Official Selections



Online programs began this year with the  announcement  of our 66 juried Official Selection films (scroll to see list) on Friday, April 9.

Click the image below to watch that announcement:

2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection announcement


in alphabetical order by title (A and The count as words)
click on an image to expand it
click here to watch us announce Official Selections

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: 2,190 Miles
Margaret Tower
2,190 Miles
A young couple, Mark and Katie, thru-hike the Appalachian Trail. Mark is planning to propose to Katie at some point on the 2,190-mile journey, but he panics about finding the perfect moment to pop the question. This film was shot in August 2020 following very strict COVID-19 protocols to keep students safe: students and cast never gathered or met indoors during the entirety of principal photography, and a majority of the film was shot in Mill Mountain Park in Roanoke, Virginia, rather than on the actual Appalachian Trail. 
High School Student Film, Narrative Short; 8 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: 75 degrees West
Thomas Parrish V and  Zachary Parrish
75° West
Civilization has fallen and two brothers now wander through a post-pandemic world, trying to survive as they travel across the US countryside. Their destination: 75° West, surviving as best they can on what they find while trying to avoid human dangers along the way.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film; you can also click here to read additional information at WRAL.com, and click here to discover some interesting details on the film’s IMDb page; click here to follow the film’s story on Facebook.
High School Student Film, Narrative Feature; 60 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: And Then the Darkness
Andrew Huggins
And Then the Darkness
A pharmacist seeks revenge against the man who took everything from him.  Click here to visit the filmmaker’s website, or click here to view his credits and projects on IMDb; click here to follow him on Instagram.
Narrative Short, 14 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Artificial
Caitlin Donnelly
Artificial
When gifted with an A.I. child meant to replace her recently deceased daughter, a grieving mother must learn to love the robotic intruder that is so clearly not what she thought it would be.  Click here to hear a snippet of electronic music from the film soundtrack, written by Wil Church.
Narrative Short, 10 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Bait and Tackle
Lily Newton
Bait & Tackle
Fourteen-year-old Kimmy meets a woman dressed like a mermaid in the motel parking lot!  To learn more about this film, and its crew, fourth-year filmmakers at the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts, click here to view information on Indiegogo.  Click here to read an article that appeared in the school newspaper for Chapel Hill High School.
Narrative Short, 15 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Between the Lines: Liz at Large
Abi Cole
Between the Lines: Liz at Large
Liz Montague, the first Black female cartoonist for The New Yorker magazine, discusses her process and how cartoons can be critical vehicles for social commentary. This short film was shot shortly before COVID-19 lockdowns—all in one day with a one-person crew, and the filmmaker connected with the subject by cold emailing her—and wishing for the best!  Click here to watch a trailer and click here to follow the film on Facebook or click here to visit the film’s website; click here to view a sampling of Montague’s work for The New Yorker.
Documentary Short, 5 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Bury the Light
Alex Maness and Jim Haverkamp
“Bury the Light”
This dance/music film about mourning rituals, lost souls, and how to deal with the living was shot, in part, at the tallest living sand dune on the East Coast. It’s right here in North Carolina: Jockey’s Ridge State Park, the Outer Banks. The music featured is performed by the Bipeds, a Durham-based dance-music-theater ensemble.  Click here to visit the Bipeds on Facebook, or click here to hear the music.
Music Video, 8 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Comic Book Hero
Justin Meckes
Comic Book Hero: A Procrastinator’s Guide
This mini documentary explores the work of amateur comic book writer Lee Stutts as he finishes the first draft of a new comic book—while battling procrastination. COVID-19 also led to some rather unexpected scenes and reshaped the end of this film after one or two more planned shoots were cancelled. Click here to read a biography of the filmmaker at his website and here to see a trailer.  Click here to view his resume on FilmFreeway. Click here to see a sampling of illustrations and artwork by Lee Stutts.
Documentary Short, 17 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Crossing Over the Dark
Jordan Ellis
Crossing Over the Dark
A withered old man metaphysically recalls the deepest memories of his late lover. Made in two days, with a crew of about ten people, this film was shot at an abandoned hospital in Yadkinville (Yadkin County) and features Ted Johnson—who has played parts in productions that included Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln (2012) and Watchmen (HBO, 2019)—and Dana McBride, a developing actress with several credits to her name (meet her via her Facebook presence).  Click here to watch a trailer.
Narrative Short, 12 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Cycling
Victoria Cruell
Cycling
A young woman recounts her difficulty in coping with painful inner emotions by reliving a series of memories in which her feelings are represented by different forms of water. This animated film was written and directed by Victoria Cruell, a 2020 graduate of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts.
Animated Film, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Dead in the Water
Lizzie Bankowski
Dead in the Water
If we are to mitigate environmental damage, we need to start with the monster in our own backyard: unsustainable industrial farms. This film was made by five students at University of North Carolina–Wilmington, as their senior thesis project, and it carried them through four semesters of work, from research and preproduction through postproduction.  Click here to view a trailer for the film, or click here to visit the film’s website. You can also follow the production—and discover some of the science, stories, and solutions uncovered during production—on Facebook or Instagram.
Documentary Feature, 43 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Dulce et Decorum Est
Walter Haussner
Dulce et Decorum Est
This performance of World War I poet Wilfred Owen’s “Dulce et Decorum Est” is from the perspective of a grandfather and World War I veteran whose grandson is serving in Vietnam, ca. 1967.  “What a wonderful rendering of Dulce. I think that is the best I have ever heard,” said Elizabeth Owen (president of the Wilfred Owen Association and widow of Peter Owen, nephew of Wilfred Owen) about actor Steven Oliver’s performance. “I feel that Steven must have experienced dreadful things—I hope I am wrong and that he is just an amazing actor, but the way it comes from him is from his heart and soul. He is not just reciting it.”   Click here to read through the poem. And click here to see a trailer.
Spoken Word, 5 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: échappé
Rebecca Walters
échappé
When faced with the opportunity to perform solo, an aging dancer must question whether her moral compass and personal integrity are important enough to stand up to a choreographer’s unwanted sexual advances. Becca Walters and her team are 2020 graduates of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts. Becca’s second-year film, Tanglefoot, made with the same lead dancer/actress, was also previously screened at Longleaf.  Click here to see some production photos and view cast and crew information on IMDb.
Narrative Short, 17 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: EuropaJoey Moore
Europa
If she has any hope of having a normal relationship with her boyfriend, Amelia, an adolescent vampire in the 1950s, must attempt to suppress her thirst for blood. Director Joey Moore and his team are 2020 graduates from the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts, in Winston-Salem, where they also found one of the locations featured in their film: Reynolda House and gardens. Moore notes that this Europa is not only a genre film; it “allows us to gain a new frame of reference on the struggles we face, to learn something more about ourselves. Europa is about growing up, leaving innocence behind, accepting who you are…it just also happens to be about blood, the full moon, and creatures of the night.” Click here to view some of the filmmaker’s credits.
Narrative Short, 12 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Fair Haven
Samantha Nolte
Fair Haven
After 11 years, a burned-out hardcore band vocalist returns to his small New Jersey hometown after his father’s death during the holidays. Filming started with snow, and, when it melted during filming with no snow in the forecast, the crew was worried about continuity. Then, the night before exterior scenes had to be shot, a freak snowfall re-covered the ground.  Click here to watch a trailer. Click here to read some background about the film on Indiegogo.
Narrative Feature, 74 minutes



Anne Ward and Chip Williams
Fog Likely Farm: An Appalachian Story

After a difficult divorce, Susie Winters, a young mother with two small daughters, moves from the Piedmont of North Carolina to a run-down, Civil War-era farmhouse in the Appalachian Mountains. As she works to pursue her dreams and redefine herself in the years that follow, Susie meets a young woodworker named David Sengel. Together, they create a new life for themselves as artists and farmers and transform the farmhouse and land into a place of exquisite contentment and beauty called Fog Likely Farm. This is an Appalachian story of heartache, resilience, beauty and love. Click here to watch a trailer for the film.
Documentary Short, 28 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Fred’s Dead
Sterling Hurst
Fred’s Dead
An easily spooked girlfriend discovers her dead boyfriend’s spirit has taken up residence in a wall-mounted deer head in the living room!  Click here to see some still photos from the film.
Narrative Short, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: From Here
Josh Swope
From Here
An adoptive father attempts to bond with his withdrawn daughter by taking her on a hunt for the first time. According to the filmmaker, this film is loosely based on a true story from his wife’s childhood. He started writing it when they were dating, and they shot the film six months after they were married.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film.
Narrative Short, 15 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: girl with the red backpack
Anita Clark-Anderson
girl with the red backpack
Get off your phone. Pay attention! You never know what you might see. Follow the girl (Sophie Anderson) with the red backpack as she makes a discovery. Filmed as a one-shot film—the camera might pan to the sky and come back down to another scene, or the camera might follow the actor. The challenge is to make it appear as if it has been filmed in one long take by a single camera. To view the filmmaker’s profile on FilmFreeway click here. For a one-minute short film created during the pandemic click here.

Narrative Short, 6 minutes


.2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Gunpowder and Paperboy
Todd Tinkham
Gunpowder and Paperboy
A teenage pyromaniac falls in love with a classmate dressed in paper.  Watch the trailer!
Narrative Short, 9 minutes



AhDream Smith
Happy Anniversary
A story about unfulfilled expectations, conceived from an original monologue written out of frustration due to how higher-level institutions were not showing up for their students, especially at the graduate level.  Click here to watch a trailer.
Narrative Short, 6 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: In Our Nature
Echo Wilson
In Our Nature
This animated documentary explores humanity’s relationship with nature through a world of interviewed “animals.”  Click here to hear an interview with the filmmaker, a 2020 graduate of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts.
Animated Film, 5 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: In the Face of Adversity: The Service and Legacy of African American Veterans of World War II
Jeffrey Paul Whelan and Clarence Goss
In the Face of Adversity: The Service and Legacy of African American Veterans of World War II
These interviews with African American veterans from World War II share the struggles and triumphs of serving in the US military, in wartime, during the era of segregation and Jim Crow—the triumphs leading to an eventual transformation of the military toward integration of all armed forces. The project features veterans who reside in the state of North Carolina and was a cooperative effort between the North Carolina Museum of History, faculty and students at Elizabeth City State University, and the state Department of Military and Veterans Affairs with support from the North Carolina Humanities Council.  Click here to watch a trailer of the film.
Documentary Feature, 55 minutes


Kemari Bryant
Inspace
An unconventional narrative, this film follows the filmmaker’s experience growing up in a predominantly White school and how that has shaped who he is today—and ways he has overcome that to find joy. The film was made possible through a grant provided by Visionary Justice StoryLab, a film collective based in Atlanta that innovates at the intersection of story, culture, and media by bringing together writers, artists, media makers, and cultural workers to evolve narratives rooted in imagination and liberation. Click here to read a blog post from the filmmaker as he talks about his process in making Inspace; click here to see his profile, credits, and some stills from the film on FilmFreeway.
Spoken Word, 6 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Jack The Radio: Creatures
Justin Zimmerman
Jack the Radio: “Creatures”
Jack confronts creatures, both real and imaginary, on an animated visual roller coaster of art, created with some of the comic world’s finest artists. Jack emerges triumphant, reborn—and as lead singer of the best band around. The art from Jack the Radio’s album Creatures comes from more than 20 of the best comic creators in the world, each handling their own piece in their own style. That art was then animated and edited into the final music video as individual shots.  Click here to read notes about the album and its individual songs, or click here to sample music, including the title track, from the band.
Music Video, 3 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Lightforce, Loveforce, Lifeforce
Lily Frame
Lightforce, Loveforce, Lifeforce
A personal essay film documenting the struggles of a budding artist with ADHD.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film; click here to read a short bio of the filmmaker.
Documentary Short, 10 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Love and Coffee
Brian Adam Kline
Love and Coffee
After a night of work, siblings gather to relax over a cup of coffee. Then, the conversation turns philosophical on the topic of love, and does it even exist?  Click here to watch a trailer for the film.
Narrative Short, 20 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Love's A Mess
McCready Brothers
Love’s a Mess
Germaphobe Calvin drops his phone in the toilet—just after the love of his life confesses her feelings for him via text message. The writer of this film was inspired by his fear of love and the messiness of relationships. The character Calvin is a physical representation of that anxiety.
Narrative Short, 9 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Magic Camera
Rodney S. Robinson
Magic Camera
A young girl, struggling to deal with her grandmother’s death, makes use of her imagination and an old camera to hold onto precious memories and bridge the emotional gap that exists between her and her mother.  Click here to view credits and some still photographs from the film, or click here to read about the filmmaker on FilmFreeway.
Narrative Short, 14 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Mermaid Bathtub
Katherine Howard
Mermaid Bathtub
As a couple shops for a bathtub, their relationship unravels right before our eyes. The short film started as an assignment in the filmmaker’s acting class—“the woman who performed the dialogue had me in tears; she then sent me a virtual zoom video of an old lover, and I created a story to tie it together.” 
Narrative Short, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Panda Bear It
Evan Kidd
Panda Bear It
Kamus Leonardo’s world is upended at the sudden death of his girlfriend, Destiny. To make matters worse, he’s hanging out with a panda bear.  Click here to view a trailer for the film, which was shot in seven production days across North Carolina, and click here to see the music video for “You’re Not Alone”—an original song created for the film by Durham rapper Kamus Leonardo. Click here to read how COVID-19 impacted production of the film, then click here to learn about the filmmaker on his website.
Narrative Feature, 63 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Pink, White & Blue
Ash Malone
Pink, White & Blue
After years of transitioning in front of a camera, Aydian Dowling discusses how allowing his transition to be visible via YouTube has helped the trans community as a whole grow in pride and alliance. The filmmaker is a 2020 graduate of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts.  Click here to view the filmmaker’s credits on IMDb; or click here to see progressive clips from Dowling’s actual videos or click here to read an interview of Dowling that appeared in MetroWeekly.
Documentary Short, 18 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Practice
Kevin Murray
Practice
Guns. Knives. Clarinets. Armed mercenaries shan’t disrupt one of Winifred Aldridge’s music lessons.  Click here to view the filmmaker’s profile on FilmFreeway, and click here to see general information about the film, which was shot in one day.
Narrative Short, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Prolific Icons
Fred Motley
Prolific Icons
Four historical and iconic figures from Caswell County—each still fondly remembered for their accomplishments; but each faced a specific turning point.  Click here to watch a trailer, or click here to follow the production on Facebook; click here to read about the project’s origins.
Documentary Feature, 44 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Prose
Kevin Wilson
Prose
An English exam takes two college students on a journey of defining their relationship.  Click here to meet the cast and crew—most of them, graduates of North Carolina universities—on the film’s website; or click here to follow production and view some stills on Instagram.
Narrative Short, 16 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Recollection
Adam Ward
Recollection
This experimental short investigates our connection with memory. What do you remember?  Click here to view some of the filmmaker’s credits on IMDB.
Documentary Short, 12 minutes



Thomas Espy, Stevie Jefferis, Cassie Harding, and Frank Carroll
Remembering Willie Earle
More than 70 years ago, Willie Earle was taken from a jail in Pickens, South Carolina, and murdered by a mob. Now, his childhood friend “AQ” remembers—in a community that wants to forget.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film, which started out as a class project at Davidson College; click here to read some background on the film in the Davidson Journal magazine, or click here to read an article, “Opera in Greenville,” that was published about the subsequent trial in the June 14, 1947, issue of New Yorker magazine.
Documentary Short, 17 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Rock Castle HomeCharlie Thompson
Rock Castle Home
Rock Castle Home is a documentary about people who lived in a farm community known as Rock Castle, now subsumed by the Blue Ridge Parkway. In the film, descendants from this 1930s Virginia mountain community return to their homes in seemingly pristine woodlands preserved within a national park, to show how even invisible home-places remain sacred for generations. Rock Castle Home matters because amidst our polarized political climate, we need dignified stories about rural life and small towns that embrace the complexity of the people living there. Seeking to push past stereotypes and tell a more nuanced, layered story, Rock Castle Home relies on the voices of the community members themselves and archival material compiled by the community to weave together a story of perseverance, ingenuity, and love, all qualities that sweetened a hardscrabble life in one steep hollow. The film hopes to foster necessary dialogue around the immeasurable value of public lands preserved by our national parks. Our film shows how the goals of national parks can dovetail with people’s work to preserve their family, community, and tribal histories, something that America desperately needs. And finally, this story matters because it is essential that, as Americans, we remind ourselves that anywhere we go in this country, including on lands that appear to be wilderness, there were people living there before we arrived. We remind audiences to remember that wherever they are, even when in the wilderness of a national park, they are entering a storied land filled with a complex human presence dating back to before our history books began. As Piscataway historian, Gabrielle Tayac says in the film, “You are always part of a larger story. You are rarely, if ever, going into a place where no one has ever been.” Click here to watch a trailer for the film, and click here for a bio of Director Charles Thompson, Jr.
Documentary Feature, 55 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Rocky Road
Madison Crisp and Victoria Sosa
Rocky Road
Maní is a socially anxious foster child who connects to her community through her adopted mother’s ice cream stand. As she grows up, Maní learns the importance of family, community, and self-confidence through her foster mother’s teachings. The film was created by a team of second year students at the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts; its producer and animators are all North Carolina natives.  Click here to see the accomplishments of one filmmaker.
Animated Film, 6 minutes



Devin Peluso
Running
As a 20-something goes for a run to reduce stress, his fears and anxieties take over as he thinks of the failed relationships he’s had in his life—and the one that he’s afraid of ruining next. This short is the creation of three film students who, during a stressful time in their semester, decided to rent a camera and just go and make something: their own version of stress relief. “I had wanted to make a film about someone reflecting on relationships for a while,” one of them said. “We strode to take a simple idea, a guy going for a run, and turn it into a cinematic and emotional experience—one that an everyday viewer can instantly connect to.” Dealing with anxiety, overthinking, and self-deprecation, the film is a glimpse into the mind of an average person going through a difficult time.  Click here to visit the filmmaker’s website or click here to see his credentials on IMDb; click here to read an article about one of his earlier projects, The Old Man.
Narrative Short, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Satellite Boyfriend
Lucy Collins
Satellite Boyfriend
This is the story of the barely discernible rise and fall of a band that enjoyed each other’s company more than the music they made.  Click here to view a trailer for the film. Click here to follow the band on Facebook, or click here to hear a sample recording, their 1989 release “Bam Bam Bah!” from the album Yes, Ma’am.
Documentary Short, 11 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Shaw Rising
Tim Finkbiner
Shaw Rising
Shaw, the oldest historically Black university in the South, rises from the Civil War, segregation, and the Civil Rights movement to confront the future of education and social justice in America. This film tells the tumultuous and inspiring story of that university. But, behind the scenes, it almost didn’t get finished because Shaw, like most HBCUs, only has limited archives of their own histories. While predominantly White institutions have always had the means to preserve their past, historically Black colleges have not. Only belief in the project, three years of commitment, and finding allies to raise almost $50,000 enabled believers to bring together, again, the visual history of Shaw University—but that’s another story.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film, or click here to read about the film’s success.
Documentary Feature, 57 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: She Carries On
Isaac Fowler and Tim Morris
She Carries On  (ᎡᏘᏴ ᏥᎾᎾᏛᏁᎮ ᎠᏰᎵᏐ ᎾᏛᏁᎰ)
Among the Cherokee people in North Carolina, the cultural tradition of stickball exemplifies “more than a game.” Cherokee women who have played the game reflect on their time playing and what the game means to the past, present, and future of Cherokee people. All of this documentary was shot around Cherokee, with much of the footage filmed at the 2017 Cherokee Indian Fair fall festival.  Click here to watch a trailer; click  here  and  here  to learn more about the tradition of stickball and more about the film.
Documentary Short, 17 minutes



Brook North
Shelter
As the nationwide quarantine continues, one man and his cat live out a day that is sure to be indistinguishable from any other day in the endless isolation of lockdown—or will it?  This film was shot during the pandemic of 2020 with strict social distancing guidelines: all scenes were acted and filmed within family units and postproduction collaboration was entirely online.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film; click here to visit the film’s website and view some stills from the production.
Narrative Short, 7 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Sheltered
Gregory Simpson
Sheltered
Two unrelated people grapple with homelessness for the first time in a quickly growing and prospering southern city, Charlotte.  Click here to view a trailer on Facebook, then look over the film’s main page there.
Documentary Short, 7 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Sideways
Daniel Robert Smith
Sideways
Best friends Kurt and Carter find out that living together may not be as easy as they thought it would be. When their competing lifestyles begin to crash, and they have a huge argument, Carter wakes up to find his gravity has shifted to the wall—he’s gone . . . sideways. Smith and his team are 2020 graduates of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts.  Click here to watch an interview with the filmmaker on an episode of Reel Conversations, with Thomas Manning; or click here to see some production information and a few stills.
Narrative Short, 12 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Spotlight
L. Ash
“Spotlight”
This animated music video explores fame and celebrity in the volatile age of social media.  The animation is made up of 6,800 individual hand-drawn frames that took approximately 2,700 hours to create.  Click here to see a teaser for the video, and click here to see work by the animator/filmmaker on her blog.  Click here to see and listen to a live performance of the song featured in this video, and follow the band Barnaby Bright on Instagram or Facebook.
Music Video, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Spread Among Us
Travis Stewart
Spread Among Us
As a horrifying disease spreads across the country, a young couple must decide what to do with their daughter after she is infected. The filmmaker is a fourth-year student at the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts. His team wrote and produced this story just before our real world entered the real pandemic.  Click here to view the film’s page at IMDb; click here to watch director Stewart and writer/producer Devin Peluso discuss the film on an episode of Reel Conversations, with Thomas Manning.
Narrative Short, 15 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Stir The Pot
Katherine Noelle Hervey
Stir the Pot
A local business goes through an unexpected transition in ownership.  When the filmmaker was planning this film, she worked at the boba shop and was originally going to make the film about how the shop was dealing with COVID-19; but, after the first interview, she found out that the owner had sold the store! 
High Student Film, Documentary Short: 10 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Sunrise
Michael Pearce
Sunrise
Hoping to strengthen their relationship, a father and his daughter join a scout troop in hiking the Appalachian Trail. Then, they fall behind—and meet an unwelcome traveler.
Narrative Short, 14 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Black Baptism
Stephanie Diane Ford
The Black Baptism
Informed by a mysterious voice, an imprisoned young woman must either pass a series of enigmatic tests or face a terrifying death. The film was shot at the historic, early 1900s jail in Yanceyville (Caswell County).  Click here to watch a trailer for the film; click here to meet the production team and find other information on the film’s website. Click here to read a synopsis and interview with the filmmaker; or follow the film on Facebook and Instagram.
Narrative Short, 20 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Cartoon

Tom White
The Cartoon
A political cartoonist gains unwanted attention after her latest and most controversial work is published. The Cartoon, part of the Bad Things, Good People anthology, was shot in January and February of 2020, the filmmaker’s last completed production before the pandemic and quarantine.  Click here to see a trailer for the anthology, or click here to visit the filmmaker’s IMDb profile.
Narrative Short, 9 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Casserole Brigade
B. Rain Bennett
The Casserole Brigade
Two brothers try to navigate the loss of their mother and the distance that has grown between them; meanwhile, neighbors and nearby loved ones duke it out in a who-cares-most competition using their main weapons—casseroles.  Visit the filmmaker’s profile at FilmFreeway and IMDb.
Narrative Short, 12 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Hot Air Balloon
Justin Meckes
The Hot Air Balloon
Enjoy a hot air balloon ride and discover what it’s like to see the Earth from above. Click here to see how this film, and an accompanying children’s storybook, got started and to explore the filmmaker’s website.
Animated Film, 4 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Ocean to John White
Georg Koszulinski
The Ocean to John White
In 1590 John White returns to Roanoke Island—but the colony he had left is gone. This film is planned to serve as the first in a collection of films about the Lost Colony of Roanoke.
Documentary Short, 8 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The other side of the coin: Race, Generations & Reconciliation
Frederick Murphy
The Other Side of the Coin: Race, Generations, and Reconciliation
This film is a collection of experiences and thoughts that address the complexities of race in America. The participants featured represent a span of generations, which presents its own unique challenges—challenges that tend to reignite historical transgressions into the fold of present-day ideologies, begging the question: How do we reconcile for the sake of future generations and humanity? Uncle George, one of those featured, is the son of a formerly enslaved man; since not many children of formerly enslaved people are alive today, he is truly a needle in the haystack.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film, produced as part of the filmmaker’s History Before Us initiative, then explore the initiative’s efforts on Facebook, at Vimeo, and through its website.
Documentary Feature, 75 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Passing On
Nathan Clarke
The Passing On
Three professions ushered former slaves from poverty to the American dream: preachers, teachers, and undertakers. Today, renowned embalmer James Bryant is putting his faith in a new generation, to continue one vanishing legacy; but he’s met with resistance from his young intern, Clarence Pierre—who is conflicted about his commitment due to judgment he feels from the Black community as a queer, Christian man. Click here to view a trailer of the film; click here to visit the film’s website, which includes a media section and links for additional information on the Black funeral home industry.
Documentary Feature, 70 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Prospector
Pete Mangum
The Prospector
During the gold rush era, Daniel seeks his fortune in hopes of creating the life his late father let slip away. Click here to watch a trailer or click here to view the filmmaker’s credits on his IMDb page.
Narrative Short, 20 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: The Reckoning
Ellen Hemphill
The Reckoning
In this prescient parable for the times, an otherworldly trio marks the unjust, who must then atone for their acts of inhumanity on a journey to the underworld.  Click here to watch a trailer for the film, which was initially shot in 2018, largely in Durham, in buildings that have since been torn down.
Narrative Short, 23 minutes


 

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2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Take Care
Cameron McCormack
Take Care
Tasked with raising her younger siblings in the wake of her mother’s addiction, a teenage girl must decide to continue as caretaker or to begin pursuit of a social life. Members of the filmmaking team are 2020 graduates of the School of Filmmaking, UNC School of the Arts.  Click here to watch a trailer for the short; click here to view other videos on the filmmaker’s YouTube page.
Narrative Short, 17 minutes



Isaiah Forte-Rose and Andres Cornejo
Tale of the Shadows
A love-struck shadow tries to seduce his reluctant crush.  Click here to watch the short, which was shot and edited within 24-hours!  Follow the Bad Mule production company on Reddit and Facebook.
Narrative Short, 1 minute


Christopher Zaluski
Theirs Is the Kingdom
A rare examination of the intersection of poverty and portraiture, this feature follows the creation of a contemporary fresco mural—not of the rich and the powerful, but of people battling homelessness, addiction, and mental illness—inside the sanctuary of a small church in Asheville. From first sketch to final unveiling, viewers will witness the difficulties of this ancient artistic technique while also meeting an ensemble cast of rich, complex characters. Click here to watch a trailer for the film; click here to explore some general information about the fresco and its site; click here to see images from the completed fresco; click here  or  click here to read articles on development of the fresco.
Documentary Feature, 60 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: TidesAndré Silva
Tides
Filmed at Masonboro Island, an undeveloped barrier island that lies between Wrightsville Beach and Carolina Beach, this short contemplates the liminal space between our modern technological world and that more ecological dimension we label as “nature” or “the environment.” 
Documentary Short, 8 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Translating Livia Ming
Patrick Wei
Translating Livia Ming
An Asian American woman loses her passport the day before she’s set to fly to China for the first time, which forces her to embark on a journey—not just to locate her passport, but to find herself.  Click here to read about the film at Seed&Spark; click here to follow the film on Facebook; click here to enjoy some outtakes from production.
Narrative Short, 16 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Trash Artistry
Kim Best
Trash Artistry
The creative potential of trash is generally unappreciated, but even the ugliest trash can be artistically mentored. Truth be told, the filmmaker spent much of Christmas Day decorating a Christmas tree—with trash. Good, clean fun!  Click here to meet the filmmaker on Facebook.
Narrative Short, 5 minutes


2021 Longleaf Film Festival Official Selection: Valle del Silicio (Silicon Valley)
James Michael Douglas
Valle del Silicio
At the age of 12, Wilson Chun, who lives on the violent streets of Guatemala’s Zona 13, has the goal of becoming a computer programmer to save his family from poverty. The one-of-a-kind after-school cada niño program might be the only chance of making his dreams a reality. “Silicon Valley,” the film’s translated title, is the filmmaker’s directorial debut—and resulted from his first trip to the country of Guatemala.  Click here to meet the filmmaker on his website and click here to view his credentials at IMDb. Click here to learn about cada niño (or cadaniño; “each child” in English), or click here to see some images from the after-school program.
Documentary Short, 9 minutes



 

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Click here for a general summary of Longleaf 2021.
Click here to see a list of virtual events held for Longleaf 2021.
Click here for a list of Longleaf 2021 award winners.
Click here to see which films were “screened” as part of our
One Last (Virtual) Viewing Event.

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