Bentonville Film Festival Sets 2023 Dates, Adds Animated Shorts Category To Its Mix

Bentonville Film Festival
The Bentonville Film Festival awards ceremony in 2021 Justin Ford/Getty Images for BFFoundation

EXCLUSIVE: The Geena Davis-founded Bentonville Film Festival has nailed down its dates for 2023, with the event that spotlights underrepresented storytellers set to unspool June 13-18. Like this year’s edition, an on-demand streaming portion will run through the following week that will include selections from its competition lineups.

The Arkansas-based festival, which will be celebrating its ninth edition, is also adding short film categories in its Animation and Adventure lineups for the first time. They join sections covering narrative, documentary and episodic titles.

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“We’re delighted to bring groundbreaking projects to the heartland where we have been an
annual convening place for independent film, artists and audiences for the last eight years,” said Wendy
Guerrero, president of the Bentonville Film Festival. “With the culturally rich community, accessibility to outdoor adventure, and focus on innovative technology, we are excited about the added short film categories in Animation and Adventure at the 2023 festival. By expanding our program in these areas, it will further our mission in championing women; people of color; LGBTQIA+ individuals; people with disabilities; older persons (50+); and large-bodied individuals in two new categories for 2023.”

Bentonville organizers said the 2022 edition featured 82% of the competition program from content creators who identify as female or gender non-conforming; 65% who identify as Black, Indigenous, a person of color, Asian, or Pacific Islander; 62% who identify as LGBTQIA+; 42% who are over 50; and 20% who identify as a person with differing abilities.

Submissions for the 2023 edition are now open for feature films here, with shorts to follow November 14.

Bentonville is produced by the BFFoundation.

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