Year Six: 2020


NOTE: In accordance with Governor Roy Cooper’s Executive Order 117, and to help limit the spread of COVID-19, the North Carolina Museum of History suspended public operations beginning March 17, 2020; all events and programs were subsequently cancelled through May 31, 2020—and that included this year’s Longleaf Film Festival. The sixth annual Longleaf Film Festival was quickly reformatted to be an online event that included:


Longleaf 2020: Official Summary

Longleaf Film Festival 2020 was year six for this program that celebrates the state’s long history in the art, craft, and business of filmmaking. And, we’ve so enjoyed celebrating the creative work of filmmakers with film fans at the North Carolina Museum of History—a place for sharing stories that reach us all—every May. Of course, this year, due to the COVID-19 crisis, we were unable to hold the in-person event.

So, we are grateful to filmmakers, film fans, and especially folks at the museum and in the state Department of Natural and Cultural Resources for helping us pivot to a series of online events to honor our commitments to all concerned.

Those online events included,

  • first, a live-stream of our Official Selections announcements on April 9. That program was watched live by more than 200 people, and the archived video of the event has been viewed more than 300 times.
  • On April 24, we streamed a program that shared the announcements of our award winners. That program started with a terrific welcome from departmental secretary Suzi Hamilton, then showcased—with help from this year’s media sponsor, CBS17 News, and station anchor Bill Young—trailers of winning films along with comments from those films’ directors. That event was watched live by more than 300 people; since then, the video has been viewed more than 700 times.
  • Lastly, on our original festival dates of May 8 and 9, with the generosity of most of our Official Selection filmmakers, we held the #AloneTogether Viewing Event, which provided free access to more than 60 films. Links from this event page of our website were accessed more than 5,000 times during the two days those films were available.

Other statistics of interest: during the 2020 festival time period, we had 5,000 impressions on the festival’s Instagram account; registered more than 13,000 impressions on Twitter; and reached more than 20,000 people on Facebook.

We are more than grateful to Secretary Hamilton and to @ComeHearNC for their generous support as our presenting sponsor this year. We appreciate so much the support of our media sponsor, CBS17 News, as well, and the support of  all  our 2020 sponsors, which included

  • Trailblazer Studios
  • WUNC, North Carolina Public Radio (91.5)
  • MOHA, the Museum of History Associates, the museum membership group
  • Lynx Licensing
  • Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern
  • Longleaf Hotel
  • Charles Ullman & Associates

Thanks, also, to the museum grants officer, Cathy Dobbins, for her cheerful and helpful efforts on sponsorships!  Further, we offer huge thanks to the museum marketing team of Marcie Gordon, Kerry Burns, and Raven Duncan for their many efforts to promote the festival (including sponsorship help). Their assistance earned Longleaf some statewide newspaper coverage, as well as some recognition on social media. Their terrific work is so appreciated.  In addition, Longleaf earned a shout-out from the News & Observer “Best Bets” listings leading up to our festival weekend, and Sally had interviews with local television stations WRAL-TV and CBS17 News and with Spectrum/Charter Communications that ran statewide.

Finally, Amme Fleming’s graphics were eye-catching and well received, as always; her creativity is a huge part of the Longleaf “look”!  Stephen Evans works year-round making sure that Longleaf’s website presence is current, correct, and connecting with filmmakers and film fans. He also provides his expert editing skills to postcards, posters, and all Longleaf materials.  And Mark John Cortez served a second year as our indispensable intern and volunteer, crafting dozens of creative social media posts for Longleaf accounts during festival season to keep us current and fresh with the public. Of course, Longleaf has friends throughout the museum who offer support in ways big and small, and we rely on their efforts and strength, too.

In summary, thank you, all, for your help in creating a moving and meaningful festival. We really believe that making films is making history.

Sally and Jerry, Festival Codirectors


Click here for a list of all Longleaf 2020 Official Selection films.
Click here for a list of Longleaf 2020 award winners.
Click here to see which films were “screened” as part of our
special #AloneTogether viewing event.