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Submissions Rolling in for Inaugural Boone Film Festival, Deadline Extended To Mid-March

By Jesse Wood

Submissions are starting to roll in for the inaugural Boone Film Festival, according to one of the festival’s co-founders Jason Berry, owner of Footsloggers.

“It’s starting to look pretty good,” Berry said on Friday.

Jan. 15 was the original submission deadline, but with this being the first-ever festival, Berry said a “learning curve” exists and the extension of the deadline is proving to be a smart move to allow for more submissions and more cooperative weather during the event itself.

From left: Bill Ireland, Russ Hiatt, Eitan Abramowitz and Jason Berry.
From left: Bill Ireland, Russ Hiatt, Eitan Abramowitz and Jason Berry.

Berry said that about 10 films have been submitted so far with several more folks considering projects to submit. Berry was enthusiastic about the diversity of the films that have been submitted as well. Off the top of his head, Berry noted that two or three cultural films and a mountain biking film are among those submitted. The latter film’s trailer is currently on the BFF’s Facebook page.

“Diversity is coming along. It’s as good as we could have hoped,” Berry said. “The more diverse the films, the more interesting the festival.”

The new deadline for the film festival is March 18 and the date of the film festival is to be determined some time in the middle of April. Even thought the date has changed, Berry said he hopes to be able to secure another a date to present the festival in I.G. Greer on the campus of Appalachian State University.

The film festival is still holding once-a-week committee meetings and is now partnering with Wonderland Woods Productions, a talented production company that is based in Boone. Wonderland Woods Productions is a managing partner with the BFF.

“There’s a lot of talent within those three guys,” Berry said of the Wonderland Woods Productions co-founders, Paul Halluch, Eitan Abramowitz and Jerry Sebastian.

When the festival was announced last year, Berry told High Country Magazine that it was a festival to celebrate the uniqueness of the High Country and was open to folks of all ages.

“This film festival is for the community, its people, its places, its uniqueness. I now there are thousands of people out there with videos saved on their computers or even phones. So many people have a GoPro in these days, or a phone that can take great videos. These individuals have inspiring stories just sitting on their computers. This festival is for anyone, of any age, with any interest to share their perspective of the world with others.”

Berry is co-founder of the festival along with Russ Hiatt, a Watauga County Schools teacher, and Bill Ireland, a local soccer coach.

For more information about the festival, see below or click here and here. 

Details About Boone Film Festival, Awards and Submissions


There are three categories of film to be judged:

  • Appalachian Culture
  • Appalachian Adventure
  • Appalachian Environment


  • Best In Show Appalachian Region Film, $1,000 cash prize
  • Best Culture Film, $500 cash prize
  • Best Adventure Film, $500 cash prize
  • Best Environment Film, $500 cash prize *Officially sponsored by ASU Environmental Sciences Dept*
  • Best Youth Film Submission, $250 cash prize PLUS a scholarship prize to work with professional Wonderland Woods Productions on skills development


See the FAQ and Rules and Regs pages for details on submissions.