SGFF Announces 2020 Festival Awards

March 16, 2020

VALDOSTA, GA – Concluding the 2020 South Georgia Film Festival, several local and regional films were rewarded with trophies and recognition. The film Speed of Life, directed by Liz Manshil, won Best of Fest, while Danielle Beverly’s documentary Dusty Groove captured best Feature Film. Festival attendees chose the inaugural Best Poster award for Life Binder, produced by Valdosta State University alum Terrel Sandefur.

Director Douglas Cullen was on-hand to receive the Best Short Film award for his film Portrait of a Woman at Dawn, which was also recognized for Best Production Design. Florida State University students Skylar Theis and William O’Neal won Best College Film for King, Charles. California native Nick Sherman won Best High School film for Earth Defence Force.

Each of the category winners above received a trophy created by Harmons’ Awards in Valdosta. Those present also received a prize package from streaming service MUBI and a blu-ray of the film Matewan, featuring VSU professor Jason Brown’s film Them That Work, donated by Criterion Collection.

The festival judges also wanted recognize other films in the festival including, Imani’s Skin for Best Animation, made by Florida State student Jessica Kirby; Best Featurette to A Rodeo Film by Ryan Binse of the American Film Institute; Best Visual Effects to Journey by Radheya Jegatheva from Australia.

Along with the direct support for this year’s winners, the South Georgia Film Festival includes sponsorships from Georgia Power, Georgia Beer Company, the Georgia Council for the Arts, Valdosta State University, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority, Wild Adventures, the Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta Main Street, the Valdosta Daily Times, Ashley Street Station, the City of Valdosta, the Williams Hotel Group, MUBI, and the Criterion Channel.

Promoting entrepreneurship through filmmaking, the festival continues to promote the regional film industry with panelists discussing both the craft and industrial impact of film for local businesses.

The 2021 South Georgia Film Festival will be held March 5, 6, and 7 and will begin accepting submissions soon. Both high school and college submissions are free until July 1, 2020.

For more information on the South Georgia Film Festival, visit SouthGeorgiaFilm.com or contact Prof. Jason Brown at 229-219-1298 or jasonebrown@valdosta.edu.

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SGFF Gives Preview of Black Barbie documentary

March 3, 2020

VALDOSTA, GA – The South Georgia Film Festival presents a special work-in-progress screening of the definitive history of black dolls, Black Barbie, celebrating the 40th anniversary of the dolls introduction in 1980. Filmmaker Lagueria Davis’ film about her aunt Beluah Mae Mitchell, who helped introduce the first black version of Mattel’s Barbie, explores the struggle for representation.

“It took a Black woman in the design and leadership position to get a Black Barbie,” Davis said. “That very first doll really is validation that my aunt and Kitty Black Perkins were seen and heard.”

Along with the support of the Valdosta State University African-American Studies Department, this screening of Black Barbie is part of the project’s development process. Having participated in several prestigious work-in-progress retreats and labs over the last year to fully fund the documentary, Davis is continue to rework the project looking for feedback and conversation on the topic.

“Unlike Hollywood blockbusters, independent films need community support,” said Jason Brown, South Georgia Film Festival director. “They need feedback to tell the best story and funding to make the best film.”

Davis has found success with Black Barbie as she continues to grow in her career. Graduaing from the University of Oklahoma, Davis feature screenplay Maid of Honor was a Quarter-Finalist for the highly acclaimed Nicholls Fellowship. After Black Barbie allowed Davis to be chosen as a BAVC Mediamaker fellow, a 2019 Logan Nonfiction Fellow, and to be a finalist for the Screencraft Film Fund, she was hired to write for an upcoming network television program.

Moderated by Alicia Pryor, of the Valdosta State University Mass Media program, the work-in-progress screening will include portions of the film, along with time for feedback from those in attendance. Davis, currently working as a writer on an upcoming cable television program, plans to be Skyping into the presention.

Along with the support of the African-American studies department, the South Georgia Film Festival includes sponsorships from Georgia Power, Georgia Beer Company, the Georgia Council for the Arts, Valdosta State University, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority, Wild Adventures, the Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta Main Street, the Valdosta Daily Times, Ashley Street Station, the City of Valdosta, the Williams Hotel Group, MUBI, and the Criterion Channel.

Festival screenings will take place at the VSU Student Union Theater at the corner of Baytree and North Oak Street. Over the three days, visitors can park at both the Oak Street Parking Deck and the University Center parking lot. With numerous panels and screenings, attendees will find plenty to do.

Promoting entrepreneurship through filmmaking, the festival continues to promote the regional film industry with panelists discussing both the craft and industrial impact of film for local businesses. This year’s festival has also includes panelists Richard Baxter to discuss Columbus, GA new tax incentives for film, Brent Simond of Illinois State University to discuss crowdfunding his documentary on country music, the Georgia Production Partnership’s South Regional meeting, and much more.

Passes to this year’s festival are currently available. The All Access VIP pass, which includes a t-shirt and access to the VIP areas costs $100. The Festival Pass which offers access to all screenings, panels and daily events are $40. Day Passes are $15 for all screenings and panels. Both High School and College students can get a free Day Pass with their school id to all screenings and panels.

For more information on the South Georgia Film Festival, visit SouthGeorgiaFilm.com or contact Prof. Jason Brown at 229-219-1298 or jasonebrown@valdosta.edu.

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South Georgia Film Festival Reveals 2020 Poster

February 12, 2020

VALDOSTA, GA – As the 2020 South Georgia Film Festival approaches, look for the event’s new design to pop-up across Valdosta. Logan Lott, a Junior Valdosta State University Art major, submitted the winning design in the festival’s inaugural poster competition. Lott won a VIP pass to this year’s festival along with $100 cash.

“Logan created a really fun design, with the film reel around the peach, which we are excited to see around Valdosta,” said Jason Brown, Festival Director and Associate Professor of Mass Media at VSU. Billboards for the fourth annual event will begin being seen across the Fairway digital billboards in Valdosta Valentine’s Day weekend.

The film festival kicks off March 6 at Georgia Beer Company where you’ll find the logo in an unexpected place – on the label. The local brewery is partnering again with the festival for its exciting opening night event, which will feature a special brew made only for the film festival. Along with the new logo, the beer named The McGuffin, after the Alfred Hitchcock device, will be given to each passholder as they walk through the door.

This past Monday, the completed poster was revealed at the Lake Park Historical Society’s winter meeting where Brown discussed the growing value of independent film production across our area. Lowndes County has benefited from various productions over the years, from “Zombieland” at Wild Adventures, to “Gator” at Banks Lake, to “Like a Crow on a Junebug” in Lake Park.

Festival screenings will take place at the VSU Student Union Theater at the corner of Baytree and North Oak Street. The festival added the use of the Odum Library auditorium this year, located beside the Student Union. Over the three days, visitors can park at both the Oak Street Parking Deck and the University Center parking lot. With numerous panels and screenings across both locations, attendees will find plenty to do.

This year’s festival continues to connect with partners in the Valdosta community, including Valdosta State University, Georgia Power, Georgia Beer Company, Georgia Council for the Arts, Wild Adventures, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority, the Turner Center for the Arts,  Valdosta Main Street, the Valdosta Daily Times, the City of Valdosta, MUBI and the Criterion Channel.

Promoting entrepreneurship through filmmaking, the festival continues to promote the regional film industry with panelists discussing both the craft and industrial impact of film for local businesses. This year’s festival has also includes panelists Richard Baxter to discuss Columbus, GA new tax incentives for film, Brent Simond of Illinois State University to discuss crowdfunding his documentary on country music, and many more.

Passes to this year’s festival are currently available. The All Access VIP pass, which includes a t-shirt and access to the VIP areas costs $100. The Festival Pass which offers access to all screenings, panels and daily events are $40. Day Passes are $15 for all screenings and panels. Both High School and College students can get a free Day Pass with their school id to all screenings and panels.

For more information on the South Georgia Film Festival, visit SouthGeorgiaFilm.com or contact Prof. Jason Brown at 229-219-1298 or jasonebrown@valdosta.edu.

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