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Highlights from the Boulder International Film Festival’s Adventure Film Pavilion

The festival showcases more than 20 short films and features this year.

The Boulder International Film Festival brings filmmakers from around the world to Boulder, Colorado, for a four-day celebration of the art of cinema, attracting more than 20,000 film enthusiasts, media, and industry members annually. From February 29 to March 3, 2024, the fourth annual Boulder International Film Festival (BIFF) will showcase 23 short films and features, more than 18 filmmakers and subjects, along with five “Call2Action” discussions. Passes and tickets are still available at for those eager to celebrate the world’s greatest adventure films.

For the first time this year, you can purchase the new BIFF Adventure Film Pass, which allows access to all three days of films and panel discussions, as well as admission to the Adventure Film Party on March 1, featuring live music from Mighty Holler, gear giveaways, food, and drink at the Velvet Elk Lounge in Boulder. The festival takes place at Grace Commons Church at 1820 15th Street, where the sanctuary is transformed into a state-of-the-art theater with projection, screen and sound.

This Adventure Film Pavilion (AFP) will also feature nine shorts and features from local Colorado filmmakers — and five films will make their world or U.S. premiere. The five Call2Action discussions include local groups working on the important issues the films present. Watch the trailer for the 2024 Boulder International Film Festival Adventure Film Pavilion here.

(photo from Arctic Ascent with Alex Honnold courtesy of National Geographic/Pablo Durana)

Among the featured presentations at this year’s AFP is the first theatrical screening of National Geographic’s 90-minute documentary Arctic Ascent with Alex Honnold, featuring the world-renowned climber on an epic quest across the toughest and most remote walls and peaks of Greenland. Arctic Ascent documents his six-week expedition to Eastern Greenland to make a first ascent of one of the highest unclimbed rock faces in the world.

(photo from Copa 71)

The 2024 AFP will also feature the film Copa 71, a documentary executive-produced by Serena and Venus Williams that uses archival footage and new interviews to tell the story of the unofficial 1971 Women’s World Cup, an event attended by hundreds of thousands that was virtually erased from the history of soccer.

(photo from No Legs. All Heart)

The AFP will also include the film No Legs. All Heart., which documents the story of André Kajlich, the first double amputee to enter the Race Across America, a grueling 12-day, 3,082-mile bike race known for spitting out 50 percent of able-bodied racers. Another film featured this year is the documentary Nothing’s For Free, from Outside, which chronicles the birth and legacy of freeride mountain biking through a three-decade journey with the pioneers, visionaries, and industry masterminds that pushed the sport to where it is today.

The festival will also showcase two short films, one feature film, and exclusive Q&A sessions with acclaimed Colorado-based climber Erik Weihenmayer, the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest. The short film, El Valle del Silencio, will make its world premiere and chronicles Weihenmayer’s attempt to become the first blind person to stand atop the Torre Norte, a remote tower in Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park.

There will also be two conservation films focusing on “re-wilding” and rhinos, to round out the mix – Wilding, and Rhino Man.

(photo from Rhino Man)

The AFP will ultimately honor one film with the Johnny Copp Adventure Film Award on the closing night of the festival, to recognize the “best film” featured in the AFP. Johnny Copp was a climber who founded the now discontinued Boulder Adventure Film Festival the same year BIFF was founded in 2005, and who died in an avalanche in China in 2009. Due to a partnership with Outside, for the first time this year, the winner of the Johnny Copp Adventure Film Award will screen on Outside Watch.

Check out the full lineup of films at this year’s festival at The BIFF Adventure Film Pavilion is supported by Audi Flatirons, Outside, A- Lodge, Chautauqua, Meteorite PR, The Post, Reel Rock, Velvet Elk Lounge, WhistlePig Rye Whiskey and Fjallraven.

Additional supporters of BIFF include: Audi Flatirons, KUNC and 105.5 The Colorado Sound, The Daily Camera, St Julien Hotel & Spa, Vermilion Design + Digital, Daryl Smith RE/MAX of Boulder, The Hollywood Reporter, Outside Inc., Millstone Evans Group, City of Boulder, Capital One, 5280 Magazine, Chautauqua, CBS4, Velvet Elk Lounge, Auguste Escoffier School, WhistlePig Whiskey, Trident Café and Bookstore, Oh Hey Creative, Embassy Suites Boulder, Longmont Museum, Japango, Hotel Boulderado, Premier Members Credit Union, SmithKlein Gallery, First Western Trust, Rick Baker Insurance, Vectra Bank, Pasta Jay’s, Savory Catering, Downtown Boulder, Space Farmer Productions, Unico Properties, Stylus Creative, Travel Boulder, Frasier, Our Secure Future, BookCliff Vineyards, Origin CPA Group, Sonic Guild, Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant, Roots Music Project, Meteorite PR, Conference on World Affairs, Scarpetta and Academy Boulder.

(lead image photo from The White Elephant)

Definitely Wild is a column by EO Contributing Editor Aaron Bible. He has been writing for Elevation Outdoors and Blue Ridge Outdoors, among other outdoor publications, for more than two decades, covering cycling, skiing, gear, adventure travel, and mountain life. The opinions expressed here are his own. Follow him on Instagram at @DefinitelyWild.

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