The International Peace and Film Festival kicked off the six month countdown toward the epic event to be held in Orlando, in January 2020.
In the first week the festival received submissions from over twenty countries, with an expectation that the competition could include as many as one thousand independent films by the end of the season. Submissions are managed through an online portal at FilmFreeway.com where filmmakers can easily send their projects in to be reviewed for possible inclusion in the festival. To date, over 88 countries have participated in the IPFF film competition.
Started in 2014, the festival began as a peace initiative among local East European and American neighbors, who wanted to build positive relationships locally. The Russian speaking community, which includes many American members, was the host, and promoter for the event.
In following years, the community director, Jef Gray, decided the festival needed to be more broad and inclusive of all cultures, not only those from Eastern Europe. He privatized the festival and added independent films, cultural performances, a fashion show and guest speakers. The event grew from a simple afternoon in the park, to a multi day, international experience, bringing guests and competitors to Orlando each year.
The Russian speaking community is still very much a part of the event, and supports the activities, arts and fashion segments with local volunteers. Performing artists delight audiences during the awards ceremony, while models and fashion designers showcase their talents during “Izuminka” the fashion expo.
The 2020 festival will host two new segments; Artifex- a live action art gallery where art is displayed and created in real time. And, Luminos-a guest speaker program on world issues such as health, education. and science.
While you might find a lot of friendly faces at IPFF, what you won’t find are discussions of politics. Aside from the flags from visiting countries, the entire effort of the festival is to build peace through cultural exchange. everyone understands that they are coming together to appreciate art and culture. During the awards ceremony, models wear a collection of national costumes to promote the inspiration of each culture, prior to the show.
IPFF has extended its reach to an online channel on Roku, to help promote the films that participate in the event, and to share some of the highlights. You can search for the channel on Roku, using ‘IPFF-TV’.
To see the last festival in action, there is an online magazine, featuring content, models in the fashion show and media clips from the winning films. Visit the official website at PeaceFestival.us