Cinematographer Gio Toninelo's fascination with G.I. Joe inspired him to start the G.I. Joe Stop Motion Film Festival thirteen years ago. The festival screens all sorts of movies that use action figures to tell stories. Fun, right? But last year, Toninelo found himself duking it out with the toy manufacturer Hasbro, which threatened to sue him over the trademark to the festival's name. Undeterred, he renamed the Denver-based traveling event the Action Figure Stop Motion Film Festival, expanding the figurines that could be used in the movies (which he found to be a relief). The festival will be back in Denver this fall, and will then let other cities in on the action. G.I.O.: a real American hero.
Readers' Choice: Denver Film Festival