Oxford Film Festival kicks off tonight

The Oxford Film Festival's 4th annual Community Film Project, "Killer Kudzu," will be shown tonight and each day of the festival. (Courtesy photo)

The Oxford Film Festival’s 4th annual Community Film Project, “Killer Kudzu,” will be shown tonight and each day of the festival. (Courtesy photo)

By Sheena Barnett

Daily Journal

OXFORD – More filmmakers are coming to the Oxford Film Festival than ever before.

The festival, now in its 11th year, will screen more than 75 films, including feature-length narratives, documentaries, shorts, animation, experimentals and music videos.

“We have 78 films, and for every single film we have (someone) representing them,” said the festival’s director, Molly Fergusson. “This will be our most filmmakers ever.”

The Oxford Film Festival kicks off tonight at Thacker Mountain Radio at The Lyric Oxford, with a screening of the festival’s 4th annual Community Film Project, “Killer Kudzu.”

That event’s free.

The documentary short film "Jot 'Em Down" is a look into the unique horse-racing culture at the Jot 'Em Down Store in Kentucky. (Courtesy photo)

The documentary short film “Jot ‘Em Down” is a look into the unique horse-racing culture at the Jot ‘Em Down Store in Kentucky. (Courtesy photo)

The movie screenings begin at 11 a.m. Friday, 10 a.m. Saturday and noon on Sunday, all at the Malco Oxford Commons.

“The quality of our submissions has gotten a lot stronger. We received more submissions than we’ve ever gotten – 525,” Fergusson said.

Friday night’s films include the narrative feature “Someone Marry Barry.”

“Supernatural” star Misha Collins’ short film, “TSA America: Level Orange” will screen before it.

Other films screened over the weekend include:

• “West of Elvis,” a documentary about Graceland Too;

• the comedy “Father-Like Son,” about a 24-year-old whose mom marries a man his age;

• the short doc “Herd in Iceland,” about the Icelandic horse, directed by New York Times photo editor Lindsay Blatt;

• “Jimbo Mathus: Finding Your Roots,” a film about the Mississippi musician;

• “Dance Like No One’s Watching,” a documentary about competitive Country/Western dancing in the gay community;

• the short film “The Horrible Life of Dr. Ghoul,” about a TV horror host;

• the short comedy “The Sidekick,” starring “Parenthood” actor Jason Ritter and “Supernatural” stars Richard Speight Jr. and Rob Benedict.

Ritter and Speight will also speak at a panel, Splitting Time Between TV and Indie.

“They love independent film, but they make their living on TV,” Fergusson said.

Speight showcased an indie film at OFF last year and is also a judge for the festival this year.

Emmy-nominated animator Kent Osborne, best known for “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Adventure Time,” will speak on an animation panel, and musicians and producers such as Scott Bomar and Hummie Mann will speak on a panel about scoring films.

One of the perks of OFF, Fergusson said, is that movie-lovers can meet the filmmakers whose movies they see.

“You can come to the festival and talk to any filmmaker you want,” she said. “I think what’s made the festival successful is that people enjoy themselves. We don’t take ourselves too seriously. Our focus is that people have fun.”

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ON THE BIG SCREEN

What: 11th annual Oxford Film Festival

When: Tonight-Sunday

Where: Tonight’s event is at The Lyric Oxford; movie screenings will be at the Malco Oxford Commons; panels at Oxford Conference Center; parties and award ceremonies at The Lyric Oxford

Cost: $8/block of films, $15/day pass, $12/student day pass, $30/three-day pass, $25/student three-day pass, $50/party upgrade for Friday and Saturday nights, $25/party upgrade for either Friday or Saturday

Info: oxfordfilmfest.com