Silverdocs as we know it is dead, killed by what I am able to translate from a bunch of corporatespeak as insufficient funding. Henceforth, the festival shall be known as "AFI Docs presented by Audi". Since it's launch in 2003, Discovery had been the Silverdocs' biggest backer, but "shifts in Discovery’s corporate focus" have led to money from that source drying up. Of course, if Silverdocs was about documenting freak shows, they'd still be all over that. Maybe we can blame Oprah.
The organizers are somehow making the festival "more ambitious" by making it two days shorter and showing fewer documentaries. Rather than hosting the entire festival at the AFI Silver (still by far the best theater in the metro area) screenings and other events will now also be held in various venues in the District.
There will still be plenty of events at the Silver, but local businesses will take a bit of a hit from the shortened schedule. Plus, it was our festival before - now we have to share.