Annual Steamboat Mountain Film Festival returns Friday featuring variety of films | SteamboatToday.com

Annual Steamboat Mountain Film Festival returns Friday featuring variety of films

In the annual Steamboat Mountain Film Festival, one of this year's featured films "Heimer" pictures a skier getting ready to drop in on a big line in Haines, Alaska.

— On screen, professional skiers and snowboarders show a ruthless ambition, pummeling down epic lines of sheer bliss on snow capped peaks.

But what about those moments off screen?

In Austrian producer/free skier Sandra Lahnsteiner's third installment in the "Shades of Winter" series, "Between," she shares those moments, from traveling and friendships to fears and motivations.

"So many people at festivals and screenings always ask for the moment between," Lahnsteiner said. "It was actually the audience and people who watch my films who inspired me to go deeper, to tell more about the athletes, the places we go to, the people we meet along the way, the process it takes to ski a big mountain line or build a kicker and the moments we live together."

Showcasing a lineup of the best local and national snow sport film submissions from the past season, Lahnsteiner's extended trailer — previewing the film’s 2016 full release — will be one of five featured films at the Steamboat Mountain Film Festival's Legendary Reel Awards. Starting at 7 p.m. Friday at the Chief Theater, the featured films will kick off with a screening of the recently released Matchstick Productions film, "Fade to Winter."

Capturing the resolve of nine skiers, "Fade to Winter" features locations from Alaska, Iceland, British Columbia, Japan, Colorado, Italy and New England and follows their quest to find favorable conditions with a lack of snowfall in many ski areas throughout the U.S.

Recommended Stories For You

"I think there are some really quality films in the lineup that people wouldn't usually see," said Mike Martin, a professor at Colorado Mountain College and producer of the Steamboat Mountain Film Festival. "The international films this year bring in a different market with a new perspective. You wouldn't normally get to see this type of thing in Steamboat."

Marking the 20th anniversary of Martin's film production company, Michael Martin Productions, never-before-seen video footage from "the glory years" featuring many local skiers will be shown during intermission.

Out of 40 applicants from around the world, five were selected to be featured at the event, at which the Reel Awards winners will be announced.

Branching out this year with a lineup of more international films, Martin said the panel of judges who selected the five best films considered a variety of criteria, ranging from action-packed clips to those with more of a backstory.

And Lahnsteiner's film fit the criteria perfectly.

Through a story of transition and endurance, Lahnsteiner sought to provide some of the best female athletes a platform to showcase their skills. She follows some of the world's best female athletes, including Sweden's Matilda Rapaport, U.S. Alpine ski racer and Olympic gold medallist Julia Mancuso, Freeride World Tour champion Nadine Wallner, from Australia, and many more.

The two-year project for "Between" started last winter in the Alps, Hawaii’s Mauna Kea, Alaska and New Zealand. This winter, she said, they will continue shooting in the Alps, Canada and Scandinavia.

"I want to inspire other girls, but also men," Lahnsteiner said. "Their inspiration is my motivation. I want to inspire them to get out there, not just to ski or go in the mountains, but to go out there and live, to follow their dreams, make it happen, believe in yourself and to be confident."

Tickets for the Steamboat Mountain Film Festival are $15 and are available at steamboatfilmfestival.com or at the door, 813 Lincoln Ave.

To reach Audrey Dwyer, call 970-871-4229, email adwyer@ExploreSteamboat.com or follow her on Twitter @Audrey_Dwyer1

If You Go…

What: Steamboat Mountain Film Festival: Legendary Reel Awards

When: Doors open at 6:30 p.m. films start at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13

Where: Chief Theater, 813 Lincoln Ave.

Tickets: $15, available online, at the door or at Ski Haus