Development Authority, Film Lobbying Group Joins SGFF Sponsors

Staff Report From Valdosta CEO

Monday, March 2nd, 2020

Hosting the fourth annual South Georgia Film Festival requires plenty of support from sponsors across our community. The festival is proud to announce that the addition of Film In South Georgia, the Valdosta-Lowndes Development Authority and the Criterion Channel this year to bring filmmakers to our community and support their time here.

“Our mission is to encourage business development in what we see as a flourishing area for industry,” said Andrea Schruijer, Executive Director of the the Valdosta-Lowndes County Development Authority.

Film in South Georgia, made up of production companies CineVantage and Prevailing Pictures, lobbies to bring production to the area and also serves as a resource to help equip the surrounding area to benefit from the film industry. They are working to see more successes, such as the recent production of BREACH with Bruce Willis and Alexander Kane, which shot this past fall in Fitzgerald.

“The film industry continues to flourish in Georgia,” said Jason Brown, South Georgia Film Festival Director. “We want to support bringing filmmakers to our community to better understand why we should be a part of that.”

Along with the VLDA, the festival also has the Criterion Channel as a sponsor this year. Criterion has dedicated to publishing important classic and contemporary films from around the world since 1984. The Criterion Channel is a new streaming platform for those films, along with ancillary material such as behind the scenes documentaries and other original programming. This past year, Criterion published its edition of MATEWAN, the 1985 film by John Sayles, and included the documentary THEM THAT WORK, by festival Director Jason Brown. Criterion has donated copies of MATEWAN for the winning filmmakers and their book of postcards representing the posters from many of their collection.

Returning sponsors to the festival include Georgia Power, Georgia Beer Company, the Georgia Council for the Arts, Valdosta State University, Georgia Production Partnership, 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, and MUBI.

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. The Georgia Production Partnership’s panel on bringing productions to South Georgia will be free for everyone.

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 much more.