What: The Found Footage Festival
When: Thursday, 8 p.m.
Where: Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St.
More info: foundfootagefest.com
When the Found Footage Festival came to the University of Colorado last April, co-curators Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett protected Boulder’s virgin eyes.
But Thursday night? Nah.
“We make a promise that you will see full frontal nudity at the Boulder Theater,” said Prueher.
The Found Footage Festival is a multimedia comedic event showcasing footage from videos gathered from garage sales, thrift stores, Dumpsters and warehouses around the country. The tour stops at the Boulder Theater on Thursday night and Denver on Friday and Saturday.
Prueher and Pickett are on the festival’s biggest tour-to-date promoting volume four of their unusual collection.
The two began collecting videotapes in 1991 after a teenage Prueher came across a humorous training video he found at work in the break room at a McDonald’s in Wisconsin.
“We’ve since found there’s this whole community of people who want to participate,” said Prueher. “People offer up their home movies. Our collection has grown immensely. It’s been fun to tap into people who appreciate the same types of things.”
Prueher said volume four offers a good mix of home movies, instructional videos and “the worst” Saturday morning cartoons from the ’80s and ’90s.
“It’s a pretty diverse collection,” said Prueher. “We’ve got a real doozy in this show coming from a death metal festival in 1985.”
Prueher said a highlight Coloradans can look forward to is “Andrew’s Grab Bag.”
Prueher and Pickett met Denver artist Andrew Novick through a mutual appreciation of discovering humor in strangers’ lives on VHS tape.
Novick, who collects eccentric items ranging from cereal dust (yes, the dust in the bottom of the a bag of cereal) to pictures of meat on a grill and more than 1,000 old VHS tapes (among a garage and storage unit full of other gems).
“Andrew saves everything,” said Prueher. “He’s just kind of a goofball and a really interesting guy. He lives in suburban Denver in this bright pink house, among tan houses, that is filled with a wall-to-wall Barbie collection and clown paintings.”
Novick’s collection of videos is what inspired “Andrew’s Grab Bag” in volume four.
“I try to find videos of a more personal nature, like ‘Bob’s 50th Birthday Party,'” said Novick. “The ones that people filmed themselves — that’s the Holy Grail of video collections. It’s a unique, one-of-a-kind thing. For some reason someone got rid of this personal object and now it’s in my hands.”
Aside from Prueher surprising Pickett with a collection of embarrassing clips at his wedding reception and Pickett looping a clip on a public access television station of Prueher singing a prepubescent version of DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince’s “Parents Just Don’t Understand” — neither of their faces appear in the montage.
“We can dish it out, but we can’t take it,” he said. “But we will give you a comedic guided tour through the collections we’ve found.”
Like Novick, he said the pair is just happy to showcase “weird stuff.”
“I collect the weird videos in hopes that I can show them to people,” said Novick, who will be at the Festival in Denver on Saturday. “So for me to see some of the videos that I’ve found shown to a whole theatre full of people knowing that they’re traveling all around the country showing these, I think it’s great.
“This stuff should not be lost to the Dumpsters, it should be retained in the archives.”
Prueher encourages people to bring their own home or found videos to the show.
“We’d love to include Boulder in the footage next time around,” he said.