Among the films coming up at the Anchorage International Film Festival is Alaska-made “And Now We Rise.” It’s a title fitting for this moment in Alaska.
When the big earthquake shook Southcentral Alaska Friday morning, one of many events impacted was the Anchorage International Film Festival. It canceled its opening night screening of short film films that had been set for Friday at Bear Tooth Theatrepub.
“We are working to assess damage to the auditorium, projection, and sound equipment and will update our Facebook and web pages with any changes or new information as it develops,” Bear Tooth announced on its website.
Then, as Alaskans do, everyone jumped into gear. Alaska Experience Theatre stepped up and by Saturday evening was serving as a replacement venue for some of the films. (The theater’s anchor is usually “1964 Earthquake Experience,” a documentary on the big Alaska quake.)
“After a shaky start we are back on track,” the festival announced on Facebook.
“And Now We Rise: A Portrait of Samuel Johns” is set for its Alaska premiere on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at Alaska Experience Theatre and a second showing at 7:15 p.m. There may be a rescreening later at Bear Tooth, which is working to reopen.
Filmmaker Mary Rosanne Katzke tells the story of Athabascan hip-hop artist Samuel Johns, who she describes as “exceptional young activist.” He is an “everyman” who heals his own trauma by helping others. He created a Facebook group, Forget Me Not, to connect those experiencing homelessness with families who are distant. Katzke will be at the screening for a Q and A. Ramuson Foundation supported the production work done by Katzke’s Affinityfilms, and she received an Individual Artist Award this year for a new multimedia storytelling project, #reset4change, on youth pushing for system transformation.
Click below for a trailer. Enjoy the screening and check out all the films at the Anchorage International Film Festival.
The 10-day festival runs through Dec. 9.
Bear Tooth Theatrepub says it is working on refunds for those who already bought tickets and may be able to reschedule some of the screenings. The grill and cafe are open. Stay tuned for when the theater will reopen.