Live on at noon: Lewiston forum to feature history of Maine’s film industry


LEWISTON — Lea Girardin, former director of the Maine Film Office, will be the featured speaker at the Great Falls Forum lecture series at noon on Thursday, Feb. 16, at the Lewiston Public Library. Girardin will present a talk entitled, “Visual Media Production: a Diverse and Growing Industry Just Right for Maine.”

The presentation will be streamed live online at

Girardin has played a leading role in Maine’s film industry for more than 30 years. First, as co-founder of Waterville’s Railroad Square Cinema and the Maine International Film Festival, she was instrumental in introducing Mainers to independent movies.

In 1988, she was called on by Gov. John McKernan to serve as the first director of the Maine Film Office. Girardin served in that capacity through 2010, building a national reputation for Maine both as a landscape offering beautiful natural backdrops and as a business-friendly location supportive to film and media producers.

In her Great Falls Forum presentation, Girardin will provide a short history of film-making in Maine, along with an overview of current activity in the state’s visual media industry. She also will look at the economic value of film and media production within the Maine economy and will provide her thoughts on how to further develop this sector.

Admission is free to all forum events and no reservations are required. The presentation will take place from noon to 1 p.m. in Callahan Hall at the Lewiston Public Library, 200 Lisbon St. Attendees are invited to bring brown-bag lunches, or to take advantage of the forum’s partnership with Guthries cafe and request one of the eatery’s custom-made, gourmet sandwiches or salads to be delivered to the library in advance of the talk. Orders can be placed by calling Guthries at 376-3344. The menu is available at Coffee, tea and bottled water will be available at the library.

The Great Falls Forum is co-sponsored by Bates College, the Lewiston Public Library and the Sun Journal. More information on Thursday’s lecture or other upcoming events in the Great Falls Forum series is available by contacting the Lewiston Public Library at 513-3135 or