One of the main events of the Yorkton Film Festival (YFF) has passed, as “Lobsterfest” kicked off Friday night at the Yorkton Wildlife Federation Clubhouse.
Canceled for two years due to the pandemic, the event is usually hosted annually by the Yorkton Lions Club. Over 500 tickets were sold for the event, with guests able to choose between lobster and steak.
The event provides a more laid-back setting where industry executives and filmmakers from across Canada can relax and hang out together, getting a taste of Saskatchewan and the Maritimes.
Fresh lobster is still shipped in from the East Coast for those attending YFF, as well as many from Yorkton and area attending the festivities.
Rebeca Ortiz is a filmmaker from Toronto. 2022 is her first film festival, and she already had a positive outlook on the community and the festival just hours after arriving on the plane.
“I love it. There’s a lot of beautiful greenery. Everything is great. Everything is beautiful. I love being here in the spring. This lobster festival is amazing,” she said. film is a great way to meet other filmmakers from across Canada.
Ortiz’s “Abuela” is nominated for the Emerging Filmmaker Award at Saturday’s Golden Sheaf Awards.
Her experience at Lobsterfest though, is something she says she won’t forget.
“(It) seems like everyone knows each other here. It’s a really good community. Everyone is really into everything that’s going on, across the city… The festival seems like everyone is involved from different manners. And I love it,” she said.
This event, and the YFF as a whole, has quite the following. Many filmmakers make it an annual trip to Yorkton to catch the event, as well as the local culture.
Richard Wright is at his second film festival and represented Saskatoon’s Alchemy Animation.
“This type of event adds a lot to the education (of the students) because with people doing this for a living and meeting people, you come to understand how to make a career out of it,” he said.
“We’re just lucky (the film festival) exists here in Saskatchewan. This (students and young filmmakers) can come to you on an annual basis. And more importantly, it’s the oldest film festival in North America. So it’s just a gigantic opportunity for (the) promising filmmakers.
Skeet filming was offered at Lobsterfest, with trained professionals showing the filmmakers the ins and outs. It drew a following, with many filmmakers trying it out for the very first time.
The Yorkton Film Festival ends Saturday night with the Golden Sheaf Awards at 8 p.m.