The film festival seeks to break stereotypes about disability, employment
Despite a labor shortage in the region, state and country, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities remain underemployed, with fewer hours and lower wages than their colleagues.
The organizers of the first All IN Film Fest – a collaborative project between The Magic of Cinema at Peninsula College, Studium Generale, ÊaÊkÌÊ·ustÉÆÃ¡wtÌxÊ· House of Learning, Peninsula College Longhouse, and Clallam Mosaic – are looking to address these and other employment challenges. ‘they share nine stories during a week-long series of film screenings and discussions, both virtual and in person, starting Monday, October 18.
The majority of the films were purchased from Sproutflix, a distributor that houses the largest and most diverse international collection of films made by and featuring people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).
Sharing these stories is âa long time ago,â according to Bonne Smith, chairman of the board of directors of Clallam Mosaic.
âThese films are wonderful stories of friends, neighbors and family membersâ¦ Cinema is an art and creativity enables people to see and hear a story, to seek out what is shared with a characterâ , she said.
Through the words of people with DID and their families, the film collection seeks to challenge myths and stereotypes surrounding disability, employment, creativity and learning.
Movies are 5 to 32 minutes long. The All IN Film Festival begins streaming for free with a movie nightly at 7 p.m., Monday through Wednesday, October 18-20.
The series kicks off on October 18 with the screening of âCassilly: How I Got to College,â the story of a young woman who overcame many obstacles to attend and succeed in community college. A recall screening of the film is scheduled for October 20.
On Tuesday, October 19, the movie “One Question” will be screened. The production crew for this film included eight people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The five-day film features 35 people with IDD who answer the same question: if you could change one thing about yourself, what would you change?
At 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, October 21, Peninsula College will host a special Studium Generale to celebrate October as National Disability Employment Month. The virtual event will begin with the screening of “The Interviewer”, an Australian film which has been used for training on corporate equity and diversity.
“There’s the idea that individuals with IDD aren’t able to learn beyond the jobs they’re relegated to, that an individual with IDD can’t move up through the ranks,” Smith said; this film challenges that perception.
âThe Interviewerâ will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by Catherine McKinney, Program and Communications Director of Clallam Mosaic. Panelists, including self-advocates from the IDD community and their family members, will discuss how the job has affected their lives.
Starting at 6 p.m. on Friday, October 22, screenings and in-person discussions will take place on the lawn behind the Pirate Union Building at Peninsula College. The evening will begin with the documentary âJMAXX & the Universal Languageâ. Viewers are introduced to Jarell, an autistic teenager who uses hip-hop dance as a way to communicate his true self to the world. Viewers learn about Jarell’s difficulties connecting with his peers, his feelings of isolation, and his experience of bullying.
The second film, “Acting Normal,” features a performing arts studio for adults with DID. The studio and its cast are working to change the preconceptions of Hollywood casting agents, directors and producers.
A third film, “Mr. Twister,” shares the art of Brian, an autistic teenager. Through his own form of creativity in creating sculptures with twist ties, the boy who was once withdrawn and almost non-verbal has become blossomed into a working artist.
Starting at 6 p.m. on Saturday, October 23, screenings and in-person discussions will begin with âBye,â a short documentary that follows Jayden, a 2.5-year-old boy diagnosed with autism during his first months. from school in the Bronx, New York.
A second film, âExtra Ordinaryâ, shares the life of two young people with Down’s syndrome, mainly told through the benevolent, honest and concerned voices of their parents.
The third film will be a recall screening of “The Interviewer”.
The last film of the All IN Film Fest will be the documentary âWhat Was It Like?
For in-person screenings, participants must bring their own blankets or outdoor chairs. Participants are also encouraged to bring their own snacks and non-alcoholic drinks to enjoy during the films. Plan to realize what is brought.
COVID-19 security protocols will be in place, which will include three-foot social distancing and masking when traveling in shared spaces. As required by the state mandate, students at Peninsula College must be vaccinated to attend campus events.
Washroom access will be provided and an easy login process will be required.
The Peninsula College campus map is available on the college website (pencol.edu/locations/main-campus/campus-map).
Links to the Zoom sessions are available at pencol.edu/events/magic-cinema-all-film-festival-clallam-mosaic.
Links to more information, movie trailers and Zoom links are available on the Clallam Mosaic website at clallammosaic.org/all-in-film-fest.
If inclement weather is forecast for October 22 or 23, the outdoor screenings will be moved to Zoom. The decision to move screenings online will be made by October 20; check the Peninsula College (pencol.edu) and Clallam Mosaic (clallammosaic.org) websites on Thursday, October 21 for more information.