IWFF LABS accepts applications from both scientists and budding filmmakers who want to learn how to make ethical wildlife films. Out of hundreds, only 12 LABS Fellows are accepted. IWFF identifies local wildlife research or conservation projects as ‘clients’, and they are assigned to a LABS team to do the impossible, produce a short film in four days (with the help of professional mentors) that will debut on the big screen at the IWFF Awards Show. IWFF LABS films have gone on to screen at film festivals and gained thousands of views on platforms like the National Geographic Short Forms Showcase as well as proving to be useful wildlife communication pieces for the clients and scientists and Fellows alike.
2019 LABS FILMS
Discover a novel way of studying elusive carnivores…using snow! Join two scientists – Jessie and Tommy – as they re-purpose an old technique in a way that not only revolutionizes how we study threatened species and manage our landscapes but also highlights the importance of collaboration in conservation.
Abandoned mines are a problem for water quality across the West. There are more than a half-million sites, many leaking toxic pollution like acid mine drainage and heavy metals into our streams and rivers. In REWINDING A RIVER we follow Trout Unlimited’s Paul Parson on a project to tackle the impacts of an abandoned placer mine.
Despite being smaller than a grain of rice, mountain pine beetles are causing big problems for pine forests across North America. Due to changes in climate and other factors, the recent outbreak of these destructive insects has reached proportions never before seen in recorded history. To combat this epidemic, Professor Diana Six has made it her mission to crack the genetic code of the pine tree. In LIFE OF PINE she studies the relationship between the mountain pine beetle and the trees they kill will provide us with valuable insight into the future of our forests.
For 150 years, scientists believed lichen was defined by a symbiotic relationship between a fungus and algae. The fungus provides structure and support for the organism, while the algae produces food through photosynthesis. However, researchers recently discovered that certain lichen have an additional fungus in the mix. This threesome was revealed after a team set out to explain what made one type of lichen toxic versus another that was seemingly identical.
The film was created with support from Day’s Edge Productions at the International Wildlife Film Festival’s Filmmaker Labs.
Macro photography by Tim Wheeler.
DOWNSTREAM was created in collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness about the important role of healthy grasslands in the northwestern United States play in providing clean, clear drinking water downstream, all the way to the Gulf of Mexico.