20th Annual Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival October 20 & 21, Austin, TX

Cinema Touching Disability Screenings

In 2023, we are focusing exclusively on short films. We'll screen both winners and selected shorts from our international Short Film Competition, plus locally made shorts celebrating the lives and achievements of Austinites with disabilities—check them out below!

Please note that some of our films include adult topics, parental discretion is advised.

Special screenings & 2023 Short Film Competition selected shorts

Gold text 03 on a blue background, over an icon of a snow-capped black mountain. The words Team Everest appear in white text at the bottom of the mountain.


Dir. Andy Cockrum, USA

The Team Everest 03 expedition is also celebrating its 20 year anniversary, and we kick off this year's Fest with return to Team Everest in this 20 minute short documentary!

Screening Friday night, with welcome by TE03 Advisory Board Member Mayor Kirk Watson!

In front of a brown brick wall, a bearded man in a blue collared shirt and cowboy hat smiles in amusement at something off camera.
A woman with black glasses, leaning into a headrest smiles at the camera.

Video tributes to Gene Rodgers & Susie Angel

In 2022 and 2023, CTD and the Austin disability community lost two of our brightest stars: Gene Rodgers and Gloria "Susie" Angel. The impact and legacy of these two remain with us today, in large and small ways. Austin filmmaker, self-advocate, and a friend to both, Dave Dauber, presents two tributes that illustrate a few.

Gene's tribute screen Friday night, Susie's tribute screens Saturday night.

In profile, an older man stands shirtless in a green lake, smiling with joy, eyes closed. Green text “Doc West Moves, a film by Federico Muchnik” appears at the top of the photo, followed by “Official Selection, The Roxbury International Film Festival 2023” in black text, and then “Sunday, June 25th @ 11:30 A, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston” in white text.


Dir. Federico Muchnik, USA

Cambridge, MA resident Lewis "Doc" West is moving out of his apartment and into a new place across town. He's blind, Black, and a blues musician. He lives with the power of Jesus, with faith that the Lord will provide and see him through life's challenges.

Screening Friday night, with performance of Doc West song by Austin musician Devin Gutierrez!

Green, beige, and black illustration of a bearded man with black glasses and ball cap, gazing into the distance. The outline of buildings from Austin’s skyline are in the back ground and racing flags and a trio of bats decorate the foreground. The text “Deaf Capo” appears on green and black blocks at the bottom of the image.


Dir. Aaron Rochlen, USA

Deaf Capo shares the inspiring story of Leo Bopp, a Capo (leader) for the most passionate fans in the supporters section of Austin FC games, a professional soccer club in Austin, Texas.

Screening Friday night, with star Leo Bopp in attendance!

On a beige background, a black and white of two women, sitting with arms around each other, one looking into the distance, the other with eyes closed, both with a concerned expression. In red text appear the words, Bri Scalese, Estefania Giraldo, As You Are. In black, a film by Daisy Friedman and film credits in very small text.


Dir. Daisy Friedman, USA

When an interabled queer couple spends the night together for the first time, they must confront their complex relationships with desire, sexuality, bodily autonomy, and what it means truly to love another person.

Screening Saturday night.

Film title with film festival laurels in white against a teal banner running across the top of the image. Below, a hand drops a white slip of paper into a ballot box, under which appears the text, “Changing the DNA of human embryos forever, where possibility defies the law. An unmissable debate on our future.” Sponsor logos run on a white banner at the bottom of the image.


Dir. Mark Downes & Anna Middleton, United Kingdom

This film seeks to explore complex themes by documenting the UK Citizens' Jury on Genome Editing, a week-long gathering of 21 people with personal experience of genetic disease to learn, discuss, and ultimately craft policy recommendations.

Screening Saturday night.

On a beige background, the handwritten word “Intro” appears, with the “o” drawn as an eye with a line through it. Film credits in a light font run down the middle of the image and end in a drawing of a city street with buildings, cars, and figures walking around.


Dir. Anne Isensee, Germany

Enervated by the visual clutter and bumbling incompetence of this animated film, the narrator of the audio description falls out of her role and retreats into the inner world of her head. There, she rummages acoustically in forgotten memories and repressed feelings and tries out various ways to let the audience participate in her inner life.

Screening Saturday night.

Illustrated silhouette of a woman wearing a large gold medal. The inside of her form is colors with watercolored pinks, purples, and blue, against a darker blue background.


Dir. Nico Meissner, Australia

Katie Kelly was declared legally blind in January 2015. 18 months later, at the age of 40, she made her Paralympics debut in Rio de Janeiro, winning Australia’s first gold medal in the sport of Para-triathlon. Last Seen: Katie Kelly is an animated short documentary that traces Katie’s remarkable journey in Tracie Eaton’s painting of Merewether Baths, Katie’s most cherished visual memory.

Screening Saturday night.

Black and white high contrast photo of a woman with a side ponytail and glasses smirking at the camera. In the background are icons of atoms on a green grid receding into the distance, with text above in bold white and hot pink: The Rad Scientist.


Dir. Paul Sprangers, USA

It's New Year's Eve, 1987, and a quantum research scientist has finally gotten her secret portal mechanism to work... with a few rad quirks.

Screening Saturday night.

Tickets available now for the 20th annual Cinema Touching Disability Film Fest! Join us Friday and Saturday, October 20 - 21, 2023, at the Rollins Theater at the Long Center in Austin, Texas.

About tickets: Cinema Touching Disability is open to the public. A $10 ticket will reserve your spot in the theater, and the price of the ticket will be reimbursed in cash at the door! Incidental costs like parking, snacks, and drinks are not included in the ticket. If tickets sell out, we will have a wait list online and at the door.

About access: the Rollins Theater will have open seating, with unattached chairs on a level floor, and some tables for those who need a surface. All films will be screened with open captions, and ASL interpretation will be provided for all spoken portions of the Festival. Audio description devices will be available. For additional access requests, please contact the Festival at filmfest@txdisabilities.org any time, or the Long Center when you purchase your tickets.


Thank you to our 2023 CTDFF Sponsors!

Amerigroup, an Anthem Company
Superior Healthplan
CDS in Texas
Molina Healthcare
Hart Intercivic
Acara, because we care
In Home Attendant Services
Touch of CLASS
Santos Alliances
State House with Frank Santos

Ted Bose


Upstream Technology  *  HillCo Partners  *  Michael Portman

Texas Medical Association  *  Friends of Ted Bose

American Construction Investigations  *  Amgen

JWH Communications  *  Lynda Frost & Dennis Borel

Sanofi  *  Shield Healthcare  *  Texas Hospital Association

Tom Suehs  *  Treaty Oak Strategies

Joe Bill & DeDe Watkins  *  Matz & Company LLC

Texas Film Commission  *  Arnold Public Affairs  *  Girling Personal Care

Gregg Knaupe  *  Joel B. Eisen & Karen E. Barnes Charitable Fund

Shea Family Charitable Trust

Christa Stevens  *  George Ledbetter  *  Austin Film Festival

Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival & Short Film Competition
1716 San Antonio St.,  | Austin, Texas  78701
512-478-3366 | info@txdisabilities.org

Cinema Touching Disability is a project of the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with Federal Tax ID #74-2071160.

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