Filmmakers share secrets at 9th annual American Conservation Film Festival

Shepherdstown, WV - Film lovers and film makers alike will enjoy learning secrets of the trade at three events during the American Conservation Film Festival (ACFF) in historic Shepherdstown WV, November 3rd – 6th 2011.

ACFF’s first ever 3-D Night on Friday, November 4, will begin with speaker Thomas Sassenberg on the making of the 3D film The Rise of the Jellyfish, followed by a screening of the film made possible by commissioning broadcaster 3Net. Sassenberg oversees the technology side of documentaries as Director of Production Services at Story House Productions, one of ACFF’s sponsors.  Following Jellyfish, Sassenberg will be joined for a 3D panel discussion with Phil Fairclough, Executive Vice President, Natural History New Zealand and Co-Producer of The Cave of Forgotten Dreams and Joy Galane, Executive Producer of Angkor Wat for the Smithsonian Channel. ACFF will then screen Smithsonian Channel’s new 3-D film, Secret Life of the Rainforest.  Both the films and discussions will be presented free of charge at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Conservation Training Center (NCTC).

The public is invited to an Encounter Session, “Don’t Let the Facts Get in the Way of a Good Story” on Saturday, November 5 free of charge at NCTC.  Non-fiction filmmakers are known to slavishly adhere to the facts, sometimes at the expense of a good story. Khris Baxter explains the rules of story structure and how to use them to your advantage without compromising the narrative. Khris is a screenwriter, producer, and script consultant. His body of work includes five optioned screenplays and one produced film. He is the founder of Story Lab, a production and development company based in Washington, D.C.

For those wanting to learn more, filmmakers Mark Terry and Peter Schriemer will hold a Master Class, “A Point of View:  Behind the Camera” on Thursday, November 3rd at Shepherdstown’s historic Opera House theater.  The class is free to Shepherd University students and $30 for the public.  Designed for those interested in filmmaking, this workshop explores the steps involved in making a successful film, including developing the vision, organizing the team, outlining the story, securing equipment and financial support, shooting the film and successfully distributing it.  Stick around for a special matinee of Mark Terry’s recent film The Polar Explorer after the class.  Mark’s previous film, Antarctica Challenge: A Global Warming, won the 2010 ACFF Audience Choice Award.  Peter Schriemer was a favorite at ACFF’s children’s festival in 2007, and brings the best of North America’s wildlife to children and families in accessible ways.  His current film, Creatures of the Lagoon, will be shown free of charge Saturday, November 5 at NCTC.

American Conservation Film Festival
November 3 through 6, 2011
3 venues in Shepherdstown, WV 25443
Full Festival Pass $40; Individual Block Tickets $10
Available via website
For more information email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Or call 304-876-7373

About ACFF

ACFF’s four-day festival will showcase more than 40 new and rarely screened films, presenting diverse conservation themes focusing on the intersection between people and the environment.  ACFF’s distinctive programming draws thousands of filmgoers from around the country to Shepherdstown, WV, an historic, arts-centered, university town just 70 miles from the nation’s capital.

Full Festival Passes ($40) and individual Block tickets ($10) are available at the door or via the website  All events at NCTC are free of charge.