The Tasmanian Breath of Fresh Air (BOFA) Film Festival was started in 2010 as Tasmania’s first-ever major annual film festival. A unique event on the Australian film festival calendar, BOFA has always been intimate, thought-provoking and fun. It’s a film festival that’s been small enough to be friendly – not a black T-shirt or snooty attitude in sight – but big enough to be international in perspective.

Our mantra has always been to use film to inspire positive change and we pride ourselves on finding fresh, innovative stories to inspire you to see the world differently, truly a ‘breath of fresh air’. We find films that are receiving acclaim at international and national film festivals but we specialise in finding films that will not make the cinema circuit in Tasmania and which are not necessarily seen at other festivals.  In 2016, we screened 14 Features (3 Australian), 25 documentaries (4 Tasmanian and 6 Australian ) and 75 Australian short films (including 42 Tasmanian).

We’ve also run BOFA in Action sessions that have made a real difference to our community and our state.  These focused at the 2016 festival on:

  1. Smart Cities and regional development – a one day Connected Launceston: Smart City, Smart Region involved short films on the subject, 12 expert speakers, audience participation and agreed action outcomes
  2. Community development – a one day What’s Strong, Not Wrong with Communities session was facilitated by Peter Kenyon of Ideas Bank and  involved a short films and presentations on the subject of community development, with audience participation and agreed action outcomes
  3. Topical issues – half day sessions were held on empowering young women (using the film What Tomorrow Brings as the basis for discussion) and “Community Takes Charge” as the Big Picture Discussion seen massive changes in the last decade as film has given way to digital production.

But things are changing……..

While BOFA has always screened digital movies at Inveresk Precinct, none of our venues has cinema grade projection and this has now become a problem. Most major films of the quality we need to retain our status and credibility as a significant film festival on the Australian circuit, are now unavailable to us without the higher grade projection.

So, for 2017 we will not run a full film festival in November as in past years.

Instead we will focus for 2017 on:

  1. Regularly screening thought-provoking movies that we know you will love
  2. Conducting the Innovative Tasmania Awards to recognise and promote the belief that Tasmania has a proud record of innovation because, as island folk, we’ve always had to find solutions and depend on our own ingenuity.
  3. Using systematic Community Led Impact Partnerships (CLIP) process for change initially to facilitate CONNECTED LAUNCESTON, to capitalise on the opportunities arising from the fact that Launceston is now Australia’s most digitally connected city/town since the NBN became 100% ready with service to the premises.

Discussions, negotiations and planning are underway to overcome our technology problems and we are confident that there is an exciting future ahead for BOFA Film Festival as well as the action work we are doing in the community.

Hence, our new slogan is: Inspiring change through film and action.

Stay tuned and stay involved. If you want to chat, want to get involved or have an idea for BOFA’s future please contact me, Owen Tilbury, at 0407 501 287 or at director@breath-of-fresh-air.com.au

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