The Downtown Los Angeles Film Festival has announced that its 15th annual edition will be held October 18-22 at Regal L.A. Live cinemas in downtown Los Angeles.
Known for its wide-ranging content and commitment to diversity, the festival has shown more than a thousand features, documentaries and shorts and other motion pictures over the past decade-plus. Produced by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the festival is dedicated to presenting the work of filmmakers traditionally underrepresented by Hollywood, notably women and people of color.
The festival also reflects in its programming choices the unique cultural and ethnic diversity of the neighborhoods of downtown Los Angeles and its surrounding Eastside communities, from South Central to Eagle Rock and East Hollywood to East L.A.. Since it was established in 2008, the festival has become the largest film event in DTLA.
“There are many film festivals in Los Angeles, but ours is one of the few that screens all genres with a focus on diversity and the only one in downtown -- the city’s creative hub and historic core,” said Carolyn Schroeder, the festival’s director of programming. “While we all know that streaming is increasingly playing a role in the careers of filmmaking talent, our festival continues its dedication to showcasing films in theaters. Since most of the films we present will be having their Los Angeles premieres, this will be the first and, in many cases, the only opportunity to see them as they are intended to be seen – on the big screen of a cinema.”
In addition to its narrative feature and short film presentations, the festival is celebrated for its documentary film programing. In addition to entries from the many film students and professional filmmakers in Los Angeles, the festival receives hundreds of entries from around the world.
“We provide an opportunity for documentaries to be screened in Los Angeles, a goal of virtually all filmmakers no matter where they live,” said Michael Kuehnert, senior curator of documentary programming. Our commitment to nonfiction filmmaking is unequivocal, perhaps best reflected in the fact that our two highest film honors, Best Picture and Audience Favorite, were awarded last year to the documentary films The Rest of Us and Low Rider Tradition, respectively.”
“While producing an independent film festival is always a challenge,” said Henry Priest, festival co-founder, “We’ll continue with our mission of showcasing diversity in cinema as long as there’s a need.”