By Michael Grondin
CALGARY – A season of secret flicks from the Calgary Society of Independent Filmaker’s (CSIF) huge collection of old-school films is set to screen monthly through the summer, building a new Calgary community based in film. According to CSIF’s Programming and Communications Director Raeesa Farooqi, CSIF is ready to showcase their extensive collection of films, spanning from Hollywood classics to obscure experimental shorts.
“For a bit of history, in 1997, the Calgary Public Library donated something like 2,000 super 8 and 16mm films to our organization,” explains Farooqi. “Instead of letting the films sit around and collect dust, we decided to start hosting these film screenings.”
Secret Cinema will take place on the third Wednesday of each month from June to September, and there’s a lot in store.
“Every screening, we bring a local personality or an organization to come in once a month in the summertime and pick a film or a collection of films to show from our library, but we never reveal the title of the films until you’re at the actual event,” she says. “So you never know what you’re in for. We’ve shown classic Hollywood films, NFB shorts, random documentaries. We have a lot of fun picking and showing films.”
For July, Calgary Folk Fest’s Artistic Director, Kerry Clarke, will be making the top-secret selection.
“The films Kerry has chosen are so good!” gushes Farooqi. “Though I can’t reveal the titles, I will say that fans of Lightnin’ Hopkins and Rebetika music are in for quite a treat.”
Screening a week prior to Folk Fest, the collaboration and cross promotion between arts organizations is what Secret Cinema is all about. “We have many very old films, and a lot to choose from,” adds Farooqi. “Having [curators] come in and pick films that relate to their work while also promoting film is a cool way to build a community.”
Secret Cinema takes place on the third Wednesday of each month at CSIF’s Sunalta Location, 100 1725 – 10 Avenue SW, by donation.Calgary Society of Independent Filmaker's, CSIF, Secret Cinema