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Canon Virginia, Inc. renews support of Global Film Festival

William & Mary and its Global Film Festival (GFF) will continue to have a powerful partner and sponsor to support its efforts in fostering internationalization, experience-based learning and community engagement, all through the mediums of film and video. Canon Virginia, Inc., after becoming a sponsor of the 2014 GFF and donating more than $20,000 worth of cameras and lenses and making a monetary donation, has made a continuing commitment to sustain that support. Canon Virginia’s support the festival’s youth filmmaking and community outreach initiatives, including both its Student Short Film Competition and the “DIY/FIY” (Do-It-Young/Film-It-Yourself) filmmaking workshops for area K-12 students.

In addition to renewing its grant, Canon Virginia, Inc. is again donating cameras and lenses, both as prizes for the Student Short Film Competition (open to student filmmakers of all ages from around the world), and to further expand the resources of the GFF’s youth filmmaking workshops and documentary projects.  Managed and maintained by the College’s Swem Library Media Center, the donated equipment also expands the video, photography and filmmaking projects of W&M students and faculty in general.

“Canon Virginia’s support last year was crucial to what the GFF achieved in 2014 and with this renewed commitment, we look forward to an even more exciting future for the festival,” said festival director Timothy Barnard, lecturer of film and media studies at the university and the GFF’s director since it was launched in 2008.  “Our partnership with Canon Virginia is allowing the GFF to continue to grow and expand as an influential educational and community resource at the same time it bolsters the College’s overall mission and commitments to internationalization, experience-based undergraduate learning and community engagement.

“This renewed partnership with Canon Virginia, Inc. is especially exciting to us because Canon Virginia’s corporate philosophy and philanthropic goals coincides so closely with the Global Film Festival’s and the College’s mission. "Canon Virginia is committed to Kyosei, the idea of 'all people, regardless of race, religion or culture, harmoniously living and working together into the future.' This mission guides the company’s philanthropic commitment to 'social and educational programs on behalf of young people and those in need.'”

Canon Virginia’s grant will help the GFF strengthen community outreach, providing support for its educational programs for diverse communities in and around Williamsburg. In particular, funds provided by Canon Virginia will allow the Global Film Festival to continue its “Do-It-Young/Film-It-Yourself” (DIY/FIY) program. The program, now in its second year, provides opportunities for local elementary, middle and high school students to attend filmmaking workshops and receive assistance and training from William & Mary film student mentors. The support of Canon Virginia will greatly assist the DIY/FIY program in its mission of providing all students with adequate equipment and training to produce their own films, regardless of prior experience or access to resources. 

“This is a very exciting partnership for Canon Virginia, Inc.,” said Ron Briggs, the company's senior vice president. “The GFF along with the ‘Film-it-Yourself’ program provides an opportunity for young people to learn outside the classroom and develop leadership skills for tomorrow.  It is important that the business community take an active role in educating, training and developing future generations.”

And, the grant supports another important education initiative of the GFF, its Student Short Film Competition. Because of Canon Virginia’s support, the Festival will be able to create festival screening opportunities for aspiring student filmmakers while also providing travel funds for student filmmakers from around the country and the globe to attend the Festival and participate in its workshops with invited guest filmmakers.

Additionally, the sponsorship includes a donation of film equipment to the Global Film Festival and Film & Media Studies program at the university. This grant will aid students throughout the year in their research and innovative academic initiatives. The donation will greatly enhance production opportunities for William & Mary student filmmakers. 

Canon Virginia funds will also enhance the Global Film Festival’s capacity for outreach and publicity. The festival is devoted to bringing world cultures to Williamsburg through film, and bringing diverse communities together to view and discuss the films. Canon Virginia’s support will assist in this mission by enabling the festival to reach out to more audiences in and around Williamsburg.

About the Festival

The William & Mary Global Film Festival will take place Feb. 19–22 at the historic Kimball Theatre in Colonial Williamsburg and will feature films from around the world, live performances, receptions and presentations by invited filmmakers. This year’s festival theme, “Film & Renewal,” encourages environmental awareness.

The Global Film Festival launched in 2008 with the support of the Reves Center for International Studies and the Roy R. Charles Center for Academic Excellence, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Williamsburg Theater. For more information on the festival and upcoming events, visit our website:

About Canon Virginia, Inc.

Located in Newport News, Canon Virginia, Inc. (CVI), a subsidiary of Canon U.S.A., has been manufacturing products on the Virginia Peninsula since 1985. CVI serves as Canon’s only manufacturing, engineering, recycling and technical support center in the Americas region. CVI produces new products using advanced manufacturing methodologies while also serving as a factory service center providing expert customer service in the repair and refurbishment of Canon cameras, video recorders and office products. Canon U.S.A. is committed to the highest level of customer satisfaction and loyalty, providing 100 percent U.S.-based consumer service and support for all of the products it distributes. Canon U.S.A. is dedicated to its Kyosei philosophy of social and environmental responsibility. For more information, visit