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Film festival to focus on Internet cat videos

July 10, 2012|By Deborah Netburn
  • The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis will host Aug. 30 what may be the first Internet cat video film festival.
The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis will host Aug. 30 what may be the first… (Katie Czarniecki Hill )

Cat videos are coming to the big screen.

On Aug. 30, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis will host what may be the first Internet Cat Video Film Festival, an evening long exploration of the joys of viral cat videos.

Depending on your relationship to viral cat videos, this film festival may sound awesome, or terrible, frivolous or adorable. And that's kind of the point, festival organizer Katie Czarniecki Hill told the Los Angeles Times. 

"It is an experiment," she said. "It will be interesting to see if people think it is silly, or great, or a waste of time. But I like the idea of everyone admitting they like cat videos."

The film festival will start at dusk, and will last 45 minutes to an hour.

That may not sound like a long time, but most cat videos on YouTube are less than a minute so the festival should allow for plenty of feline fun.

The festival is part of the Walker Open Field summer program, which is all about community building and experimentation. So rather than acting as a traditional curator, Czarniecki Hill said she will be collecting cat video nominations from the general public -- focusing especially on the local community. Then she'll screen those nominations, and decide which videos will make the cut.

The winning videos will be projected on a building wall near the art center.

Czarniecki Hill said she is curious to see what happens when the usually private act of watching a cat video moves into a public space.

"I could not be more excited to literally bring this solo cat video viewing behavior out in the open," she wrote in a blog post introducing the idea of the festival. "Walker Open Field welcomes cat lovers (and challenges haters – c’mon, you know who you are) to openly release your cat-video-induced giggles and emotions that are otherwise muffled by computer screens and constrained by cubicles.... Let’s transform this singular small screen viewing experience into a shared celebration with the larger-than-life projection of these silly clips out on the Open Field."

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