa, or in the Siouxland area of Nebraska and South Dakota. While the local entires are also required to be 15 minutes or less in length, this category is judge separately from the short category. Films in both categories can cover any topic or genre.
For the 2014 festival 74 films were submitted, and 16 were shown at the festival. In the local film category Another Chance by Dave and Barbara Gross took home the $500 cash prize and the Siouxsie award trophy. The film chronicles the story of an animal shelter employee who falls in love with an old, abandoned dog. Second place and a $250 cash prize went to Cheating The Hangman by Jake Rains. This film is the story of a quiet student being bullied. Third place and $50 went to local high school students Araceli Lopez and Zaide Moran for I Have A Dream.
In the short category first place, and a Siouxsie award, went to Mischa Jakupcak from Washington for her short film The Hero Pose. The film is about a father ad daughter’s relationship and features Chaske Spencer of Eclipse, New Moon, and Breaking Dawn fame. Second place was awarded to Gianluca Sodaro from Rome, Italy for God’s Got His Head In The Clouds. Third Place went to Nic Barker of Melbourne, Australia for The Pint.
The Siouxland Film Festival is an amazing opportunity for local filmmakers to showcase their work, and for Siouxland residents to get a taste of the short film industry worldwide. If you want to try your hand at filmmaking, check out their web site at Siouxlandfilmfestival.org for information on next year’s festival.