Ypsi residents create free newsletter cataloging local film screenings and events

A new resource for Washtenaw County film enthusiasts launched earlier this year, thanks to Ypsilanti cinephiles Jason Voss and Dustin Krcatovich. Their free monthly print newsletter, Cinemania, offers a curated schedule of upcoming Southeast Michigan film screenings and events, and Voss and Krcatovich hope it will help build a more thriving community of local film lovers.

"I was scouring local cinemas for special screenings and interesting things to send to a group chat of friends," says Voss, Cinemania's editor in chief. "I figured I might as well turn that into a full newsletter that anyone can refer to."

"We thought it would be a good idea to aggregate all of this film information," says Krcatovich, Cinemania's designer. "There is less of a unified cinephile community here because that information is really spread out, or it isn’t being catered to a demographic that is really excited about film."

Krcatovich and Voss were partly inspired by Frank Uhle’s recent book "Cinema Ann Arbor," which features archival research and interviews detailing the history of Ann Arbor’s underground art film community. After seeing enthusiasm from attendees at the Ypsilanti Independent Film Festival (iFFY) and Ann Arbor Film Festival (AAFF), Voss saw an opportunity to reach a larger audience of both filmgoers and local organizations.

"We want to encourage more of the energy from things like iFFY and give it a place to bloom," Voss says. "It’s a shame we don’t have this level of creative print floating around in the physical world anymore."

Krcatovich says he and Voss are working on creating an online version of the newsletter, but they are "highly encouraging people to interface with the print version," hoping that a physical newsletter will encourage film lovers to connect with local businesses, as well as one another. In addition to building a stronger cinephile community, Krcatovich says there's more to the newsletter than a collection of local screenings and other events.

"On the flipside of every issue, there’s a collectible poster suitable for framing," Krcatovich says. "So, once you’re done using it for a practical purpose, you have something aesthetically nice to frame and collect."

You can find Cinemania at Ypsi businesses Wyrd Byrd, World of Rocks, and Ziggy’s, as well as Encore Records in Ann Arbor. To learn more about sponsorship and collaboration opportunities, email Krcatovich at mafutopo@thickair.graphics

"We’re both excited about making something more ephemeral than an Instagram post," Krcatovich says. "We hope that this newsletter is something people can look back on in maybe 20 years and remember there were cool things happening here in Ypsi and Ann Arbor."

Rylee Barnsdale is a Michigan native and longtime Washtenaw County resident. She wants to use her journalistic experience from her time at Eastern Michigan University writing for the Eastern Echo to tell the stories of Washtenaw County residents that need to be heard.

Image courtesy of Dustin Krcatovich.
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