The Palm Springs International Film Festival announced via e-mail this morning (Nov. 2) that they will cancel their 2021 festival, becoming the second major event in Greater Palm Springs to do so due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The film festival normally runs the first two weeks of January, but then officials rescheduled the fest to a later starting date of February 25 through March 8 after the Academy Awards were moved to April 25, 2021.
Back in June, the Coachella Valley Arts Festival and country counterpart Stagecoach announced both events would not take place in 2020, and have since pushed the possible return dates to October 2021.
Modernism Week also announced this morning that much of its 2021 programming will be offered online. There will be in-person events such as architectural walking tours, home tours, garden and driving tours, and more. All ‘live’ events will follow established public health protocols and observe social distancing.
The online programming will include approximately 20-30 specially created video programs that will provide free and low-cost streaming educational and entertainment experiences. The programs will include presentations by noted architects, designers, and historians who are experts in their fields. The educational and entertaining programs will cover topics ranging from historic building restoration and preservation to adaptive reuse and the development of affordable housing. These online programs will allow viewers to participate remotely from home and to safely share the online experiences with their families.
Tickets for in-person events will be available online beginning at noon Jan. 1, 2021. Online programs will go on sale at noon Feb. 1.
• • •
Here is the text sent out by the film festival this morning (Nov. 2):
For 31 years, the Palm Springs International Film Festival has been bringing together an international community of filmmakers and film lovers to celebrate the riches that cinema presented that year. We’ve rushed into packed screening rooms, shared food and conversation and made lifelong connections with people standing in lines. This festival has been about sharing our love for movies, but even more, it’s been about creating personal connections for our audiences.
As we reach the end of the year, it is clear that we will not be able to present the film festival the way we have over the past 31 years. This is not an easy choice but we have made the decision to skip the 2021 edition. Rest assured we plan to be back in 2022 when we can hopefully be together safely again in theaters. We are still planning to celebrate and honor the best in cinema with our Film Awards Presentation on February 25, 2021 and plans for our annual short film festival scheduled for June 22-28, 2021 remain intact. Details on those will be shared before the end of the year.
Until then, we will continue our mission to share cinema through our Member and Community programs. Film Society Memberships will be extended to February 2022 at no additional cost. Memberships that include festival benefits will receive the festival benefits in January 2022. Memberships that include Film Awards Gala benefits will receive those benefits in either 2021 or 2022. Our year-round member screenings and events will continue virtually until we are able to safely be in theaters. And we are excited to work with our studio partners to bring you new film screenings and Q&As from your favorite directors and actors. Once theatres are safely able to open, we will end virtual screenings and resume Member screenings in-person.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all of our lives in profound ways but we have not stopped believing that cinema has the power to change our hearts and minds. We stand by that truth and commit to continue our efforts in bringing film to our community.