Take my word for it… After years of experience, I know that it ain’t easy to put one together. It’s tough, draining, demanding, brutal and exhausting. (And that’s before the festival has even begun) But in the end, it’s always worth it.

However, you don’t have to ask me. Just ask Chicago independent filmmaker Mark Harris who just completed this weekend his inaugural Englewood Film Festival.

Aside from the fact that it’s hard work to put a film festival together, Harris’ mission was compounded by the fact that the festival took place in the Chicago neighborhood of Englewood.

Now for those of non-Chicagoans out there, suffice it to say, Englewood isn’t exactly the greatest neighborhood in the city. In fact, one could argue that it could be the the single “worst community in Chicago.” A place that no one dares to tread. And that’s not me saying that. Even Harris honestly admits that himself, in an article about him and the festival, which appeared in today’s Chicago Sun Times (Read it HERE)

But you cannot deny his struggle and have to give all praise to Harris for his outstanding efforts to do something positive for his neighborhood, and to be a force of change in the community. So let’s give a round of applause to Mark Harris, for doing and achieving something genuinely uplifting, and wish him good luck in the future.