The 13th Annual Fargo Film Festival Now Accepting Withoutabox Online Entries!


The Fargo Film Festival prefers online entries submitted via, which provides cost-saving, paperless submission to film festivals around the world. Withoutabox’s internet-only submission platform features online applications via one master entry form, online fee payments, press kits, and the option to use Secure Online Screeners, an economical, eco-friendly, and secure alternative to traditional hard-copy DVD submissions. Fill out one master entry form and take advantage of quick entry, extended deadlines, and powerful submission management tools. There’s no extra cost to you, and by submitting, you’ll join Withoutabox’s global filmmaker community and stay in the loop about international exhibition opportunities. Click to submit your film today!

See You in 2013!

The Fargo Film Festival would like to thank all the volunteers, audience members, panelists, visiting moviemakers, board members, projectionists, theatre staff, and everyone else who helped to make 2012 the most successful and rewarding experience to date. Our twelfth outing featured some of the finest movies ever showcased in the festival and was enriched by the presence of so many talented and enlightening personalities.

The quality and breadth of the movies showcased in the Fargo Film Festival continues to impress cinema devotees from the community, the region, and beyond. We will most certainly be back in 2013. If you are an audience member, we thank you for your support and look forward to seeing you next March.

If you are a moviemaker, we can’t wait to see your next project; submissions are open year-round.

Films by Simon Tarr and Aaron Valdez Featured at Post-Party


The Fargo Film Festival was pleased to feature work by filmmakers Simon Tarr and Aaron Valdez at the 2012 closing night post-party held at Ecce.

Festival volunteer Kyja Kristjansson-Nelson curated the installation screening of Tarr’s “The Long Way Down” and Valdez’s “Dissolve.”

The festival would like to thank these talented filmmakers for sharing their visions with our guests.

2-Minute Movie Contest Tonight!

The Fargo Film Festival’s popular 2-Minute Movie Contest returns tonight beginning at 9:30pm at the Fargo Theatre. Admission is two dollars.

More than forty very short movies will be screened and judged this year, and the winner will have the honor of being shown during the festival’s closing night session on Saturday, March 10, 2012.

From parodies to fantasies, the 2-Minute Movie Contest showcases a wide range of content in a program where anything can – and often does – show up on the screen. You might cringe, you may roll your eyes once or twice, and you’ll almost certainly laugh at some of the movie snapshots on parade. Remember our motto: if you don’t like the movie on the screen, just wait two minutes and there will be something else to see.

FAIR WARNING: The 2-Minute Movie Contest features adult material, including some profanity and violent and sexual content that would typically be rated R and NC-17. Viewer discretion is advised.

2012 Best in Show Award Winners


The Fargo Film Festival is proud to announce its 2012 Best in Show award winners.

Best Picture: Incident in New Baghdad (James Spione, director)

Best Director: Don Hertzfeldt (It’s Such a Beautiful Day)

Best Actor: Lee Tergesen (Silver Tongues)

Best Actress: Anna Margaret Hollyman (Small, Beautifully Moving Parts)

Best Screenplay: Simon Arthur (Silver Tongues)

Best Cinematography: Will Basanta (Jess + Moss)

Congratulations to all the winners for their incredible work.

Fargo Film Festival 2012 Program Schedule

Click Here for the Downloadable PDF Program (web resolution)

Tuesday, March 6 Evening Session (On Broadway)
8:00 p.m.  Jay & Silent Bob Get Old, featuring Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes live on the stage of the Historic Fargo Theatre

Wednesday, March 7 Morning Session (On Broadway)
10:00 a.m. My Hometown (animation)
10:10 a.m. Falling (experimental)
10:20 a.m. Serial Killer (student)
10:24 a.m. Heliotropes (animation)
10:30 a.m. The Power of Two (Honorable Mention Documentary Feature)

12:00 p.m. Lunch Panel: The Gift of Life. Join The Power of Two filmmaking team along with local doctors and transplant recipient to learn about organ donation and the ongoing challenge of raising awareness. Juano’s, $8.

Wednesday, March 7 Morning Session (Off Broadway)
10:00 a.m. Birdboy (animation)
10:15 a.m. God! (invited film)
10:30 a.m. Mommy’s Boy (narrative short)
10:45 a.m. The Beast Pageant (experimental)

Wednesday, March 7 Afternoon Session (On Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Heart (invited film)
1:40 p.m. Along the Road (narrative short)
1:55 p.m. Nature’s Child (student)
2:00 p.m. Clear Blue (narrative short)
2:20 p.m. Cat’s Cradle (invited film)
2:30 p.m. Faster! (student)
2:45 p.m. The Gloaming (animation)
3:00 p.m. Bertie Crisp (animation)
3:10 p.m. Vicenta (animation)
3:35 p.m. A Windigo Tale (narrative feature)

Wednesday, March 7 Afternoon Session (Off Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Blazing the Trail: The O’Kalems in Ireland (documentary feature)
3:00 p.m. The External World (animation)
3:15 p.m. Belly (animation)
3:25 p.m. Maska (invited film)
4:00 p.m. Fast Talk (documentary feature)

Wednesday, March 7 Evening Session (On Broadway)
7:00 p.m. The Power of Two (Honorable Mention Documentary Feature)
9:15 p.m. Age of Champions (Winner Best Documentary Feature)

Thursday, March 8 Morning Session (On Broadway)
10:00 a.m. The Tannery (animation)
10:10 a.m. Above the Knee (narrative short)
10:20 a.m. Reservation Realities (student)
10:30 a.m. Performance Anxiety (documentary short)
10:45 a.m. Fast Talk (documentary feature)

12:00 p.m. Lunch Panel: Hot Talk. Join filmmaker Debra Tolchinsky (Fast Talk) and local members of the collegiate debate community for a discussion about the world of competitive forensics. Juano’s, $8.

Thursday, March 8 Morning Session (Off Broadway)
10:00 a.m. Devil’s Gate (experimental)
10:20 a.m. Currency (narrative feature)

Thursday, March 8 Afternoon Session (On Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Daisy Cutter (animation)
1:40 p.m. Sang Froid (narrative short)
1:45 p.m. Cuddle Group (experimental)
1:55 p.m. Come Wander with Me (student)
2:00 p.m. Drumbeats (documentary short)
2:10 p.m. The Monster of Nix (animation)
2:40 p.m. Crooked Beauty (documentary short)
3:15 p.m. Somewhere Only We Know (Honorable Mention Experimental)
3:20 p.m. Dik (narrative short)
3:30 p.m. Silver Tongues (narrative feature)

Thursday, March 8 Afternoon Session (Off Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Top Secret Rosies (documentary feature)
2:30 p.m. Blue Mantle (experimental)
3:05 p.m. In the Absence of Light, Darkness Prevails (experimental)
3:20 p.m. Horsemen (documentary feature)

Thursday, March 8 Evening Session (On Broadway)
7:00 p.m. An Evening with Don Hertzfeldt
9:30 p.m. Adventures in Plymptoons! (documentary feature)

Thursday, March 8 (All-Star Bowl)
9:30 p.m. 1st Annual Bunny Lebowski Pro-Am Invitational. Join us for bowling, trivia, costume contest, and what have you. All-Star Bowl, $10 (includes shoe rental and bowling).

Friday, March 9 Morning Session (On Broadway)
10:00 a.m. Hamster Heaven (animation)
10:05 a.m. Papa’s Boy (animation)
10:10 a.m. After the Shearing (narrative short)
10:20 a.m. A Short Film About Ice-Fishing (narrative short)
10:30 a.m. Madtown (documentary short)
10:50 a.m. Like Sugar on the Tip of My Lips (student)
11:05 a.m. Ingrid Pitt: Beyond the Forest (student)
11:10 a.m. Grandpa Looked Like William Powell (animation)
11:15 a.m. Francois Marconi: Man or God? (student)
11:30 a.m. The Books: A Video and Audio Retrospective

12:00 p.m. Lunch Panel: Acting for the Camera. Meet Rich Sommer and Fred Stoller as they engage in a conversation on the art, craft, and business of acting. Juano’s, $8.

Friday, March 9 Morning Session (Off Broadway)
10:00 a.m. Pioneer (narrative short)
10:15 a.m. Photos & Drawings (narrative short)
10:30 a.m. A Good Day to Die (documentary feature)

Friday, March 9 Afternoon Session (On Broadway)
1:00 p.m. Ant Farm (student)
1:15 p.m. Together: Dancing with Spinner Dolphins (experimental)
1:20 p.m. The Mariner (student)
1:40 p.m. Teen Writes: The Group That Opened the Box (invited film)
2:45 p.m. Flagpole (narrative short)
3:05 p.m. At the Formal (narrative short)
3:15 p.m. Method (narrative short)
3:30 p.m. Fred & Vinnie (narrative feature)

Friday, March 9 Afternoon Session (Off Broadway)
1:00 p.m. Among Us (narrative feature)
2:35 p.m. Language of the Unheard (documentary short)
2:55 p.m. Achante (experimental)
3:30 p.m. Beatles Stories (documentary feature)

Friday, March 9 Evening Session (On Broadway)
7:00 p.m. A Finger, Two Dots, Then Me (narrative short)
7:10 p.m. Tooty’s Wedding (narrative short)
7:30 p.m. Jess + Moss (Honorable Mention Narrative Feature)
9:30 p.m. 2-Minute Movie Contest

Saturday, March 10 Morning Session (On Broadway)
9:45 a.m. Melt (Winner Best Experimental Film)
9:55 a.m. Honesty in Perspective (invited film)
10:30 a.m. You Don’t Know Bertha Constantine (narrative short)
10:55 a.m. Duck, Death and the Tulip (invited film)
11:05 a.m. Guard Dog Global Jam (animation)
11:10 a.m. Moon Rock (Winner Best Student Film Non-Fiction)
11:20 a.m. Cookie (narrative short)
11:35 a.m. It’s Such a Beautiful Day (Winner Best Animation)

12:00 p.m. Lunch Panel: Making an Indie Work. Special guests Matt Walsh, Joe Lo Truglio, Matt L. Jones and Kirk Roos will discuss the making of the almost entirely improvised High Road and Clay Jeter and Brian Harstine will discuss the feature Jess + Moss. Juano’s, $8.

Saturday, March 10 Morning Session (Off Broadway)
10:00 a.m. Wings. Dirt. Magic. (invited film)
10:15 a.m. A Shadow of Blue (animation)
10:30 a.m. Gone (student)
10:45 a.m. Small, Beautifully Moving Parts (narrative feature)

Saturday, March 10 Afternoon Session (On Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Mound (Honorable Mention Animation)
1:35 p.m. Don’t Be Nervous (animation)
1:50 p.m. Method (narrative short)
2:00 p.m. Gynoid (Honorable Mention Student)
2:25 p.m. Waiting Room (narrative short)
2:35 p.m. Bear Force One (Honorable Mention Narrative Short)
3:10 p.m. TXT (Honorable Mention Documentary Short)
3:20 p.m. After-School Special (narrative short)
3:30 p.m. Bukowski (narrative short)
3:40 p.m. Mustache (student)
4:00 p.m. High Road (narrative feature)

Saturday, March 10 Afternoon Session (Off Broadway)
1:30 p.m. Silver Tongues (Honorable Mention Narrative Feature)
3:15 p.m. Age of Champions (Winner Best Documentary Feature)

Saturday, March 10 Evening Session (On Broadway)
7:00 p.m. Presentation of the Margie Bailly Volunteer Spirit Award to Greg Carlson
7:10 p.m. 2-Minute Movie Contest Winner
7:15 p.m. Misdirection (Winner Best Student Film Fiction)
7:35 p.m. A Morning Stroll (animation)
7:45 p.m. 5 Dollars (Winner Best Narrative Short Drama)
8:05 p.m. Incident in New Baghdad (Winner Best Documentary Short)
8:30 p.m. After the Credits (Winner Best Narrative Short Comedy)
8:45 p.m. Time Freak (narrative short)
9:15 p.m. LIVE ON STAGE: Matt Walsh and Rich Sommer in CELEBRITY, an interactive improv game show where “knowing fame wins the game”

FFF 12 Welcomes Special Guest James Spione


The Fargo Film Festival is pleased to welcome special guest James Spione.

James Spione is an independent filmmaker based in New York. His latest film, the Academy Award-nominated documentary Incident in New Baghdad, recounts a U.S. Army infantryman’s life-changing experiences on the scene of a controversial 2007 American helicopter attack made famous by WikiLeaks.

The film won Best Documentary Short when it premiered at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, and garnered the Grand Prize for Documentary Short at the Rhode Island International Film Festival.  The film also won the Documentary Short category for the 2012 Fargo Film Festival and is currently nominated for several BEST IN SHOW awards.

Mr. Spione’s first documentary feature, American Farm, detailed the intense intergenerational conflicts on his family’s fifth-generation homestead in central New York State. The film played theatrically from New England to the Midwest, and was subsequently released on DVD by Passion River Films.

Jim Spione has also made a number of fiction films. Perhaps his best-known work was the eerie Sundance favorite Garden, a suspenseful drama starring Oscar winner Melissa Leo (The Fighter) and veteran character actor Matt Malloy (Six Feet Under); the film screened at festivals worldwide.

His first film Prelude earned a Student Academy Award and was seen at numerous international film festivals. Mr. Spione also produced the acclaimed independent feature Parallel Sons (Sundance ’95), directed by John G. Young.

Mr. Spione lives with his wife, actress Pamela Stewart, and his two sons in the Hudson Valley region of New York State.

Incident in New Baghdad will screen at the Fargo Theatre as a part of the Fargo Film Festival’s Best of Fest closing night, Saturday, March 10 at 7:00pm.  Mr. Spione will participate in a brief Q&A session that evening.

An additional special screening of Incident in New Baghdad and Q&A session with Mr. Spione will be held Friday, March 9, 4:00-5:30pm on the campus of MSUM (Livingston Lord Library, room 103).  This event is FREE and open to the public.  Seating is limited.

FFF 12 Welcomes Special Guest Sarah Hagan


The 2012 Fargo Film Festival is proud to welcome Sarah Hagan, who appears in Jess + Moss, a narrative feature screening on Friday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Sarah Hagan is best known for her beloved recurring roles as Millie Kentner on the cult series Freaks and Geeks and as Amanda, the nerdy potential slayer on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Born in Austin, Texas, she began acting at age six when her mother first signed her up for musical theater. Sarah has appeared on Ally McBeal, Undeclared, Boston Public, Grey’s Anatomy, and Medium.

After a hiatus from acting to study painting and sculpture, Hagan has returned with a supporting role in the comedy Spring Breakdown and the lead performance in Jess + Moss.

Sarah will be joined by her Jess + Moss director Clay Jeter, producer Brian Harstine, and co-star Austin Vickers for a Q&A following the screening. The Jess + Moss team will also participate in a lunch panel at Juano’s on Saturday, March 10 at noon. Admission to the lunch panel is $8.

FFF 12 Welcomes Special Guest Fred Stoller


The 2012 Fargo Film Festival is proud to welcome Fred Stoller. Fred appears in and wrote Fred & Vinnie, a narrative feature that will screen on Friday, March 9 at 4 p.m.

Fred Stoller has appeared on numerous sitcoms, most notably as Ray’s mopey cousin on Everybody Loves Raymond. His film credits include Dumb and Dumber, The Change-Up, and Austin Powers in Goldmember.

A frequent voice actor, Fred could be heard as Steve the Tree on Nickelodeon’s Oswald, Stenographer Fred on ABC’s Science Court, Rusty the Monkey Wrench on Disney’s Handy Manny, and as Fred the Penguin on The Penguins of Madagascar.

As a stand-up comedian, Fred has appeared on HBO, The Tonight Show, and Late Night with David Letterman. Fred was also a staff writer for Seinfeld and has also written for Handy Manny and National Lampoon magazine.

Fred will join Rich Sommer on a lunch panel at Juano’s on Friday, March 9 at noon to discuss the acting and auditioning process. Admission to the lunch panel is $8.

FFF 12 Welcomes Special Guest Matt Walsh



The 2012 Fargo Film Festival is proud to welcome Matt Walsh, director of the narrative feature High Road, which will be screened on Saturday, March 10 at 4 p.m.
Matt Walsh was born in Chicago and attended Northern Illinois University where he received a degree in psychology. After college he moved back to Chicago and quickly began performing comedy. In 1991 he co-­founded the sketch group Upright Citizens Brigade with Matt Besser and Ian Roberts (later joined by Amy Poehler). In 1996 he moved with the group to New York City where they landed a sketch show on Comedy Central and opened a theater.
After three seasons of the UCB sketch show, Matt worked as a correspondent on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart from 2001 to 2002. Matt’s extensive movie credits include The Hangover, Old School, Bad Santa, Due Date, Role Models, and School for Scoundrels. He has also appeared on many TV  shows including Hung, Community, Arrested Development, and Reno 911.

Additionally, Matt will be joined by Rich Sommer live on the stage of the Historic Fargo Theatre at 9:15 p.m. on Saturday, March 10 for Celebrity, an interactive improv game show where “knowing fame wins the game.”