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Anchorage International Film Festival

December 5-14, 2008

New Website for 2009!

This is the old website. The new website is available here!

Festival News Update - April 2009

AIFF Debuts Homer "Road Show"

The Anchorage International Film Festival is bringing some of the highlights of last year's AIFF to Homer on Friday, May 1.  See outstanding selections like  "Sikumi," as well as a bundle of other exciting Alaskan made and imported short films. Program starts 8ish at the Bunnell Street Gallery.

Festival News Update - March 2009

AIFF Reorganizes as its own 501(c)(3)

The Anchorage International Film Festival has reorganized as a new 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. The AIFF has been operating under the auspices of AMIPA (The Alaska Moving Image Preservation Association).

The festival is currently transitioning and will be operating full-fledged under the new corporation by July 1, 2009. The new Board of Directors for the Anchorage International Film Festival are

Rand Thornsley, President

Tony Sheppard, Vice-President

Michele Miller, Secretary/Treasurer

The new AIFF will be a membership based organization and will start soliciting memberships in various categories starting April 15.  We look forward to continuing to serve Anchorage cinephiles for years to come and have many improvements in line for the AIFF.

The Bear Tooth Theatrepub is now the title sponsor of the AIFF guaranteeing the AIFF a first-rate showplace. Walsh-Sheppard Strategy and Communications will continue as the founding sponsor of the film festival.

The 2009 AIFF will run for two full weeks with the Opening Night Gala and the Awards Gala both held at the Bear Tooth. The Awards Gala will be moved to second Sunday of the festival (December 13 this year) and award winning and best of the fest films will show the final 4 days of the festival at the Bear Tooth and conclude on December 17.

We are seeking persons interested in volunteering for various positions including programming and screening. If you have an interest in volunteering your talents with the AIFF, please complete a brief online resume.

Anchorage International Film Festival "Call for Entries" will open on May 15, 2009.

If you have any questions, please contact one of the board members.


Greetings    Admissions Price and Policies   A Message from the Founder

A Message from the Executive Director

Special Thanks      Cast and Crew

What Do I Know? Blogspot


Audience Awards Announced

Best Feature - Coyote

Best Documentary - The Wrecking Crew 

Jury Prize Winners Announced

Streetsweeper is Best AIFF Feature for 2008

AIFF 2008 Photo Gallery


Thank you!

To all who attended, our filmmaker guests, our wonderful volunteers and our sponsors, you made 2008 a milestone year for the AIFF. With a record attendance, exceptional films and workshops - the 2008 AIFF brought to Anchorage a truly international event. The festival is over for another year, but the management and program team will be back to work in just a couple of months getting ready for a bigger and better 2009 festival.

In the meantime, our website will be kept live for those who want to reseach films they have seen. We are also still posting photos from the various events that took place this year.

Dates for 2009 - December 4-17 (2 weeks!)


Film Critics are already calling Anchorage Screenwriter, Don Reardon's comedy film hilarious! Click here for more.

Anchorage Film Festival reviewed in the Anchorage Daily News

Anchorage Film Festival reviewed in the Anchorage Press

Hanah Kaplan's "Tit's & Skatin' featured in the Kodiak Mirror

"The Last Days of Shishmaref" in the Anchorage Daily News

"Sky in December" in the Anchorage Daily News



The AIFF would like to say a big



Duke Russell

for this year's poster art

Limited Edition 2008 T shirts with Duke's art are still available - Contact Michele at (907) 786-4980

Greetings film lovers...

We hope you will join us for the eighth annual Anchorage International Film Festival to be held December 5-14, 2008. This promises to be our biggest and best festival yet; over 150 films will screen in our three main venues during the 10-day festival. It’s not just about film; our festival explores cultures, diversity, techniques and having a good time.

Speaking of a good time, our opening night on Friday, December 5 will feature a fabulous gala event at the Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum on Lake Hood, following the screening of our opening night film (Camille) at the Bear Tooth Theatre. This is a wonderful opportunity to mix and meet with local cinephiles, filmmakers and industry celebrities.

The film selection process for the 2008 AIFF has ended and the official selections have been announced. Films slated to show in competition will be announced on November 1. The complete program schedule is now online and  the AIFF program guide was published in the Anchorage Press on Wednesday, November 26.

The Bear Tooth Theatrepub will again be the AIFF premiere venue and new for 2008 will be a full ten-day screening schedule at the Bear Tooth. Our other venues include the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center and the 200-seat Fireweed Theatre. The Fireweed Theatre 1,100 seat auditorium will feature a special centerpiece attraction on Wednesday, December 10.

This year the AIFF has added a chance for the audience to be more involved. Guests attending feature narrative and feature documentary films will receive a ballot to judge each film. The top three films in each category will receive an Audience Choice Award from the Anchorage International Film Festival and the best film in each category will have a special screening on the closing day.

So, wake up and smell the popcorn, get off your couch, put away your skis for a few days and join the festivities. This is your chance to meet filmmakers from around the world and attend workshops, forums, galas and screening events. And it only happens once a year! Volunteers are needed and Festival Passes are on sale now!

See you at the movies

Film Festival Admission Prices and Policies

Admission prices

General admission $7

Selected Screenings (Family Matinees/Classic Films/Martini Matinee $5)

Package Prices

Festival All Films and Events Pass $85  Available online - buy now! (select 11:45 PM)

All Festival Films Pass $60 Available online - buy now! (select 11:55 PM)

Tickets purchased ONLINE must be picked up from the Bear Tooth box office no later than Friday, December 5.  Starting Saturday, December 6, Passes will only be available at the venues.

6 Pack Admissions $36 (Available starting Tuesday, December 2 at the Bear Tooth)

The $60 ALL FILMS pass allows expedited admission to all films.The $85 ALL FILMS AND EVENTS pass includes all screenings as well as entrance to special events like the opening night gala, Martini Matinee, the Golden Oosikar Awards and all workshops. Please note: events may sell out. A pass does not guarantee you a seat, but it does promise expedited entry. Pass holders can pick up tickets (without charge) from the hosts at each screening. AIFF passes are NOT transferable. Your purchase helps make the festival possible, so thank you for not sharing!

Purchase your festival passes or punch cards in advance or during the festival at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub, AMIPA or The Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center and Regal Fireweed will also sell passes and punch cards during the festival's run. Passes purchased online can be picked up at the Bear Tooth box office. You must present the confirmation number or the credit card used to make the purchase to receive your AIFF pass.


AIFF Pass admissions are not eligible for purchasing booth/reserved seating at the Bear Tooth. The Booth/Reserved seating at the Bear Tooth is $2 higher than regular admission price for each show and you must purchase the entire occupancy of the booth (either 2 or 4).


Advance tickets are only available for films scheduled  at the Bear Tooth Theatre. Tickets for the entire festival will go on sale starting Tuesday, December 2 at 12 noon. Tickets at all other venues will be sold starting approximately 45 minutes before the start of each film.


Film categories include Feature Narratives, Documentaries, Short Films, Super Shorts, Animation, Family, and our Alaska showcase, Snowdance. Festival entries are open to all films regardless of origin, content and genre. Official selections include all films selected to be screened during the Festival. Special presentations include all films that are invited to fortify our program. Films in competition are the Official selections that are chosen by our prescreening committee to be entered into competition. Approximately 20% of our official selections are entered into our competition.

Parents should note that most films are for mature audiences, however the festival has programmed several wonderful family programs.  While we make an effort to note specific programs that are not appropriate for children based upon our programmers suggestions, we cannot guarantee that a film is suitable for your child. We therefore recommend that you check out the film background before bringing pre-teenage children to any AIFF program unless it is specifically listed in the family category.

A Message from the Founder of the Anchorage International Film Festival

Did you read Jaws by Peter Benchly, or The Exorcist? Did it scare you more than the film version? Really, did it? And when it's the other way around, why is it that writers can rarely do a movie justice and turn it into a great novel? I mean, writers have much more time and imagination at their disposal. And their budget? What budget? A 3-month cash advance from the publisher and a case of scotch. Maybe some smokes? Ouch! That's gotta put some cramps in their imagination and style. Okay, I suppose, as novels, Ulysses, The Great Gatsby, Don Quixote, along with many others can proclaim their superiority over the movie versions. But, have you ever sat in a crowded auditorium and simultaneously laughed, cried, shrieked, and been transformed in a state of emotional metamorphosis? There’s nothing else like it.

I'd like to thank all of the filmmakers, supporters and volunteers that have come together and contributed their materials, resources and personal time. Can you believe that this is the eighth annual Anchorage International Film Festival?

Thank you for supporting the art of independent film. Thanks for all of your hard work and sacrifices.

Yours in good film,

Tony Sheppard
Founder & Director of Film Programming, AIFF

A Message from the Executive Director

The Anchorage International Film Festival (AIFF) is a program under the Alaska Moving Image Preservation Association (AMIPA) umbrella. AMIPA is proud to have the AIFF under our purview: It is a distinctly Alaskan 10-day film festival that brings cinema and media artists to Anchorage from all over the world, featuring Films Worth Freezing For! Thank you fellow film fanatics,for eight years of support! The Anchorage International Film Festival is a bright spot in 10 of the shortest days of our winter. We're honored to screen work from emerging and established filmmakers, including world-class Snowdance films like Sikumi and The Last Days of Shishmaref. Now, sit back, relax, and let the Anchorage International Film Festival take you far away – to another place, space and time – 10 glorious days of independent film!


Michele Miller
Executive Director, AMIPA

Special Thanks

Huge endeavors like a film festival require the hard work and endless patience of volunteers and dedicated professionals. The staff, programmers and managers of the Anchorage International Film Festival want to thank the following people and businesses for their expertise and generous support: Feature screeners John McKay, Karen Miovas, Keith Popely and Roberta Spayd; animation screeners Laura Jungreis, Max Jungreis, Sally Jungreis, Buzz Schwall and Katie Scott; animation judges Janes Cruz, Richard Dowling, Dave Hoffman, Becky Fox-Krogstad and Sam Krogstad; feature judges Bruce Farnsworth, Christopher Wilhelm, Kevin Tripp, Carol Schatz and Cindy Allen; shorts judges Joel Williams, Rob Keys, Alicia Rosner, Rebecca Anowlic, and Kenneth Oh; shorts honorary screener Tom Dolan; super shorts screener Kristian Pettyjohn; documentary screeners Jess Doherty, Kim Flemming, Travis Shinabarger, Chuck Crew, and James Gwynn; documentary judges Jess Doherty, Kim Flemming, Travis Shinabarger, James Gwynn; Dawnell Smith; and for capturing this year’s festival, photographers Chris Arend, Clark Mishler and Hal Gage; Bear Tooth owners Rod Hancock, Matt Jones and Warren Hancock for giving Rand so much time to work on the festival and projectionist Dillon Miller for covering shifts; John Brower and Christopher Wilhelm for allowing us to use their home theater for judging; Shari Hart at Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum; Carolyn Kinneen, the special events wizard; Barb Miller of Midnight Sun Brewing Company; Café Amsterdam, the Middle Way Café, Bosco's, Sony Pictures and Moose's Tooth for contributing to hospitality bags; special thanks to Pat Walsh, Jack Sheppard, Sara Croop, Karen Miovas, Catherine Shenk and the AMIPA staff -- Kevin Tripp, Michael Walsh and Greg Schmitz.

Cast and Crew

Tony Sheppard, founder, director of programming, management committee; Michele Miller, AMIPA executive director, fundraising, sponsorship, events and management committee; Rand Thornsley, specialty film programmer, studio liaison, web site, management committee; Lee Bullington, PR and community relations; Carolyn Kinneen, special events manager; Mark Lutz and Kim Wilson, hospitality; Juliet Hildreth and Nancy Moore, volunteer coordinators; Glenn Hemingson, AMIPA board chair and AIFF transportation coordinator; Karen Miovas, program manager; Sara Croop program designer; Michael Walsh, media compilation; Doug Griffin and Kelly Gwynn, documentary programmers; Teresa Scott and Fran Kelly, animation programmers; Julie Decker, family programmer; Mike Allison, super shorts programmer; Miranda Felch and Cody Nipper, shorts programmers; Dawnell Smith, film festival coordinator and administrative support.

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