Thank you to the Gimli Film Festival for screening our film and taking the time to let me know how it was received. I must admit their note made my eyes wet.
FROM THE FESTIVAL: The screening of The Disappeared at the Gimli Film Festival was a resounding success. It was one of our most popular films of 2013. (Unofficially – we turned away more than 50 people at the scheduled screening last Friday – which lead us to make the decision to re-schedule The Disappeared in one of our Second Coming slots on Sunday).
The other thrilling success story is the introduction given by a local resident. By way of explanation – prior to every GFF screening, we ask an individual either connected to the festival or the story of the film to bring a few words of welcome and introduction. Les came into the GFF office a few weeks before the festival to buy his pass and pick up the program guide. When he saw the descriptor for The Disappeared, he shared his personal story of being the son of a Nfld fisherman and brother-in-law to a Captain of a vessel that was lost at sea. Upon hearing this, GFF Festival Director, Cheryl Ashton, asked Les to do the intro for The Disappeared and he happily agreed.
I have heard many intros and most are good … Les’s was EXCEPTIONAL. I can’t tell you how awesome it is to have Canadian stories seen on screens and enjoyed by audiences. What surprises and delights me most is how a story like The Disappeared resonates so strongly with people in in a small inter-lake community in central Manitoba. Personally and professionally, The Disappeared’s screening at GFF is one of the most moving exhibitions I’ve attended. I regret you weren’t there to experience this, yet I trust this note together with Les’s intro gives you a sense of how much your film was appreciated and loved by the GFF audience.
“Hi and welcome to the screening of The Disappeared.
My name is Les Stoodley... I’m honoured to have the privilege of introducing this afternoon’s presentation. This is the Manitoba Premiere so you are the first to see this outstanding film. One of the actors, Shawn Doyle, a native of Newfoundland/Labrador won the 2013 ACTRA Toronto Award as Outstanding Male Performance for this film…
I’m honoured to introduce this film for three reasons. The dories you will see are the same type my father used as an inshore Newfoundland fishermen to earn his living and raise a family of five children. The yellow painted dory is a prominent part of my childhood memories.
Secondly, my brother-in-law was the captain of the fishing trawler, Blue Wave, which sank off the coast of Newfoundland on February 9, 1959 taking 16 men to their death. My eldest sister was widowed with 7 children. She was 32 years old and had no insurance. That tragedy is still vivid in the memories of all of my family.
Finally, The Disappeared was filmed entirely off the shores of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia where I spent a decade of my life. I know all too well, the dangers that lurk in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean. I also know well, the courage and determination of those who go down to the sea in ships and do business in great waters.
Ladies and Gentlemen, a rare glimpse of the physical and emotional strength of East Coast fishermen awaits you with The Disappeared.