— Mayor R.T. Rybak (@MayorRTRybak) August 30, 2012
Unknowingly, the Internet Cat Video Film Festival was scheduled to go up another big night in entertainment: Mitt Romney (and Clint Eastwood & Chair) at the Republican National Convention. Thoughts of that gathering were far away on Open Field last night (though often mentioned together in tweets), as over 10,000 cat video fans came to watch 79 cat videos. The videos were divided into categories: Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Documentary, Animated, Musical, Art House, Lifetime Achievement, and People’s Choice. #catvidfest t-shirts sold out in a hot second, but you can pre-order from the next batch here.
When we announced the festival, we thought maybe 100 people might come. Last week, we were estimating about 2,000 people. A few days ago, it wasn’t a stretch to say 5,000 people. Last night, we were dumbfounded. We want to thank everybody who nominated videos, who voted, and who showed up last night and made it a truly memorable event. We couldn’t have done it without you.
Here are some of our favorite tweets & photos from the evening:
There were lots of cat t-shirts, naturally. Some of them had famous internet cat video cats on them, some of them just had really big cat faces. There were lots of cat ears, cat whiskers, and even some cat snouts.
— Molly Kuhs (@kuhskuhs) August 31, 2012
Our beautiful t-shirts:
— AndreaKopfmann (@AndreaKopfmann) August 31, 2012
Cat dressed like Keybaord Cat! (The original K. C., Fatso, died three years ago.)
Henri, Le Chat Noir sent his regards:
I am proud to be featured in
#catvidfest tonight. Humans should gather more often to appreciate their feline counterparts. We deserve it.
— Henri, Le Chat Noir (@HenriLeChatNoir) August 30, 2012
Henri would end up taking top honors, winning the “People’s Choice Award” chosen by online votes. The creator of Henri 2: Paw de Deux, Will Braden, was on hand to accept the Golden Kitty Award:
Joining Braden on the stage was LIL BUB with her Dude, Mike. BUB showed up around 6:15 and greeted adoring fans until the videos started. Here are just a few of the fan photos:
— Jenn Stromberg (@fluteswedie) August 31, 2012
— Kristina Fong (@kdotfong) August 31, 2012
— Anica Wensman (@awensman) August 31, 2012
Me and Lil Bub! instagr.am/p/O-QVVdp3Gu/
— Josh Kolesar (@LaszloPanaflex) August 31, 2012
— Emily Ruth Eaton (@ereyayouknowme) August 31, 2012
Our fearless leader, Katie Hill, got her wish and met up with the Kittens Inspired by Kittens girl. (That classic video received a Lifetime Achievement Award.)
— Katie Hill (@czarkat) August 31, 2012
I counted many collective ‘Awwwws’ throughout the night and it was impossible to keep track of how many times the entire crowd erupted into laughter.
I wish you all could’ve been at the
#catvidfest. TRULY THE MOST AMAZING PUBLIC EVENT IN HISTORY.The internet became a real life experience
— Molly Pancake (@mollypancake) August 31, 2012
#catvidfest proved that if the UN adopted a pro-cat policy there would be world peace. Cats are apparently a universal language.
— Lacey N. Dunham (@bookbent) August 31, 2012
— davidbatcher (@davidbatcher) August 31, 2012
Internet Cat Video Film Festival attracted thousands, a photo slideshow from the Boston Globe
At Cat Video Film Festival, Stars Purr for Close-Ups on the New York Times
Why a Fancy Art Museum Is Curating a Collection of Cat Videos on The Atlantic
Photo: Minn. cat video fest a purr-fect viewing from AP Press
Internet Cat Video Festival draws 10,000 (!) to Walker Art Center from Pioneer Press
Full Photo Set by Joshua Feist
That will do it for now.
I realize I probably haven’t scratched the surface of photos and videos, so if you have any you’d like to share, please leave a comment below.