(November 18th, 2013) Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival will hold several “Best of Buffalo Dreams” nights at the Screening Room Cinema Café, 3131 Sheridan Drive, in the Northtown Plaza. The first year festival programmed 85 films from around the world over seven days: 26 features, 59 shorts, 27 international films and 13 local productions. Forty awards were handed out, including Dedication to Indie Excellence for Troma pioneer Lloyd Kaufman; the Indie Genre Spirit Award to cult filmmaker Albert Pyun; and Local Service Awards for Buffalo-Niagara Film Commissioner Tim Clark and Buffalo Film Office Director of Operations Rich Wall. The later awards were presented by Pat Kaufman, the retired New York State Film Commissioner. Paige K. Davis, Director of Business Development for Alternative Cinema, gave a seminar on DVD and VOD distribution for independent filmmakers.
Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival celebrates the best independent films in the categories of science fiction, fantasy, horror, action, thriller, animation and cult cinema. Over 30 filmmakers traveled to Buffalo for the event, which festival directors Gregory Lamberson and Chris Scioli cite as a measuring stick for success. Simon Pearce, director of the feature Judas Ghost (winner of the Best International Horror Feature Award) came all the way from the UK to answer questions from the audience. A benefit screening of Kaufman’s Return to Nuke ‘Em High Vol. 1, lensed in Niagara Falls, raised almost $3,000 for the Niagara Arts and Culture Center (NACC).
“We exceeded our expectations as far as attracting out of town filmmakers to Buffalo,” says Lamberson. “These are people who stayed in Buffalo hotels, enjoyed Buffalo restaurants, visited Niagara Falls, and supported each others’ film screenings. It was a great week for our festival launch, and a great week for Buffalo.”
On Wednesday, November 27th,at 7:00 pm, the Screening Room presents Don Thacker’s Motivational Growth (Best Cult Feature, Best Actor, Best Screenplay, Best Special Make-Up Effects), about sentient mold (voiced by Re-Animator’s Jeffrey Combs) that takes over the life of a depressed shut-in. The film has won awards at festivals around the country. At 9:30 pm, the German suspense film On Air (Best International Thriller, Best Directors), about a serial killer who calls in to a pirate radio station host, with dire consequences, is guaranteed to have viewers on the edge of their seats.
On Saturday, November 30th, Brendan Steere’s Animosity (Best Horror feature, best Actress Tracy Willet) screens at 7:00 pm. At 9:30 pm, the local short Broken Wings (Best Western New York Short, Best Action Short, Best Western New York Screenplay), which examines the nature of a mysterious pulp superhero, plays with Pearce’s Judas Ghost (Best International Horror Feature). Four more features will screen Friday, January 10th and Sunday, January 11th. Admission is only $7 per feature, or $10 per double feature.