Message from the EFFY 2017 Directors

Michael Warady

Michael Warady

Anna Fiastro

Anna Fiastro

For the past nine years, the Environmental Film Festival at Yale (EFFY) has provided a stage through which filmmakers have showcased the environmental tragedies becoming all too commonplace across the United States and the world. In 2016 our festival screened 22 different films (to over 1,500 attendees) from all over the world, with topics ranging from unsustainable logging in SE Asia to strip mining in Appalachia, and nearly everything in between. Today, after six months of mental processing, these films and the people whose stories were told within them continue to both influence our lives and haunt our nightmares. 

In 2017 EFFY is firmly established as one of the premier student-run environmental film festivals. Correspondingly, the opportunity to showcase unique films sourced from places far beyond the borders of New Haven, CT has grown exponentially. It is with that opportunity in mind that the two of us, Michael Warady and Anna Fiastro, have decided to jointly take on the role of Co-Executive Directors for EFFY 2017. We have both had the privilege of working with the festival for the past two years, and we have been able to see firsthand the many changes that have occurred as the festival has increased in size. We hope to continue building on the success of our predecessors as we bring audience members a unique, entertaining, and educational movie experience. We are excited to continue EFFY’s awesome tradition of spreading important environmental messages through the medium of film.

While acknowledging the successes of our predecessors, EFFY 2017 will also experience some significant changes from previous years. In addition to the beautiful redesign of our EFFY logo, website, and laurel that you see here (thanks to our Marketing Director Leah Michaelsen), we also seek to institute a more compact and impactful festival. EFFY 2017 will span across four nights of movie screenings, rather than nine as in previous years, and one of these nights will be hosted off of Yale’s Campus (for the first time ever!) in downtown New Haven. EFFY 2017 will seek to establish stronger ties to the New Haven community, as we hope to source films not only from exotic locales across the globe but also from right here locally – as there are countless environmental concerns that exist right outside of Yale’s gates. In addition, it is exciting to see that the quality of film submissions continues to improve. EFFY 2017 has already received 2x the number of submissions that it received in all of 2016! We are honored for EFFY’s brand to be growing so rapidly, and we are excited to begin the film selection process after the New Year. EFFY 2017 will also build on last year’s significant data analytics drive. We hope to gain further understanding as to who our audience members are and how we can best continue spreading the EFFY message to those we have not yet reached. More to come on this later.

Finally, and it should go without saying, we are extremely excited to be joined in our EFFY 2017 adventure by the remainder of our Executive Board members: Leah Michaelsen, Olivia Sanchez Bandini, and Emma Crow-Willard. The team has already put in countless hours as we begin to lay the groundwork for what is going to be an incredible festival just six short months away. If you have any questions about the festival, please feel free to reach out on our website or directly to us at michael.warady@yale.edu or anna.fiastro@yale.edu. See you in April!

-Michael and Anna