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Fundraiser teases Brainwash Film Fest

Andy Sywak Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday May 30, 2002

In a place with more than its share of film buffs, aspiring amateurs and famous directors, the Bay Area seems to never tire of film festivals. 

With such titles, as “Sex Life of a Chair” and “Anarchy Monkey” and calling itself “weird, unique and delightful,” the upcoming Brainwash Film Festival aims to carve out its own unique corner of the bizarre. 

The festival has received more than 100 submissions from all over the world with the majority coming from Los Angeles, the Bay Area and New York. 

Dave Krzysik, one of the original founders of Brainwash, said the festival is distinguished from other film festivals because of “the emphasis on shorts and the unique styles of filmmaking that we pick.” 

Krzysik created and produced the film festival, along with co-organizer Vikky Vaden, a founder of one of San Francisco’s underground movie houses, the Werepad. Calling Brainwash “the true underground independent,” Krzysik and his co-organizers have filtered through nearly 400 movies in preparation for the event. 

A fundraiser for the eighth annual Brainwash Drive-In/Bike-In will be held on Thursday, May 30th at the Parkway Theater in Oakland. The event will be emceed by San Francisco Mime Troupe member Ed Holmes and an actress from one of the film shorts, Lani Fantz. 

Showcasing a stream of shorts, many of them under five minutes in length, the fundraiser serves as a teaser for the festival that will take place July 5th and 6th at the parking lot for the Alliance for West Oakland Development.  

Expected to last an hour and a half, Thursday’s fundraiser will also feature the shorts “Fool’s Errand” and “Thought Bubble” by local filmmakers.  

Krzysik plans to shoot a television show at the fundraiser as a hopeful pilot for a large television network.  

“We hope to make it into an ongoing TV series,” he said regarding the format in which a moderator presides over a series of shorts. Krzysik cites an Alfred Hitchcock television series and “The Twilight Zone” as examples of shows that were based on shorts. 

One of Krzysik’s own shorts, “Sheep Action,” will screen next Thursday at the Parkway. His film features clips of “Buy Everything Day” – a mock counter-protest of the busies shopping dayof the year, the day after Thanksgiving. Fantz, who donned the sheep’s outfit for the film, has become a sort of mascot for the event. 

The fundraiser costs $8 and starts at 9:15 p.m. The Parkway Theater is located in Oakland at 1834 Park Boulevard at 18th Street.