Oxford Film Festival

Published on January 25th, 2021 | by TLV News


The 2021 Oxford Film Festival Announces Ambitious Hybrid Film Festival Presentation (March 24–28, April 1–30)

The 2021 Oxford Film Festival (March 24–28, April 1–30) has announced an ambitious approach to the 18th annual edition of the popular film festival which will take place in an open-air outdoor theater, drive-in, and include virtual presentations as well. The premiere-rich schedule projects to close to 30 world premieres, 5 US premieres, more than 60 Mississippi premieres, and 40 regional premieres.

Energized by the addition of newly upped Program Director Donna Kosloskie and new Narrative Features programmer Greta Hagen-Richardson, the Oxford Film Festival will follow the success of its virtual and pop-up drive-in innovations in 2020 by adding more films this year, nearly tripling its LGBTQIA+ features, expanding the music video category, and increasing the award monies for every one of the filmmaker competitions this year. 

On March 24–28, screenings will be held in a specially designed open air Malco Commons Outdoor Theater and Oxford Film Festival’s two drive-in locations. Throughout April, Virtual Cinema screenings will be offered via Eventive.

Oxford Film Festival’s Executive Director, Melanie Addington, said, “In a year of crisis, we were reminded that one thing remains constant: movies bring us together, bring out our shared humanity, help us navigate sorrow, joy, love, trauma, remind us to laugh, and keep us occupied while sheltering at home. The selection made by the programmers this year was one recognizing exactly that. While we reckon with a better tomorrow, for now we can at least gather safely outdoors or virtually and celebrate one positive unifier: movies. We can’t wait to share the first portion of our 18th annual film festival slate with you.”

Horton Foote: The Road to Home

Spotlight films previewed from the 2021 slate include Ann Rapp’s documentary Horton Foote: The Road To Home, which lays out the creative journey of the acclaimed Texas writer through his own eyes and voice at the end of his life. The screening will mark Rapp’s return to Oxford, after attending the very first Oxford Film Festival 17 years ago.

Olivia Peace’s wry coming-of-age comedy Tahara about two best friends learning surprising information about each other during the funeral service for their Hebrew school classmate, has won multiple awards on the film festival circuit thus far including Best Director at Women Texas Film Festival, Best Feature Debut at NYC’s NewFest, and a Special Mention at LA’s Outfest.

Get the Hell Out

Additional films previewed include; Chelsea Christer’s documentary Bleeding Audio about one of the 90s most popular, yet unsung bands, The Matches; Jonathan Wysocki’s entertaining comedy Dramarama, about a group of drama nerd friends who get together for one last party after graduation before they each go their separate ways; Megan Petersen and Hannah Black’s drama Drought, co-produced by indie stalwart Mark Duplass, about estranged sisters who come together to help their autistic brother chase down a storm he’s predicted, and I-Fan Wang’s Get The Hell Out, about a zombie outbreak in Taiwan’s parliament.

Surviving the Silence

Caren Zucker and John Donvan’s drama In A Different Key highlights the local Mississippi productions Oxford will feature this year. The film focuses on a mother’s efforts to track down an elderly man, who was the first person diagnosed with autism, hoping his life will hold some promise for her autistic son. The cast includes The Clarion-Ledger’s political columnist Sid Salter. Nathan Willis’ documentary Rap Squad looks at students helping to forge more promising lives via their participation in a high school hip hop class, who take their message for justice to their Delta community through their music. Cindy L. Abel’s inspiring documentary Surviving the Silence focuses on the story of Colonel Patsy Thompson, who presided over the board that dismissed Colonel Margarethe Cammermeyer for being a lesbian, while in truth and in secret, she too was a lesbian. Khadifa Wong’s endlessly entertaining documentary Uprooted – The Journey of Jazz Dance celebrates the history, lineage, and future progressions of jazz dance with “you would’ve never guessed it” stories and anecdotes by several dance legends. 

The full film lineup for the 18th edition of the Oxford Film Festival will be announced on February 16, 2021.

To buy passes or tickets or find more information, please go to: https://www.oxfordfilmfest.com/.

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About the Author

The Local Voice is a bimonthly entertainment guide and newspaper based in Oxford, Mississippi, covering and distributed in North Central Mississippi, including Oxford, Ole Miss, Taylor, Abbeville, Water Valley, Lafayette County, Yalobusha County, and parts of Panola County, Marshall County, and Tupelo . The Local Voice is distributed free to over 255 locations in North Mississippi and also available as a full color PDF download worldwide on the internet.

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