The educational benefit to the attendees was offered as follows:
On Thursday, February 23 from 8:10PM-8:20PM a question and answer session was held at the Waterway Square Amphitheater in The Woodlands, TX. Filmmakers and stars (names and addresses available if necessary) were available to answer questions from audience members about their films, how they were made, what motivated the art, the impact that it had on audiences including, but not limited to The Woodlands Waterway Square Amphitheater audience, and what these filmmakers believed their next projects would include, have as subject matter, or be related to.
On Thursday, February 23 from 8:30PM-10:30PM a reception was held at Glade Gallery at 24 Waterway, The Woodlands, TX. Film makers were in attendance from several films, including but not limited to LandFillHarmonic, Unbranded, Frame by Frame, and Almost Sunrise, to mix and meet with festival attendees, answer questions, and offer their opinions of the value, utility, economic impact, cultural benefit, and educational return society enjoys, or tends to enjoy, from cinematic artistic expression.
On Friday, February 24, from 9:-00PM-9:10PM Mr. Tom Voss, the subject of the film Almost Sunrise, and the film's director, Mr. Michael Collins, took questions in person from the theater audience about what motivated their film, how and where it was created, the impact on the communities where it has been seen, and the work Mr. Voss continues to do helping veterans and others impacted by the moral injury of war heal, recover, and mainstream back into society as productive, stable citizens. This was repeated on Saturday, February 25 from 10:50PM-11:00PM.
On Friday, February 24 from 10:20PM-10:30PM Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist Mr. Massed Hossaini, and award winning documentary film maker Ms. Alexandria Bombach, took questions from a live audience about what motivated their film, Frame by Frame, how and where it was created, the impact on the communities where it has been seen, and the work Mr. Hossaini continues to do to establish a free press in the country of Afghanistan in the aftermath of tyrannical rule by the Taliban. This was repeated on Saturday, February 25 from 8:00PM-8:10PM.
On Friday, February 24 from 7:30PM-8:10PM the LandFillHarmonic Orchestra appeared for a mulit-cultural, educational performance with a local youth symphony. Students introduced themselves and educated the audience about their lives in Paraguay, the instruments they were playing which were made from discarded materials found in the town’s dump, how these instruments were made, what their lives have been like since getting to see so much of the world and being exposed to so many different cultures, and what their plans for their futures include. An interpreter translated from Spanish into English for an audience of approximately 300 which had the opportunity to ask questions of the musicians and their conductor, Mr. Favio Chavez. This was repeated on Saturday, February 25 from 5:10PM-5:20PM.
On Saturday, February 25, from 2:30PM-2:40PM, the film Life Animated was discussed among a live theater audience with festival staff serving as moderators. This film was made about a young man suffering from Autism and there were many family members of autistic patients in attendance. Personal experiences were shared among many who saw the film and suggestions were made about how to educate the public more completely about those experiencing autism. This was repeated on Sunday, February 26 from 3:10PM-3:20PM.
On Saturday, February 25, from 5:10PM-5:20PM, one of the subjects of the film Alive Inside was present before a live theater audience to answer questions about how this film and the treatment it proposes impacted his own life and the life of his wife who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease. Suggestions were made for how this treatment might be made available in local nursing homes and what family members of Alzheimer’s patients might do to bring this treatment to their loved ones. Educating the public at large about this treatment was discussed as was its economic benefit to our country’s healthcare system.
On Saturday, February 25, from 2:50PM-3:00PM, Mr. David Holbrook, the son of career U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrook, was present to discuss his father’s career and the making of the film The Diplomat. Holbrooke’s career spanned fifty years of U.S. foreign policy from Vietnam to Afghanistan and left an indelible mark upon the world. People interested in world affairs and the lives of those who make things happen got an inside look at the life of one of the most experienced public servants our country has ever produced. This event was repeated on Sunday, February 26 from 5:50PM-6:00PM with David Holbrooke presenting about his film and taking audience questions pertaining to his father’s career, the workings of the U.S. State Department, the family lives of those who serve our country in the Foreign Service, and the many challenges we face around the world.
On Saturday, February 25, from 5:30PM-5:40PM, the film The Eagle Huntress was shown to a sold out audience. The film explores the culture of Mongolia and the breakthrough of a young girl into the exclusively male world of hunting with eagles. At the conclusion of the screening the film’s director was Skyped into the theater from her home in New York and took questions from the audience pertaining to the making of the film and the impact on the communities where it has been seen. This was repeated on Sunday, February 26 from 3:20PM-3:30PM. Immediately after the film was shown on Sunday a 45 minute educational presentation about birds of prey was given outside by Mr. John Karger of the Last Chance Forever Birds of Prey Conservancy in San Antonio, TX. This demonstration included free flying various falcons and the presentation of other birds including, but not limited to, Barred Owls (Strix varia), Great Horned Owls (Bubo virginianus), Screech Owls (Megascops asio), Red Tailed Hawks (Buteo jamaicensis ), Black Vultures (Coragyps atratus), Golden Eagles (Aquila chrysaetos), and Bald Eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus). Festival goers were able to ask questions and learn about these birds’ characteristics, mating habits, food sources, habitat, benefit to the environment, natural predators, and watch them fly.
On Saturday, February 25, the film Unbranded was shown which had as its purpose educating people about the wild mustangs in the western United States. The Bureau of Land Management is struggling to take care of some 50,000 of these horses which are overpopulated and suffering from depravity. Mr. Val Geissler and Thomas Glover both appear in the film and were present in the theater to answer questions from Inspire Film Festival attendees about their work on the film and the work being done to address the plight of these wild horses. Questions pertained to budget, logistics, horse adoption, fundraising, sources for additional information and contacts. This event was repeated on Sunday, February 26 from 5:50PM-6:00PM.
On Saturday, February 25, from 5:20PM-5:30PM, the film Becoming Bulletproof was shown and questions were taken in person by Mr. A.J. Murray and Ms. Cynthia Murray who appeared in the film. The central educational issue of this screening was the ability of people with disabilities to participate in the creative expression of making movies, form bonding relationships to create a truly inclusive community, and move beyond societal stigmas and stereotypes. The question and answer session shed light on the experience of Mr. Murray, a person with Cerebral Palsey, to have the dream of becoming an actor and set goals to realize the actualization of that dream. This was repeated on Sunday, February 26 from 5:20PM-5:30PM.
On Saturday, February 25 at 11:30AM a panel discussion titled “If Your Life Was A Movie” was held at Glade Gallery, 24 Waterway Ave. The Woodlands, TX 77380. In attendance was A.J. Murray, an actor in the film Becoming Bulletproof, Tom Voss, the subject of the film Almost Sunrise, Val Geissler and Thomas Glover of the film Unbranded, and Favio Chavez of the film Landfill Harmonic. The actors discussed with the public how their lives have changed since having their stories made into a movie.
On Saturday, February 25, at 10:00AM a panel discussion titled “Capturing The Moment” was held at Glade Gallery, located at 24 Waterway Ave. The Woodlands, TX 77380. Directors David Holbrooke, Michael Collins, Alexandria Bomback and Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist Massed Hossaini discussed their films and the process of capturing on film “the moment” that defines the story they wanted to tell. Other questions pertained to the details of project planning, funding, hiring, travel, editing, and distribution of their films once they were completed.