Feb 242010

Free gathering at Natasha’s on Friday, February 26

By Kiley Lane of the Lexington Film League

On Friday, February 26, from 6-8 PM, the Lexington Film League will host the “Do-ers Video Screening and Event Ceremony” at Natasha’s Bistro and Bar in Lexington. The event is free and open to the public.

When asked what to expect from the event, LFL co-producer Sarah Wylie VanMeter stated, “We expect a big crowd at Natasha’s. The contest didn’t just reach a film public, it extended to organizations and their supporters, too. And, if the stream of People’s Choice award votes we’ve been getting since Feb 1 is any indication, those networks are huge.”

Do-ers and the community

The definition of what makes someone or something a “Do-er” is somewhat obscure.

When the Lexington Film League announced their “Do-ers Video Contest” in the fall of 2009, they coined a “do-er” as any person, organization or business doing something to make their community better or more interesting. This interpretation left a lot open to the imagination, but the end result is that the Lexington Film League now has 22 videos that exemplify just what a “do-er” is and can be.

Lucy Jones, the newest co-producer of the Lexington Film League, cited the contest as one of the reasons she joined LFL. “I didn’t join the group until the planning stage of the event was already underway,” Jones notes. “I must admit—learning about the contest was a strong incentive to join! I’m proud to be part of an organization that is not only interested in promoting filmmaking, but is motivated in exploring the power of film to uplift the community.”

One of the hardest aspects of filmmaking is learning how to tell a story that is not your own. Creating something that makes sense, believe it or not, is not as easy as it sounds. The leaders of the Lexington Film League feel that each filmmaker of the Do-ers Video Contest achieved emotion and understanding of his or her subject that went above and beyond any expectation.

For the last five months the Lexington Film League has put up posters in both Lexington and Louisville, sent emails and made phone calls to surrounding schools and non-profit organizations and even reached out to other organizations across the state. “The community response has been very large, and very positive. Large, because the videos feature (mostly) organizations, and for the most part those organizations that have a large networks of supporters. And positive, because these ‘do-ers’ often are completely under most people’s radars,” says co-producer VanMeter.

If you visit the Lexington Film League’s YouTube account where all of the videos are posted (youtube/user/lexingtonfilmleague), you will see everything from Lexington citizens expressing their love of art to an individual being art in Louisville’s 21c Museum/Hotel. You will learn about a high school boy who clears walkways and driveways for free and a man who reads in Cheapside Park aloud.

You will learn about the Americana Community Center in Louisville, Hospice of the Bluegrass and Lexington’s Living Arts and Science Center. Perhaps you will become enthralled with an organization that empowers young girls, one that provides counseling services, those students feeding the homeless and a brick squad dedicated to helping the handicap.

Due to this diversity it was very difficult for LFL to choose the top 10 videos to be shown at Natasha’s. When asked if there were any surprises when watching the submissions, Jones responded by saying, “While I grew up in Kentucky, I have only recently returned here. So every aspect of the event has been a surprise. I am thrilled to know that there are so many incredible service organizations in the community, as well as individuals intent on making a difference. I am also thrilled to see the level of talent that exists in the filmmaking community.”

LFL and film communities

If LFL could have given a prize to each filmmaker and his or her prospective organization, we would have, but aside from the People’s Choice award, a $400 cash prize will go to the Best Overall, to be split between the nonprofit organization of the filmmaker’s choice. A Student Award has also recently been added. The Lexington Film League wants to thank Henry Clay High School’s Matthew Logsdon for motivating a number of his students to enter the contest; in part as a result of his efforts and interest, we created an award to recognize their efforts.

The Lexington Film League is dedicated to creating events to fit every genre and interest in film and filmmaking. We hope to bring both new and old interpretations to an amazing and attainable form of expression. We believe that by connecting Lexington audiences to filmmakers—and to a whole world of artists that make Lexington and Kentucky so artistically spontaneous—that we will help build on a community dedicated to the arts.

“LFL is important to Lexington because there are already lots of filmmakers here, and they need to be given opportunities to show what they’re doing. And because there are a lot of people who would like to try filmmaking, and they need to know they have community and support. There are also a lot of people who are just crazy about film, and they need ways to get their fix. We’re one more block that’s building the film community in Lexington and in Kentucky,” reflects VanMeter.

Please join the Lexington Film League at Natasha’s Bistro and Bar on Esplanade St. on Friday February 26th from 6 – 8 PM. Aside from a wonderful evening of “Do-ers” videos, we will also be announcing our next contest and big event, which will take place at the end of May.

We hope to see you there in support of not only LFL, but also the filmmakers and organizations who have shown that anyone can be a do-er—you just have to go out and DO something rather than choose to do nothing at all.

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