Anderson Island launches first annual film festival


 Anderson Island will host its first annual film festival and gala on Sept. 14 and Sept. 15 at the historical society’s new Archival Building, 9306 Otso Point Rd., Anderson Island. Five films will be featured on Saturday, Sept. 15 at the festival, which is sponsored by Island Arts, non-profit organization.

The festival was the brainchild of longtime Anderson Island resident John Ullis, who travelled to Friday Harbor in the fall of 2017 and became a volunteer of the highly successful Friday Harbor Film Festival. The experience left him convinced that Anderson Island, an artists’ haven in its own right, would be the perfect venue for a film festival. As word spread, volunteers kept asking to get involved in planning the event, and excitement has grown steadily. Sponsors stepped forward to underwrite the licensing costs for each of the films.

“We have a thriving arts community, lots of visitors and a terrific venue in the new Archival Building,” Ullis said. “My long-term hope is that this event, and the ones that follow will trigger the creative juices among aspiring filmmakers in our own community and perhaps someday lead to an Anderson Island filmmakers’ festival.”

Ullis drew on the support of the Friday Harbor Film Festival, which has been instrumental in making sure the Anderson Island event gets off to a great head start.

In keeping with the tradition of film festivals, the event will kick off with a gala on Friday Sept. 14, featuring live music, good food and a rare island chance to get dressy.

Tickets for the gala are $50, with proceeds supporting both this year’s festival and helping launch next year’s. Tickets for each film at the festival will be $7, except for “Plastic is Forever,” which will be shown free of charge. Tickets for all events may be purchased at

Anderson Island is Puget Sound’s southernmost island, reachable by a beautiful, 20-minute ferry ride from Steilacoom. Ferry information is available at


Films featured Sept. 15:

10 a.m. “The Eagle Huntress”

A 13-year-old Kazakh clan member, Aisholpan Nurgaiv, becomes the first female in a dozen generations to be trained to hunt with an eagle.

1 p.m. “Loving Vincent”

Nominated for an Academy Award, this film hired 100 artists to animate the life of Vincent Van Gogh – and do so in the style of Van Gogh’s paintings.

3 p.m. “Plastic is Forever”

What happens when you throw plastic away? A 13-year-old filmmaker shows us in this much-honored documentary.

5 p.m. “River Blue”

An award-winning film that documents the dark environmental side of the fashion industry.

7 p.m. “Score: A Film Music Documentary”

How much more frightening was the beginning of Jaws with the iconic sounds of ta-DA…ta-DAH…dah-dah-dah-dah-dah-dah-dah-dah at the beginning? This film illustrates what goes into the making of a musical score

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