The Los Angeles Film Festival began as the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival (LAIFF) in 1995. The first LAIFF took place over the course of five days in a single location: historic Raleigh Studios in Hollywood. In 1996, the LAIFF expanded to include the Directors Guild of America. The LAIFF ran for six years until it was absorbed by Film Independent (formerly IFP/West) in 2001. At its height, the LAIFF attracted 19,000 attendees. Today, the Los Angeles Film Festival attracts more than 92,000 and is centered at L.A. LIVE in downtown Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Film Festival is produced by Film Independent, a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization dedicated to promoting and supporting independent films and filmmakers. Film Independent produces the acclaimed Spirit Awards, honoring vanguard films that embody innovation and originality.

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