POV series producer Yance Ford is in Columbia, Missouri for the True/False Film Festival.
Film festivals are usually unpleasant experiences on some level. The lines are ridiculous, the crowds are ridiculous or the schedules are impossibly arranged: You say that there’s a film you really want to see? Try the 8 a.m. show! Oh, it’s too bad you didn’t get to bed until 2 a.m. the night before…
But the word in the doc world has been that True/False is the exact opposite of unpleasant. And I’m here to tell you — that’s exactly right.
Held in the very walkable city of Columbia, Missouri, True/False is a friendly, relaxed festival staffed by an army of volunteers and headed up by David Wilson and Paul Sturtz This year marks my first time at True/False, and already, I’m having a blast!
I arrived yesterday on a bus full of documentary filmmakers, and honestly, the two-hour ride from St. Louis felt like a field trip. Surrounded by some of my favorite folks in documentary film, I got the chance to catch up with Megan Mylan and hear stories of the Oscar night craziness. I also learned that her amazing red dress was designed by her grandmother in the 1930s. Pretty cool.
I also chatted with Colin Beavan (that’s “No Impact Man” to you) whose doc of the same name screens here Saturday morning and Sunday afternoon.
If you come to True/False, you’ll quickly realize that it’s a festival put together with its audience rather than with industry people in mind. The festival begins on Thursday, but the first screening is at 5 p.m. Got work or class? No problem. You only have to sneak out a few minutes early to see a great doc rather than losing the entire day or skipping the film.
I’m here as a “ringleader” and have a schedule of films to introduce and several post-screening Q&As to conduct. Last night I introduced At the Edge of the World to a full house at the Macklanburg Cinema. Tonight, I’ll intro We Live in Public, Ondi Timoner‘s film about artist Josh Harris and his Big Brother-esque “experiment.” The film was a Sundance hit that I missed and I’m looking forward to the screening.
Later today, the main drag of Columbia, Missouri will be overtaken by the True/False parade — a fun, raucous affair with marching bands and puppets! I’ll have pictures and more from True/False tomorrow.
Want to hear more about Yance’s adventures at True/False? She’ll be twittering throughout the weekend, so follow along.