(Boston, MA) –The Roxbury International Film Festival (RoxFilm), New England’s largest film festival screening films celebrating people of color from around the globe, takes place June 20 – 29 at the Museum of Fine Arts, the Haley House Bakery Café, and Hibernian Hall in Roxbury.
For the past two decades, the festival has showcased and celebrated both films and filmmakers of color, and has screened more than 1,200 films. Festival Director Lisa Simmons, who has been with RoxFilm since its inception, is proud and excited that the festival has made it to this milestone which it could not have done without the support from filmmakers, audiences, and sponsors who have believed in its mission and have contributed to its success.
“When ACT Roxbury and Color of Film Collaborative first started this festival, the mission was to support local filmmakers of color whose work was not being presented by other festivals. We wanted to create an opportunity for filmmakers to share their vision and voice with a wider audience who were hungry for authentic representations of people of color beyond the stereotypical images from Hollywood,” says Simmons.
“Twenty years later so much has changed from film formats to film stories and the availability of diverse stories of people of color across the world. More access to equipment, more distribution avenues and a greater hunger for these stories in the mainstream media has opened up the doors for filmmakers to create and share their stories. We believed that if a festival that supported this work existed in the Boston area, there would be an audience excited and engaged to watch it. What we didn’t know is that they would still be as committed and excited 20 years later.”
The Roxbury International Film Festival is a competitive festival that awards certificates in the categories of Audience Favorite, Narrative Film, Documentary Film, Narrative Short, Documentary Short, Youth, Emerging Filmmaker, with a special award named after award-winning filmmaker Henry Hampton.
Over the course of 10 days the festival screens all genres of films, holds workshops and panel discussions and offers filmmakers the opportunity to network with each other as well as audience members. Submissions are now being accepted through March 9 at www.filmfreeway.com/TheRoxburyInternationalFilmFestival.
What’s new? This year, with the focus on storytelling, the festival is challenging non-filmmakers, to pick up their cameras, their iPhones or androids to capture a story that hasn’t been told, or something that deeply moves them, for The RoxFilm20 Film Challenge. The submission can be one minute or up to 10 minutes in length, and should be uploaded to www.filmfreeway.com/TheRoxburyInternationalFilmFestival (using code roxfilm20family) by March 16. (Films will not be placed in competition).