Last weekend and last week, I celebrated my fourth year as a volunteer for the Austin Film Festival and Writer’s Conference! I heard about this festival right when I moved to Austin, as I was listening to a podcast on screenwriting.
The festival is THE biggest writer’s conference in the country and the film festival is quite impressive. Last year, I worked all of my volunteer shifts at the movie theatre and I got to see sooo many movies.
So, I signed up for similar shifts this year, hoping to see lots of movies.
But when I showed up for my first shift, the theatre manager was frazzled and wouldn’t let any volunteers watch the movie. That meant sitting outside the theatre for the duration of the film. I stupidly didn’t bring a book.
After five hours of quite an awful shift, I was wondering if maybe this would be my last year at the festival.
But, during my second shift, I got to see a movie. It was called, “Making Apes” and it was a documentary on the makeup artists for “Planet of the Apes”. It was so fascinating! They talked about the idea for the makeup and prosthetics, and how groundbreaking it was to create a movie starring human-like apes.
It made me wonder about the makeup in several other early films. Very cool!
I had one final shift and although I didn’t get to see any movies (they offered to let us), I had so much fun talking to the other volunteers! They were movie buffs and studying film in school, which was interesting to hear about. It doesn’t hurt that we were at the Drafthouse, so I got a yummy Reese’s milkshake and Sriracha fries 🙂
I mentioned that I felt like the vibe was different this year, and one volunteer explained why, and I don’t want to blast anything on here, but it made sense, and honestly, the Film Fest is such a huge undertaking and most of it is done through the work of volunteers. The whole thing is impressive.
One thing that I will a,ways enjoy about the theatre shifts is seeing and talking to people before they’re about to go into the movie and after they come out. They are always excited and it’s cool to see.
Another year down — see y’all next year!
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