Time to get your little monsters to the theater! There is another fabulous line up of international films for kids and young adults this year. Visit the website to sign your kids up for amazing workshops where they can learn how to audition, write storyboards and/or make stop motion films.

Press Release                                                                                                September 9, 2008

A Reel Accomplishment

25 Years as the Top Children’s Festival in the U.S.

Chicago, ILThe Chicago International Children’s Film Festival, running Oct. 23-Nov. 2, celebrates its silver anniversary in style with Mayor Daley and Chaz and Roger Ebert signed on as the Fest’s Honorary Chairs for the Kidsfest Gala, October 22.  Screening the best children’s films in the world, the CICFF will feature 213 films from 44 countries, again securing its place as the largest and longest running Kidsfest in the U.S.

The CICFF is the only children’s festival in the world that’s recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as an “Academy qualifying” festival. Festival winners in the animated and live action short film categories may go on to compete for Oscars®. Last year over 26,000 attended the festival.

As always, family-friendly fare of high artistic value is in abundance, ranging from feature-length films to shorts both live action and animated. With more premieres and directors in attendance than ever before the CICFF once again proves its status as “Cannes for Kids” –  the most prestigious festival devoted to children’s films in the United States.

Premieres And Films


This year’s audiences will thrill to 53 World Premieres; 59 North American Premieres; 22 U.S. Premieres and 65 Chicago Premieres.


Among the star studded films making their U.S. or North American premiere are the animated Spirit of the Forest  (Spain, 2007) featuring the vocal talents of Angelika Huston, Ron Perlman and Sean Astin;  Diamond Dog Caper (USA, 2008) with Jon Farley, Kevin Farley and French Stewart and At Jesus’ Side (USA, 2008) starring Roma Downey and Lucas Grabeel.  Together with the short live-action gem, His Good Will, starring James Avery, these films bring a dash of Hollywood fun to the Chicago festivities.


The CICFF welcomes back Oscar-winner and friend of the festival Jessica Yu for the Chicago premiere of her new film, Ping Pong Playa (Saturday, November 1st, 3pm, Wilmette Theater.) Ms. Yu’s film Sour Death Balls was awarded the Best Live Action Short Film Children’s Jury prize by the CICFF in 1993, and the festival is proud to have her back.


Other “don’t miss’  premieres include: Moonbeam Bear And His Friends (Germany),

Mozart in China (Austria/China), 31 Minutes, The Movie (Brazil/Chile/Spain),

Amazon Jack 3-Jungo Goes Bananas (Denmark), Hamoon and Darya (Iran)

Lost Treasure of the Knights Templar III: The Mystery of the Snake Crown (Denmark), Mother Nanny (Phillipines), Stella And The Star Of The Orient (Austria),

The Three Investigators-The Secret of Skeleton Island (Germany) and

Where is Winky’s Horse (Netherlands)


But Wait, There’s More!

The CICFF’s 25th Anniversary celebrations also include critically lauded and child-applauded programs that bring kids closer to films and filmmakers.

My First Movies is dedicated to the belief that cinema appreciation must start early, presenting age-appropriate educational and entertaining films to kids ages two and up and their parents. This year will also see the expansion of the CICFF’s celebrated My First Movies programs for children ages two and up.   My First Movies has proved so popular in Lincoln Park that the program had to be moved to the more spacious Biograph Theater (2433 N Lincoln Ave).

Look for seven new My First Movies programs – they’re on first at every theater and sell out fast.   On  November 1st and 2nd, the CICFF’s  9:30am “My First Movies” programs will screen in the Victory Gardens Biograph Theatre to accommodate larger crowds (and to avoid the tears and disappointments from sell-outs.)  Biograph parking is available at Children’s Memorial Hospital parking lot and all theatres are stroller-friendly!

Also expanded are the CICFF’s popular Take One! hands-on workshops and “Directors in the Schools” programs which bring kids into the filmmaking process. Greg Aronowitz, the creature-effects mastermind of X-Files, Power Rangers SPD, and Babylon 5, and the director of last year’s CICFF Best of the Fest winner, Labou, leads the Creepy Creatures Take One! workshop. Aronowitz will help kids make their own monsters during two weekends and then later at ten different schools in the Chicago area.

And what kid doesn’t want to make their own cartoons? Chicago animator Jenny Gribble presents Dream Screen II-Animation Workshop.  Ms. Gribble guides kids through the creative processes behind stop-motion animation creation, resulting in an animated memory of their CICFF experiences.  Details on other workshops to follow.

On weekdays, Kidsfest also celebrates cultural diversity with Proud to be Me: Stories of African and African-American Children and Espanol Para Todos, a Spanish language program.

Reel Poetry features screenings of literacy-focused films and activities and short films based on contemporary poems. Green Screen features films on the environment and how kids can help save the earth.

The CICFF is also state certified to provide continuing education credits for teachers through Professional Development Workshops,

Watching, making, learning about and loving films with the entire family: it’s a belief held strong by the Chicago International Children Film Festival for 25 years. And we’ve only just begun!

Festival Locations – 2008

Facets Multi-Media  – 1517 W. Fullerton Ave., Chicago (Fullerton, a block east of Ashland) – Parking along Fullerton, Greenview or Bosworth


Kerasotes Showplace 142600 N. Western Avenue, Chicago (Between Fullerton & Diversey on Western)  Parking at Kerasotes parking ramp next to theaters.


Harold Washington Cultural Center – 4701 S. King Drive, Chicago (Corner of 47th & King Drive in Bronzeville)  Parking at venue or on street..

Thorne Auditorium – at Northwestern University Campus – 375 E. Chicago Ave., Chicago (Chicago & Lake Shore Drive) Parking on Chicago or at lots near venue.


Davis Theater4614 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago (in Lincoln Square) – Parking at lots nearby or street parking. 


Biograph Theater – 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago (in Lincoln Park) – Street parking & at Chicago Children’s Hospital ramp (south on Lincoln).


Wilmette Theatre 1122 Central Ave., Wilmette (Central Ave. near Wilmette Ave.)

Parking Metra lot, street parking, Central School & Bank One lot (to NW of theater)


Film Row Cinema – Columbia College Chicago -  1104 S. Wabash, 8th Floor, ChicagoParking at lots near the venue.


For more information about the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival or Facets Multi-Media, please contact Patrick Ogle at (773) 281-9075, e-mail kidsfest@facets.org or log onto our website at www.cicff.org

One Response to “Chicago International Children’s Film Festival Returns”

  1. on 16 Dec 2008 at 11:55 am shanda marshall

    i have two teenagers who are visual artist, and would be interested in your program

Trackback URI | Comments RSS

Leave a Reply