Father The Flame Premieres At Chicago International Film Festival

Father the Flame premiere information

Chad Terpstra held a special screening of his pipesmoking documentary Father the Flame at the 2017 Chicagoland Pipe Show. It was a great event and simply a pleasure to see all of Chad's and his production company Mirror Darkly's hard work come to fruition. But since then, many of you have wondered what's going on with this project? When will it be released? We're very excited to hear that Father the Flame will premiere at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival, October 10-21, 2018.

For more information, here's a quote from Mirror Darkly's recent press release:

Chicago, IL - Mirror Darkly today announces the world premiere of FATHER THE FLAME​, a documentary about the legacy of the tobacco pipe, at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival (October 10-21, 2018). Chad Terpstra, a Michigan-based cinematographer, makes his feature directorial debut with this cinematic exploration of the tobacco pipe, long a symbol of contentment, through the window of its sacred origins and meticulous craftsmanship. FATHER THE FLAME ​screens Friday, October 12 at 6:30p and Sunday, October 14 at 11:30a at the Festival's primary venue, AMC River North (322 E. Illinois St.).

FATHER THE FLAME​ follows Lee Erck, a world-renowned pipe maker from far Northern Michigan, as he travels the globe to explore the nearly forgotten art of tobacco pipe making. Along the way is a charming cast of characters, including the "royal family of Danish pipemakers" and the patriarch who helped shape the industry; the Italian briar root cutter known as the world's greatest source for the raw material used to make handcrafted pipes; and a fourth-generation Native American pipe maker who carries on his ancestors' sacred traditions. Ultimately the story of a slower pace of life, a luxury in our sped-up world, FATHER THE FLAME​ is a contemplative, hypnotic film that immerses the viewer in the cultural and spiritual significance of the tobacco pipe and what it can teach a modern generation about legacy and the things we leave behind.

Want to know more about the film? Check out the latest trailer for the documentary above. You can also check out the Chicago Film Festival's site for more details on the screenings.

Did anyone see the featurette at the Chicago show last year? Feel free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below.

Category:   Events
Tagged in:   Father the Flame Film Pipe Culture Video


    • Richard C on October 9, 2018
    • Looking forward to seeing this!

    • Stan R on October 9, 2018
    • Will this film eventually go to DVD?

    • Ted S. on October 9, 2018
    • Stan R, the film makers are working really hard to make that happen. Film festivals like the Chicago International Film Festival provide an opportunity to expose work to potential distributors.

    • Casca on November 5, 2018
    • I just stumbled on this. It looks wonderful. I'm surprised it's not already available for purchase, either as a DVD or download. I can't image how else any revenue will be had to offset the cost of production. Is this something Smokingpipes is looking into? If not, can we as customers help in any way?

    • Steven Brule on December 19, 2018
    • Why even bother making the film if nobody can see it?

    • Hawky454 on January 11, 2019
    • Is this streaming on any popular (or not so popular) platform yet? I’ve been dying to see this for years now.

    • Hawky454 on January 11, 2019
    • Is this released on any popular (or not so popular) platform yet? I’ve been dying to see this for years now... literally dying!

    • Cassie D on January 14, 2019
    • Casca, Steven Brule, and Hawky 454, it is still in the works to get this film distributed. The film makers are getting close to a distribution deal and we are in touch with them regularly for any updates. Stay tuned, we are hoping to have more information soon!

    • Casca on January 14, 2019
    • Thanks for the update. Wishing you the best of luck.

    • Al janabi on March 15, 2019
    • Any updates on the film release date(dvd/download/streaming)?
      Kindest regards
      Al janabi

    • Aljanabi on March 15, 2019
    • Any updates on release date (dvd/download/streaming)

    • Cassie D on March 15, 2019
    • Aljanabi, no updates just yet. From what we know, the filmmakers are still in talks with a couple of distributors to get this film released. When there are plans and/or a release date we will be sure to update everyone!

    • David John Miller on March 19, 2019
    • Cassie D, thanks for the update! I really appreciate all that you are doing and I am so stoked to see the film in its entirety! Hats off to everyone involved for taking a chance on making a documentary on this very niche hobby of ours. It’s my hope that your film will influence more and more people to take up the pipe so we can keep this much underrated pleasure of ours alive.

      Again, I can’t thank you all enough!


    • Cassie D on March 25, 2019
    • Hi everyone! Great news, the filmmakers have partnered with a distribution company and have a release date of June 4, 2019. It looks like there will be some opportunities to pre-order at some point, we will keep you updated on that. Father the Flame also has a facebook page where you can find the latest information regarding the film. Very exciting news!

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