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First International Vegan Film Fest Lands in Canada

Filmmakers are encouraged to submit their films to the world's first vegan international film festival to be held in Ottawa in October.

The annual Ottawa Vegan Film Festival will debut on October 14 at the Mayfair Theatre in Ottawa, Canada. Event organizer Shawn Stratton was inspired by vegan documentary Forks Over Knives and set out to make a positive impact for the animals and planet. “I want to utilize the festival to inspire more people to live a vegan lifestyle, motivate vegans to keep up the lifestyle, and support vegan-themed filmmakers by giving them an avenue to get their videos in front of more people,” Stratton told VegNews. During the event, short and feature-length films will be shown from categories such as Health and Nutrition, Environmental Protection, Animal Advocacy, and Lifestyle, with awards presented for Best in Show, People’s Choice, and other categories. “I would like the films to deliver authentic stories with a sense of hope,” Stratton said. Attendees can expect to leave the event inspired and educated about living a vegan lifestyle. A portion of the festival’s profits will go to support various charities. Stratton hopes to expand the festival in the future and to travel around world showcasing vegan films and inspiring others. “Eventually, I would like to make it a weekend or even a week of events highlighting veganism, filmmakers, and their films from around the world.” The festival’s entry deadline is July 31. Vegan documentary What the Health debuted last year, with numerous people and celebrities, such as Ne-Yo and Theo Riddick, citing the film for their decision to go vegan.

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