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Host a mutual rescue film festival

Ideas for presenting an inspirational event to benefit homeless animals in your community

Ask About Hosting a Festival

Everyone is welcome to request resources to host a Mutual Rescue Film Festival—Animal shelters, rescue groups, individuals, community organizations, businesses, charities, foundations, others—provided that it benefits an animal-welfare organization in your community as approved by Mutual Rescue. Events can range from informal gatherings to dazzling galas. They can be used for community engagement or fundraising—it’s up to you!

Mutual Rescue Films

“Mutual Rescue: Our Story” [5:40] View Film

Mutual Rescue’s origin story, an engaging way to start your event and give context to the films that follow. Through sharing authentic stories in film and print, Mutual Rescue presents compelling evidence that when people adopt animals, their own lives are often dramatically transformed in positive ways as well.

“Keema & Her Pack” [9:44] View Film

The effects of child abuse, poverty, racism and homophobia made it difficult for a young woman to open her heart—until a chance encounter with a dog changed the trajectory of her life.

“Until I started working with dogs, I didn’t know what love was.”

— Shakeema Hutcherson

“Bhuvana & Abhishek & Lollipop” [7:49] View Film

“Having one common thing that we both just loved changed things. We call the three of us a family.”

—Bhuvana Hariharasubramanian

“Jade & Trubs” [5:50] View Film

Trubs, an unadoptable cat with a chronic illness and Jade, an autistic girl, form an instant and unexpected bond. Trubs, who seemed to sense Jade’s challenges, helps her find peace in situations that formerly caused her anguish.

“As a parent of a special-needs child, your hopes are that they have a normal life. I never thought this would happen because of a shelter cat that no one else wanted.”

—Jessica Allen, Jade’s Mom

“Kim & Brian & Lana ” [7:41] View Film

Kim and Brian were devastated by the death of their newborn baby. While Kim began to heal, Brian remained locked in his grief. Adopting Lana, a German shepherd mix, gave Brian an outlet for his grief and helped the couple bond again.

“Grief is just love with nowhere to go, and Lana has given us a place to put that love.”

—Brian Rose

“Sarah & Domino” [5:45] View Film

Sarah’s chronic pain led her to become addicted to drugs. Rescuing a neglected dog became a catalyst for change in her own life. With courage and perseverance, Sarah recovered and begins again with Domino as her constant companion and source of inspiration.

“Even though I was in a really bad position myself, I was the better option by far for Domino. He was just broken, and I felt broken as well.”

—Sarah Coletti

“Patrick & Grace” [5:20] View Film

After taking in Grace, an abused pit bull, Patrick, a young competitive athlete suffers a debilitating stroke. This is the story of a strong dog and strong man both beaten down, building each other back up.

“I’ll never be the athlete I was, but Grace has changed my definition of strength.”

—Patrick Donovan

“Mike & Abbie” [6:15] View Film

When everything in Mike’s world collapsed around him he found Abbie, a shy kelpie pup traumatized from having been abandoned on a busy highway. Together they embarked on a remarkable journey of recovery that resulted in adventure, world records and joy.

“I would never have known my full potential if I hadn’t helped a shelter dog find hers first.”

—Michael Uy

“Jessi & Andi” [4:50] View Film

Jessi’s boyfriend was the life of the party. His unexpected suicide cast her into a downward spiral of anxiety and depression. When she happened upon Andi, a puppy at a local shelter, she found a path to a brighter future.

“While my life looks different than I thought it was going to, Andi made me start seeing that there could be another future. She really was the one that pulled me out of my darkness.”

—Jessi Burns

“Josh & Scout” [4:50] View Film

We follow a young soldier from a battlefield in Iraq, where he sustained traumatic injuries, to Fort Riley, Kansas. There, an unlikely savior appears and saves him from taking his own life and leads him into a life he never imagined possible.

“Even before he was my cat, before he even knew me that well, Scout saved my life. He put me on a different path. He gave me the confidence to try to come back from all the adversity that I was feeling.”

—Josh Marino

“Tracy & Jack” [5:20] View Film

When Tracy and Jack each suffered extreme injuries, they managed to heal each other. Jack’s positive attitude and spirit spread to Tracy, helping her along her own road to recovery.

“He has three legs and one eye...but it has no impact on him whatsoever. To Jack, everything is a source of joy.”

—Tracy Campion

“Kylie & Liza” [6:15] View Film

In her final days, Kylie, a young girl with cancer, was comforted by a rescue kitten named Liza. In the same way Liza bonded with Kylie when she most needed her, the kitten intuitively comforted the grieving family after Kylie’s passing.

“I’ve heard people describe animals like angels. I never really understood what that meant until Liza met Kylie.”

—Robin Myers, Kylie’s Mom

“Eric & Peety” [6:25] View Film

Eric weighed 340 pounds and was diagnosed with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and Type 2 Diabetes. His doctor told him he had 5 years to live. Then he met Peety—and everything changed.

“I’m still here because a shelter dog saved my life.”

—Eric O’Grey

Memorial Montage Films

To those who have loved and lost an animal companion, Mutual Rescue offers two short films with timeless messages from the spirits of a dog (“Still Yours”) and cat (“Silent Paws”). Through photography, poetry and music, these films illustrate the enduring bonds between animals and people and celebrate the power of love.

“Still Yours” [5:58]

...You were never masters, but friends. I was your friend.

I loved you well, and was loved. Deep love endures

To the end and far past the end. If this is my end,

I am not lonely. I am not afraid. I am still yours.

-Robinson Jeffers

View Film

“Silent Paws” [5:55]

...You’ll stand with your habitual

optimism at the back door, calling my name.

I won’t come, of course, but that’ll make the whole ritual

seem normal, familiar, as ever all the same.

-Gabriel Spera

View Film

What does Mutual Rescue provide free of charge to event presenters?

  • Digital film files
  • Mutual Rescue Film Festival artwork
  • Mutual Rescue logo
  • Reduced price for Mutual Rescue book (available April 2019)
  • Consultation with Mutual Rescue’s executive producer
  • Promotion of your event on Mutual Rescue’s social media channels
  • What does your organization need to do?

  • Submit a request to host an event - Ask About Hosting a Festival
  • Hosting organizations select from Mutual Rescue’s portfoilo of current and unreleased films and decide on an event format that suits your audience.
  • Events can be free or ticketed.
  • Fundraising options to benefit an animal welfare organization might include auctions, raffles, donations, Mutual Rescue book sales, sponsorships, competitions, etc.
  • Upcoming and past events

    Los Angeles Black Film Festival

    West Hollywood, CA

    February 13–16, 2020

    A Night At The Movies Presented by Maui Humane Society

    Kihei, HI

    February 1, 2020

    San Diego Black Film Festival

    San Diego, CA

    January 29–February 2, 2020

    Pride Films & Plays Film Festival

    Chicago, IL

    December 9, 2019


    NY Dog & Cat Film Festivals

    New York City, NY

    November, 2019

    KC Pet Project

    Bar K Dog Bar, Kansas City, MO

    October 20, 2018

    Duke's OceanFest, Movie on the Sand

    Waikiki, HI

    August 23, 2018

    Calvin and Susie Hawaii Animal Foundation

    Waikiki, HI

    August 21, 2018

    Colorodo Springs Fine Arts Center

    Colorodo Springs, CO

    July-October 2018

    Foothills Animal Shelter

    American Mountaineering Museam, Golden, CO

    June 27, 2018

    Humane Society Silicon Valley

    Hammer Theatre, San Jose, CA

    June 24, 2018

    Humane Society Silicon Valley

    Flint Center for the Performing Arts, Cupertino, CA

    September 18, 2016

    What are examples of event formats?

    Low cost on-site event

    On-site screening of Mutual Rescue films, using available resources. A low-cost way to elevate awareness and engage staff, volunteers, board members, and other associates of the presenting organization and beneficiary.

    Moderate cost private off-site event

    Off-site screening of Mutual Rescue films at private homes, businesses, boardrooms, hotels, and community spaces, using available resources or rented equipment. Intended to attract new supporters and broaden circles of awareness about animal welfare in your community.

    Modest event at a professional venue

    Screening of Mutual Rescue films at professional venues such as theaters, performance spaces, school auditoriums, churches, or outdoor settings such as botanical gardens, beaches, or parks, using professional resources and staff. Could include Mutual Rescue representatives, including film subjects, and an opportunity to purchase Mutual Rescue’s book (Reduced price for Mutual Rescue book) at a special price to offer for sale for fundraising. Moderate to higher costs with excellent fundraising potential.

    High-end event at a professional venue

    Screening of Mutual Rescue films at large venues with professional equipment and staff. This is an excellent opportunity for the presenter to partner with sponsors to produce a special event to attract news coverage, social-media attention, community leaders, etc. Option to include Mutual Rescue representatives, a panel discussion with film subjects, and an opportunity to purchase Mutual Rescue’s book (Reduced price for Mutual Rescue book) at a special price to offer for sale for fundraising or as a gift to attendees, with the possibility of a post-screening book signing.

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