The Sight of Silence

The reasoning for a silent film festival was ultimately pragmatic: “I didn’t have any speakers,” explains Wendy Manning, marketing director for the Denver Pavilions and organizer of the Short, Sweet & Silent Third Floor Film Festival. All the same, Manning wanted to do something to commemorate Denver Arts Week, November 5 through 13, and though she couldn’t do sound, she did have a twenty-foot LED screen and one of the few permits in the city to project moving images from it.

“It can be hard or political to get your work into a film festival,” says Manning, who put out a call to directors who wanted to make films that could stand up without sound. “We wanted to do something where a local filmmaker could just get their work out there. To that end, all this week, Manning will work screenings of one- to five-minute silent films from local filmmakers into her regular rotation of programming of ads and film trailers on the LED screen. “So you could have a trailer for Pixar, and then have your film right next to it,” she says. “It gives you some street cred.”

The screenings will happen sporadically throughout the week until November 13, but the festival formally kicks off tonight at 7 p.m. with an hour-long screening and gathering on the patio of Jazz @ Jack’s on the third floor of the Pavilions, which Manning says is “ideal for viewing the screen.” It’s entirely free, and all you have to do is show up; for more, go to
Fri., Nov. 5, 7 p.m., 2010

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Jef Otte
Contact: Jef Otte