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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

MaGa: Macon Film Festival Sizzles

Panic on the Streets of Anniston
  • Panic on the Streets of Anniston

On Thursday, February 17th about 90 miles to the south The 6th Annual Macon Film Festival will kick-off at 7:30 PM at the Cox Capitol Theatre with the gripping Civil Rights-era Documentary Freedom Riders.

Directed by noted documentarian Stanley Nelson (Jonestown, The Black Press, A Place of Our Own) Freedom Riders—which also opened the 2010 Atlanta Film Festival—takes on renewed resonance as Georgia Representative John Lewis, featured so prominently throughout the film, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom earlier this week.

In an even cooler turn of events, PBS's American Experience is co-sponsoring a "2011 Student Freedom Ride," in honor of the 50th Anniversary of the historic event. The 2011 ride will retrace the historic civil rights bus rides that changed America. Accompanied by original Freedom Riders, forty college students will be chosen to participate in the bus ride which will take place from May 6 - 16, 2011. The film will debut on PBS soon thereafter.

(Disclosure: I am serving as a juror for this year's event, and so won't be commenting on any of the content in consideration for prizes.)

Film screenings for the festival, which runs through Sunday the 20th begin earlier in the day on Thursday the 17th with blocks of shorts, and features screening at at the Cox, as well as the Douglass Theatre and the Marriott City Center in historic downtown Macon.

Here is the Macon Sizzle Reel:

Macon Film Festival 2011 from Stephanie Shadden on Vimeo.

(Get it? it's funny to say sizzle because Macon rhymes with bacon.)

More from the official press release:

With over 100 film submission screenings and 4 new categories of awards, organizers are gearing up for the biggest event to date. The film festival will continue daily through Sunday, February 20th.

The Macon Film Festival was created to celebrate the art and craft of the moving image, and to introduce independent films that rarely appear in Macon, Georgia. Macon Film Festival is dedicated to entertaining, educating, and inspiring audiences and filmmakers alike by offering innovative and imaginative films both mainstream and independent in nature. We also strive to introduce visiting filmmakers and guests to the Central Georgia community, and to promote film production in the area. The festival is open to filmmakers working in all media, genres, and themes.

2011 Macon Film Festival — Special Screenings
Thursday, February 17th @ 7:30pm “Freedom Riders”
Friday, February 18th @ 8:15pm “Black, White and Blues”
Saturday, February 19th @ 10am “Fat Boy Chronicles”
Saturday, February 19th @ 8:30pm “The Kid”
Sunday, February 20th @ 7:00pm “Get Low”
Q&A Session to follow each special screening with special guests.

Macon Film Festival will take place February 17th — 20th at the Cox Capitol Theatre, The Douglass Theatre & the Marriott City Center. 478-257-6391.

Lady MaGa: The Macon Film Festival Goes to the Next Level
  • Macon Film Festival
  • Lady MaGa: The Macon Film Festival Goes to the Next Level

For more information or to view the full screening schedule, log on to or the Facebook event page.

Tickets are now available online at

Admission for the Thursday day blocks is free thanks to a grant from the City of Macon administered by Macon Arts Alliance. Free admission to all day blocks for students with a valid college ID.

You can also follow them on the Twitter: @maconfilmfest

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