It doesn’t get much more Maine than the Maine Outdoor Film Festival. MOFF—which annually hosts a suite of adventure films beginning in Portland and moving across the state—has long been an outlet and display of the state’s talented outdoor independent filmmaking scene. For this year’s festival, Eastern Mountain Sports will be a presenting sponsor for Weekend 3 (August 11 through August 14) of the Maine Outdoor Film Festival’s flagship screenings at Après in downtown Portland.

The festival showed its first films in 2012, the result of the work of a team lead by creator Nick Callanan. We sat down with Callanan to chat about what he’s most excited for ahead of this year’s festival.

Courtesy: MOFF

goEast: When you’re out looking for films to bring into the mix, what kinds of films are you looking for? What do you think fits the festival?

Callanan: We put out a worldwide call for submissions for outdoor adventure and conservation films each October. These include shorts and features from across Maine and around the world. This year we accepted 70 films totaling over 18 hours of content, and that includes features on surfing and dogsledding, short features on farming and river restoration, and shorts on mountain biking and ski touring.

goEast: How many of these films have ties to Maine?

Callanan: 17 were either filmed in Maine or created by a Maine Filmmaker.

goEast: How important is that?

Callanan: Very important. Maine has so much talent right now, and it’s an honor that Maine filmmakers look to MOFF as a place to exhibit and even premiere their work! We will continue to work to bridge relationships between filmmakers and distributors and other presentation modes, and we’re hopeful to increase our filmmaker budget in the coming years.

Courtesy: MOFF

goEast: You have a lot of awesome looking films on the roster. Any favorites? Anything you’re particularly excited about?

Callanan: So many good ones, so hard to choose! I’m stoked to share the whole program with people, but I’m particularly excited that there is such an increase in films sounding an alarm about climate change. Artists get it: This is the issue of our time and we need to act now. I’m hopeful that our attendees will heed this message, while also still having a little fun.

goEast: Talk to me a little bit about the schedule. How did you group these films them together?

Callanan: I deeply enjoy being a part of the programming process. It’s an amazing responsibility to have filmmakers trust you with their work, and am usually pretty nervous to put forward the curated show.

goEast: After the Portland event, you’ll start touring. Where else will people be able to watch these films?

We’ve got Selects Tour stops booked for Camden, Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park, Rangeley, Winthrop, Biddeford, Millinocket, Westbrook, Scarborough and more.

Courtesy: MOFF