Founder / Artistic and Executive Director Leslie - Ann Coles conceived the Female Eye Film Festival in 2001 having observed that women directors were a minority among filmmakers at the international film festivals she attended with her debut film, "In The Refrigerator."
2001: The Female Eye Film Festival (FeFF) was established and incorporated as a provincial not-for-profit organization in Toronto, Canada.
2002: The Female Eye presented 42 films in its inaugural year; 70% of the participants were local Toronto directors.
2003: FeFF launched the Script Development Program and opened it to both women and men. A mandate to select screenplays that feature a female protagonist was adopted.
2004: FeFF produced its first December 6 Program, In Memory of the Montreal Massacre, featuring films that pertain to global issues of violence against women. FeFF presented its seventh December 6 Program in 2014. Proceeds have been donated to shelters for women escaping domestic violence.
March 2004: Coles traveled to the United Nations Headquarters in New York City on International Women's Day to present films addressing the AIDS pandemic and its impact on women and girls.
2005: FeFF became a competitive festival presenting awards for Best Films and Best Screenplays at the Closing Awards Ceremony.
2006: FeFF produced its first Young Filmmaker Development Workshop. In this workshop, the Female Eye and alumni directors mentor female youth on the production of their debut films. Since the inaugural workshop the Female Eye has produced 46 short films involving 26 Aboriginal girls.
2007: FeFF held the inaugural FeFF Photo Exhibition and Experimental Film Program.
2009: Jules Koostachin and Coles spearheaded another FeFF signature series, The Aboriginal Filmmaker Program with Jules as the Head Program Officer.
2014: Coles was selected to be an Official Juror and Guest Film Curator at the 11th KIN International Women's Film Festival in Yerevan, Armenia. She will return to Yerevan in fall 2017 with another program culled from the FeFF.
May 2015: Coles presented a Canadian Program at the 18th Annual Flying Broom International Women's Film Festival in Ankara, Turkey. FeFF continue to expand its outreach, and in 2015 curated a documentary program for Doctober, a month long festival (Bellingham, Washington), and curated a Canadian Shorts Program for the Los Angeles Int. Women's Film Festival. In recognition of Women's History Month the FeFF recently created a program for The Waterloo Art Gallery, and will facilitate a screening in Sudbury for Pride.