Veteran American actress Geena Davis (Thelma & Louise, Beetlejuice) is starting her own campaign – The Bentonville Film Festival (BFF).
The soon-to-be annual gala will be held in Bentonville, Arkansas, is designed to promote women and minority filmmakers and will be the only competition in the world to guarantee theatrical distribution for the winners.
The BFF is being co-hosted by WalMart, AMC, Coca-Cola, and ARC Entertainment, and the advisory board will consist of a bevy of Hollywood stars, including Natalie Portman, Julianne Moore, Randy Jackson, Eva Longoria, Angela Bassett, Samuel L. Jackson, and Shailene Woodley.
The festival will screen approx. 75 films in competition, and the films that win the Audience, Jury Selection and Best Family Film Awards will get a distribution agreement with a guaranteed theatrical release in at least 25 AMC theaters.
“I have been an advocate for women for most of my adult life,” Geena Davis said in a statement. “The Bentonville Film Festival is a critical component of how we can directly impact the quantity and quality of females and minorities on screen and behind-the scenes.”
Submissions will be accepted starting Jan 15, and the selected films will be announced in March.