Montana International Children's Film Festival
Montana International Children's Film Festival - Films for Children of All Ages

Festival History

The First Annual Montana International Children’s Film Festival was held in March of 2011 followed by producing an event at the Wilma Theater to benefit international students at the University of Montana whose families were affected by the Fukishima Nuclear Disaster. This event included a celebration of Japanese dance and a print by local Artist Monte Dolack entitled “East meets West.”

In 2012 MICFF produced a panel discussion about children and the media at the Wilma Theater featuring University of Montana Professor Udo Fluck. The festival expanded to include feature films from Missoula, China, Japan, France, Germany, Latvia, the UK, USA, Turkey, Canada, Germany, Australia. The 2012 MICFF also produced, in coordination with the Roxy Theater, a Stop Motion Workshop with the film Village Au Panique. The workshop was in part sponsored by the Alliance Francaise and the French American Culture Exchange.

2013 saw the MICFF join in with the University of Montana as part of the University's International Food and Culture Festival to expand on our mission of providing children the opportunity to learn about other cultures through film, and to help bridge University of Montana International Studies students with the Missoula community.

The 2014 Festival featured multiple guest speakers leading discussions including Bryan Whitney, Sentinal High School French Teacher leading a discussion about ideas and cultural questions brought up in the French feature animation The Painting, Rabbi Laurie Franklin, spiritual leader and rabbinic intern at Har Shalom, Missoula’s Jewish congregations, and a faculty affiliate with the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Montana. Laurie introduced and led a discussion of another French film, The Rabbi's Cat. Samir I. Bitar, M.I.S., a Lecturer, Expert in Arabic Language and Cultures, and Modern & Classical Languages & Literatures and Assistant Director of Outreach-Central and Southwest Asian Studies Center at the University of Montana moderated a discussion of the Egyptian film Zlezla. Finally a discussion on the effects of media on culture was led by Dr. Udo Fluck, Director of Global Gateway at the University of Montana.

In addition to an expanded selection of movies from more countries than ever before, 2015 saw the inclusion of some great hands-on workshops on Animation, Storyboarding, and Drawing Key Frames by Marcus Schleuter from Innovation Studio. It included cultural discussions and musical performances tied into the feature films, including discussions of the Indian feature film Arjun: The Warrior Prince by Guest Speakers Dr. Ruth Vanita and Dr. Bradley Clough of the University of Montana, and of the Japanese film Patema Inverted by the University of Montana's own Dr. Udo Fluck. Patema Inverted was preceded by an amazing performance from the Spokane Taiko Drummers. The 2015 MICFF also introduced what has become one of our favorite hands on events, Story Boarding and Filming Dolls From Around the World. The dolls, many of which are handmade, reflect the heritage of international students at the U of M. Mona Mondava, University of Montana Culture Festival Director, will lead the event using the beautiful dolls from her own collection.

Our 2016 Festival was blessed by submission of over 200 films from more than 30 countries, giving us a great selection of short and feature films from many different cultures. The 2016 Festival also enjoyed the support of the University of Montana Confucius Institute and their Executive Director, Suhan Chen , who provided the introduction and discussion of the film Monster Hunt. University of Montana's Dr. Udo Fluck and Betsy Mulligan-Dague, Executive Director of the Jeanette Rankin Peace Center introduced film shorts from all over the world including Slovakia, Bahrain, India, Spain, Russia, Germany, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Japan, Jordan, the Netherlands, Mexico, Guam, South Korea, Ireland, Singapore, Peru, Sri Lanka, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

MCIFF-HistoricalPoster2011

  • Montana International Children’s Film Festival 2011
  • The poster showing the great films offered on our kick-off year!

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  • Montana International Children’s Film Festival 2011
  • A special showing of the classic film “Summer Wars” during the 2011 Festival, proceeds went to benefit international students at the University of Montana whose families were effected by the Fukishima Nuclear Disaster.

MCIFF-HistoricalPoster2012

  • Montana International Children’s Film Festival 2012
  • Showings of two of the many great films at the 2012 festival

MCIFF-HistoricalPoster2013

  • Montana International Children’s Film Festival 2013
  • Our first year to be part of the University of Montana's Culture and Food Festival.