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New Orleans Film Society Announces South Pitch Finalists

NEW ORLEANS (press release) – The New Orleans Film Society (NOFS) announced the finalists for the 2023 South Pitch program, set to take place during the New Orleans Film Festival and award a total of $30,000 to South-based filmmakers.

Since 2011, South Pitch has provided a unique opportunity for filmmakers from across the American South to pitch their next film production to a panel of industry professionals to gain valuable, constructive feedback on their projects in development. The program, which is free and open to the public, not only provides a platform for these important stories but also offers an opportunity to witness how
leading industry professionals evaluate proposals.

This year’s program features two tracks that will take place at the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans (CAC) Black Box Theater:

Date: Friday, November 3

Finalists and the projects they will pitch include:
ALONG THE WAY – Narrative Feature – Hannah Patterson
DETRÁS DE LA FACHADA (BEHIND THE FACADE) – Narrative Short – Juan Luis Matos
IN AN ORDERLY FASHION – Narrative Feature – Adrian Cardenas
IRRESISTIBLE – Narrative Short – Helen Peña
PEACE BE UPON YOU – Narrative Feature – Diffan Sina Norman & Carolyn Purnell
QUAKE THUNDER CRACK – Narrative Feature – Mary McDade

Date: Friday, November 4

Finalists and the projects they will pitch include:

BASKETBALL HEAVEN – Documentary Feature – Resita Cox
MISSISSIPPI MERCEDES – Documentary Feature – Hanna Miller
SEVEN ACRES AND A CHURCH – Documentary Feature – Caroline Josey Karoki & Abbey Hoekzema
THE CUBAN SUITCASE: THE SMELL OF PROGRESS – Documentary Feature – Ana Alpizar & Zoe Garcia Miranda
THE ONLY BANYA THIS FAR SOUTH – Documentary Feature – Varvara Degtiarenko
WALKER – Documentary Feature – Amy Bench & Dr. Mei Kennedy
Details on this year’s participants and their film projects are available here.

The winning pitch in each track will receive a $10,000 award, and all pitchers will receive a minimum of a $1,000 award, in addition to a travel stipend and pass to attend this year’s New Orleans Film Festival. Winners will be announced during the Awards Brunch on Sunday, November 5.

Elise McCave, Head of Film at Kickstarter, will moderate both pitch sessions, and feedback panelists will include grantors, funders, and distributors from leading film organizations. Prior panelists have represented organizations like ITVS, Firelight Media, Viva Maude, Sundance Institute, Marginal Mediaworks, and more. Panelists for this year’s event are not made public until the start of the festival.

“At the New Orleans Film Society, we believe in the power and importance of Southern stories,” said Clint Bowie, Artistic Director of the New Orleans Film Society. “And we also believe that Southern artists should be the ones telling these stories. There’s insight and nuance that come when filmmakers tell the stories that they’re closest to: films inspired by the communities they’re a part of and the regions they know best.”

“These 12 projects represent some of the most exciting filmmakers and stories coming out of the American South today,” Bowie continued, “and we’re looking forward to showcasing them during this year’s festival.”


Festival-goers can purchase an All Access Pass, good for all NOFF in-person and Virtual Cinema screenings, parties and events; or purchase individual tickets for each screening. Browse the film guide offering 130+ films at noff2023.eventive.org/films.

The in-person screening schedule will be announced on Oct. 6 at 12 p.m. CST, and screenings will take place at The Broad Theater, Contemporary Art Center New Orleans (CAC), and The Prytania Theatres, between Nov. 2-7. This year’s festival includes the return of a Main Festival Headquarters at the CAC, which will be open to the public. This festival hub will include the main NOFF box office, a merchandise store, special events and activations, and more.

Film lovers can also buy a Virtual Pass to watch all films in the lineup throughout the festival; a Six Film Pass to watch any six films virtually or in-person or buy individual tickets for each virtual screening. Students and teachers can purchase a discounted pass for access to all virtual and in-person screenings.

Individual tickets go on sale to NOFS members on Oct. 9 at 12 p.m. CST, and to the general public on Oct. 16 at 12 p.m. CST at neworleansfilmsociety.org.

New Orleans Film Society members receive $50 off of All Access passes, $3 off of in-person screening tickets, and $2 off of NOFF Virtual Cinema tickets. Become a member today and save with these great benefits! Sign up for membership here.

All festival transactions will be contactless; cash or check payments will not be accepted–– acceptable forms of payment include credit and debit cards, and Apple and Google Pay. Click here for more details.

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