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Charlottetown Film Festival starts today at City Cinema

P.E.I. singer-songwriter Lennie Gallant, actor Sharlene MacLean, centre, and P.E.I. singer-songwriter Tara MacLean appear in a scene from “The Song and the Sorrow: Dedicated to the Memory and Music of Gene MacLellan”. Due to popular demand, the film sold out twice at the Charlottetown Film Festival. There is still one more opportunity to see it on Friday, Oct. 19, 7 p.m., at St. Mary’s Church in Indian River.
P.E.I. singer-songwriter Lennie Gallant, actor Sharlene MacLean, centre, and P.E.I. singer-songwriter Tara MacLean appear in a scene from “The Song and the Sorrow: Dedicated to the Memory and Music of Gene MacLellan”. Due to popular demand, the film sold out twice at the Charlottetown Film Festival. There is still one more opportunity to see it on Friday, Oct. 19, 7 p.m., at St. Mary’s Church in Indian River. - Contributed

The Charlottetown Film Festival is seeing so many big dreams come true.

Now in its fourth year, the festival runs from Oct. 12-14 at City Cinema in Charlottetown.

Both screenings at the all-Island opening night sold out in a flash, says festival director Cheryl Wagner, who is thrilled with the 2018 lineup.

“The 7 p.m. screening, ‘Songs. Sorrow. Celebration!’ features three remarkable documentaries by three remarkable Island women directors. And all three films show how music can impact different aspects of our theme, Life is a Balancing Act,” she says.

P.E.I. singer-songwriter Catherine MacLellan, left, and director Mille Clarkes, appear in a handout photo for “The Song and the Sorrow.”
P.E.I. singer-songwriter Catherine MacLellan, left, and director Mille Clarkes, appear in a handout photo for “The Song and the Sorrow.”
“Athena’s Lost Twin”, a film by Pamela Gallant, starring Sophie Gallant will be screened today at 7 p.m. during “Songs. Sorrow. Celebration!” at City Cinema. It’s part of the Charlottetown Film Festival.
“Athena’s Lost Twin”, a film by Pamela Gallant, starring Sophie Gallant will be screened today at 7 p.m. during “Songs. Sorrow. Celebration!” at City Cinema. It’s part of the Charlottetown Film Festival.

“O Kanata” focuses on one small P.E.I. community as it plays it part in steps towards reconciliation by recording school kids recording our national anthem in Mi’kmaq.

“Athena’s Lost Twin” celebrates the amazing energy of pre-teen Summerside musician and philosopher Sophie Gallant as she sings, plays piano and wonders about the world and how she fits in it.

The much-anticipated NFB documentary by Mille Clarkes, “The Song and the Sorrow: Dedicated to the Memory and Music of Gene MacLellan” explores his daughter Catherine’s journey through song to come to an understanding of his mental health struggles. And her own.

Then, at 9 p.m., a screening of “Let’s Go to Pogey Beach” takes a different approach to finding a balance.

“Jeremy Larter’s first feature film is rude, crude and sometimes lewd – but done with such humour and gusto you can’t help but laugh and feel good,” Wagner adds.

“Let’s Go to Pogey Beach”, is a feature film by Jeremy Larter.
“Let’s Go to Pogey Beach”, is a feature film by Jeremy Larter.

The following two days will feature more than 60 films; many including stories from and about P.E.I.

The “Seeing is Believing” screening will showcase works by emerging Island filmmakers including a documentary by Shane Pendergast on the late, great oysterman John Bil. “PreHistoric P.E.I.” and “In Love and Anger: Milton Acorn Poet” are other Island documentaries being offered.

Sunday launches include “Hello Eckhart” a free, family event at noon. Three episodes of the award-winning animated series about the adventures of a curious little mouse set in a rustic P.E.I. from the past, produced by Charlottetown’s own Cellar Door Productions will be shown.

The festival will also offer adults so much to choose from. “Atlantic Shorts for Grownups” screens on Saturday at 9 p.m. Then on Sunday afternoon will present two screenings of “Atlantic Shorts: What’s a Girl to Do?” and “RelationSHIPS? Bon Voyage”, which includes stories about the intricacies of LGBT partnering.

The festival wraps up on Sunday night with two award-winning feature films from Atlantic Canada. Deanne Foley’s “An Audience of Chairs” is 7 p.m. is followed by Cory Bowles’ startling “Black Cop”, at 9 p.m.

The strong demand by Islanders to see the opening night screening “The Song and the Sorrow” has brought about two encore screenings.

Next Tuesday’s screening is sold out but there’s still a chance to catch it on Friday, Oct. 19, 7 p.m., at St. Mary’s Church in Indian River when

Catherine MacLellan will sing and share her thoughts after people enjoy “The Song and the Sorrow”.

The full schedule can be checked out and tickets bought at the ChFF18 website, Charlottetownfilmfest.com.

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