5 Regional American Film Festivals Worth Travelling For
You may be familiar with Sundance, Toronto, and Cannes, but there are many smaller film festivals throughout the year showcasing great work that don't require media credentials to get into. If you're a movie buff, consider checking out one of these regional events to see some of the stupendous filmmaking being done in America and all over the world. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.
5 Notable American Film Festivals
|Oxford Film Festival||Oxford, MS|
|Art of Brooklyn Film Festival||Brooklyn, NY|
|New Hampshire Film Festival||Portsmouth, NH|
|Hill Country Film Festival||Fredericksburg, TX|
|Florida Film Festival||Maitland, FL|
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The Oxford Film Festival's 2019 Award Ceremony
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As of 2018
|Rank||Country||Box Office Revenue (billion US$)|
Hollywood may be heavily associated with movies, but not all filmmakers work in LA. There are talented creative people making films all over the United States, from Mississippi to Florida. Here, in no particular order, are five regional festivals that showcase great cinema.
First up, at #1, we have the Oxford Film Festival, which celebrates the art of independent cinema and works to encourage filmmaking in Mississippi. Its year round programming provides the community with screenings, workshops, and educational programs, culminating in the annual five day festival. The main event, founded in 2003, exhibits over two hundred films from around the world, including short and feature-length selections. There are also panel discussions on issues in contemporary filmmaking and a number of social events where filmmakers can interact with the audience.
Categories include slots for features, shorts, documentaries, animated works, music videos, and more. There are also awards for films that are based in Mississippi and those that have LGBTQ representation. The festival creates a community film each year, encouraging locals, both professional and amateur, to pitch in and help make an original comedy short. It also collaborates with Yoknapatawpha Arts Council to run OxFilm Society, which gives filmmakers in the area the tools and support they need to create their art.
There are also awards for films that are based in Mississippi and those that have LGBTQ representation.
In the #2 spot is The Art of Brooklyn Film Festival, which brings the borough's media makers together with their peers across the country and around the world. Entries are shown to audiences at multiple locations throughout Brooklyn and a panel of industry professionals, including directors, writers, and producers, selects winners in each category. Alongside screenings, the event features talkbacks, as well as programs that help creators network and hone their craft.
The organization also produces Brooklyn On Demand, a streaming platform dedicated to Brooklyn-centric indie film. The shorts, features, and series cover a wide range of genres, but they all have a connection to the area.
Next up, at #3, we have the New Hampshire Film Festival. The event takes place in the fall and highlights both the artists it showcases and the town where it's held. With screenings, parties, and ceremonies spread throughout different venues, audiences get to explore the coastal community of Portsmouth as they take in thought-provoking independent films.
The event takes place in the fall and highlights both the artists it showcases and the town where it's held.
A weekend-long workshop for teens offers young filmmakers a chance to not only learn more about the craft but to see their work on the big screen. Enthusiasts and professionals of all ages can also learn about what goes on behind the scenes at Q&A sessions, panels, and workshops.
For #4, we find the Hill Country Film Festival. Held annually in Fredericksburg, Texas since 2010, the event showcases independent films both short and feature length and hosts a variety of social events for attendants. Narrative movies and documentaries are screened and considered for several awards.
The Hill Country Film Society, which runs the festival, has a number of other programs. Their summer camp gives teenagers guidance, experience, and a chance to get creative. Film Affare, an annual fundraiser, features local cuisine and wine, as well as screenings and in-depth Q&A sessions. The society also partners with Gem of the Hills Activity Center to offer free, year round indie movies to audiences in the area.
The Hill Country Film Society, which runs the festival, has a number of other programs.
Finally, at #5, is the Florida Film Festival. Produced by Enzian, a nonprofit dedicated to alternative cinema, the festival has been taking place annually since 1992. Lasting more than a week, the event showcases dozens of current, independent, and international films. When they're not at screenings, attendants can mingle with the professionals at the Eden Bar, a restaurant attached to the theater.
Because the event is Oscar accredited, winners in the live action, documentary, and animated short categories automatically qualify to enter the following year's Academy Awards. Enzian also hosts several other festivals, celebrating filmmakers of different ages and origins.