Saving You A Seat To Movies And So Much More!

The Calgary International Film Festival is an experience like no other, even beyond the screen. This year, CIFF is action-packed, creating an immersive environment to envelop the audience in a sea of sights and sounds. A range of special events and our classic red carpet work together to make your time at the festival unforgettably fun. We are so excited to bring our audiences a chance to watch, laugh and play with a diverse community of film lovers. CIFF 2021 has saved you a seat to movies and so much more!

Beakerhead presents THE ASCENT, imagined with The Calgary International Film Festival (CIFF)

Friday September 25, 2021. 7:00 PM MT - 10:00 PM MT.

We have come together with our friends at Beakerhead for a very special and exciting climb - THE ASCENT!

CIFF has co-imagined this groundbreaking collaboration with our friends at Beakerhead to help uplift our community, and to inspire us all with what’s possible when we work together.

On Saturday, September 25, 2021, Calgarians will witness DAVID, North America’s largest marionette, making THE ASCENT. At 34-feet tall, DAVID, assisted by a team of puppeteers and operators, will climb 39 stories of Oxford Properties’ Devon Tower, adjacent to Eau Claire Market. Whether in person or online via an innovative live cinematic capture, viewers will encounter DAVID as he climbs, observes, and becomes one of us — reaching, thinking, feeling, curious, determined.

During David’s climb, installations like “Steely T” (a giant rolling, flaming steampunk turtle), Nibbles (Beakerhead’s big bunnies), film clips and projections by CIFF, roving artists and performers, can all be enjoyed while David makes THE ASCENT. 

THE ASCENT is a special, free event presented by Beakerhead and imagined with CIFF outside Eau Claire Market on the first weekend of the film festival. It will also be live-streamed so you can attend virtually from the comfort of your home. 

David is the largest marionette in North America, and the only one in the world designed to hold circus acts in its hands. David is 34 feet tall and fully articulated, made from 800 feet of ½ inch aluminum rod, 1,200 feet of rope, and various pulleys. As a fully operational marionette, David can be puppeteered by circus staff or audience members. Created by The Underground Circus (Vancouver) in 2009 for the opening of the Vancouver Convention Centre, it’s been featured at events such as the TED wrap party in Long Beach California and has appeared at the Vancouver Public Library, and on a mountain in Whistler. Learn more about the making of David and about The Underground Circus at

Beakerhead Creative Society is a registered charity whose mandate is to globally advance education at the crossroads of art, science and engineering. Through year-round educational programs and the annual September festival in Calgary, Canada, Beakerhead aims to engage, delight, surprise and entertain you so completely that you don’t even realize you are learning too!


Thursday, September 23 - Sunday, September 26, 2021

Where:  Eau Claire Market

Hours: 5 - 9 p.m. Thursday & Friday and 12 - 9 p.m. Saturday & Sunday

For the first time ever, CIFF is working with Raw Fury and Vancouver Film School to bring our audience the chance to get their game on at the CIFF Intermission Arcade! Raw Fury is a boutique indie game publisher founded in 2015 by Jonas Antonsson, Gordon Van Dyke and David Martinez and they are bringing all the action and adventure to Eau Claire with their impressive game lineup. The arcade will also have a pop-up bar of yummy mocktails courtesy of Greta Bar and will feature several games and chances for entertainment, including:

DANDARA: Trials of Fear: A unique 2D Metroidvania platformer full of mystical creatures and boundless exploration.

LONGEST ROAD ON EARTH:  A thoughtful and deeply personal title with stripped-down mechanics, grayscale design, and no dialogue.

NORCO: A sci-fi Southern gothic adventure that immerses the player in the sinking suburbs and verdant industrial swamps of Louisiana's petrochemical hinterlands.

SABLE: A coming-of-age tale of discovery through exploration across a strikingly rendered open world


Friday, September 24 - Monday, September 27, 2021

Where:  Eau Claire Market

Hours: 11 am-7 pm

In partnership with YYC Media Lab, CIFF has invited a variety of talented local podcasters to help bring the festival's stories to life! Our guest podcasters will be set up in Eau Claire Market in our podcasting booth having in-depth conversations with filmmakers to dissect all kinds of topics related to the film festival, the film industry or the stories being told through film.


Thursday, September 23, 2021

Where:  Eau Claire Market

Hours: 1 pm-10 pm

CIFF and Keep Alberta Rolling are teaming up with BEAMA Visuals to give you an awe-inspiring glimpse into the future of filmmaking. Using cutting-edge LED video wall technology, we will transport you into another world using the power of Virtual Production. Watch as you move through a cyber punk setting in real-time without having to take a step out of Eau Claire Market. Come be a part of the future.


Sunday, September 26,  2021

Where:  Eau Claire Lobby

Hours: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Your exciting new career in film starts now! Meet representatives from local film organizations and learn about the tons of amazing opportunities out there for you. There are a wide variety of skills and expertise required on a film set, so, regardless of your knowledge and background, you might be just what employers are looking for. 

21 CareerExpo CalgaryFilm2018