International media coverage preceded the first-ever Internet Cat Video Film Fest at the Walker Art Center, and a reported turnout of 10,000 cat lovers delivered on the hype. Cat paraphernalia abounded, picnickers toted impressive spreads and some attendees - despite urgings from the Walker - even brought along their whiskered companions.
Adorable/wacky kitty cats are an easy sell, but no one could have predicted that the premier Internet Cat Video Film Festival would draw Rock the Garden-rivaling attendance (smirking memes aside, the noble cat boasts a level of earnestness you won't find in indie-rock). The Walker anticipated a crowd of around 5,000, according to its Twitter account.
Festival-goers were treated to 79 selections curated from 10,000-plus submissions. Partitioned off into nine categories (Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Animated, Musical, Documentary, Art House, Honorable Mention, and Lifetime Achievement), LOLs and awws were out in force for more than an hour. In the end, though, William Brandon's "Henri 2, Paw de Deux" took home the Golden Kitty, the online-voted prize for the top kitty flick. The existential, subtitled selection will be aired on Animal Planet's "My Cat From Hell" Sept. 8 at 8 p.m.
You can stream the entire event here.