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Film Society celebrates 10th anniversary with free ‘Lincoln’

Champlain Valley Film Society founding members Larry Barns, Bill James and David Reuther stand in front of the new screen at the Whallonsburg Grange. The organization will host a free screening of “Lincoln” to celebrate their 10th anniversary April 27.

Champlain Valley Film Society founding members Larry Barns, Bill James and David Reuther stand in front of the new screen at the Whallonsburg Grange. The organization will host a free screening of “Lincoln” to celebrate their 10th anniversary April 27.

— The Champlain Valley Film Society (CVFS) showed its first movie in 2003 and since then it has screened nearly 170 films.

The Film Society will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Saturday, April 27, at 8 p.m. with a free showing of “Lincoln,” at the Whallonsburg Grange Hall. It stars Daniel Day-Lewis, who won the Oscar for Best Actor. The film was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.

“We want to thank our loyal audience for their tremendous support over the years,” CVFS co-founder, David Reuther, said. “When Larry Barns, Thurston Clarke, Bill James and I began this organization, we never imagined we’d reach this milestone.”

In June 2003, the Film Society opened with, “Shakespeare in Love.” For the next two years it showed movies outdoors, behind the Essex Inn and at Ballard Park in Westport.

In 2006, the Film Society returned to showing films indoors but instead of a summer series they focused on the fall, winter, and spring seasons. They also greatly expanded the number of shows so that people in the Champlain Valley were able to enjoy current, classic, foreign and independent films that weren’t being shown in traditional theaters.

The Film Society has also featured many special shows that were introduced by a writer, director, actor connected to that film. These include, “Frozen River,” with Oscar-nominated director Courtney Hunt; “King Corn,” with director/writer Aaron Woolf; “Islander,” with by actor/writer Thomas Hildreth; “Affliction,” with author Russell Banks; and three silent film classics with live piano accompaniment by Ben Model.

“We are pleased to have made such a difference to this community,” CVFS President, Sue Reaser said. “Besides the strong support from people in Essex, Westport and Willsboro, a significant part of our audience travels to our films from Elizabethtown, Keene, Jay, Moriah and Plattsburgh.”

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