Pro Tip: Paint the Town Red


Come for the movies, stay for the best night of your life [photo by james dimagiba]

When I first moved to Denver several years ago, I remember seeing numerous signs and banners around town promoting the Starz Denver Film Festival.  But for some reason I wasn’t exactly sure if I was “allowed” to attend…did I have to be in the industry?  Some sort of member?  Was a monocle required?

A couple of years later, I started working at a local media organization, and was lucky enough to obtain an industry badge for our work in supporting the fest.  It was then that I learned how fucking cool the festival was, and how you actually didn’t have to be any sort of member of anything to participate in the fun.

If you can relate to not exactly knowing how to attend the fest, here are a number of ways that you can experience this 10-day extravaganza of movies, parties, (booze), and special events.

  • VIP Patron Package – So I by no means have gobs of extra money.  As mentioned in a previous post, I chose to go to grad school, and am now burdened with a redonkulous amount of student loan debt.  However.  Movies, booze, food, and blah blah blahing about movies are quite possibly my most favorite things in life, and for the past couple of years I have chosen to buy a patron badge.  This option gives one the ability to pre-order movie tickets (ensuring that you won’t be denied due to a sell-out); VIP access to all three red carpet screenings and after-parties; access to the Filmmakers Lounge (where you can enjoy free drinks, snacks and food between each movie); access to the Late Night Lounge, which is hands down a top 10 Denver experience (free booze until 4am, yo); private receptions (last year there was a party at the very top of the 16th Street Clocktower – baller); a number of pre-festival parties and screenings; a one-month complimentary membership to Pura Vida Fitness & Spa (sweat out those film fest toxins, girl); the ability to bring a guest to all of those things, and more!  Patron packages start at $550, which rivals the amount you would spend on any sort of vacation.  EXCEPT THIS ONE IS 12 DAYS LONG.  If movies, bloodies, unlimited Stella Artois, free food, and partying with hot filmmakers are your bag, I would seriously consider this option.  For more information, visit the site, or email Alison Greenberg.
  • Red Carpet Package – This package is appropriate for those who want to be guaranteed 3 solid movies, and who want to partake in a bit of the glitz and glamour of the festival.  This year’s red carpet picks (all screening at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House) include Labor Day, Nebraska, and At Middleton, and are all sure to please.  Red Carpet Packages run $57 – $72.
  • VIP Opening Night Package – This package is aimed at those individuals who want to go big on opening night.  This option includes: dinner at any Larimer Square restaurant, free parking, the opening night screening of Labor Day at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, and the opening night after-party at the historic McNichols Civic Center Building (read free food, free drinks and free eye candy).  This is also your excuse to wear that fancy dress that has been collecting dust in the back of your closet.  VIP Opening Night Packages run $105 – $115.
  • Reel Social Club (RSC) Package – Calling all 20ish – 30ish years olds: If you haven’t been to the fest yet (or even if you have), this may be your best bet.  This package includes the opening night screening of Labor Day at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House; the opening night after-party at the historic McNichols Civic Center Building; a special screening of Doomsdays, followed by an epic after-party at the Parkside Mansion; an additional secret film screening for RSC members only; and passes to the infamous Late Night Lounge for all three nights.  This pass definitely equals fun (and hott).  Feeling intrigued?  Come learn more at the RSC Kick-off Party on Friday, October 25th and feel free to thank me later.  Reel Social Club (RSC) Packages run $110 – $180.
  • Living Social Voucher – This awesome deal gets you two film tickets, a bottle of wine, chocolate, and free parking.  Score!  $35; limited time offer so buy today!
  • Individual Tickets – Not sure how much you want to partake in the fest?  Well, there is always the option to buy individual tickets for any films that look might intriguing.  Not sure what to watch?  Stay tuned for future blog posts from Starz Denver Film Festival insiders, or do your own research after checking the festival line-up. But whatever you do, plan on buying your tickets early, as buzzworthy films tend to sell-out before the fest.  Individual ticket prices run $8 – $13.
  • Volunteering – Interested in getting a behind-the-scenes look at a world-class film festival?  Well, the film fest is always in need of volunteers.  Add it to your resume, meet new people, and check-out some free films in exchange for your time.  Volunteer registration is still open.

Want more info?  Festival guides hit Westword stands on Wednesday, October 24th.  Make this your year to go big people!

bw fest

Outside of the Ellie Caulkins Opera House [photo by kyle manikowski]