Festival Visions: Bentonville Brings New Perspectives to Northwest Arkansas

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Located betwixt Oklahoma’s Cherokee Nation and kitsch Missouri family fun destination Branson, Northwest Arkansas’s Bentonville is one of the great cultural destinations of the SEC region. In addition to its thriving theaters, museums and local artist community, the city has announced itself as a burgeoning cinema hub, thanks to the emergence of the Bentonville Film Festival.

Founded in 2015 by activist and Oscar winner Geena Davis in partnership with producer and businessman Trevor Drinkwater, the annual June festival is the centerpiece event for the year-round BFFoundation, providing a safe space and exhibition venue for emerging creators and visual storytellers hailing from underrepresented backgrounds—sounds familiar!

But don’t worry! We’re not being paid off by Big Arkanite to say nice things. Next week, Film Independent kicks off Festival Visions, a Film Independent Presents summer spotlight series featuring—online and for free—some of the best indie films programmed in the past year at our favorite regional film festivals.

First up: recent Bentonville Film Festival (BFF) hits Seasick and Liquor Store Dreams. Both films are available to watch (again: for free!) in Film Independent’s virtual screening room next week, May 23- 24. See Events for more details.

To learn a little bit more about the festival and said vision, we sat down with the great Drea Clark—producer, podcaster and BFF programmer (not to mention Film Independent Spirit Awards aide-de-camp.) Here’s the conversation...

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