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Local filmmakers picked for St. Louis International Film Festival

This radiation warning sign is one of many posted on the chain link fence surrounding part of the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton, Mo.
File photo | Sarah Skiold-Hanlin | St. Louis Public Radio
"The Safe Side of the Fence" looks at the Manhattan Project and its aftermath.

This year, 26 St. Louis-produced films will appear alongside films from around the world at the St. Louis International Film Festival. The organization’s Artistic Director Chris Clark said quality, not just location, was the primary factor affecting what films would be included in the November programming.

“They are like top gun. They are the best of the best,” he said. “These are things that we would be proud to recommend and could stand toe to toe in other festivals anywhere.”

The international film festival announced the list of included films at the tail end of the St. Louis Filmmaker’s Showcase, which took place at the Tivoli Theatre in the Delmar Loop this past week. The festival featured everything from documentaries focused on St. Louis’s roll in Blues music history, and feature-length examinations of inner-city life, to experimental short films. Initially, the local film festival showed all submissions, but things have changed since the project’s first years. Now there’s a selection process.

Festival highlights included in STLIFF: The Safe Side of the Fence: a documentary examining a local businesses roll refining uranium for the Manhattan project. The Heroin Project: a documentary examining the effects of heroin on the St. Louis region. Party Animal: humans playing animals participate in a strange dinner party.

“They’re not just 'Hey, it's cool and have our aunts and cousins and girlfriends come see it because we made it and we’re here'; but it could stand up anywhere else and be competitive,” said Clark.

The St. Louis International Film Festival puts on events throughout the year including the international film fest, the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase, QFest which highlights contemporary gay and queer themed cinema, 48 Hour Film Project St. Louis, and the Robert Classic French Film Festival. More than 2200 films are submitted to the international film festival, which will run from Nov. 5-15 this year.

Full list of locally produced films to be featured at the St. Louis International Film Festival


Four Way Stop directed by Efi da Silva (Fiction)

Sleep With Me directed by Brian Jun (Fiction)

America's Blues directed by Patrick Branson (Documentary)

The Heroin Project directed by Ashley Seering and Corey Byers (Documentary)

The Safe Side of the Fence directed by Tony West (Documentary)


Abhita directed by Lacey Turner (Narrative)

About That directed by Damien D. Smith (Narrative)

The Basement directed by Bart Elfrink (Narrative)

Blameless directed by Robert Herrera (Narrative)

Daddy I Cut My Hair directed by Matt Amato (Narrative)

El Tio directed by Michael Rich (Narrative)

Future War directed by Chris Grega (Narrative)

Grow directed by Matthew Bryan (Narrative)

Late War directed by Chris Grega (Narrative)

Nature Imagined directed by Tim Craft (Narrative)

Out of the Basement directed by Benjamin Dewhurst (Narrative)

Parallel Chords directed by Catherine Dudley-Rose (Narrative)

Party Animals directed by Will Morris (Narrative)

Sophie directed by Alvaro Aro (Narrative)

Splatter directed by Hieronymous Cole (Narrative)

Trinity directed by Wyatt Weed (Narrative)

Whisper directed by Alec Wild (Narrative)

Witness 11 directed by Sean Mitchell (Narrative)

Zero Degree Overlap directed by Zlatko Cosic (Narrative)

Feeling Wanted directed by Yasmin Mistry (Documentary)

The Swallows' Tale: The Story of Ozark Airlines directed by Jim Dreyer (Documentary)

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