The Kids Film It Festival started with a vision from fourteen-year-old Ryan Levine. Ryan’s dream was to find a way to pair his passion for movies with a philanthropic cause that hit very close to home for his family – Parkinson’s Research.
Ever since Ryan was young, he loved movies. Eventually, that passion grew into filmmaking. Unfortunately, he came to find that there weren’t many outlets for young people to showcase their work in filmmaking. Many festivals show films made for kids, but not made by kids.
When Ryan’s grandmother was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, Ryan wanted to find a way to help. He decided to pair his filmmaking dream with his philanthropic passion, and that mission led to the creation of the Kids Film It Festival.
The festival affords kids and young people with the opportunity to showcase their work, and all proceeds go to the Michael J. Fox Foundation to benefit Parkinson’s Research. With much hard work and dedication, the first ever International Kids Film It Festival was held in 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio at the iconic Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. People from more than 97 countries visited the festival website, and more than $32,000 was raised for Parkinson’s Research. With such outstanding support and enthusiastic participation from kids around the country, Ryan was inspired to move forward and create a yearly Kids Film It Festival.