Columbus’ first high-profile film festival begins Friday

Columbus’ first high-profile film festival begins Friday

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The Way Down Film Festival – Columbus' first high-profile, short film festival – will come to the Fountain City from Friday, Oct. 21 – 22.

More than 100 short films from all over the world were submitted, and 47 were chosen to be featured as a celebration of the most innovative voices in narrative, documentary, and experimental categories from all over the world.

Curated into six different blocks, each screening will run 70-90 minutes and consist of varying short films.

Viewed on a state-of-the-art projector and sound system, film screenings will take place on The Main Stage of the Springer Opera House.

Following each screening, filmmakers will conduct Q&As with the audience to further explore what equipment they use, the techniques they employ, and the inspiration behind their art.

An after-party networking event is planned for Friday evening at Meritage, and attendees are invited to reconvene Saturday morning at 9 a.m. in The Springer's Saloon for "Filmmaker Coffee Hour," a panel conducted by guest judges, sponsored by Iron Bank Coffee Co.

Select filmmakers and celebrity/industry judges will lend their expertise to decide which filmmakers will take top honors, including $2,500, at the Closing Night Awards Ceremony Gala on Saturday from 8-10 p.m. at The Loft.

According to co-founder Stacy Cunningham, the Way Down Film Festival was created to support the underground arts.

"We wanted to enhance awareness through exciting short films that shed light on the periphery, express triumph over tragedy, and allow audiences to walk away with more courage and perspective, feeling inspired and connected," Cunningham said.

Co-founder Cora King added that the festival will provide talented filmmakers a platform to showcase their creative efforts and deliver networking opportunities to obtain jobs and launch projects.

"Over time, we foresee Columbus as a film community hub, by offering an audience the opportunity to experience stories that otherwise would not be accessible, and to help cultivate the film industry here through relationships," King said.

The Way Down Film Festival exists to empower and connect the artists, audience, and community with encouraging film projects, said co-founder Jacy Jenkins.

"We see the impact and vitality of this event serving as a tool for filmmakers, and the film industry, which is almost $7 billion in our state, to infiltrate our community," Jenkins said.

For more information, visit their official website at this link.

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