The Savannah College of Art and Design, or SCAD, as it’s commonly known, has an almost iconic presence in the Atlanta and broader Southeastern US as stalwart and pioneer of the promotion and integration of arts into the community. Their annual film festival is a prime example of this, and it holds the unique position of the largest university-run film festival in the US, hosting over 63,000 attendees over 8 days. Showcasing the work of professional and aspiring student filmmakers alike, the film festival also draws in major well-known actors, directors and producers from the industry, truly taking what could have been a smaller, student population event to the next level. The SCAD film festival cumulatively shows 159 films, 109 of which are short films. There are also numerous forums and educational opportunities being hosted, such as the Animation Corner and the “Wonder Women” Forum. The Wonder Women series is a particular highlight for the Executive Director of the Film Festival, Christine Routhier, as this year, the festival will feature over 50 female filmmakers from all over the world.
The screenings at the SCAD Film Festival are nothing to be scoffed at, and many films that are featured at the Festival go on to Oscar nominations and frequently, wins. This year, the films which have earned the prestigious Gala Screening spots are The Aeronauts, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Clemency, Harriet, A Hidden Life, Honey Boy, Just Mercy, The King, Knives Out, Motherless Brooklyn, Pain and Glory, Parasite, Portrait of a Lady on Fire, The Report, Seberg, The Truth, The Two Popes, and Waves. The films notably feature a unique combination of legendary actors and performers, such as Tom Hanks and Reneé Elise Goldsberry, popular stars of today, like Brie Larson and Timothée Chalamet, and new players on the field, including Noémie Merlant and Chang Hye Jin. An opportunity like being featured at the Gala Screening not only helps open up the art and performances of well known actors and directors, but also spotlight the innovation and less commonly known work of highly talented artists in search of an audience to connect with.
These events, along with many others, allow SCAD to not only showcase its highly skilled and talented students and alumni, but also the broader Atlanta and Georgia community’s contributions and significant relevance in the international industry as a whole. Although the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Film Festival is now in its 22nd iteration, these innovations and artistic steps in a new direction are what make it such an important part of the Oscar circuit, and the film industry. Where film festivals have existed for many years, SCAD’s Festival does something different because it isn’t afraid to connect the simplicity of Savannah with the complexity and advanced orbit of its art. With panels, workshops, and screenings galore, the SCAD film festival truly offers something unique and valuable for everyone and allows students and A-list professionals alike to connect over something as fundamental as it can get- humans and their stories.
The Savannah College of Art and Design is a private, nonprofit, accredited university offering more than 100 academic degree programs in more than 40 majors across its locations in Atlanta and Savannah, Georgia; Hong Kong; Lacoste, France; and online via SCAD eLearning. SCAD enrolls more than 15,000 undergraduate and graduate students from more than 115 countries. The innovative SCAD curriculum is enhanced by advanced, professional-level technology, equipment, and learning resources, as well as opportunities for internships, professional certifications and collaborative projects with corporate partners.
In 2017, the prestigious Red Dot Design Rankings placed SCAD as the No. 1 university in the U.S. and in the top two universities in the Americas and Europe. In 2019, The Rookies ranked SCAD as the Best 3D Motion Graphics School for the fourth consecutive year. Career preparation is woven into every fiber of the university, resulting in a superior alumni employment rate. According to recent studies, 99 percent of 2017 and 2018 SCAD graduates were employed, pursuing further education, or both within 10 months of graduation. For more information, visit the official SCAD blog.