Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema
The first year
The Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema (IIFC) was first organized in 2009, under the working name the Idyllwild Film Festival, by award-winning screenwriter, director, producer, editor and composer Stephen Savage, entrepreneur Charles Huddleston, producers Bill Triplett and Mona Lee-Taggart, writer-photographer Julia Countryman, speaker-author Denise McGregor, businesswoman Kathy Sachar Wilson, and film enthusiasts Kevin and Deborah Brennan. "It will be a professional film festival," said festival director Stephen Savage in an on-line discussion in the event's official Facebook page.  "This is a local business building venture. Mona and Bill and Ken and Andrea have a vision, which is now My vision, which is now your vision if you choose. I will be the director of the festival, but the people of Idyllwild will be it's heart."
With heavy community and local business support, the IIFC opened its doors on January 11,  and ran through January 16, 2010, with over 60 feature-length dramatic, documentary, and short films, including Rock Slyde by director Chris Dowling; Legacy by director Stephen Savage; Daddy I Do by director Cassie Jaye, Manhater by director Anthony Doublin, Dead Cat Bounce and Crook by director Daric Gates, Cautiva by director Gaston Biraben, Clear Lake, WI  by director Brian Ide, A Way Back In by director Brad Mays, and Broke Sky by director Thomas L. Callaway.  Film screenings are held in the Rustic Theatre and Caine Theatres.
Actor/director Will Wallace was the 2010 IIFC featured filmmaker, who personally presented his feature comedy Cake: A Wedding Story. Such celebrity invitations are intended by film festival planners the world over to generate interest that is both wide and deep. "This is a business venture, aimed at building our little economy when times are toughest, Winter," Stephen Savage acknowledges.
Like other film festivals, The Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema offers awards to exceptional films and artists. These include the Walter Hill Western Spirit Award, given for that feature, documentary, or short, which best captures the beauty of the North America; the Tahquitz Awards, determined by audience ballot; the Best Of Festival, for overall best in feature, documentary and short film categories; Best Directors, Best Actor, Best Actress, for features and short films, Best Screenplay, for features and shorts; Best Documentary; the Marshall Hawkins Award for best original musical soundtrack; the Juan Ruiz Anchia Award, for best cinematography in any category; the Caine Learning Center Award, for best short or documentary film by an educator; the Geoffrey Caine Trophy, for best student film director; and the Frank Ferro Trophy, for most unique or most humorous short film.