Aspen Filmfest announces special events, guests |

Aspen Filmfest announces special events, guests

Staff report

Aspen Film has released the lineup of special events and in-town guests as part of the 40th annual Aspen Filmfest, which opens Monday and runs through Sept. 29.

The events include panel discussions with filmmakers and a tribute to iconic New Hollywood filmmaker Bob Rafelson. The longtime Aspenite will receive a lifetime achievement award from Aspen Film on Sept. 25 at the Wheeler Opera House.

“We are extremely honored to be able to present our first-ever lifetime achievement award to Bob Rafelson and consider ourselves incredibly fortunate to have a filmmaker of his caliber in our midst in Aspen,” Aspen Film executive and artistic director Susan Wrubel said in an announcement. “The evening we are spending with him promises to be a special one.”

Additional events include an opening night reception (Monday at the Wheeler), the panel discussion with “Fantastic Fungi” filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg titled “The Magic Beneath Us: Mycelium & Mushrooms” (Tuesday at the Here House), a discussion with “Cracked Up” filmmaker Michelle Esrick and the Aspen Hope Center’s Michelle Muething and Sandy Iglehart (Sept. 27 at Here House), a panel discussion with WeRiseUp creators Kate Maloney, Michael Shaun Conaway, Alex Melnyk, and DJ Spooky (Sept. 28, Here House) and a closing night party (Sept. 28 at 7908 restaurant).

Additional special guests coming to the festival include “Museum Town” producer and writer Noah Bashevkin and executive producer Rachel Chanoff, “The Times of Bill Cunningham” director Mark Bozek.

“To round out our 40th anniversary Filmfest, we are ecstatic to be able to expand on ideas presented in three of our eye-opening documentaries with some of the filmmakers and a few special guests. In general, we are looking to shine a light and help bring about positive change,” Wrubel said.

The previously announced schedule of film screenings in Aspen and Carbondale is online at

Advance film and event tickets are on sale now. Individual tickets can be purchased at the Wheeler Opera House box office and at Festival passes and memberships can be purchased online at