WIFI Film Festival
The WIFI Film Festival will run from Thursday, April 11, 2019, to Saturday, April 13, 2019, on Washburn University’s campus and is open and free to attend for both the Washburn and Topeka communities.
The WIFI Film Festival will feature a variety of events, including the viewing of film submissions, alumni events, the presentation of awards to filmmakers, a featured DACA and Immigration documentary by filmmaker Alan Holzman from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, and a Late Night discussion with Allan about his film. Your generous gifts will help make this festival a reality by making submissions free for artists, providing awards for winning films, contributing to the cost of hosting the film festival, and helping us provide educational opportunities for artists.
WIFI will feature films by Emmy Winning Director Alan Holzman and actor, director and producer Shia LaBeouf.
In 2017, Matthew Nyquist, an experienced filmmaker and director, joined the mass media department at Washburn University as an assistant professor in film and video. Nyquist’s Hollywood background gave him a vision for a film program that would encourage and help prepare Washburn students to take their stories from the Midwest to a national stage through film.
Nyquist’s dedication and enthusiasm for the mass media program was shared by his colleagues in the department and championed by Maria Stover, the chair of the mass media department. Through a unique opportunity provided by Alan Holzman, acclaimed Hollywood filmmaker and lecturer at USC, the idea of a film festival at Washburn was born and the very first WIFI Film Festival features Holzman’s documentary on DACA and immigration.
In August 2018, the Department of Mass Media faculty created an internal organization called the Washburn International Film Institute, or WIFI for short. Under the direction of Nyquist, a dedicated leadership comprised of Washburn faculty and valuable community members was formed. WIFI could not exist and do the work it is dedicated to without a community of supporters. The WIFI festival is partnering with the Mulvane Art Museum, KTWU and the Office of Student Involvement & Development to give a voice to artists who deserve to be heard.
WIFI is dedicated to promoting and celebrating film production, stories from the Midwest, and education at Washburn University, in the Topeka community, and in the state of Kansas. Its leadership holds to the mission statement of Washburn University and sees WIFI as an organization that will allow the department to foster and engage in relationships that will enhance students’ lives and help them in their development as productive and responsible citizens.
At the core of WIFI’s inception is the belief that cinema is one of the most democratic arts with its ability to reach large audiences on an accessible and inclusive level.
Each year, the WIFI Film Festival adopts a theme it promotes through its work in the community and on campus. This year, the festival has adopted Washburn University’s spring 2019 theme: Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Action. The featured film at the 2019 WIFI Film Festival, by Alan Holzman, will express these ideas as it looks into DACA and immigration in the United States.
We hold the guiding principle that students at Washburn, Topeka community members, and Kansans should have a place to showcase and promote their work and come together to celebrate stories from the Midwest in film and artistic expression. We believe there are unique stories that can only be found in the Midwest, and particularly in Kansas. We support filmmakers in producing and creating stories from the Midwest that need to have a voice in our world and we advance the impact of those stories.
WIFI is dedicated to championing filmmakers who tell stories from the Midwest and supporting those who want to bring their artistic visions to life through film. Many times, aspiring filmmakers need resources to help them achieve their dreams and you can join us in our endeavor to help the next generation of filmmakers realize their potential as storytellers through your generous support. Thank you for your consideration.