Oscar nominated film, 20+ Presenters Highlight 6th Annual South Georgia Film Festival

With over 20 invited presenters and numerous attending filmmakers, the 6th Annual South Georgia Film festival is highlighted by an outdoor screening of the film CODA, recently nominated for the Best Picture Oscar, and the South Georgia Premiere of AMERICAN SIEGE, starring Bruce Willis and produced in Fitzgerald, GA.

“We’re showcasing the art and industry of filmmaking for our community,” said Festival Director Jason Brown, “But we’re also bringing tons of people to South Georgia to discover what our community has to offer to them.”

This year’s presenters and judges make up some of the most interesting and inspiring filmmakers to come to Valdosta in some time. With 23 invited presenters and judges along with an anticipated 32 screening filmmakers coming to town, the SGFF sees itself as the largest local event for film in the area to showcase what is possible for the industry in our community.

Producer Alexander Kane and Director Edward Drake will be screening AMERICAN SIEGE Saturday March 5 in the Valdosta State University Student Union Theater. The film was produced in Kane’s home of Fitzgerald, GA. Willis made several films in Fitzgerald and Siege is the most recent, having been released nationally in January of 2022. This will be the first public screening of the film in South Georgia.

Actress Emilia Jones and Eugenio Derbez from the Oscar nominated CODA, screening March 5 on the College of the Arts Lawn as part of the 6th Annual South Georgia Film Festival

Also, with the cooperation of Apple and Apple TV, the film CODA will be screened on the College of the Arts lawn on Saturday March 5. CODA, recently nominated for Best Picture at the 2022 Academy Awards, focuses on a deaf family whose hearing daughter wants to leave to become a singer. While the film won awards at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival, it has had limited distribution until being release on Apple TV this past fall. In cooperation with VSU’s ASL/English interpreting program, the SGGF is excited to present this film for the first time in Valdosta. Throughout the festival, ASL Interpreters are available by request for the panels on each day. Requests should be made through the VSU Access Office by February 24th (VP: 229.375.5871). The screening is open to the public, but passholders will have preferred seating. Hot chocolate will be made available through Aramark.

The festival includes numerous other presentations throughout the weekend?

  • Recent recipient of a Southern Documentary Fund grant, Daresha Kyi will be presenting a work-in-progress panel about her upcoming project BLACK VOTERS MATTER. Kyi will be leaving directly from Valdosta for Austin, TX where she will be presenting her film MAMA BEARS at the South by Southwest Film Festival.
  • The 23-year-old Atlanta filmmaker Chatejah George will be speaking on her journey to establish C&C Studio Movie Film Studio. Honnie Korngold of South Georgia Studios & Film Academy will be talking with George in relation to their upcoming construction in Brooks County. The infrastructure necessary for filmmaking is key, but the perseverance of those building it is inspiring.
  • Valdosta State University Theater Alum Myles Grier will be present to discuss his journey as an actor and filmmaker. Moderated by VSU faculty Ian Anderson, Myles will be screening a film he directed during the festival while working with the VSU Theater program throughout the week.
  • Each year, the Valdosta State University Mass Media program hosts a panel recognizing some of our successful alums. This year’s VSU Mass Media Alumni panel includes Frank Amoroso of Marvel Studios, podcaster John Brown, Olivia Gregory of West Networks in Gainesville, FL, and Saige Ashe.
  • After many screenings, visiting filmmakers present for their screenings will be available for question and answer sessions. This year, a handful have also been asked to participate in a panel. Those filmmakers include Jon Matthews, director of ANG MOTEL; Nathan Bach, director of NO SMALL DREAMS; Doug Hawley, returning filmmaker and director of SWEETEST DAY; Ole Miss Professor Jonathan Clayton, director of OXFORD: A PLACE FOR ART; and Brinceton Baum and Maggie Rogers of MONSTER?.
     
  • Returning judges and presenters include 2021 Best Fest winner Geena Hernandez, filmmaker Thomas Grant from ABAC, VSU Alum Brantly Jackson, Columbia State professor of film David Smith, founders of Film Impact Georgia Melissa Simpson and Molly Coffee, and Chuck Thomas of the AFC Indie Filmmaking Podcast.

Unlike most of the films during the festival which will be available on our Eventive online platform, our presenters and special screenings are only available as live events.

“This year’s festival offers many ways for people to participate,” Brown said.

The majority of films are available on our online platform EVENTIVE, beginning March 1 and ending March 10. Watch any film block from your home for just $5. Attend any day’s films and panels for $15. Enjoy all the panels, films and after parties with our $40 pass. Step backstage to our green room and grab a festival shirt with our exclusive VIP Pass for $100. Check out our schedule and purchase the pass that works for you at http://sgff22.Eventive.org or http://SouthGeorgiaFilm.com/

The 2022 festival could not happen without the support of our community sponsors, including Valdosta State University, Georgia Power, South Georgia Studios and Film Academy, Valdosta-Lowndes County Tourism Authority, the City of Valdosta, the Georgia Film Office, Georgia Beer Company, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority, the Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta Main Street, Georgia Production Partnership, Fairway, and MUBI.

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

South Georgia Film Festival Announces 2021 Award Winners

MARCH 7, 2021
* UPDATE MARCH 14, 2021

VALDOSTA – After a unique year, the South Georgia Film Festival announces its 2021 Winners and extends the virtual window to watch them. Starting Monday, March 8, all of the 2021 winners can be viewed in a Winners Block on the Eventive platform for $5 through March 12. The festival now opens public voting for best poster.

This year’s winners include Best of Fest winner PINE MOUNTAIN OVERNIGHT from Director Geena Marie Hernandez is the adolescent story of camping, puberty, and Big Foot; Best Feature is BLEEDING AUDIO about the band The Matches’ struggle in the music business; Best High School goes to DAVID ISN’T HERE ANYMORE from Director Josh Ceranic about a haunted house and a determined realtor; Best College is WING IT from Jillian Lucia and Brendan Arena about an inspired Dragon; Best Short is ALICE from Laura Scrivano based on the Noel Coward poem; Best Family Friendly is HANGRY by Clint Till about hungry reverend in a retirement home; Best Animation is SOPHIE & JACOB from Max Shoham. This year, the judges also recognize one filmmaker as a Rising Filmmaker – JACOBE LOVE with his documentary A DANGEROUS SILENCE, about domestic violence in Columbus, GA.

Along with the other 106 films of the festival, this year’s winners will be available through Friday March 12 on the Eventive platform at SGFF21.Eventive.org.

The Festival has one more award to announce – Best Poster – which will be chosen by the public. After a week of public voting, the winner of the Best Poster award goes to DOLPHIN ISLAND.

This year’s festival could not happen without the support of our community sponsors, including Georgia Power, Valdosta State University, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority, Wild Adventures, the Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta Main Street, the Valdosta Daily Times, the City of Valdosta, Georgia Production Partnership, Fairway Outdoor, the Georgia Film Office, Georgia Beer Company, and MUBI.

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

Congratulations to all of this years winners
Best High School – DAVID ISN’T HERE ANYMORE
Best College – WING IT
Best Family Friendly- HANGRY
Best Short- ALICE
Best Animation- SOPHIE & JACOB
Best Feature- BLEEDING AUDIO
Rising Filmmaker- JACOBE LOVE
Best of Fest- PINE MOUNTAIN OVERNIGHT

Best Poster – DOLPHIN ISLAND

SGFF Celebrates #FilmFestivalDay, supports Second Harvest

In collaboration with thirty other film festivals across the country, the South Georgia Film Festival is celebrating #FilmFestivalDay on April 11 with a digital screening event and fundraiser for Second Harvest.

As a member of the Film Festival Alliance, the South Georgia Film Festival is participating in the streaming of the new film Phoenix, Oregon, April 11, along with a question and answer session with the filmmakers. The online event costs $6.50, with the proceeds being split between the filmmakers and whichever festival viewers chose to support.

“As people are home, we believe this is a way for us to reach our local audience and allow them to support our community in a fun way,” said Jason Brown, Festival Director of the South Georgia Film Festival.

The South Georgia Film Festival will be donating all of the proceeds received to Second Harvest to support those locally hardest hit by the COVID-19 closure. Unlike many festivals, the South Georgia Film Festival was one of the last festivals that was able to be held before widespread quarantining took hold. More than 175 film festivals have been hit with cancellations and postponements since COVID-19 began to spread across the country.

Wide-spread social distancing has encouraged many people to stay at home where they are streaming entertainment from such platforms as Netflix, Hulu, and many others. The South Georgia Film Festival has begun by sharing links to previous filmmakers’ work on their social media where audiences can support them directly. Participating with the Film Festival Alliance, this screening allows local viewers to discover a new film and contribute back to their local organizations.

Phoenix, Oregon is the story of two middle-aged friends, one a graphic novelist and the other a chef, who quit their jobs to restore an old bowling alley and serve the “world’s greatest pizza.” Starring James Le Gros (Living in Oblivion, Drugstore Cowboy), Lisa Edelstein (House, Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce), Jesse Borrego (Fame), Diedrich Bader (American Housewife, Beverly Hillbillies, Napoleon Dynamite) and Kevin Corrigan (The Departed, True Romance, Pineapple Express), the film had a planned film festival distribution plan.

“Film festivals and community cinemas are the backbone of the independent film industry. They introduce audiences to stories which nurture, nourish and encourage new perspectives,” said Annie Lundgren, producer of Phoenix, Oregon.

Along with the streaming of the film, viewers will be able to enjoy a Q&A session moderated by Melanie Addington of the Oxford Film Festival and later download the film.

Viewers are encouraged to visit the South Georgia Film Festival website to find the appropriate link to the screening link, where they will be asked which festival to support.
https://shop.jomafilms.com/products/phoenix-oregon-film-festival-day

The festival will soon be asking for submissions for the 2021 festival, which will be the fifth edition. Along with feature films, the festival is looking for shorts, documentaries, college, and high school films. Specifically, the festival is looking for both family friendly films and those produced regionally.

For more information, please contact the festival at southgeorgiafilm@valdosta.edu, use their social media @SouthGeorgiaFilm or call 229-219-1298.

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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