Fifth Annual Children’s Film Symposium

Washington University’s Center for the Humanities and Program in Film & Media Studies, both in Arts & Sciences, will host the Fifth Annual Children’s Film Symposium Friday and Saturday, Nov. 21 and 22.

Presented in conjunction with Cinema St. Louis, the festival will feature five screenings as well as introductions and postshow discussions by a half-dozen of the films’ creators.

“For the Birds,” a Pixar film released in 2001, will be one of the short films shown Friday, Nov. 21, at the Children’s Film Symposium.

All events are free and open to the public.

The first screening, “Pixar Shorts,” will take place in the auditorium of the Saint Louis Art Museum. All other events take place in Brown Hall Auditorium.

The schedule:

Friday, Nov. 21

7 p.m. “Pixar Shorts” (2007). This film features a dozen rare theatrical shorts spanning the history of Disney/Pixar, the studio responsible for such modern family classics as “Toy Story,” “Monsters, Inc.” and “Finding Nemo.” Introducing the screening will be Jeremy Lasky, a director of photography for Pixar, who also will conduct a postshow question-and-answer session.

Saturday, Nov. 22

Noon. “Matchmaker Mary” (2008). Shot in Lee’s Summit, Mo., this family-friendly tale stars Dee Wallace, a former Kansas City resident best known for her role as Mary in “E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial,” and Katherine McNamara, 12, a Lee’s Summit native making her screen debut. The story centers on Mary Carver, a sixth grader (played by McNamara) who attempts to broker romance between two lonely people she meets at an animal shelter, where all three are adopting puppies. Following the screening will be a Q&A session with director Tom Whitus and co-star Jilanne Barnes.

2:30 p.m. “The Flyboys” (2008). Directed by Rocco DeVilliers and featuring Stephen Baldwin and Tom Sizemore, this rollicking adventure won best film at the 2008 Sedona Film Festival. The story follows two small-town boys (played by Jesse James and Reiley McClendon) whose courage is tested when they become accidental stowaways aboard an airplane owned by the mob. The screening will be followed by a talk with producer Lisle Moore.

5 p.m. “The Making of WALL-E” (2008). A peek behind the scenes of last summer’s animated offering by Disney/Pixar. Written and directed by Andrew Stanton, whose previous credits include “A Bug’s Life” and “Finding Nemo,” the computer-animated tale follows a wide-eyed robot (whose name stands for “Waste Allocation Load Lifter Earth-Class”) as he travels to the deepest reaches of outer space in search of a newfound friend — and the only friend he has ever had. A reception for Pixar’s Lasky follows.

7:30 p.m. “King of the Hill” (1993). Based on the memoir by alumnus A.E. Hotchner and adapted and directed by Steven Soderbergh, “King of the Hill” stars Jesse Bradford as 12-year-old Aaron Kurlander. Separated from his parents and younger brother, Aaron must fend for himself while living in a run-down hotel in Depression-era St. Louis. Attendees will include producer Ron Yerxa and local casting director Carrie Houk. The movie, presented in conjunction with the Missouri Center for the Book, is rated PG-13 for mild profanity and one implied sexual situation.

For more information, call the Center for the Humanities at 935-5576.