12th Annual Macon Film Festival Kicks Off with Fulldome Film Debut at Museum of Arts and Sciences July 20th

Staff Report From Middle Georgia CEO

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017

Macon Film Festival attendees will enjoy an unprecedented experience for the city at the festival's kickoff event this year with the screening of a new fulldome film, Stardancer's Waltz, at the Museum of Arts and Sciences' Mark Smith Planetarium on Thursday evening, July 20, at 7:45 p.m.

Stardancer's Waltz will show multiple times during the evening with a reception throughout and will be followed by the festival's ever-popular after-party, also taking place at the Museum. Tickets for the Macon Film Festival as well as a special Opening Night Screening and Party Pass are available at www.MaconFilmFestival.com.

The 10-minute fulldome animated film by Savannah-based independent filmmaker Diana Reichenbach was inspired by a recorded concerto movement included on the 2016 released album by R.E.M. founding member Mike Mills, "Concerto for Violin, Rock Band and String Orchestra," featuring Grammy-nominated violinist Robert McDuffie. Mills and McDuffie are both from Macon.

"I'm thrilled to be presenting in the city of Macon," says Reichenbach. "We are hoping that this event will spark interest amongst Georgia-based artists to create artistic projects for the dome."

A professor of animation at Savannah College of Art and Design, the filmmaker will present her work followed by Q&A sessions after each screening that night and will conduct workshops for the community and film industry professionals the next day at the Museum.
"Emerging technology and the uniqueness of the Planetarium dome will allow us to offer our patrons a unique film experience on Opening Night," says Julie Wilkerson, president of the Macon Film Festival. "We are celebrating the sphere as a form of artistic expression and expect this to be the beginning of a great partnership with the Museum of Arts and Sciences."

Currently the Museum of Arts and Sciences is partnering with the Macon Film Festival to develop an annual Fulldome Festival hosted in the Museum of Arts and Sciences' Mark Smith Planetarium. That initiative will be announced in July of 2017 and fully implemented in July of 2018.

The Museum's Planetarium features the industry's leading planetarium projection technology--the Konica Minolta Super MediaGlobe II--plus a 44-foot dome, the largest in Central Georgia or within a 100-mile radius of Macon.  

"We are excited about the premiere of Stardancer's Waltz," says Museum of Arts and Sciences Executive Director Susan Welsh. "Thanks to the financial support of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Museum was able to commission Diana Reichenbach to create a fulldome animated film to complement the music of Mike Mills and Robert McDuffie. We hope the resulting multimedia artistic experience will serve as an example of how artists can collaborate to create new immersive forms of artwork for a fulldome venue."

Following the opening night's festivities, films programmed expressly for the festival's 12th annual audience will be screened daily at downtown Macon's Cox Capitol Theatre, Douglass Theatre, Theatre Macon and the Macon-Bibb County Convention and Visitors Bureau during the 4-day event, with special screenings and celebrity guest appearances throughout. Additionally, 56 films from all over the U.S, plus several international countries, will compete in categories including Music, Documentary, LGBT, Narrative Feature, Narrative Shorts, Southern and Student Shorts.

Surrounded by a rich musical and Southern culture, the Macon Film Festival celebrates independent films while promoting filmmaking for entertainment, inspiration, education and economic development.
For more information about Reichenbach's and other workshops, the complete screening schedule and tickets, visit www.MaconFilmFestival.com.