Tonight is Opening Night for the National Film Festival for Talented Youth (NFFTY), a cornerstone of Washington’s film festival scene. NFFTY is the largest film festival for youth in the world. The festival has a global reputation and received 700 entries from filmmakers 22 and under this year. Programmers selected 215 films to screen during the 4-day fest, April 25-28. “How cool it is for the public to get a chance to meet the future Spielberg’s of tomorrow?” asks NFFTY Managing Director, Lindsey LeDuc.

More than 10,000 attendees are expected over the extended weekend. The festival has continued to grow and this year will be NFFTY’s seventh annual fest. “The films of NFFTY 2013 represent the voice of this generation. Despite cultural and geographic differences, we see similarities in the stories these young filmmakers tell,” says NFFTY Founder and Artistic Director, Jesse Harris. The festival features a diverse line up films, and attending filmmakers include young directors from Egypt, Greece, Iceland, Denmark, the UK, and more. The entire lineup of films, events and panels can be found here.

NFFTY isn’t just for kids either. There’s something for all film lovers. “Most of the screenings are labeled as not appropriate for youth under 13. These are young filmmakers telling their stories. If you just walked into these screenings you’d have no idea they were youth made films, you would just think they are phenomenal shorts,” says LeDuc.

Washington Filmworks looks forward to Opening Night and to a weekend of fantastic films and events. Congratulations on your seventh fest, NFFTY!

Passes, individual tickets to films and events, including tonight’s Opening Night Gala are available online here.