Film Festivals for Kids in April – Free and Low-Priced Films!

Throughout April 2012 are two fabulous Washington DC film festivals with animated international offerings for kids. Filmfest DC: The Washington, DC International Film Festival has a film for kids with two April weekend showings, and Kids World Cinema 2012 showcases animation for kids from around the world at various screenings at throughout DC April 20-28.


Eleanor’s Secret – from France, shown in English

A family-friendly offering at Filmfest DC: The Washington, DC International Film Festival

Saturday April 14 2:30 PM  Goethe-Institut Washington 812 7th St., NW (Gallery Place/Chinatown) $5.00   Buy Tickets

Saturday April 21 2:30 PM Goethe-Institut Washington 812 7th St., NW (Gallery Place/Chinatown) $5.00   Buy Tickets

“Academy-Award–nominated director Dominique Monféry celebrates the joy of reading in his sumptuously animated movie about a magic library where all the characters from classic children’s books come alive.  With the help of Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, and others, [protagonist child] Nat…learns to read an ancient spell to keep the characters alive for future generations of children. Eleanor’s Secret will win the hearts children and adults alike.” —Seattle International Film Festival

See the trailer for Eleanor’s Secret

If these films are too international and art house-y for your tastes, A Parent in Silver Spring also gives out free passes to mainstream films from Pixar, Disney and more!

All film pass giveaways are handled on the A Parent in Silver Spring Facebook page, so Like the page here and receive posts about free film screenings throughout the DC area!

Kids World Cinema Festival 2012

International animated short film festival for children hosted by Alliance Française de Washington

Friday, April 20 at 6 PM Alliance Francaise, 2142 Wyoming Avenue, NW Free with registration  by calling 202-234-7911 or registering online

This showcase of international children’s films, which is now in its fourth year, invites Washingtonians to compare the ways in which different cultures approach this compact, yet powerful genre, as well as introduce young audiences to the discovery of foreign cinema. On April 20, the Alliance Française and the Embassy of Senegal present the following film collection tailored to children aged 6-8:

  • Frère Benoit (Brother Benoit) (8 min, no dialogue) – Brother Benoit is in charge of the cleaning service in an abbey.
  • Train-Train Medina (7 min, no dialogue) — People start stealing sand from the beach to build their houses with and things start to get messy in the Medina. Living in common disrespect for nature and for each other brings about a time of misery.
  • Gom (7 min, French with English subtitles) — An awkward rubber boy is unexpectedly enlisted to replace a circus performer’s assistant.
  • Le Têtu fainéant (The Lazy Jackal) (4min, English ) — The dog-like Jackal does not want to go to school with the other animals on the savannah.
  • Rumeurs (Rumors) (7min 30sec, no dialogue) — In the silenceof the jungle, an unusual noise scares the animals, causing them to feed off each other’s panic.
  • OZO  (7min 30sec)A monkey named Ozo chases the bird that stole his egg.

Animation for Children from Japan and Mexico Organized by the Mexican Cultural Institute and the Japan Information and Cultural Center

Saturday Apr. 21  at 2pm at the Mexican Cultural Institute, 2829 16th Street NW, Free, register by e-mailing

Various films in Japanese with English subtitles, Spanish with English subtitles, no dialogue or dubbing in English.  Full line-up.

Animation for Children from Korea and Spain Organized by the Korean Cultural Center and the Embassy of Spain

Sunday April 22 at 2:00pm, Spain and Korea at the Korean Cultural Center, 2370 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington DC 2370 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Free, online registration required.

As part of Kids World Cinema 2012, the Korean Cultural Center is teaming up with the Embassy of Spain to present a collection of short Korean and Spanish films just for kids, followed by a group discussion and cultural activities. Children will learn about Korean and Spanish culture in a fun setting, and see how even though kids in other countries may not speak the same language, they are not so different. Children and parents of all backgrounds are welcome to participate. Intended for children age 6-10, but slightly younger or older children are also welcome.

In order to attend, a parent/guardian must RSVP for each child or group of children by completing this online registration form. One parent/guardian can RSVP for up to 4 children. Adults may accompany children during the event (a separate adult space will be available), or drop children off by 2pm and pick them up by 3:30pm. Children under age 6 cannot be dropped off and must be supervised by an attending adult. Adults who attend must be accompanied by at least one child.

Short fairy tale films from the United States and Québec

Friday April 27 6 – 9pm, Hillwood Estate, 4155 Linnean Avenue, NW, Free, register at 202.686.5807.

6-9 pm Art activity, tour the Mansion, bring your own picnic to enjoy, children encouraged to wear their own crowns from home
7-8:30 pm Short film screenings

Picnic in the gardens, explore the Mansion on a fairy tale quest, and create and wear your own prince and princess crowns. Enjoy screenings of several short fairy tale films from the United States and Québec, including Sleeping Betty, The Tender Tale of Cinderella Penguin, and Faerie Tale Theatre. Snacks and light bites available for purchase from the Cafe. Presented in partnership with the Québec Government Office.

Animation from Brazil and Germany, Organized by the Goethe-Institut and the Embassy of Brazil

Saturday Apr. 28 at 2PM, The Goethe-Institut, 812 7th Street, NW, Washington DC, Free, RSVP & Information: 202-289-1200 &

  • Fishtronaut (33 min, dubbed in English) — An enviro-friendly animated mystery series, where our secret agent “Fishtronaut” goes on slimy, furry and gooey adventures with his best friends, gal pal Marina and Zeek, a tween-age monkey. Kids are encouraged to engage interactively by tapping and clapping along with Fishtronaut and friends. Targeting 3 to 6 year-olds, the series explores the world’s many mysteries above and below water in a unique and entertaining way.
  • Lotte Reiniger: Fairytales and Fables (30 min.,German with English subtitles) — Fairytales and music form an integral part of Lotte Reiniger’s (1899-1981) artistic oeuvre and were driving forces behind her work. Moving between different cultures for inspiration, she created animated films full of graceful, beautiful characters. A selection of her films will be shown.

Enjoy the shows!

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