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Lights! Camera! Kids in Action!

The Chicago International Children's Film Festival isn't just for kids, it's all about 'em.

The long-running Children's Film Festival not only lets kids vote for the best films in the festival, it also exercises their creativity by teaching them how to make their own documentaries, animated movies and feature-length films.

In one-day workshops or week-long camps, kids become actors, directors, producers and critics – and gain a new appreciation for what movies can do.

Started by Chicago-based Facets Multi-Media in 1983 as a way to give kids an opportunity to see new and exciting movies they may not find at their local multiplex, the festival also asks kids to take a critical look at how the media shape our world.

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Check out some of the other film festivals that happen in Illinois every year: the Festival for Cinema of the Deaf and the Latino Film Festival, both taking place in Chicago, the Big Muddy Film Festival in Carbondale and the Beyond Normal Film Fest in the city of Normal.

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The Children's Jury announces a winner!

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An aspiring filmmaker readies her camera.

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LeVar Burton joins children at Carpenter School for a special screening of the Shel Silverstein film, Lafcadio, The Lion Who Shot Back.


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