Spice up wintertime with films and music

Gwen Woolf

Film festivals are a great way to see many cutting-edge films in a short time from a wide variety of sources. The filmmakers are often on hand to host screenings and answer questions. Virginia, Washington, and Maryland have festivals coming up that will whet the appetite of any movie buff.

Virginia’s Richmond International Film Festival, now in its sixth year, is expanding with a music component.

Up to 65 local, national, and international bands will perform at various venues around the city during festival week, Feb. 27–March 5. In addition, a one-day creative conference, the FLOW Collective, will bring together artists and professionals from the film and music industries for presentations and networking.

The film part of the festival will feature more than 120 movies from 20 countries. All genres are expected, including feature films, shorts, documentaries, animation, and music videos.

Screenings are held at the historic Byrd Theater and Bow Tie Criteria Cinemas at Movieland. Prizes are awarded in competitions.

The festival’s Heather Waters is modeling the Richmond festival after South By Southwest, an international film and music festival in Austin, Texas.

Other upcoming festivals include:

  • The DC Independent Film Festival, Feb. 15–20 in Washington. The festival offers feature, short, animation, and documentary films by local, national, and international filmmakers.
  • The DC Environmental Film Festival celebrates its 25th year March 14–26, presenting 150 films focused on the environment at multiple venues.
  • Filmfest DC International Film Festival, April 20–30 in Washington. The 31st annual festival promises more than 70 feature premieres, restored classics, and special events.
  • The Maryland International Film Festival in Hagerstown, Md., March 31–April 2. Films from 140 countries are on tap.
  • The Maryland Film Festival, May 3–7 in Baltimore. Some 50 feature films and 75 short films will be showcased.

Learn more:

Richmond International Film Festival: rvafilmfestival.com

DC Independent Film Festival: dciff-indie.org

DC Environmental Film Festival: dceff.org

Filmfest DC International Film Festival: filmfestdc.org

Maryland International Film Festival: marylandiff.com

Maryland Film Festival: mdfilmfest.com

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