"To fulfill a dream, to be allowed to sweat over lonely labor, to be given the chance to create, is the meat and potatoes of life. The money is the gravy." –Bette Davis
Created in 2006, the Carnegie Mellon International "Faces" Film Festival is a project of the Humanities Center at Carnegie Mellon University, which has supported research and encouraged interest in the humanities for more than 13 years. The festival serves as a non-academic bridge to the greater Pittsburgh community, and opens its doors each year to the interests and passions of people across generations and cultures.
The "Faces" Film Festival takes place every year in the spring and presents a wide spectrum of contemporary world cinema, focusing on a different annual theme that addresses a current social issue; previous themes were Democracy (2007), Mechanization (2008), Realism (2009), Globalization (2010), Migration (2011), Others (2012), Media (2013), and Work (2014). The festival presents 14-18 international narrative features, documentaries, and shorts each year.
As a community-building event, screenings are accompanied by components such as Q&A sessions with the films' directors and local academics, artistic performances, and receptions with local ethnic cuisine. In this way, the events are more than just film premieres; they are cultural celebrations that allow audiences to observe, discuss, and experience international cultures.
Entering its ninth year, the "Faces" Film Festival prides itself in being the only international film festival in the world organized and run by university students from the numerous institutions across Pittsburgh, such as Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh. The students build events around the festival's rich variety of films from the U.S., Egypt, France, Morocco, Australia, China, Iran, Peru, Poland, Japan, Germany, Belarus, Korea, and many other countries, hoping to reinforce Pittsburgh's ethnic history and living culture.