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The Los Angeles Film Festival celebrates 20 years running

Commerotive poser by world renowned artist Ed Ruscha
Artist ED RUSCHA, LAFF

It is that time of year again, my darling Los Angelinos. I am not talking about the awful heat waves hitting our region, causing problems for our skin, hair, makeup, life, environment, and clothes. I’m talking about the positive events and parties that bring joy to our lives, aka the Los Angeles Film Festival, running June 11th through June 19th, 2014.

Downtown Los Angele’s, continues it’s attempt to gentrify the region, with both development and events, and have once again teamed up with The Los Angles Film Festival. This festival, which once had a home in Westwood Village, home of most red carpet premieres, hosts the Los Angeles Film Festival 2014 (from here on out further noted as LAFF).

We in for another fun filled year of films, artists, creator talk sessions, seasoned film buffs, press and fans coming together to support mostly independent movies, combined with some summer smashes, which in years past, included, but not limited to, Magic Mike, Hell Boy II, and The Conjuring, among countless others.

2014 hosts the 20th anniversary of the most prestigious film festival that Los Angeles has to offer, 20 years of LAFF, as it is presented by Film Independent, and has continued to be the place TO BE for film makers, press, and aspiring industry alike, to mix and mingle while sharing their art and visions of the future, past and present world. With sponsors like the LA Times as well as, L.A. Live, this is truly a Los Angeles event to be sure to attend at least once in your life.

If you will be attending this year know that L.A. Live offers parking for a flat rate of $10 per day cash in advance when you tell them you are there for the festival, which can save you $$, as parking in Downtown can become incredibly expensive and sketchy at times. This parking area is located at the West Parking Garage 1005 Chick Hearn Court. Lot W Gate B. It is under the theater. If you do not want to deal with walking alone among vagrants who will most likely harass you, and you will only be going to the LA Live center, then this is the best option for you.

LAFF hosts many ticket packages, including a VIP area that can be purchased. However, note that it is usually reserved for press and filmmakers who’s content is in the festival, and at times can be so packed that you will be put on stand by, though that isn’t usually the case until the sun sets and the alcohol begins to flow. That being said it can be a great break from back to back movie screenings.

The VIP area usually consists of sponsored items such as snacks, water, vitamin water, and at night, an open bar, which includes soda for those of you who don’t drink alcohol, what they don’t offer is coffee, they really should offer coffee, though if you are press you can go to the press center where they have, you guessed it, coffee, usually. I’m not sure what has changed this year in way of sponsors and complimentary beverages.

Inside the VIP area there are usually a few computers, in case you need to check a screening, places to sit, a patio area for smoking, for use with whatever legal thing you need to do.

As press in the past, covering LAFF for many different outlets, I have had immense access to everything, and can say first hand that if you are going to be at the festival from morning to night, and don’t want to leave, and you want to party with music and an open bar till the wee hours, this area is a great place to relax, mix and mingle.

Should you choose to have a couple alcoholic beverages, please remember to take public transportation, have a designated driver, &/or call a cab, or use your phone to ap a car service. If you are new to town for the festival and aren’t staying in the downtown area, download Uber, Sidecar, and Taximagic as public transportation out here is dodgy at best and shuts down early, so be aware because sometimes time can escape you and the next thing you know it is 4am. and if you haven’t kept track of your drinking, you shouldn’t be driving. There is nothing beautiful about playing with your life, or the lives of others, please drink responsibly.

With that being said, get your party clothes on, put your best face forward, be ready to meet some amazing people, and prepare for the heat, as it usually gets hot during the day with sporadic winds, cooling down into the night.

See you there! I will be reporting back to you about who wore what, did what, what movies were good, how the parties are. I have been covering this event for various outlets for more years than I can remember.

One year I gave a horror movie a bad review, because it was a terrible movie, and after my review was live, one of the filmmakers pushed me out of nowhere from behind, as I was crossing the street, and then walked quickly away so he wouldn’t get into trouble, all because his feelings were hurt by my negative review, and the main actress apparently sent a barrage of childish comments geared towards me on the internet due to the review.

I’d tell you the name of the movie but it was so bad I scrubbed it from my mind, when I remember it I will add it into this article, and should I have time, I’ll tell you the entire story in the future, because nothing is more beautiful than laughter.

Now what kid of behavior is that of a grown man and woman? It is certainly not professional behavior by any means, and shows the types of people they are, their true character, there is nothing beautiful or happy about that group of humans and is probably the reason their movie was so terrible and underdeveloped, infantile at best. This, however, thankfully, isn’t typical behavior at LAFF.

Most people understand that press has a job and not everyone is going to love your movie. However I can’t stress enough that if you are going to be venturing into downtown Los Angeles keep your whit’s about you, you never know where something negative can come from. That being said, this was the only time I’ve had a grown man physically push me over a negative review, and the actress internet stalk me and harass me on the internet. She was told by others to apologize to me as her actions were in poor taste. Life as press is forever an adventure, and you not being press, probably wont deal with such things. However if anything negative should happen to you at LAFF or in the VIP area, tell one of them men working the door. They will take care of it asap. The safety of guests is paramount.

Among the people that I met last year who were awesome were Zach Braff, a prince of some nation I can’t remember (thanks to the vodka sponsor, I wish I remembered who the sponsor was because the vodka was of the POPOV class variety and shouldn’t be marketed as mid-range, but I digress this is a film festival, and there will be alcohol if you are able to get an invite to all of the special event parties), and one of the stunt men from the movie The Rocketeer who told me some fantastic stories about working on that movie. There are too many people to list including two years ago actor/director/writer Alex Karpovsky and his people, with his incredibly fun movie, Red Flag.

For more information on the Los Angeles film festival go here: http://www.lafilmfest.com/

See you there my beautiful readers! And if you can’t make it, I will be writing up the juicy bits & interviews throughout the event, trust me there will be juicy bits. So put on your sunscreen, and let us all get through this May weather together, because June will be a month to remember.

Stay beautiful, stay positive, the future is a wonderfully lit place that has room for us all.