• Northwest Film Forum Northwest Film Forum


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Mission Statement

The Northwest Film Forum (NWFF) is a Seattle-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to becoming the nation's leading center for film artists. Our mission is:

  • to enlighten, support, and champion the film artist by presenting educational programs with a curriculum by filmmakers and for filmmakers; providing access to filmmaking equipment; granting funds directly to working film artists; showcasing the work of local directors; and promoting local film work to international prominence;
  • to deepen public appreciation of film as an art form by exhibiting historical film; influential world, national and local cinema; and new work which explores the intersection of cinema and other art forms; and
  • to create a fertile environment for filmmaking, specifically by establishing a filmmakers' endowment by the year 2004.


Northwest Film Forum is Seattle's premier film arts organization, screening over 200 independently made and classic films annually, offering a year-round schedule of filmmaking classes for all ages, and supporting filmmakers at all stages of their careers.

Founded in 1995 by filmmakers Jamie Hook and Deborah Girdwood, the Film Forum now operates the region's first and only non-profit center for the film arts. The Film Forum's programming embraces film production as well as film exhibition, with two cinemas, film production and post-production facilities and equipment, educational workshop space, filmmaker offices, a film vault containing over 1,000 titles and a filmmaking library in our space at 1515 12th Ave.

Over 1000 members strong, the Film Forum aides 250 filmmakers in the production of nearly 80 films, and offers more than 60 workshops annually. Our innovative Start-to-Finish grant program partners with a local artist to produce a feature length film, using both for and non-profit funding, a model unique in the non-profit world. The most recent film, The Immaculate Conception of Little Dizzle, premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival.

Our cinemas showcase the best in American and international cinema, as well as unique live multimedia performances. Past highlights include a 27 film retrospective of Japanese filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu that included ten commissions for live musical scores; over a decade of the Local Sightings Film Festival, celebrating achievements in filmmaking from the Northwest; an annual Children's Film Festival Seattle with movies from over 80 countries; a screening and discussion of the making of Rebel Without a Cause with screenwriter Stewart Stern; and the strongest music film programming in the nation.

In our new 8,000 square foot facility are housed:

  • A 118-seat 35mm Dolby-equipped cinema and mainstage live theater
  • A 46-seat 35mm Dolby-equipped cinema and theater
  • Dedicated workshop space/ filmmaker lounge with free WiFi
  • Two film and video post-production suites
  • A dedicated animation studio
  • Production gear rentals
  • A vault, housing our 1,000 title film archive



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