ClearviewboxEmpty box: there will be no 2008 edition of the festival — not in 2008, at least. The Freedom Film Society (its logo is below) says the RBIFF will return to Red Bank’s Clearview Cinemas in January.


Usually at this time of year, the buzz is getting louder about the Red Bank International Film Festival, one of the strongest cultural magnets in a town loaded with them.

So far this year, though, there’s been an odd and somewhat disconcerting silence about the festival. Earlier this week, redbankgreen found out why: it’s been postponed from its normal October run until January.

“We just needed more time, that’s all,” says Andrew Malecki, the festival’s chairman and an employee of the host Clearview Cinemas on White Street. “January was a better month.”

Malecki says there’s been no slackening in the effort by Freedom Film Society volunteers who sort through the hundreds of candidates for screenings, and the selection process is completed.

“All the programming is done,” he says, and though the roster of films is still under wraps, he says it’ll be bigger than in the past.

So why no word to the filmgoing community? Malecki told us that an announcement of the postponement was to have appeared on the RBIFF website two days ago. As we post this, it hasn’t.

Instead of the festival, Clearview will be hosting something called

Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour, described on the Woodsongs website as “a hometown coffeehouse style concert performance by wonderful regional songwriters and bands followed by the big screen broadcast of WoodSongs,” which itself is billed as “a live audience multi-media celebration of grassrots music that airs on 491 radio stations worldwide, XM Satellite Radio, online and on public television stations across the nation. Each week, millions of people tune in to hear WoodSongs produced every Monday evening from the historic Kentucky Theater in Lexington, KY.”

Artists featured in past broadcasts have included Jakob Dylan, Blind Boys of Alabama,The Del McCoury Band, Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, John McCutcheon, the Sparrow Quartet, Kathy Mattea, Tim O’Brien, Marie Knight, Dar Williams, Over the Rhine.

The Red Bank theater’s lineup is as follows:

October 22nd – Jakob Dylan and Minton Sparks
October 29th – Sparrow Quartet
November 5th – Blind Boys of Alabama
November 12th – Kathy Mattea

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