By Robert Fulton

Special to The Washington Examiner

D.C. Shorts Film Festival, through Sept. 16

To compile the 140 films that make up this year's D.C. Shorts Film Festival & Screenplay Competition, festival director Jon Gann said he received 860 films and 145 scripts submission. He added those numbers were slightly down from last year, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

"As we became more of a magnet and our expectations became known, we've gotten higher caliber films," Gann said.

Now in it's ninth year, D.C. Shorts takes place at multiple area venues through Sept. 16. Highlights this year include Film & Chef Pairings and the Online Festival.

For the Film & Chef Pairings, Gann recruited local chefs to create dishes that reflected specific films. For example, since the film "Liberty Road" takes place in a crab shack, Peter Smith of PS7 has created a special crab cake; and Chef Mark Timms has created a honey bread inspired by the beekeeper film "The Capital Buzz."

"I thought it was a no brainer to put it together," Gann said. "It's been an interesting experiment."

The Online Festival grants ticket holders access to more than 100 films online. With so many films, it became nearly impossible for a film buff to enjoy everything the opening weekend; and the larger online presence helps market the festival around the globe. On the other hand, Gann isn't sure if the convenience of viewing online will keep folks home.

"It's a grand experiment," he said.

While D.C. Shorts doesn't curate a single focus, Gann said that loss and yearning has been a common thread in this year's submissions, and that many films deal with lost crafts.

"There's always a zeitgeist," Gann said. "There's always naturally occurring themes."

When: Daily through Sept. 16

Info: Tickets are $12 online, plus a $1.50 surcharge; or $15 at the box office, plus a $1.50 surcharge (showcases are approximately 90 minutes). Festival passes are $125, and party tickets are $25. For more information, visit

Boyz II Men at the Howard Theatre Friday

Easy jokes can be made about how these fellas are a long ways away from being Boyz, but it still should be a great show.

When: 8 p.m. Friday

Info: $59.50 in advance, $64 at the door;

Jammin' with the Jazz Greats of New Orleans at Bayou Bakery Saturday

Bayou Bakery has always offered a taste of New Orleans. On Saturday, enjoy the sounds of the Big Easy at the Arlington establishment. The event is a fundraiser for Roots of Music.

When: From 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday

Info: $60 and $75 options;

BroBible PosCollege Confusion Tour at Sixth & I Saturday

D.C. and NYC area comics bring the funny to Sixth & I for one night of laughter.

When: 8 p.m. Saturday

Info: $15 in advance, $18 at the door;

Rush at Jiffy Lube Live Sunday

Canadian prog rockers Rush best known for the hit "Tom Sawyer," among others, visit Jiffy Lube Live.

When: 7:30 p.m. Sunday

Info: $32 to $132;