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  • Brian Giovanni

Columbus Capers and Film School Flashbacks

More festival news! Last weekend I was in Ohio for the 66th Annual Columbus International Film and Animation Festival. It was the fifth festival 'When Comes the Rain' was screening in, and I was very excited to be a part of it!

Touted as the oldest film festival in the country (who else can put a '66' beside their name?), the festival was a great mix of indie features, shorts, animation, documentaries, and plenty of other fun times. Festival programmer Jeremy Henthorn was wonderful to work with, and he, along with his staff, put on an amazing three-day event.

My film was once again part of a family / kids animated program, and it screened twice - first to a sold out crowd at the fabulous Drexel art house theater, and then later at CCAD (Columbus College of Art & Design) who was partnering with the festival. I'm used to chatting with fellow animators and filmmakers after various screenings.. But this time, talking with families and little kids about what they liked from my film was a whole new experience, and wonderfully rewarding seeing how much fun they were having. When I made the film, I had no idea what kind of appeal it would have on kids, so it was quite eye opening! Your own work can often surprise you if you listen to it, and let others see it in their own way..

Another great part of the trip was reconnecting with my college years. My family and I paid a visit to my alma mater - Denison University in nearby Granville OH - and I was happily reacquainted with the campus and the renovations to their cinema department - of which I was once a student. Even more exciting was reuniting with my film professor Marc Wiskemann, whose animated short 'Leaves of Fall' also screened at the festival! I also met up with another fellow alum and animator Tom DeCarlo, who had a short in the same block as me, with his animated film 'The Encounter.' A small world indeed!

If that wasn't enough alumni networking, I was also fortunate to meet the crew of Columbus-based production company Loose Films (made up of film grads well after my time), who showed their documentary short 'Down and Dirty.'

So much alumni activity packed into one big weekend! Check out all of their amazing work, and marvel at the broad spectrum of creativity stemming from my beloved film school!

All in all, a fantastic and diverse programming of films, a super friendly staff, and the added benefit of taking a trip down memory lane. Let's hope I can get another film up and running soon so I can do it all again next year!


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