?: daniel dunlap
Omaha Film Festival (OFF) will mark 15 years of elevating our community, filmmakers and the arts when it opens its next run on March 3, 2020.
“It’s important for people to do things they love – and if you can support local events and the community at the same time, all the better,” says Marc Longbrake, OFF co-founder and program director.
He, Jeremy Decker and Jason Levering set out to build something like Sundance or the Austin Film Festival – a way of celebrating the artistic, educational, and historical importance of motion pictures, only closer to home.
?: marc longbrake
“If you like movies, there’s going to be something that you’ll enjoy. We have comedies, dramas, action-adventures, animated shorts… (Over the course of a week, OFF showcases over 100 films selected from an average of over 1000 annual entries.)
If you think you don’t like documentaries, come and see at least one of ours. I think it will change your mind pretty quickly,” Longbrake says.
Recognized by MovieMaker magazine as one of the “50 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee,”
OFF shows what it considers the top independent films circulating that year in film festivals, including a lot of films that premiere at Sundance or Slamdance every January. Showcasing local talent is also a priority. Every year, OFF has a Nebraska Spotlight category – three full blocks of Nebraska shorts. If they receive locally-made feature films or documentaries, they like to highlight those as well.
Over the years, OFF has also made great strides towards becoming one of the Midwest’s premier teaching festivals, offering opportunities for filmmakers, students, and film enthusiasts to learn more about the craft of filmmaking through panels, lectures and workshops, including OFF Academy, which connects high schoolers with filmmakers and the screenwriters.
“It’s all about educating, entertaining and inspiring – and it is a super-rewarding part of what we do,” Longbrake says.
We’re only as boring as you are.
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