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Saturday, 27 August 2016 00:50

Menifee to kick off the international film festival season Featured

Written by  Michelle Mears-Gerst
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Romanian Council General Eugen Chivu, Croatian CG Sinisa Grgic, Menifee Mayor Scott Mann, Greek CG Gregory Karahalis, DocuFilm President Bill Gunasti, Belgian CG Henri Ventieghem, DocuFilm Chairwoman Daphne Barak, Paradise Owner Terry Gilmore, Polish CG Mariusz Brymora, Santa Rosa Academy Principal Laura Badillo, Mt. San Jacinto College President Romanian Council General Eugen Chivu, Croatian CG Sinisa Grgic, Menifee Mayor Scott Mann, Greek CG Gregory Karahalis, DocuFilm President Bill Gunasti, Belgian CG Henri Ventieghem, DocuFilm Chairwoman Daphne Barak, Paradise Owner Terry Gilmore, Polish CG Mariusz Brymora, Santa Rosa Academy Principal Laura Badillo, Mt. San Jacinto College President

The motto, Keep Menifee Moving, has helped this once small western town, gallop its way into the spotlight of international leaders and filmmakers.  Menifee is now home to the new California DocuFilm Festival kicking off the global season of film festivals.

A meet and greet was held on Monday, August 22 at the Santa Rosa Academy where foreign diplomats and sponsors converged to support the international film festival. On hand for the press conference were Eugen Chivu, Consul General of Romania; Sinisa Girgic, Consul General of Croatia; Gregory Karahalios, Consul General of Greece; Henri Vantieghem, Consul General of Belgium; and Mariusz Brymora, Consul General of Poland.

There will be a dozen foreign ambassadors signed on to support the international film festival. Also on hand were Santa Rosa Academy Executive Director Laura Badillo and MSJC President Dr. Roger Schultz. The festival is taking place from Dec. 6 -11in Menifee.

Menifee Mayor Scott Mann helped bring the festival to the city by introducing television personality Daphne Barak to Menifee in 2015 when her partner Bill Gunasti was running for mayor of Palm Springs.

Mann convinced Barak to help develop a magnet and lead it as its chairwoman. Barak, is known for her books and exclusive TV interviews with A-listers of Hollywood and world leaders. The magnet Barak thought must be something to do with the entertainment and media industries.  That is how the DocuFilmFestival was born.

Laura Badillo, executive director of Santa Rosa Academy and Dr. Roger Schultz, president of Mt. San Jacinto College were contacted and asked to join Mann and Barack in this endeavor.

Mt. San Jacinto College is a strategic partner with the festival. According to the festival organizers, the college is a great educational institution that is expanding. Becoming a partner to the festival will contribute to the college’s future growth.

The festival will take place on the 25-acre campus of Santa Rosa Academy. The campus will be transformed into the FestivalGrounds. If you have never been to the Santa Rosa Academy, it is unlike any charter school campus in Southwest Riverside County.

The festival will feature documentaries from filmmakers around the world. However, youth and first time filmmakers will also have a category.

Mann has told reporters, “With Menifee's centralized location in Southern California -- an hour from San Diego, Los Angeles, the beaches, and the mountain and desert resorts -- we are well positioned to have such an incredible international event here.  Collaborating with our premier community college MSJC and Santa Rosa Academy charter school helps deliver a new dimension to their programs.  It's all very exciting."

Mann brought Barak to Menifee with a vision and she is going big. The DocuFilmFestival plans to fill a large void in the birthplace of movies.

According to its website, DocuFilmFestival plans to become the only international documentary film festival in California, big enough to challenge the current leading documentary film festivals worldwide. 

They are holding the event during the first two weeks of December when no other major film festival is taking place around the world. 

 

Read 6576 times Last modified on Saturday, 27 August 2016 01:27