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GCC will host third film festival this weekend

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 August 2018 at 5:58 pm

The WNY FAME festival this weekend at Genesee Community College includes the showing of “SMACKED! Heroin Addiction & Recovery In Rural America.”

Sgt. Stubby will be screened at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

BATAVIA – Genesee Community College is hosting a film festival this weekend for the third time and many the filmmakers tackle critical social issues, including drug addiction in rural communities and rape violence.

The WNY FAME festival includes 76 films. Rhonda Parker, a GCC alum and former Albion resident, is the lead organizer of the event. She now lives in Lockport and is a filmmaker with her husband Mark.

“The filmmakers have something to say,” she said. “They pick relevant issues. These are passionate individuals.”

Not all of the films are serious. Many are silly and just for fun. Parker was pleased to have an animated film with a big budget in the festival. “Sgt. Stubby – An American Hero” is a computer-animated feature film based on the true story of the bond between a solider and a stray dog in WWI. The film includes voices of Logan Lerman from Percy Jackson and Helena Bonham Carter. The film starts at 2 p.m. on Sunday and is free to veterans and their families.

The Parkers had their own work in the first two festivals. They have a new film in production that isn’t done. They are editing “A Christmas Monstrosity” that will include a companion book, Mrs. Parker said.

She said the festival includes many films shot in Western New York, as well as others from outside the region.

“We have a lot of great local stuff,” she said about the festival, which starts on Saturday at 11 a.m. and ends at 9 p.m. on Sunday. “I want to promote local art and film. People don’t realize there are a lot of local people making film.”

The festival is open to the public with tickets $5 per two-hour block or $24 for a festival pass. FAME will present awards for the top films, actors, writers, directors, set designers, costume designers and cinematographers at 6 p.m. on Sunday.

To see a schedule of events, click here.

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