How Telluride held one of the biggest Film Festivals

Glitter. The mines in the San Juan Mountains were once rich with mineral deposits: gold, silver, zinc, lead, copper. All kinds of metals were once mined from the mountain near Telluride. In the 1970s, though, as the mines dried up and closed, the town traded the lustre of those precious metals for the glitterati of Hollywood as the Telluride Film Festival got bigger and bigger. The 48th edition of the fest is underway. But how did a small mining town in Colorado become one of the biggest stops for Oscar contenders? Writer Phillip Lopate remembers the Telluride Film Festival as it once was. An attendee of what he calls the festival’s maiden voyage, his stories are filled with brushes with famous …

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