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Mill Valley Film Festival Collection
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography/Administrative History
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Mill Valley Film Festival Collection
    Dates: 1977-2017
    Collection Number: MS.2017.020
    Creator/Collector: California Film Institute
    Extent: 2 linear feet, 1 oversize folder, 1 legal-size folder, approximately 200 digital files
    Online items available
    Repository: Mill Valley Public Library
    Mill Valley, California 94941
    Abstract: A collection of photographs, programs, posters, and ephemera associated with the Mill Valley Film Festival from 1977-2017.
    Language of Material: English


    Collection is open for research. Original materials may be viewed with permission from staff. Digital copies of materials may be available. Materials in this collection do not circulate.

    Preferred Citation

    Mill Valley Film Festival Collection. Mill Valley Public Library

    Biography/Administrative History

    The Mill Valley Film Festival was founded in 1977 by Mark Fishkin, Rita Cahill, and Lois Kohl Shore, who served as festival director, festival coordinator, and managing director, respectively. The trio formed the Film Institute of Northern California, now known as the California Film Institute (CFI), and created the first Festival as a three-day event held in August of 1978 at the Sequoia Theatre in Mill Valley. The first president of the Board of Directors was Andrew Maguire, serving for five years. The earliest board members were casting agent Ann Brebner and Sid Ganis of LucasFilm. Zoë Elton, hired as the first employee, took on the role of office manager. The Mill Valley Film Festival began when Fishkin received a grant from the Mill Valley Arts Commission. With help of staff and board members, as well as many people in the community, the Festival has gradually grown, becoming renowned as a “filmmakers’ festival.” Initially focusing on Bay Area filmmakers, the Mill Valley Film Festival now draws internationally acclaimed and award-winning actors, writers, producers and directors, and also hosts events at Cannes, musical showcases at the Sweetwater Music Hall, panels, seminars, workshops, and a Children’s FilmFest. At the time this guide was written, Fishkin is still presiding as executive director. Founding board member Cahill remained as an emeritus board member. Shore had stayed on for the first two and a half years until moving out of state. The Festival’s first employee, Elton, is director of programming.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    This collection comprises one box of photographs, one oversize folder of posters, one box of programs, one legal-size folder of ephemera, born-digital photographs in TIFF and JPEG format, and electronic versions of posters and programs. The materials pertain to the Mill Valley Film Festival, including its attendees, staff, volunteers, events, and programming.

    Indexing Terms

    Directors, film
    Film festivals
    Producers, film
    Cahill, Rita
    Elton, Zoë
    Fishkin, Mark
    Mill Valley Film Festival
    Mill Valley (Calif.)
    San Rafael (Calif.)