< Boston Film Festival

Our Mission

The Boston Film Festival endeavors to present a program of films that entertain, enlighten and educate the audience. We are dedicated to supporting evolving filmmakers by providing a forum to showcase their artistic vision. A variety of awards are presented annually, i.e. Best Film, Performance, Documentary, and Lifetime Achievement. New categories have been added to laud productions that influence green industry living in addition to the unique "Mass Impact Award" given to a filmmaker whose movie illuminates a social issue that positively affects humanity.

The festival offers audiences first-hand access to the filmmakers and filmmaking process during the Q&A sessions with the Director and talent following every screening. The BFF continues its commitment to being a valued member of the city's cultural community contributing to the desirability of residing and working in the Bay State. Further, a rich history of programming illustrious films and featuring top actors elevates the international visibility of the region via publicity.

The Committee

  • Robin Dawson
  • Rebecca Marks
  • Kim Cooper
  • Matthew Giordano
  • Nancy Eckersley
  • Kahlil Olmstead
  • Joe Russo
  • Gina Zicarelli
  • Elizabeth Duff
  • Laura Yellen
  • Vicky Oleskey
  • Shauna McCarthy
  • Annika Von Rosenvinge
  • Peggy Delaney
  • Austin Stack
  • Jessica Todd
  • Kayla Burton
  • Malachi Moore


  • Jennifer Heffernan
  • Nancy O'Brien
  • Deb Fernandes
  • Laurie Mann-Strenge
  • Craig Najjar
  • Tim Hayes
  • Donnetta Campbell
  • Thomas Makowski

Our History

The 33rd Boston Film Festival took place Sept. 21-24, 2017. The program was culled from a vast number of quality films submitted for review and consideration. A schedule of feature, documentary, short and animated films were presented. A questions and answer session followed each premiere with the director, producers, writers and actors.

A remarkable assembly of established filmmakers and talent attended the 2017 BFF. Audiences were given first hand access to the filmmaker’s experience to make their flick during the Q&A panel. There were cutting edge movies by emerging filmmakers were shown as part of the educational component geared toward students.

Renowned author producer Casey Sherman (“Boston Strong,” “The Finest Hours”) presented his Tales of Suspense One Man show as part of the film festival’s Conversations Spotlight series. Sherman, an award winning journalist and international bestselling author, has been called one of the "greatest storytellers in America today." The audience learned the thrilling behind the scenes stories of “The Finest Hours,” and “Patriot’s Day.”

International press covered the red carpet daily. Notable talent attended such as Anne Heche, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Olivia Culpo, Mike Vogel, Barkhard Abdi, Chris Matthews, James Keach, and New England Patriot’s player Danny Amendola among others. Documentaries presented included wide ranging topics that are informative, critical, and emotive.

The World Premiere of “John Hume in America” Opened the film festival. During a period of political instability, it is a timely film that examines steady leadership and international co-operation through interviews with President Clinton, President Carter, Prime Minister Tony Blair, Bono and Tom O’Neill about the peace efforts of the Nobel Prize recipient John Hume. British director Maurice Fitzpatrick was joined by Tom O’Neill, and TV journalist Chris Matthews for a panel moderated by Boston Globe columnist Kevin Cullen.

Another current documentary presented was the World Premiere of “What Haunts Us” from Director Page Goldberg Tolmach and Kennedy Marshall. The film delves into the surprising truth behind the unusually high number of suicides among male students from Tolmach’s high school class in South Carolina. What she uncovers, is the ongoing sexual abuse of students by a teacher and the complicit inaction of the administration.

Award-winning filmmaker James Keach directed the emotional hopeful documentary “Augie” that chronicles the life of Augie and Lynne Nieto following his diagnosis of ALS. Refusing to surrender to the disease, Augie is veracious in his objective raising millions to fund the research for identifying a cure. It is an inspirational story of resolve and love.

The feature films screening at the 33rd Boston Film Festival included drama, true-life, historical, comedy and philosophical genres. The film “Damascus Cover” directed by Daniel Berk and based on the book by Howard Kaplan made its World Premiere at the film festival. Jonathan Rhys Meyers received the Best Actor honor which was given to him during the question and answer panel. Also, the film took home the top awards for Best Film and Best Director.

A special presentation of a TV series pilot was a new showcase in this year’s program. NBC’s “The Brave” starring Anne Heche and Mike Vogel screened at the Calderwood Pavillion. Entertainment Reporter Jackie Bruno moderated a panel with the actors.

The short films segments are an audience favorite each year. This year included outstanding stories. The variety of topics were created by international directors, Hollywood veterans, students as well as local filmmakers. An extensive screening process for the shorts category takes place. The final arrangement is thoughtfully programmed offering an interesting collection of films.

The films were screened at the AMC Boston Common Theatre with a few showing at the Calderwood Pavillion and the Boston Center for the Arts. Celebrations each evening showcased some of Boston’s finest cuisine including the Avery Bar at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, Legal Seafoods, Aggassio’s in the famed North End along with a party at The Revere Hotel which hosted the actors and filmmakers.

The 33rd Boston Film Festival hires college interns contributing to the educational process that is vital for graduates. Students represented many local institutions; Emerson College, Boston University, Northeastern University, Boston College, Suffolk University and UMass Boston .

The Presenting sponsor was Union Point. Leading Sponsors included The Hollywood Repoter, NBC Boston, A&E, USA Network, Revere Hotel, Dav El|Boston Coach Chauffeured, Transportation Network and Depasquale Venutres

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