FilmQuest Film Festival Brings Hundreds of Filmmakers to Provo | This Friday News, sports, jobs


Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

Viewers will watch a range of short films during the FilmQuest Festival taking place at the Velor Live Music Gallery in Provo on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Starting October 29th, the streets of downtown Provo may have a few more dining and entertainment options.

The 2021 FilmQuest Festival will hold its 8th annual festival starting Friday and ending on November 6th. While most locals may not even know what this is, the 200-plus filmmakers planning to attend do know.

FilmQuest, based in Velor on University Avenue, is one of the largest genre festivals in the country and one of MovieMaker Magazine’s Top 50 film festivals for 2021 that are worth entering.

While some of the productions may not be suitable for all residents, such as those who dislike horror and science fiction, there is something for everyone.

“It’s a real thing. Come and visit us, ”said Jonathan Martin, the festival’s founder. “I’m not trying to build the next Sundance (film festival), but I know we can bring millions of dollars to the downtown economy, but I need the local support.”

Isaac Hale, Daily Herald

Members of the press and viewers listen to the creators of the television series “The Outpost” during a panel discussion as part of the FilmQuest Festival taking place on Tuesday, September 11, 2018 at the Velor Live Music Gallery in Provo. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

As international directors come to Provo, Martin says the final frontier of involvement will come from the people of Provo and across Utah County.

“It took Sundance 10 years to get going,” said Martin. “These things don’t just happen overnight. Most festivals don’t last longer than four years. “

Martin said these filmmakers and their crew love coming to Provo because it reminds them of the hometowns they grew up in and that most of these professionals leave Hollywood to get a sense of nostalgia.

“They love to visit the residents. They may not come from the Utah Valley culture, but they love it here, ”said Martin.

The 2021 personal line-up will be led by Tim Blake Nelson, Angela Bettis and David Arquette, all of whom star in Ghosts of the Ozarks. Netflix’s The Old Ways, The Free Fall with Andrea Londo and Shawn Ashmore, and the winner of the Slamdance Best Documentary Code Name: Nagasaki are also among the highly anticipated options.

“We were able to hold our postponed Festival 2020 last May as one of the first in the world in person by requiring all participants to have a vaccination or a rapid test,” said Martin. “By putting the safety of our guests first, we were able to create a pleasant atmosphere that is shaped by the best genre cinema in the world and an unforgettable experience for everyone involved.”

The event features full-length films, short films, documentaries, workshops, laboratories and social gatherings.

FilmQuest is also capitalizing on the rise of virtual screenings at film festivals by incorporating a hybrid virtual / personal approach that also gives it the opportunity to expand its historically large line-up.

Special guests at the festival who will attend workshops include Bryan Woods (A Quiet Place), CAA Executive Julia Glausi and David Wardle, Senior Vice President of Saban Films. Events include a pitch session with MovieMaker Magazine through their MovieMaker Production Services program.

“As festivals have changed and adapted in a COVID world, we wanted to investigate what advantages a virtual component can bring and what this means not only for the festival, but also for the filmmakers,” said Martin. “This enabled us to expand our official selection program to include a selection of films that are still in the competition as well as special workshops and lounges that are only accessible via our virtual portal.”

As an extension of the festival’s mission to create new opportunities for emerging voices in the genre, the festival also announced new partnerships with ALTER and DUST of Gunpowder & Sky, Dread Central and MovieMaker Magazine.

“In an increasingly competitive marketplace, we are constantly looking for new partners and employees to increase the opportunities for our filmmakers and guests to see their work and advance their careers. ALTER and DUST are the world’s leading destinations for genre short films, and we are delighted that they are the presenting sponsor of our short film program this year, ”said Martin.

“Dread Central, along with its Dread distribution platform, supports our mission to bring these great feature films to audiences, while our partnership with MovieMaker Magazine will help filmmakers achieve their dreams through their Production Services program that drives the market only through quality enriched. Content move forward, ”he concluded.

FilmQuest has won the Utah Best of State Film Festival award for four consecutive years. FilmQuest takes place every fall in Downtown Provo.

“With hundreds of guests from across the country and the local area, FilmQuest is seeking to partner with restaurants in Downtown Provo to receive exclusive discounts for pass holders with their VIP FIlmQuest badge. Current restaurant partners have offered festival guests who present their FilmQuest Pass in exchange for payment a 10% to 20% discount on meals, ”said Quinn Peterson of Downtown Provo Inc.

This has proven to be a great motivator for restaurants and eateries as festival guests choose to dine in the area throughout their festival stay, Peterson said.

For more information on FilmQuest 2021, including the full lineup and schedule, please visit or contact Martin at [email protected]


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