IU Cinema’s showing of “Chasing Ice,” a documentary about a photographer’s trip to Iceland to document climate change, sold out Saturday. About 20 people in the stand-by line waited for tickets in the cinema’s small vestibule.
Senior Adam Wolf was one attendee who came to the cinema after tickets sold out. Wolf had attended the Friday screening and came back Saturday to see it again. He said he has attended IU Cinema screenings before “Chasing Ice” as well.
“I’m a big fan of intellectual films, art films and independent films,” Wolf said. “They have movies that appeal to me more than the mainstream.”
Wolf said he considers himself a promoter of environmental conservation, which is why he returned to see “Chasing Ice” a second time. The film was part of the Cinema’s International Arthouse Series, which features critically acclaimed films such as “Beasts of the Southern Wild” and “Amour,” both of which have been nominated for a 2013 Academy Award for Best Picture.
IU Cinema Director Jon Vickers said in an email that some filmmakers approach the cinema about showing their films, while others are invited to IU. Filmmakers do not pay the cinema for screenings, although some filmmakers may be paid for visiting and delivering a lecture. This is considered on a case-by-case basis.
“We are not a rental house,” Vickers said. “We take responsibility for whatever we put on screen and are trying to build trust in an audience. We know that everything that we program does not appeal to all, the reality of a diverse program, but hope that we communicate our program well enough to encourage or discourage audiences based on their individual tastes.”
The IU Cinema has several series, including the City Lights series, which features classic 20th century films, and the Underground Film series, which features independent films. Both of these series are cosponsored by the Department of Communication and Culture.
The program includes new and unreleased films as well as classic films. Upcoming films include “Out of the Past,” a crime drama from 1947, which will show Saturday as part of the City Lights series. Christine Vachon, filmmaker and founder of production company Killer Films, will give a guest lecture on Friday.
Vickers said the goal of the IU Cinema is to serve as an art house cinema to showcase the best in new international, documentary and independent film. To that end, faculty looks at film festivals and new releases to find titles that are well received by critics and academically relevant.
“We are very proud of our program and what it tries to accomplish,” Vickers said. “We understand that many of our programs may not appeal to the casual movie-goer but hope that there continues to be great opportunities for discovery.”