Virginia may not have the Oscars and Hollywood, but we still have a big film scene for movie buffs to check out. From foreign to western, attend one of these annual film festivals and expand your cinematic horizons.
Richmond International Film Festival—March 3-6, Richmond
The Richmond International Film Festival brings more than 120 international films (from over 20 different countries) to Virginia. This annual event is held at the Bowtie Movieland/Criterion movie theaters on the Boulevard and at the Byrd Theatre in Carytown. The films include feature films, short films, documentaries, music videos, and screenplays across every genre. Ticket prices range from $10-$235. Get TicketsNorthern Virginia International Film & Music Festival—April 21-30, Fairfax
Although only in its second year, the Northern Virginia International Film & Music Festival is already the biggest film festival in the mid-Atlantic region! This festival lasts ten days and screens over 250 films from around the world. Tickets for the festival start at only $11 for individual movie screenings, or you can purchase a VIP Super Pass and get access to every event during the NOVA Film Fest, including the parties, seminars, and Awards Ceremony, for $200. Get TicketsBANFF Mountain Film Festival World Tour—March 6-7, Charlottesville
Outdoor enthusiasts flock to the BANFF Mountain Film & Music Festival World Tour. The tour travels to important mountain film destinations all over the world, promoting films that discuss outdoor hobbies and sports, and one of the stops is at Charlottesville’s Paramount Theater on the downtown mall. The Charlottesville festival lasts two nights and shares films about skiing, rock climbing, kayaking, mountain biking, and other mountain culture. Proceeds from the festival go to the Shenandoah National Park Trust, which protects the area’s natural and historic programs. Get TicketsGI Film Festival—May 21-29, Northern VA/DC
Started in 2007, the GI Film Festival is all about military filmmaking. These are films by, for, and about our military troops and their families. This year’s event kicks off with musical act Gary Sinise and the Lieutenant Dan Band. Learn about military experiences and support American service members by attending the GI Film Festival in Charlottesville this May. Get TicketsWilliamsburg Film Festival—March 9-12, Williamsburg
Come see your favorite classic Western films at this annual festival, presented by the Williamsburg Classic Film Guild. Since 1997, the Williamsburg Film Festival has brought together fans of old Westerns for film screenings, meet and greets with the stars, and a taste of Old Hollywood not often experienced outside of Los Angeles. Guest stars for 2016 include Roberta Shore, Don Collier, Audrey Dalton, Ed Faulkner, Robert Fuller, Donna Martell, Terry Moore, and Jacqueline Scott. Get TicketsReel Abilities Film Festival—March 3-6, Richmond
Dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciated for the lives, stories, and artistic expressions of people with different abilities, the Reel Abilities Film Festival in Richmond features award-winning films about special needs individuals. In addition to films, the festival hosts discussions and engaging programs to celebrate the diversity of the shared human experience. This year’s films include Autistic Like Me, It’s All About Friends, Little World, No Ordinary Hero-The Superdeafy Movie, and The Finishers. Get TicketsFrench Film Festival—March 31-April 3, Richmond
The French Film Festival, held at the Byrd Theatre, has been bringing French cinematic masterpieces to Virginia for 24 years. The films are presented by the directors or starring actors and include Q & A sessions after the films. The movies have English subtitles and discussions are either in English or translated by an interpreter. Experience a little European culture during this cinematic weekend in Richmond. Get Tickets
Although you typically associate springtime with being outdoors, these film festivals provide culture, knowledge, and entertainment in an educational setting. Come to one of these Virginia spring film festivals to find films that ignite your imagination and teach you about fascinating places throughout the world.