Insider’s Guide to The Macon Film Festival
The four-day Macon Film Festival was named one of Top 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. Screenings will be held at four venues located within three blocks in downtown Macon: The Douglass Theatre, Theatre Macon, Macon-Bibb Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Cox Capitol Theatre. Filmmaking workshops, networking events and legendary after-parties combine to make this an event that draws audiences and artists from around the globe.
“Special Screenings are the culmination of each day of films; a time for everyone to gather in the same theatre and watch a film selected by our Board and Programmer that we feel will speak to our audience in a unique way,” said Julie Wilkerson, festival president. All special screenings will be held at the historic Douglass Theatre located at 355 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd in downtown Macon. Festival programmer, Tabitha Walker said, “With this year’s special screenings of MY BLIND BROTHER and MORRIS FROM AMERICA our festival audience will have an opportunity to see why these two films have been such audience favorites throughout the year at festivals like Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, and more.”
Thursday, July 21
PRETTY IN PINK with special guest Andrew McCarthy. The film was written and produced by John Hughes and directed by Howard Deutch, Pretty in Pink (1986) is about love and social cliques in American high schools starring McCarthy, Molly Ringwald, Jon Cryer, Annie Potts and James Spader. Mr. McCarthy portrays Blane, a rich preppy high school senior who falls for Andie (Molly Ringwald) a working-class girl from the wrong side of the tracks and both encounter resistance from their perspective social circles. The special screening will follow a Q&A with Mr. McCarthy that will begin at 6:00pm.
Friday, July 22
THE END OF THE TOUR, directed by James Ponsoldt. The story of the five-day interview between Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg) and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel), which took place right after the 1996 publication of Wallace’s groundbreaking epic novel, ‘Infinite Jest.’ Before the screening, Mr. Ponsoldt will be conducting the Sundance Institute Short Film Master Class at Theatre Macon from 12p to 4pm on Friday.
“The festival programming committee is also excited to be showcasing not one but two of director James Ponsoldt’s films during this year’s festival. THE END OF THE TOUR and THE SPECTACULAR NOW are fantastic examples of James’ unique voice as a director,” Walker added. The Spectacular Now is a story of Sutter, a high school senior (Miles Teller), effortless charmer, and self-proclaimed “life of the party” – unexpectedly falls in love with the “nice girl” Aimee (Shailene Woodley). While Aimee dreams of the future, Sutter lives in the now. And yet somehow, they’re drawn together. What starts as an unlikely romance becomes a sharp-eyed, straight-up snapshot of the heady confusion and haunting passion of youth – one that doesn’t look for tidy truths. The Spectacular Now, filmed in Athens, Georgia, features wonderful supporting performances from Brie Larson, Kyle Chandler, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. The additional Georgia Film Spotlight feature, THE SPECTACULAR NOW, directed by James Ponsoldt, will screen on Friday, July 22 at 11:50am at The Douglass Theatre.
Saturday, July 23
MY BLIND BROTHER, with special guest Charlie Hewson, is a relationship comedy, written and directed by Sophie Goodhart, My Blind Brother recently premiered at the SXSW Film Festival. Bill (Nick Kroll) has always lived in the shadow of his brother Robbie (Adam Scott), a handsome athlete and local hero who happens to be blind. Their sibling rivalry reaches a fever pitch when both men fall for the same woman (Jenny Slate). Mr. Hewson will conduct a Q&A following the screening.
Sunday, July 24
MORRIS FROM AMERICA, written and directed by acclaimed up-and-coming filmmaker Chad Hartigan (This is Martin Bonner), centers on Morris Gentry (Markees Christmas, in an incredible breakout performance) a 13-year-old who has just relocated with his single father, Curtis (Craig Robinson) to Heidelberg, Germany. Morris, who fancies himself the next Notorious B.I.G., is a complete fish-out-of-water—a budding hip-hop star in an EDM world. To complicate matters further, Morris quickly falls hard for his cool, rebellious, 15-year-old classmate Katrin.. Morris sets out against all odds to take the hip-hop world by storm and win the girl of his dreams.
MORRIS FROM AMERICA won two prizes at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the Waldo Salt Screening Award and a Special Jury Award for Robinson, who has been receiving tremendous praise for his touching and nuanced performance in his first serious role. Poignant and funny in equal measure, Morris from America is a delightfully original take on growing up, following your dreams, and finding your voice.
Narrative Feature Spotlight: THE ARBALEST
Synopsis: When an unexpected tragedy befalls an amateur game inventor, his wife and a rival make a pact to share in the spoils of his invention. But when that invention becomes an international sensation, the pair charts different courses in their own lives, until desire brings them together again for one final game.
Music Spotlight: CONTEMPORARY COLOR
Synopsis: Ten of the country’s elite color guard teams—the flag-flipping, sequin-studded crème de la crème of the “sport of the arts”—sync steps with musical luminaries for a bacchanalia of beats, sabre-spinning, and glitter cannons. Live performances by David Byrne, Nelly Furtado, How to Dress Well, Devonté Hynes, & more.
Programmer’s Choice Spotlight:
HARRY BENSON: SHOOT FIRST
Synopsis: The film charts the illustrious career of the renowned photographer who initially rose to fame alongside The Beatles, having been assigned to cover their inaugural trip to the United States in 1964. With unprecedented “behind the scenes” access, Benson captured some of the most vibrant and intimate portraits ever taken of the most popular band in history. His extensive portfolio includes iconic images of Muhammad Ali, Michael Jackson, Robert F. Kennedy assassination, among others.
Purchase passes online now at ticketderby. Redeem your purchase for badges and tickets at Festival Headquarters (502 Cherry Street) during the festival.
FestieBesties VIP Pass – $175 (Save $50)
Bragg Jam / Film Festival Combo Pass, After Parties, and 2 t-shirts! One Macon Film Festival All Access Pass and Macon Film Festival t-shirt AND one Bragg Jam Music and Arts Festival VIP Pass and one Bragg Jam t-shirt. For Bragg Jam info: http://www.braggjam.org
All Access VIP Pass – $150
Admission July 21 – 24, 2016 for priority seating at all Screenings AND Special Screenings AND the Awards Ceremony. All Access Passes also include admission to After Parties for ages 21 and up.
Opening Night Screening & Party Pass – $50
Admission Thursday, July 21 for the Opening Night Film, Pretty in Pink, Q&A with Andrew McCarthy and the Opening Night Party for ages 21 and up.
Screening Pass – $75
Admission July 21 – July 24, 2015 for priority seating at all Screenings AND Special Screenings AND the Awards Ceremony. Screening Passes do NOT include admission to After Parties. Passes do not guarantee admission to any screening. ALL Pass holders should arrive at the venue 30 minutes prior to the screening for admittance, which is on a first come/first served basis.
Admission for ONE chosen day (Friday, Saturday or Sunday) to all Screenings, including the evening Special Screening. After Party not included.
Single Block Ticket
Admission to ONE film or block of films July 22 – 24, 2016. CANNOT be used for an evening Special Screening Film . Must be exchanged at Festival Headquarters for a pass to the film of your choice.
Music Junkie Pass
Admission to the THREE Music Film blocks at Macon Film Festival (CANNOT be used for an evening Special Screening Film) AND one Bragg Jam Concert Crawl ticket. A $75 value for $50. Must be exchanged at Festival Headquarters for a pass to the films of your choice.