Chicago gets REEL this September!

ReelAbilities Film Festival partners with ADA25 Chicago

June 30, 2015 (Chicago,IL) – ReelAbilities Film Festival is the largest film festival in the United States dedicated to sharing the human experience of disability through art and film. The Chicago festival is scheduled for September 9 -13, 2015 and includes films with engaging panel discussions, guest speakers, exhibitions, performances, and opening/closing night celebrations. The purpose of ReelAbilities Chicago is to initiate dialogue and critical thinking about the perception and stereotypes of the disability experience in the Chicago community through the platform of film, art, media and powerful imagery.

BACKBONES (Chicago’s host organization) is a local nonprofit providing support for people with spinal cord injuries, and has partnered with ADA25 Chicago, a citywide initiative and public awareness campaign under the Chicago Community Trust, which celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Other partners include Comcast, Chicago Cultural Center, National Museum of Health and Medicine Chicago, Columbia College, Reva and David Logan Center, Bodies of Work.

The films range from dynamic, funny, thought-provoking and eye-opening! They celebrate the stories, lives and art of people who experience disability.

“Having ReelAbilities in Chicago is important because it gives filmmakers with disabilities a chance to showcase their work and it provides an outlet to show people what we’re capable of as filmmakers, producers, actors, and actresses.” – Justin Cooper, Chicago Filmmaker, Wheelchair Chronicles

“Many of us who identify as people with disability celebrate that aspect of our identity. And so we have a culture, and as any culture we have an art, we have stories, so the film festival tells a story of that culture.” – Kara Ayers, co-chair ReelAbilities Cincinnati

“There couldn’t be a more appropriate way to share stories and celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act” – Reveca Torres, Festival Director


Contact: Reveca Torres
Executive Director

Meet the Team!

Matt (left); Grishma (middle); Reveca (right)
Matt (left); Grishma (middle); Reveca (right)

Meet ReelAbilities Chicago directors:
Matt Lauterbach, Grishma Shah and Reveca Torres!

Have you heard of this joke, a director of a not-for-profit (Reveca), a film editor (Matt) and a mass-media consultant (Grishma) walk into a bar and…

You haven’t? Well, then it’s a good thing you are on this website.

So all three walk into a bar, and what happens? REELABILITIES Chicago happens! REELABILTIES Chicago is part of the 25th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities ACt. A four day film festival in September dedicated to film, art and amazing panel discussions dedicated to articulating the human experience of disability.

The WOMEN of ReelAbilities Chicago

Cobb-front-cover1If you haven’t noticed, ReelAbilities is about sharing stories and highlighting diversity. Although our lineup of films for the Chicago ReelAbilities reflects stories of disability and the human experience, we would also like you to know that over half of the films we will be screening are films that were directed by women!

Today we would like to celebrate the following women and their films! We have partnered with Directed By Women Worldwide Viewing Party to showcase women directed films from September 1-15, 2015. Please join us for a film or ALL of them in Chicago September 9-13, 2015. Share the films and please use hashtags: #getREELChicago #DirectedByWomen

On Beauty
by Joanna Rudnick
Wednesday, September 9

Keep the Change
by Rachel Israel
Wednesday, September 9

Sound Shadows
by Julie Engaas
Wednesday, September 9

Wretches & Jabberers
by Gerardine Wurzburg
Thursday, September 10

Scarlet Road
by Catherine Scott
Saturday, September 12

by Regan Brashear
Saturday, September 12

Getting Up
by Caskey Ebeling
Sunday, September 13

Lost and Sound
by Lindsey Dryden
Sunday, September 13

Flying Anne
by Catherine Van Campen
Sunday, September 13

Sounds for Mazin
by Ingrid Kamerling
Sunday, September 13