What an opportunity – to be a part of a first-year event like the Bentonville Film Festival (BFF). In addition to our inaugural Young Filmmakers Short Pitch Competition, we’ll be participating in festival events, panels, screenings and more. But our involvement and excitement for the festival goes beyond being a sponsor. This is a festival that not only addresses critical issues in the film industry, but serves as a platform to inspire, motivate and drive us to be more inclusive.
As I review the film selection, I’m noticing some emerging themes. Much like a conductor leads all instruments to produce a perfectly coordinated symphony, a film selection serves as the heart and soul of a festival. A lot of hard work goes into reviewing and selecting the perfect mix of films and stories to tell. BFF promotes diversity via a wide range of themes:
Coming of Age
Coming of age stories continue to be relevant: teenagers and children either choosing or being compelled to grow up. Coming of age is a prime metaphor at the festival – and appropriately so.
We all lose our way at times. Whether by intrinsic searching or journey-based discovery, these films all seem to find their way back to family.
Another prevalent theme will be one of overcoming adversity and challenges of all kinds. The official SXSW 2015 selection, A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velazquez Story, plays again in Bentonville as a modern centerpiece to this theme.
Who isn't drawn to the unexpected? These films will promote the unique, the offbeat and the originals.
Twisting the Truth
We aren’t entirely sure what to expect with films with this theme, but there seems to be a lot of films that examine truth and lies. Take it or leave it.
The final category of themes emerging from this year at the Bentonville Film Festival is challenging conventions of faith, tradition and expectations. These films will deal with some of the heavier topics – but also challenge audiences to think deeper.
Mitchell Communications Group is proud to support BFF’s mission of championing women and diversity in film as an official sponsor. From our CEO, Elise Mitchell, leading a panel discussion on the Power of Brand for Social Change and our president, Sarah Clark, serving on the film festival jury, to the Young Filmmakers Short Pitch Competition we'll be launching from the Mitchell Lightbulb Lounge, we're all in. We look forward to seeing you at the festival. The power of story is amazing and this is an experience you're not going to forget.