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|Out on Film thrives after 25 years|
|by Dyana Bagby|
|October 01, 2012 13:28|
World premieres, special guests and great lineups are just a few of the keys to the success of Out on Film, Atlanta’s LGBT film fest, which celebrates its silver anniversary this year Oct. 4-11.
“First and foremost, I’m glad we’re still around. So many festivals, especially gay and lesbian festivals, are now gone or have to take a break,” says Jim Farmer, festival director of Out on Film.
When Out on Film began in 1987, it was managed and produced by the Atlanta Film Fest. In 2008, the Atlanta Film Fest decided it was time to give Out on Film “back to the community,” Farmer explains.
“That year was a rocky year and to have weathered that and gotten bigger and better is an accomplishment,” Farmer says. “I love the fact we’re independent, we’re an official nonprofit, our programming is very strong.
“That is something we wanted to do — put an emphasis on quality. We focus on the community and that’s why we’re here.”
Farmer said in 2008 when AFF sought people to take over OOF, his hand went immediately up to take on the challenge and rewards of bringing LGBT films to Atlanta.
“I’m an absolute movie geek,” Farmer says. “When I was growing up in middle Georgia, I was very much an outsider and would escape to the local movie theater; most of the time I would go see movies by myself. Movies took me to other places, introduced me to people I might never have known. They were an escape.”
Farmer and volunteers, including Farmer’s partner, Craig Hardesty, take care each year to have a broad selection of films to appeal to the diverse LGBT community in Atlanta and Georgia. This year’s lineup includes movies that address tough topics such as HIV, race, gender identity and aging.
Farmer says the goal is to give attendees “an experience,” not just the chance to watch a movie.
“These films are for you, by you, about you, and you can watch them with your community,” he says.
Special guests for 2012 Out on Film (click here for times)
• Oct. 4: Producer Anne Hubbell and Director Jonathan Lisecki of opening night film “Gayby.” Hubbell is also a former Atlantan.
Top photo: Out on Film Festival Director Jim Farmer (left), seen here with his partner, Craig Hardesty, is proud of the diversity the LGBT film fest provides each year and says community support continues to grow. (File photo)
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