About the KFS
The Kamloops Film Society (KFS) is the umbrella organization that operates the Paramount Theatre and runs two main events: The Thursday Film Series and the annual March Kamloops Film Festival (KFF), which includes the Kamloops Independent Short Shorts (KISS) Festival. The KFS has been operating for over 49 years and was officially incorporated under the British Columbia Societies Act on August 17, 1994. In the spring of 2019, The Kelson Group purchased the Paramount Theatre from Landmark Cinemas and leased the venue to the KFS to continue operations. The support of The Kelson Group and Ron Fawcett has made the venture possible as The KFS continues to try to make the theatre a viable cultural venue.
The Kamloops Film Society took over the operations of Moviemart, originally on St. Paul Street, and now operating out of the Paramount Lobby. There are currently over 25,000 films in stock, both in stock, sales, and ready to rent. Moviemart hours are currently listed on its webpage.
Thursday Film Series
The Thursday Film Series are weekly curated screenings of Canadian, Independent and International films. The Society currently runs three Film Series; FALL (September to December), WINTER (January to February) and SPRING (March to April).
Kamloops Film Festival
The Kamloops Film Festival, launched in 1996, is a 10-day celebration of excellence in filmmaking. 20+ screenings take place in March, and include opening and closing galas, workshops, special guests and other events.
The Kamloops Independent Short Shorts (KISS) Festival is a showcase of local filmmakers in the short film category. Held in March during the Kamloops Film Festival, we screen 5 min. or shorter films in any genre from independent filmmakers in the TNRD region. Cash prizes are awarded to winners.
The Paramount Theatre in Downtown Kamloops began operations in 1955 with Theatre 1. In 1977 Theatre 2 was added. Theatre 1 seats approximately 500 patrons and Theatre 2 seats 270.
The forerunners of the Kamloops Film Society—the Thompson Valley Film Society, the Cariboo College Film Society and the Cariboo Film Society—screened 16mm. films, first, at the Cariboo College campus cafeteria, then at the South-Central Health Unit auditorium in 1973. In the late 1980s, films were screened at the newly constructed University College of the Cariboo Clock Tower building’s Alumni Theatre. By that time, 35mm films were the new standard and the Society needed to rent a theatre with the appropriate projection equipment; it began screening 35mm films Sunday afternoons at the 404-seat North Hills Theatre.
After several years at the North Hills, Society members expressed a preference for a downtown location. The Society moved its showings to the old Odeon Cineplex Theatre on Victoria at 6th Ave from 1999 to 2001 and initiated Thursday night screenings at 7:30 pm. When that theatre closed, the Paramount theatre offered the Society Thursday night screening times at 7 pm, and fully accommodated the annual March Kamloops Film Festival, and that theatre has been the home of the Society ever since.
Society Mission Statement
Kamloops Film Society provides publicly screened, hand-picked, diverse, high-quality films and supports film-related activities in the community of Kamloops and Area.
The mission of the KFS is to bring the best in independent, Canadian and foreign cinema to Kamloops. The Society’s series and festival bring film lovers together to experience the best in cinema.
As well, the Society endeavours to promote and support filmmaking and related visual media in the Kamloops area by offering grants periodically throughout each year.
Society Vision Statement
Community and individual transformation through film.
The Society is governed by a Constitution and By-laws, most recently updated in 2017. The 6-member Board of Directors meets monthly and the Society holds its Annual General Meeting in November each year. The KFS board of directors are as follows:
- Tom Friedman – Chair
- Adam Trudel – Treasurer
- Terri Anne Wilson – Secretary
- Esther Miller
- Justin deVries
- Laura Michel
- Kevin Martin
- Murray Dickinson
- Nathalie Wandler
- Brian Mitchell – Special Advisor to the Board
Dušan was born in Slovakia, but has been in Kamloops since elementary school and considers it his home town. He graduated from Thompson Rivers University with a BBA in Marketing and a BA in Theatre, and obtained his MBA in Strategic Marketing Management from Plymouth State University in New Hamphsire.
Dušan has been involved with the Kamloops Film Society for over 10 years, first as a Kamloops Film Festival (KFF) Committee Member, then also as a Society Board Member, then as the KFF Chair, then as a part-time Executive Director, and now as the full-time ED and Theatre Manager, overseeing the operations of the Paramount Theatre and the KFS’s signature events, including the Thursday Film Series, the Kamloops Short Shorts Film Fest, and the KFF.
Dušan started his career path as the Marketing & Communications Manager for Western Canada Theatre for six years and then spent six years as the Development Director for the School of Trades and Technology and the Aboriginal Education Department at Thompson Rivers University. He has also served as the General Manager, then Artistic Producer, of Project X Theatre, and is an award winning filmmaker, a produced playwright, and at times, even a performer.
Dušan’s favourite films include American Beauty, The Band’s Visit, The Guardians of the Galaxy, Amélie, Warrior, and 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days.
Patron Engagement Manager
Emily graduated from Thompson Rivers University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and English in 2020, and has lived in Kamloops for most of her life. In her spare time, Emily loves consuming stories through reading, watching movies, and TV shows. She also loves to spend time with her family, friends and her cat named Wink.
Emily works full time running the KFS social media and creates various newsletters and marketing strategies for KFS, as well as managing Front of House and the volunteers. You’ll often see her laughing way too hard at a joke a staff member said, chatting with patrons outside the building as she updates the posters, or dancing up a storm at the drive-in.
Some of Emily’s favourite films include the Little Women (2019), The Wedding Singer, La La Land, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Across the Universe and Inception.
Video Store Supervisor
Serena recently graduated from TRU with her Bachelor’s degree in History and English with plans to pursue a career in education. Serena has always had a passion for film, and spends much of her free time watching movies or discussing them with friends and family. As well as movies, Serena loves books, The Cure, Halloween, thrift shopping, and tea.
Some of her favourite films include: The Big Lebowski, Columbus, Rushmore, What We Do in the Shadows and The Shining.
FOH & DCP Supervisor
Bram is a Bachelor Arts student at TRU who is working hard to one day become a high school teacher. He loves history, music, hiking, chess, dancing (poorly), Toronto sports teams, going to the gym and travelling.
Since 2019, Bram has been a part of the amazing team that runs the Paramount Theatre. You can find him running around upstairs getting the projectors to work, slinging popcorn at the concession counter, or in the theatre watching one of the KFS’s fantastic movies!
Bram’s five favourite films are: Apocalypse Now, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, the End of Evangelion, the Godfather, and Damsels in Distress.
Bin was born and raised in Kamloops. He studied theatre at Thompson Rivers University as well as business and science briefly. He loves to watch, re-watch and analyze all things Survivor and also enjoys playing D&D.
Bin’s favourite movies are Big Trouble, Shrek 2, The Court Jester, Vampire’s Kiss and Get Out.
FOH & Janitorial Coordinator
Des has recently graduated in the Bachelor of Arts program at TRU with a Theatre Major. In their free time they love to play with their ferrets, snuggle their cat, tidy their house, and play D&D. They were born and raised in Creston, BC and moved to Kamloops for school in 2017. Des misses Creston sometimes, and reminisces about working along side their mom at their theatre in Creston when they were growing up. Des is excited to once again be cleaning bathrooms in a theatre, just like the old days.
Des’ favourite movies are Beetlejuice, Pulp Fiction, Heathers, Labyrinth and Get Out.
Foster is a Kamloopsian born and raised. He is currently finishing up his double major in Theatre and English with hopes to become a professor. If he finds any spare time it will be spent getting ready for his next DnD session. Aside from prep, he also loves stories in all forms, from movies, to tv shows, to books, to any medium that can communicate a message and a plot. Aaron is beyond excited to be working somewhere that doesn’t just love movies but tries to expand the horizons of the entire community.
Foster’s favourite films include: Paprika, It’s Such a Beautiful Day, Sorry to Bother You, Pacific Rim, Get Out and Troll Hunter
When not at KFS, Kyra works as freelance journalist within the Thompson Nicola Regional District and as an operator at Radio NL Kamloops. Kyra is an all American girl who grew up in Kingston, Tennessee. She moved to Kamloops after meeting her soulmate and partner, Sam, at Pemberton Music Fest in 2016. Kyra loves all things art and culture and can be found enjoying local bands, breweries and coffee shops when not at work. Kyra is also an amateur photographer and is obsessed with all things analog… making her time spent at the Paramount all the more exciting due to its retro mystique.
Some of Kyra’s favourite movies include Princess Mononoke, Coraline and The Love Witch.
FOH & Video Coordinator
Sam was born in Regina, Saskatchewan in 1999 but has lived in Kamloops for around 10 years. He is currently attending Thompson Rivers University pursuing a Bachelor of Journalism degree. His love of film has led him to many film sets where he’s volunteered for the past year in the sound department, as a grip and as a production assistant. He also spent a summer at Joy Factory Films as a PA.
He is very proud to have his own IMDB page.
Sam’s favourite movies include Dog Day Afternoon, Call Me By Your Name, In Bruges, Blindspotting, Moonrise Kingdom and What We Do in the Shadows.
Sydnee Lynn Blackall
Sydnee is currently a student in her fourth year at Thompson Rivers University. Her goal is to one day become an elementary school teacher. She has worked at the Paramount Theatre since 2015. In her free time you can usually find her watching a new TV series, reading a book, or watching films.
Her favourite films are Hot Fuzz (2007) and Pride and Prejudice (2005).