Jackson, Wyoming – February 8th, 2007 – Alpinist Magazine is pleased to announce the inception of the 2007 Alpinist Film Festival. The Festival will be held in downtown Jackson, Wyoming from March 15-17th, at the new Center for the Arts. Featured presenters for this year’s Festival are Mark Newcomb, Gerry Lopez and Steve House.
The Alpinist Film Festival, formerly known as the Barry Corbet Film Festival, began in March 2004 in Jackson, Wyoming. Founded by Alpinist Magazine Editor Christian Beckwith, the Festival was created in order to honor the athletic and artistic spirit of the late Barry Corbet through films that celebrate the adventure lifestyle across disciplines and generations. Since the Festival’s beginning, all events have sold out and have received notable press, both locally and nationally.
In addition to honoring the lifestyle of Barry Corbet, the Festival’s creation was also motivated by philanthropic interests. Every year the Festival works in conjunction with a new nonprofit organization, and so far the Festival has donated over ten thousand dollars to its various charities. For the 2007 Alpinist Film Festival, the nonprofit of choice is Teton County’s own One Percent for the Tetons, a partner of the organization One Percent for the Planet. The organization is the first of hopefully many locally-based chapters of One Percent for the Planet and is dedicated to protecting the extraordinary natural resources of the Tetons and its surrounding area, done so through the financial support of local business and organizations.
“This year’s Festival is unique for many reasons, our nonprofit sponsor being only one of the many. Having One Percent for the Tetons as our charity of choice is important to the residents of Jackson and the rest of Teton County. It’s our way of saying thanks to our many supporters and to lend support to a new organization whose very goal is the preservation of the land many of us call home,” said Festival Founder Beckwith.
The Festival itself is composed of three nights, each dedicated to a different genre of sport and adventure filmmaking. The Festival kicks off with Snow Night on March 15th, the evening being dedicated to snow-based adventure films; Surf Night takes place on March 16th, which showcases surf films; and Stone Night, the last evening of the 2007 Festival, takes place on March 17th, the night meant for mountaineering films. In addition to presenting some of the best films in the respected genres – and often times premieres, either world or US – a feature presenter will help open and close each night.
Ski-great Mark Newcomb will be the feature presenter for Snow Night on March 15th. Mr. Newcomb, born and raised in Jackson, Wyoming, is part owner and Senior Guide of Exum Mountain Guides. His accomplishments include three separate first descents of the Grant Teton within a three-year period, the first ski descent of the Black Ice Couloir, and the first ascent of Sepu Kangri in Tibet, among many others. He is also a guide for Geographic Expeditions and an avalanche course instructor for the American Avalanche Institute, which his father founded. Mr. Newcomb will be presenting his adventure biography film “The Line,” created by Rattlecan Productions. The film documents Newcomb from his home in Jackson, Wyoming, to the 8000-meter Himalayan giant Shishapangma, which he attempts to ski with a small group of like-minded friends.
On March 16th, surf-legend Gerry Lopez will be the feature presenter for the Festival’s Surf Night. Mr. Lopez, a native of Honolulu, is most widely known for his mastery of Hawaii’s Pipeline (for which he is often called “Mr. Pipeline”). In 1972 and 1973, Mr. Lopez won the prestigious Pipe Masters competitions; he made the finals four other times. In addition to his involvement in the surfing industry, Mr. Lopez also acts on occasion, most notably in “Conan the Barbarian,” co-starring with California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. He also serves as ambassador to Patagonia and is the founder of his own surfboard, snowboard and clothing label. Not only will Mr. Lopez be introducing the night, he has also been commissioned to create a program of surf films that have helped shape his admirable and highly successful career.
Master alpinist Steve House will be the presenter for the Festival’s closing, Stone Night. Originally from eastern Oregon, Mr. House began climbing at young age and through his numerous years of dedication to climbing and alpinism is widely regarded as one of the world’s best alpinists. Mr. House’s list of accomplishments is impressive, the list littered with first ascents, new routes, and an impressive and minimalistic style to the sport nearly all his own. In addition to his success and physical domination of the sport, Mr. House has also lent an artistic and sophisticated hand to the sport, often writing and documenting through various forms of media his various ascents and accomplishments. Mr. House will be joining the Festival with the purpose of presenting his latest film “Cayesh: The Calling,” which documents his one-day ascent of a new route on the west face of Perua’s Cayesh with fellow alpinist Marko Prezelj.
“Our lineup for the 2007 Alpinist Film Festival is an impressive one, one that I’m incredibly excited for,” said Beckwith. “Just one of our featured presenters is strong enough to make the Festival, but being able to have all three, each of them wildly successful at their respected sports, is truly more than one could ask for.
“And not only are they speaking, they’re also here to introduce films they’ve personally produced and directed, films that document important and impressive personal journeys they’ve recently taken, and/or films that have helped shape their career and define their chosen sport. They’re doing more than gracing us with their presence: they’re helping us make the night.”
Also note-worthy is the venue for this year’s Festival. Being one of the first events, the 2007 Alpinist Film Festival will take place in downtown Jackson, Wyoming’s new $36 million Center for the Arts. Working in conjunction with the Town of Jackson and Teton County, the Center for the Arts is a 41,000 square foot arts venue; the theatre, which seats 525, is the final element of the venue’s construction. Planning for the Center, which was envisioned as a showcase for local arts organizations and artists, began in 1991. Construction is nearly complete and the grand opening for the Center’s theater is currently schedule for a March 3rd premiere.
“There’s obviously much to be excited for – our program, our featured presenters, our charity of choice, our venue. This year’s Festival is bound to be a success, as all of our other Festivals have proven to be,” said Beckwith. “However, this year we’re truly standing apart from our past, going above and beyond the high demands and expectations our fans have come to expect from the Festival.
“This year’s meant as a thank you,” continued Beckwith. “A thank you to our fans and to the residents of Teton County. This is our way of giving something back to our own community and to acknowledge their loyalty and support. And, perhaps more importantly, to stand as an example of what more is to come from future Alpinist Film Festivals.”
The 2007 Alpinist Film Festival takes place March 15-17th in Jackson, Wyoming at the Center for the Arts. Tickets are $16 in advance and $18 at the door; price does not include six percent sales tax nor a ten percent Center for the Arts service fee. Tickets will soon be available through the Center for the Arts and can be purchased through their box office and online by visiting the Center’s website at www.jhcenterforthearts.org. Information on the 2007 Alpinist Film Festival can be found on the web at www.alpinist.com/p//film or by calling Alpinist Magazine at (307) 734 – 0600.