Friday, June 25, 2021

Oxford Film Festival Expected to Draw Largest Crowd Yet

Executive Director, Melanie Addington, prepares for the opening day of Oxford Film Festival. Photo by Ashley Thusius

The 14th annual Oxford Film Festival is now underway and the festival’s executive director, Melanie Addington, says attendance is expected to be at an all time high this year.
​“We’ve already sold over 300 extra tickets more than last year, and we’re still a couple days out from the main event, so we are expecting larger attendance than ever before,” Addington said.
​The festival drew its largest crowd in 2015, when actor James Franco attended. Coincidentally, regional Google searches for the event also peaked that year, particularly in the Memphis and Jackson metropolitan areas.

Emily Johnston has attended the festival for the last three years and said she enjoys the broad variety of genres.
​“They have so many different types of things showed that there is something for everyone. I’ve always been a movie buff, so it’s right up my alley,” Johnston said.
​There will be 151 films shown this year at Malco Commons and the Powerhouse in categories like Animated Short, Music Documentaries and New Media, including Virtual Reality.
​The organization initially receives as many as 1000 submissions, and a panel makes the final decisions of which films are shown. They also curate some films for the event like the Oscar-nominated, “I Am Not Your Negro.”
​Along with the short and feature-length films, attendees may also enjoy panel discussions and workshops.
​The festival draws people of all ages, Addington said.
​“Everyone comes. We have films for different people. There are college students, retirees; we have diversity of people,” Addington said.
Story contributed by Ashley Thusius, althusiu@go.olemiss.edu.

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