Parties & Openings
March 16 - Williamstown
WCMA Season Celebration
March 3 - Lenox
Andrew DeVries Benefit Party
Feb. 23 - Pittsfield
Real Art Party
BIFF Previews Its Ninth Showing
Lisa Green reports from Lenox. The 9th Annual Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF) got off to a rousing start at Haven Café on Thursday, April 24, where BIFF supporters, board members and others gathered as the festival’s founder and director, Kelley Vickery, announced the lineup. The festival, May 29—June 1, will feature 29 documentaries, 28 narrative features and 16 short films from 18 countries; a record 41 filmmakers will be in attendance with their films. For the first time, BIFF will open with a feature film, May in the Summer (the opening film at Sundance a year ago), directed and written by Cherien Dabis, who will be in attendance. Since the film takes place in Jordan, the Opening Night Gala in Great Barrington will be themed as a Middle Eastern party with a band and plenty of dancing under the tent. In Pittsfield, the opening night will feature The Trip to Italy, a continuation of the Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon culinary and cultural road trip movies. BIFF wouldn’t be complete without its auxiliary elements: the “Next Great Filmmaker Award” presentation, the Third Annual Jury headed up by Karen Allen, a French film retrospective screening, a filmmakers summit and, of course, the closing night party at Castle Street Café. “I did over program,” Vickery admitted. But no one seemed to mind. (Above, Doone Marshall with Lauren Ferin, BIFF’s executive assistant.)
John Valente, general manager of the Triplex and Beacon cinemas, and Lydia Shulman, The Beacon Cinema’s assistant manager and projectionist; Amanda Bettis (aka BIFF’s “Design Diva”) of Studio Two and Lindsey Schmid, director of marketing services for the Berkshire Visitors Bureau.
Haven Cafe’s Alba Sanchez and owner Shelley Williams, who hosts the BIFF Preview Party every year.
Kelley Vickery announces the 2014 lineup; Katie Whalan and John Whalan, a filmmaker.
Hunter Runnette with advisory board members Suky and Tom Werman.
Corliss and Charles Rosenberg of Otis and New York; Steve Johnson, assistant manager at The Triplex Cinema.
Haven’s Jane Ciepiela, who is also a yoga instructor, and Diane Pearlman, executive director of the Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative of Western Massachusetts.