The Atlanta Film Festival & Creative Conference (ATLFF) announced that format of the 2020 event will shift to drive-in & digital screenings and virtual educational events. 

The 44th edition of ATLFF, and the 10th annual Creative Conference will take place, Thursday, September 17 – Sunday, September 27, 2020. 

“The Atlanta Film Festival’s commitment to providing a platform for filmmakers from around the world to showcase their work spans more than four decades,” said Christopher Escobar, executive director of ATLFF. “Providing a spotlight on talented and often under-represented filmmakers, as well as enriching educational experiences, during the annual event remains a pillar of our organization’s mission.” 

“However, as 2020 has shown us, nothing is more important than the health and well-being of our filmmakers, attendees, staff and volunteers. When presented with the opportunity to pivot to a virtual format with select drive-in screenings, it became obvious that this adjustment was the only way to achieve our goals this year.”

The Atlanta Film Festival is the annual centerpiece of educational and enriching film programming that is provided year-round by its parent organization, the Atlanta Film Society (ATLFS).

The annual film festival and educational conference traditionally take place each spring with in-person events and screenings but was postponed and adjusted due to precautions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 10th annual Creative Conference, a five-day series of educational events, remains a key part of ATLFF’s programming and will take place virtually. The festival will again host some of the top professionals in the entertainment industry to share their latest ideas, innovations and observations.

Earlier this year, ATLFF announced the lineup of creative works, feature-length and short films selected from a record-breaking 8,500+ submissions for the 2020 event. 

The announced 148 selected works included a mix of narrative and documentary feature-length films, short films and creative media. A number of these works were planned world premieres. Though ATLFF intends to present the lineup as announced, films are subject to change and the final schedule is forthcoming. 

In addition to the full lineup of Creative Conference events and a final schedule of film programming, announcements about special guests and Marquee screenings will be shared on the festival’s website as they are confirmed.

“In the last decade, ATLFF’s attendance has more than tripled to approximately 30,000 attendees over the 11-day festival,” said ATLFF Programming Director Alyssa Armand. “This growth is undeniably due the talent we are honored to showcase through film, the outstanding filmmaking community that comes together to present resourceful educational workshops and, of course, the unwavering support of passionate Atlantans.” 

“While we will miss seeing many attendees in-person this year, we are immensely proud and excited to present the same quality of film and events to a virtual audience in our beloved city and across the country.”

The modified format of this year’s festival will allow audiences in Atlanta and beyond to safely enjoy screenings from a diverse slate of approximately 150 filmmakers over 11 days. 

Drive-in screenings will primarily take place at The Plaza Theatre (1049 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30306) and Dad’s Garage (569 Ezzard St SE, Atlanta, GA 30312), with additional venues to be announced. 

Health protocols and social distancing will be followed to ensure safe and comfortable events for all attendees. 

Additionally, ATLFF will present a slate of films and selected works through a digital platform for the first time. Providing accessibility to audiences across the country, ATLFF has partnered with Eventive to host virtual film screenings.

To stay up-to-date, please visit and follow the festival on social media via Facebook (@atlantafilmfestival), Twitter (@atlantafilmfest) and Instagram (@atlantafilmfestival).

(Photo: Courtesy of Atlanta Film Festival + Creative Conference)

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