Poppy Jasper International Film Festival Written By Robin Shepherd T Left: Randy Spendlove, keynote speaker at April 6 Gala with daughter Alex and Katy Perry. Above: Poppy Jasper International Film Festival Director, Mattie Scariot. PJIFF is for Filmmakers In recent years, independent filmmakers have won Oscars—a trend predicted to continue. Like any other film festival worth its salt, PJIFF aims to discover the next great talent and help them on the path to stardom. 42 This year, 100 short and feature-length films from twelve countries were submitted for consideration in the festival’s juried competition. A panel of film experts selects the best films in each of eleven categories— including drama, comedy, science fiction and documentaries. Winners are invited to PJIFF to screen their films, followed by onstage commentaries and Q&A with the audience. PJIFF is for The Community Festival goers get to see great new films, rub elbows with filmmakers, and hear from notable guest speakers. The four-day event is also an opportunity for family and friends to gather at popular downtown Morgan Hill and Gilroy venues where the film screenings and mixers will be held, and there’s more. During the run-up to the festival, PJIFF organizers have invited local community members who want to try their hand at filmmaking to sign up for one of three Pre-Festival Programs: learn moviemaking using smartphones and apps. Millennials Music Video A group of local directors will create a music video of a live band performance in South County (schedule/location will be announced). Community members, 21 years of age or older, will have an opportunity to be “audience extras” during a portion of the filming. Online registration required. 40 & UP Filmmaking Workshop Film fans (40 or older) who want to try their hand as part of an instructor-led filmmaking crew can attend one or several workshops taking place over three Sundays: February 11, 18 and 25; from 10 am to 6 pm. Online registration required. Films created in these programs will be shown at the festival and their creators will receive recognition and awards. Space in these workshops is limited. Register online at pjiff.org. Young Filmmakers (ages 4-14) PJIFF is for Film Lovers This winter, four workshops were coordinated by Community Media Access Here’s a sampling of what’s in store for the PJIFF 2018 film screenings. Partnership (CMAP) and hosted by the Gilroy and Morgan Hill Libraries. These • A French documentary, “With My free workshops gave kids a chance to GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 gmhtoday.com INTERNATIONAL his spring, South County will roll out the red carpet and shine a spotlight on the rebirth of a local tradition—the Poppy Jasper Inter- national Film Festival. It’s a rare opportu- nity to see films from around the world and meet the artists who created them. According to Festival Director Mattie Scariot, “There’s been a dramatic change in the way films are being created and consumed. We have incredible technology like the RED camera. We have broad distribution thanks to companies like Netflix. And we have a new generation of filmmakers with stories to share. It’s through film festivals that they can make their voices heard.” Popularly referred to as PJIFF, the 2018 festival will host filmmakers, film fans, and even a few celebrities. If you’ve never been to a film festival, or if you have been but didn’t quite get the hang of it, read on.