Who let the dogs out… on the big screen? After its great success in New York City, the first ever Dog Film Festival will be touring different cities around the country, including a pit stop in the Hamptons.
Located in East Hampton, the event will help celebrate everlasting ties between people and their dogs and will benefit the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons (ARF) with 50% of the festival’s net proceeds and a 10,000-bowl donation of natural pet food from Purely for Pets, Freekibble.com and Halo. ARF will also have adoptable dogs on hand.
“We look forward to a great event this summer in the Hamptons, as well as the awareness it will bring to the homeless cats and dogs at the ARF Adoption Center looking for forever homes,” said ARF’s Director of Marketing and Communications, Jamie Berger, sharing her excitement to partner with the Dog Film Festival.
The event begins on Sunday, July 31 with an afternoon tea Pooch Party at the home of the Pet Philanthropy Circle president Jewel Morris. A green carpet will be rolled out, welcoming dogs and their human escorts. Dog hors d’oeuvres will be passed out along with tea, finger sandwiches and pastries for their humans. Food will be provided with entertainment from the Long Island Drill Team, which is featuring a horseback demonstration. Photo ops and doggy sWag bags will also be offered at the Pooch Party.
At the tea party, Morris will be greeting this year’s Pet Hero winners, who will be honored at the Pet Philanthropy Circle black tie gala dinner dance at Gotham Hall in NYC on October 7.
On Tuesday, August 2, the festivities will continue with the opening of the Dog Film Festival at Guild Hall in East Hampton. The scheduled film screenings include animated and live-action shorts highlighting bonds between humans and dogs, documentaries and other feature films focused primarily on dogs.
The short films range from 1–30 minutes, and each of the two approximately 90-minute programs has entirely different films.
The first program includes an assortment of playful, family-friendly animated and narrative shorts. The spotlight short, William Wegman’s The Hardly Boys in Hardly Gold, has been remastered for the festival and features four of Wegman’s iconic Weimaraners in different costumes. Other films featured at the first screening are Useful Dog Trips, highlighting ways dogs can help around a house; The Lewis Lectures, helping man decipher what pups are actually thinking on a day-to-day basis; and Beta, which reveals some of the most common questions that people have about dogs.
The second program features more serious content, including documentaries and narrative films. All ages are encouraged to attend, but certain narrative, subtitled films will pose a challenge to young viewers. Some films featured at the second program include David & Goliath, the true story of a German Shepherd who saved a Jewish resistance fighter’s life from the Nazis; Second Chances, a film that shows incarcerated women helping train canines to become service dogs; and Dog Years, which features a dog questioning his relationship with his owner.
The festival is partially funded through a grant from The Petco Foundation, national Presenting Sponsor of the Dog Film Festival. The event is also a way for its founder, author and radio host Tracie Hotchner, to give back to organizations that are close to her heart.
“We are excited to bring animal lovers together to experience the many ways our lives are enriched by dogs, and to honor the animal welfare groups that bring them together,” Hotchner says.
The Dog Film Festival’s Afternoon Tea Pooch Party will take place on July 31 from 4–6 p.m. at Hobby Hill, a private estate in Water Mill. Tickets for the afternoon tea Pooch Party are by private invitation and a donation of $150. Please contact [email protected] for an invitation. The Dog Film Festival begins on August 2 at Guild Hall, 158 Main Street, in East Hampton. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children. For more info, visit dogfilmfestival.com.
See a video of Tracie Hotchner at the Los Angeles Dog Film Festival below!