Catskills Film Festival set for May 2 - May 4

By Joe Moskowitz
In just two weeks SUNY Delhi will host the Catskill Mountains Film Festival, the brainchild of Hamden filmmaker Jessica Vecchione.

Her own credits include the highly acclaimed “Bienvenidos a Fleischmanns”, a documentary about the birth and development of the Mexican community in Fleischmanns.
A year and-a-half ago, Vecchione helped produce the film festival, “The Art and Soul of the Catskills” where she said they screened anything that anyone recorded and submitted. But that was a primitive ancestor of the Catskill Mountains Film Festival.
This festival will have big names, big movies, and, while there will be plenty of local entries; the goal was to get the best movies available from anywhere.
The festival’s honorary chairman is actor Bill Pullman of “Independence Day”, “Spaceballs”, “A League of Their Own”, and “Sleepless in Seattle.” Pullman is unquestionably the most famous SUNY Delhi alumnus.
Margaretville resident David France will screen his Academy Award nominated documentary, “How to Survive a Plague.” Roxbury’s Roger Ross Williams will screen “God Loves Uganda”, His film was short listed for an Academy Award this year. Williams did win an Oscar in 2010 for his documentary “Music by Prudence.”
Vecchione said most of the films will be documentaries. One of them, “Destiny’s Bridge” is about a now demolished tent city for the homeless in New Jersey. It was directed by former Andes Resident Jack Ballo.
“To Be Forever Wild”, a film about the Catskill Park was first screened at last autumn’s Woodstock film festival, but Vecchione said that was a “rough cut.”
A more polished version will make its debut at the Catskill Mountains Film Festival over three days; May 2, 3, and 4 at SUNY Delhi.
Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at WWW.catskillmountainsfilmfestival.org.