The Rural Route Film Festival was created to highlight works that deal with unique people and places outside of the bustle of the city. Taking in a Rural Route program is like choosing the road less travelled, and learning something new about our constantly amazing world.

Whether it be a fictional backpacking drama set in the Peruvian Andes, a personal/experimental work about life in a Kazakh village, or a documentary about an organic, Appalachian turnip farm, our mission is to screen work about rare people and cultures normally overlooked by the mainstream media.  Our content consists of top quality, cutting edge contemporary and archival work from sources both local and far, far away.

Since 2002, the Rural Route Film Festival has been centered in New York City, where both founders (originally from Iowa) met working in the film industry.  Whether screening in New York, or on one of our many tour dates, our content is more relevant than ever, tackling some of the most important topics of the day within the slow food movement, global warming/environmental arena, and life sustainability symposium.

Who We Are

Alan Webber (Creative Director) hails from Elkader, Iowa, where he started making movies at an early age.  Upon moving to New York, he obtained his M.A. in Media Studies from the New School while working for director Hal Hartley.  Alan has written and directed numerous short films and narrative music videos for rock bands such as  Federation-X, The Silver Jews, and Akron/Family.  Through 2008-2009, he traveled to all 7 continents screening the RRFF while vlogging.  He is currently developing several feature length screenplays.

Denis Blot (Deputy Director) obtained a BA (Denison University) and MA (NYU) in Cinema Studies, and his passion for film has had him don many hats as film educator, DVD film reviewer, documentary stock footage researcher, and DVD marketer. When not watching movies, he is an active traveler, hiker, and beginner guitar player.

Jason Ross (Program Manager) is a musicology and film studies specialist, based in Oakland, CA, where he also teaches and heads up a library.  An avid backpacker and trout fisherman, Jason has spent a lot of his life in places like Yellowstone Nat’l Park.  He was once carried out of the world’s deepest canyon in Peru on a donkey after twisting his ankle.

Emily Cameron (Production Manager) is a traveler and aspiring cinematographer. From some combination of Washington, Texas, Iowa, Thailand, and finally Brooklyn, she has had her fair share of rural. When not exploring, Emily makes films and photographs.

Rodney Linderbaum (Communications Director) lives in Iowa City, IA, where he helped design the world’s largest wooden nickel, and serves as an active camper and outdoorsman.

Severine von Tscharner Fleming (Agricultural Consultant) raises rabbits, herbs and rare fruit in the Hudson Valley. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a B.S. in Conservation & AgroEcology, where she also founded SAFE (The Society for Agriculture & Food Ecology). She is currently producing a documentary about America’s young farming community, called The Greenhorns. She also works as a consultant for Slow Food, and advises Rural Route on agricultural issues and co-organization of an extensive new wave agri-film festival to educate the nation.

Associate Programmers:  Chris Burns, Helmut Steinecker
Technical Operations:  Nick Smith-Koblitz
Affiliates-at-large:  Brian Shirey, Andy Brodie, Darla Elsbernd, Sallie Sanders, Katherine Hanes, Eugene Lehnert, Tenzin Dasang, Anna Diaz