Last November I had a wonderful time travelling around some of the US states and as I’d heard good things about Asheville, North Carolina, it came in handy that there was a film festival on during my visit. It was the first time the Asheville Cinema Festival (3-6 November 2011) was being held after the Asheville Film Festival ceased to exist two years earlier. It is never a small feat to revive or start a new festival from scratch. It was all the more impressive what the organisers managed to pull off.
My weekend in Asheville couldn’t have been more fun and interesting. I stayed with a lovely local couchsurfer and spent my days taking tickets at screenings, counting audience award ballots, handing out flyers and attending various events. One of my festival favourites was the inspiring filmmaking workshops that were on offer. From screenwriting to editing we learned a whole lot from industry experts, such as Blair Daily and Joseph C. Stinson. Another one was the inaugural awards ceremony where everyone got together for a few drinks to celebrate the best of the fest.
If you’re looking at spending a weekend in Asheville and love films I can highly recommend volunteering with the ACF, you’ll be guranteed a warm welcome, fantastic movies and a great atmosphere. Hope to be back myself sometime soon!