All About Cats – A Conversation with Will Braden on the Cat Video Fest

by Hogan Short

Cat Video Fest 2019

The creation of the internet redefined our entire society. The world became smaller as the ability to connect and share information and thoughts became incredibly easier. The global community is still quickly evolving because of new ways to use the internet for communication. Youtube, Vine, Instagram – They have allowed us to share countless videos, serving as a collective memory bank of a place in time. Why is it that one type of video is always attached to the joke of what people really use the internet for? Why did one specific topic begin and continues to thrive for audiences around the world? Of course, cat videos are that topic. Everyone just loves a good cat video. Vancity theatre is excited to feature the Cat Video Fest 2019, a compilation of cat videos in an experience that is communal and joyous. Will Braden is the director and curator of the festival and he spoke to us a little bit about this year’s event

How many years has this festival been running?

I’ve been running CatVideoFest since 2016. 

What is the reach of this festival? How many countries does it go to?

We’re in close to 150 cities in North America this year. We’ve had a few shows abroad, and we plan to do more soon.

How has the festival changed over time?

The spirit has remained the same, we’ve just expanded our reach a lot more this year. But the shows remain a joyous, communal experience and we are raising money for local shelters everywhere we go!

Why do you think cat videos are so loved by people?

The internet has become a de facto virtual cat park for folks. It’s a way to feel like loving cats is a real shared experience. Plus cats are usually so aloof and graceful, it’s fun to see them get taken down a peg or two. 

What can people expect to see? Why is it such a communal experience?

There’s just something about seeing a joyous, curated experience, in a theatre, with hundreds of other cat lovers that’s hard to describe. It’s just hard not to get caught up in the fun. People need a fun distraction nowadays. 

Do you have any advice for people hoping to make their own cat videos for the future?

Keep it short! Make sure your cat is into it. And whatever the best part is, make sure it’s right at the end of the video. 

What should people know about how this fest raises money for cats?

Local partnerships are super important to us. Our goal is a true community experience so making sure that a percentage of ticket sales go directly to a local shelter or organization is a must. Plus, they will usually have a presence at the shows in order to spread information, recruit volunteers, take additional donations, etc. Often they will even have cats up for adoption right there! 

The Cat Video Fest will be playing at Vancity Theatre April 20th. Vancouver Orphaned Kitten Rescue (VOKRA0 will receive a percentage of all box office receipts for our Vancity Theatre screenings.

Get your tickets here.

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