When is the Big Water Film Festival?
The 15th Festival will run on-line from January 6 to February 3, 2023. All screenings this year will be free and online. We will post links to our films on our Facebook page. Please be sure to like or follow us on Facebook to receive notifications of these posts.
Where does the Big Water Film Festival take place?
The 15th Big Water Film Festival will take place in your living room, bedroom, or wherever you want to relax in front of a screen. This is our second year as a virtual festival, but we still hope to be back in our usual venues next time. Here they are:
The Big Water Film Festival usually takes place at the Bay Theater in Ashland, Wisconsin. The Bay Theater is in the center of Ashland’s business district, close to numerous restaurants, shops, bars, and coffee houses, and one block from Lake Superior and Ashland’s lakeshore walking and biking trail.
Our screening in Bayfield is at the Bayfield High School Library.
Our Drummond Night is held at the the Drummond High School Auditorium.
Our Washburn show was at the Harborview Event Center (former Steak Pit Restaurant site).
Our Friday Night Gala Reception will is usually held across the street from the Bay Theater at The Office Bar.
The Vaughn Public Library, across the street from the Bay Theater, is our host for Cinema and Cinnamon Rolls on Saturday morning.
How do I get there?
The Bay Theater is located at 420 Main Street West, at Vaughn Avenue, in the center of Ashland, Wisconsin , one block south of U.S. Highway 2. The Bayfield High School Library is at 300 North Fourth Street in Bayfield, up the road from Ashland on Highway 13. Drummond High School is located off of Highway 63 between Ashland and Hayward. The Harborview Event Center overlooks the Washburn waterfront, off of Bayfield Street.
What is the deadline to submit films for consideration for this year’s Big Water Film Festival?
The deadline for film submissions for the 15th Annual Big Water Film Festival has passed. The entry period for the 16th Festival will open February 15, 2023, and close July 15, 2023. (These dates are subject to change, so please review the submission information on Film Freeway, below.)
Can I submit my film online?
Yes. All entries must be submitted through FilmFreeway. Our listing is here. The deadline for the 15th Annual Big Water Film Festival has passed. Please go to the FilmFreeway site for more information. We will open our site for the 16th Festival on February 15, 2023, and close July 15, 2023. There will be a $10 entry fee.
What are the criteria used to accept films?
We are looking for films that are “as fresh as the water of Lake Superior.” The Big Water Film Festival selects a wide range of films. We actively support the creative efforts of regional and local filmmakers, as well as national and international films. BWFF welcomes features, shorts, documentaries, and animation.
How can I participate in the Big Water Film Festival?
There are many ways to participate.
As a film fan, you can attend the Festival on-line.
As a filmmaker, you are invited to submit your films for consideration for the next film festival. The Committee encourages early entries. All entries must go through Film Freeway.
As a sponsor of the Big Water Film Festival, your financial backing will help put on the show and bring filmmakers to the Festival. The Big Water Film Festival is a project of the Bay Area Film Society, a 501(c)(3)-recognized non-profit organization, so any personal donation is tax deductible. Become a sponsor today.
As a fan of film, you might be especially interested in Cinema and Cinnamon Rolls, our Saturday morning event where filmmakers discuss various aspects of the craft. (To be scheduled as a live virtual event for the 15th Festival.)
Volunteers are usually needed for the Festival weekend, from set-up on Friday through awards on Sunday. Volunteers who work during one block of films can see another film block of their choice for free. Let’s hope by the 16th BWFF we will need you again. Click here to become a volunteer.
How can I buy tickets?
While viewing all of our films for the 15th Annual Festival will be free, you will need to register at our Eventive platform site to view the films.
What do tickets cost?
In 2021, zero! Just follow the instructions we will post for registering to watch the films, or click on the links we will provide each week.
What awards are offered at the Big Water Film Festival?
BWFF also awards prizes for Best Feature Film, Best Documentary, Best Short Film, Best Short Short, Audience Favorite, and the Loren Savitsky Young Filmmaker Award. Viewers will vote virtually for the Audience Favorite award. Each award comes with a certificate, a $150 check, and (usually, although not for the 15th Festival) an award bowl hand-thrown by the potters at Stone’s Throw in Bayfield.
What is the Loren Savitsky Young Filmmaker Award?
The Loren Savitsky Young Filmmaker Award is given each year to one filmmaker age 25 or younger whose work screens at the Festival. The award is offered in honor of cinematographer and Washburn native Loren Savitsky who tragically died in a 2009 motorcycle accident in L.A. at the young age of 23. A graduate of Brooks Institute of Photography, Loren was cinematographer on the short film, Just One of the Gynos, which screened at the 2008 Big Water Film Festival, and earned Best Short Film honors.