May Member Highlight: Bev Cooper

Bev Cooper (pictured center), Utah Film Center member, at a special screening of Meet the Patels.
Bev Cooper (pictured center), Utah Film Center member, at a special screening of Meet the Patels.
As you may have heard us mention in our program guide, newsletter, or last blog post, this May we are celebrating Utah Film Center membership. Our members are the foundation of our organization. Their ongoing annual support keeps our screenings free and brings film to more than 38,000 people statewide.

To show our appreciation to our biggest supporters we will continually highlight our members on this blog. Today we’ll start with Bev Cooper. Bev has been a Utah Film Center member for 7 years. We asked Bev to tell us why she became, and continues to be, a member. Here is what she had to say:

A few weeks ago I spent one of the few nights a week I have free watching a film called Toxic Hot Seat. I was invited to the special screening of James Redford’s (son of Robert Redford) latest film because I am a Utah Film Center member. I decided to watch the movie without knowing anything about it—I didn’t even take the time to read the film’s description. Toxic Hot Seat could not possibly be a happy, feel-good movie, and might even be depressing, I thought to myself. So, why would I decide to spend my evening at a movie I know nothing about? See, I knew the film would be good without having a clue about the content because it was a film offered by the Utah Film Center and I trust them to entertain and inform me.

Knowing my evening would be interesting I invited a friend to join me at the screening. I have to admit though, by the time we arrived at the screening venue I was exhausted from a long day, good dinner, and tasty wine, and I was concerned that I might fall asleep during the movie. Not this time—Toxic Hot Seat is literally hot. Eyes open wide, I learned about the virtually useless mandatory flame retardant chemicals in furniture that are killing people, from firefighters getting a rare form of cancer to our children breathing these toxic chemicals into their system. The chemicals I learned about in the film are worse than cigarettes! Astonished and horrified, I was glad I saw the film because not only did I learn about these chemicals, but I was also told what I could do to prevent these chemicals from harming me, or anyone I love.

Walking out of the movie, the friend I brought along with me phoned her daughter, a new mother. In to the phone my friend said, “Nicole, check all your furniture for flame retardant chemicals and get rid of it.” Because of just this one film we are making changes in our homes for the betterment of our lives.

I trust this explains why I love the Utah Film Center, why I donate to the organization, and why I attend the movies that they provide in this community FREE OF CHARGE. Without their screenings I would not be as knowledgeable as I am today.

I look forward to the next screening.
Bev Cooper

The films we show are entertaining, informative, and simply put, the best. Everyone is welcome to our weekly free screenings, but if you’d like to be invited to special screenings, private receptions with filmmakers, and would like to provide critical support for outreach programs that enrich the lives of children and adults throughout Utah, please become a member. If you join, or renew, this month you are eligible to receive a special gift—so don’t delay, join today!

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