24th annual DC Independent Film Forum welcomes 70 filmmakers to E Street Cinema

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews the D.C. Independent Film Forum (Part 1)

The 24th annual D.C. Independent Film Forum returns to the nation’s capital this week.

Over 70 filmmakers will visit Landmark E Street Cinema from Wednesday to Sunday.

“It started in 1999 to give a voice to independent filmmakers at a time when it was hard for them to get noticed; it’s still quite hard, so here we are,” Executive Director Deirdre Evans Pritchard told WTOP. “We just had our high school film festival, we are teaching animation nowadays, so our interest is in helping the general public see what goes on behind the films.”

It all kicks off Wednesday, with the opening night screening of “Divine Instinct” by Maryland filmmaker James Gossard.

“He’s made a film that’s very spiritual and artistic about taking time and thinking about life,” Pritchard said. “It’s a documentary about a sculptor named Gary Spinosa, who makes fantastic work and has sort of retreated into the woods to live his life.”

Thursday brings “The Smoke Master” by Brazilian directors Andre Sigwalt and Augusto Soares. “That is a wild ride screening both Thursday and Friday of kung-fu with the Chinese mafia thrown in and the argument that you must be high to be good at kung-fu,” Pritchard said.

Next, you can enjoy Fright night frights with a slate of scary flicks, along with Ellie Foumbi’s “Our Father, the Devil,” which is simultaneously competing this weekend at the Indie Spirit Awards for Best Feature against “Bones and All,” “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” “Tar” and Women Talking.”

“This is a thriller about the issue of child soldiers,” Pritchard said.

Saturday brings a variety of animated films, as well as the world premiere of “City of Love” directed by Èric Boadella.

“It’s a film about the difficulties of readjusting to society when things have gone really wrong in life,” Pritchard said. “It’s a riff on the ride-share culture as well. I like to think of it as having a ‘Fight Club’ feel to it, slightly behind the scenes of life.”

It all wraps Sunday with Paul Daisuke Goodman’s “No No Girl” about a Japanese-American family burying a big secret, and Michael Rainin’s “Run Raven Run” about “Gypsy music in Romania. It follows a lot of the historical background and some of the difficult treatment that gypsies have been through, their inspiring music and how it’s moved into popular culture.”

Find more information here.

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews the D.C. Independent Film Forum (Part 2)

Listen to our full conversation here.

Jason Fraley

Hailed by The Washington Post for “his savantlike ability to name every Best Picture winner in history," Jason Fraley began at WTOP as Morning Drive Writer in 2008, film critic in 2011 and Entertainment Editor in 2014, providing daily arts coverage on-air and online.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow WTOP on Twitter and Instagram to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2023 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up