Baldwin Chiu accepts the Hoka at the 2016 Oxford Film Festival for Best Mississippi Documentary.

Baldwin Chiu accepts the Hoka at the 2016 Oxford Film Festival for Best Mississippi Documentary.

 The winning films will be announced at the awards ceremony held during the annual film festival on Saturday, February 9.

All winners receive a cash prize and our Hoka award. Some of the winners receive other in-kind gifts.

Other awards selected from programmer and jury feedback include the Lisa Blount Memorial Award for Acting, the Alice Guy-Blaché Filmmaker Award which receives a $1,000 cash prize from the Louis M. Rabinowitz Foundation, the Pat Rasberry Emerging Mississippi Filmmaker award also comes with a cash prize courtesy of Dr. Eric Springman and Kat Phillips of Kat Scratch Films LLC. The Reel South Best Southern Film also gets an opportunity to screen on PBS. These special awards are only eligible to attending filmmakers.

Mississippi film winners will receive a one year membership to OxFilm Society which includes use of film equipment free. The Mississippi Music Video musician or band also will win $1,000 worth of recording time from the studio of Oxford-based RNN Studios (Nathan Robbins). 

Taproot Audio Design will provide 3 days of post-audio production for the narrative and documentary short winners

The Artist Vodka award of $10,000 will be awarded to the contest winner.

The Documentary Feature winner will receive $2,500 of editorial consultation from Editor Joe Shapiro. The prize winner will also receive $250 sponsored by Reba Greer.

Panavision will provide $10,000 of equipment rental to the narrative and documentary feature winners. 

The Mississippi Feature prize of $250 is awarded in memory of Mike Overstreet.

The UM Department of Modern Languages sponsors $250 for best Foreign Language Film.

Award for the Student Filmmaker award of $250 is sponsored by Michael Johannson.

Damon Burks sponsors the $250 prize for best LGBTQ Feature.

Best Narrative Feature prize of $250 is sponsored by Steven and Gay Case.

The Best Script winner will be awarded $1,000.

Best Music Doc, Fest Forward: Animation, Fest Forward: Experimental, MS Music Video, LGBTQ Short will each be awarded $100.

2019 Oxford Film Fest Jury

Narrative Feature Jury

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Milan Chakraborty is a 15-year veteran of the film industry after a career as an auditor/Certified Public Accountant. He started his career at Warner Bros. ("WB") and New Line Cinema ("NLC”). In 2008, Milan left the big studios to focus on independent films, and has since produced 13 features MY FRIEND DAHMER directed by Marc Meyers, released in November 2017. He was recently an Executive Producer for the Sam Levinson directed film, ASSASSINATION NATION, which premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.



Aaron Hillis was praised by Brooklyn Magazine as one of "The 100 Most Influential People in Brooklyn Culture." His life is a never-ending film festival, following a creative path through programming, exhibition, distribution, filmmaking, finance, journalism, and owning a video store. His writing has appeared in The Village Voice (RIP), VICE, Variety, Vanity Fair, and other outlets that don't begin with V. In 1997, Aaron saw Spice World three times in the theater with no regrets.



Kathie Fong Yoneda is a story consultant specializing in development of live action/animated film, television, literary, and web projects. A former exec at Disney, Touchstone, Island Pictures, and Disney TV Animation, she teaches workshops worldwide. Her clientele includes several award-winning screenwriters and novelists. She is the author of The Script-Selling Game (2nd edition).


Documentary Feature and Music Documentary Jury

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Scott Barretta is a writer/researcher for the Mississippi Blues Trail, the host of Highway 61 on Mississippi Public Broadcasting, and teaches sociology at the University of Mississippi. He was the co-producer of the Joe York-directed documentary “Shake ‘em On Down” about bluesman Mississippi Fred McDowell, which received OFF's award for Best Music Documentary in 2017 and was a nominee for a Southeast Emmy award. In 2016 he received the Mississippi Governor’s Arts Award for Mississippi Heritage.

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Nelson Kim wrote and directed the award-winning feature film SOMEONE ELSE (2016). The movie was hailed by the LA Weekly as “a tense, unexpectedly moving psychological study of a man’s unraveling” and by VCinema as “a highly intriguing debut.” Nelson teaches film at Wagner College in Staten Island, where he co-directs the Film and Media Studies Program, and writes film criticism for Hammer To Nail, Senses of Cinema, and other websites. He lives in Brooklyn



Brighid Wheeler has been a willing slave to the film festival world for most of her adult life. Having run the gamut from volunteer to Head Lesbian In Charge (AKA Festival Coordinator), she currently serves as the Shorts Programmer for the Indie Memphis Film Festival, a role that embraces her love of the short form and the power it has to transform lives. Brighid has served on countless juries at festivals across the country, but considers being a part of a singular LGBT jury one of the greatest honors in her career.



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Malcolm Ingram (Director / Producer) While on assignment for Film Threat magazine, Ingram met filmmaker Kevin Smith (Chasing Amy, Dogma, Clerks), who soon became his mentor. Smith financed Ingram’s first feature film, “Drawing Flies,” starring rising talent Jason Lee. Shot in the summer of 1995, the comedy found success on the Festival circuit and was released on DVD. Ingram’s next feature, “Tail Lights Fade” featured a high profile, talented cast including Denise Richards, Jake Busey, Elizabeth Berkeley and Margot Kidder. The film, a delirious action-comedy-drama, was released by Trimark/Lions Gate in 1999. His third film, the documentary “Small Town Gay Bar,” also executive produced by Kevin Smith, has screened at over 100 film festivals around the globe.


Andrea Krauss

Andrea’s professional background in television, film and video with a concentration on independent film spans over two decades. Producing credits include: Dalila Ali Rajah’s short film “Secret & Toys” with Quentin Lee directing, “Grown This Way” and “Cock N’ Bull2” directed by Nathan Adloff and “Cinema Conversations with Stephen P. Jarchow”, a docu series for Here Television.She currently resides in O’ahu, Hawaii and enjoys casting for Hawaii Five-O and Magnum PI reboot.



Maitland McDonagh is the founding editor of 120 Days Books, which reprints vintage gay erotica. It has been profiled in Rolling Stone and Gay City News and is now an imprint of Riverdale Avenue books. She has written for outlets ranging from Film Comment and The New York Times to Culture and is the author of books that include The 50 Most Erotic Films of Time and Broken Mirrors/Broken Minds: The Dark Dreams of Dario Argento. McDonagh earned an MFA at Columbia University and has appeared in many documentaries on film and erotica-related topics.


Shorts Jury

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Jack Barbera is a Professor Emeritus in the English Department at The University of Mississippi. In addition to literature courses, he taught several different film courses at the University, and directed the first two film theses in the Honors College. Barbera has lectured on film at scholarly conferences, and has published essays on the films Tomorrow, The Seventh Seal, and A Streetcar Named Desire, and on the uses of the Vertigo Shot.  

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Gabriel Furman of Queens, NY is an actor, writer, producer and comedian who  has performed at UCB and The Pit. Gabriel started off his career as a professional Breakdancer and DJ in the underground NYC dance scene. He also wrote, produced and starred opposite Academy Award Winner Melissa Leo in the Award Winning Short Mother’s Day.



Edward Douglas has been reviewing a wide variety of movies for 17 years for an equally varied number of online and print outlets. For 13 of those years, he was the film critic for, where he wrote a weekly movie preview called The Weekend Warrior. 


Fest Forward/Music Video/Student Jury



Katherine Fields is Professor of Art and the Chair for the Studio Art and Art History Division of the Center of Excellence for the Visual and Performing Arts at Houston Community College in Houston, TX. As a Professor, she prioritizes and integrates technological innovations into her studio arts curriculum. Since August of 2016, as one of the very first in the Houston region, Fields incorporated the early applications of Virtual Reality technology, Tilt Brush on HTC Vive, into her Drawing course curriculum and has expanded the curriculum to incorporate Oculus Rift’s Quill and Masterpiece VR applications with the assistance of HCC’s Center for Learning Innovation, Central Region, Instructional Innovation & Learning Initiatives. Fields is also President and CEO of PrintMatters, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit arts organization in Houston, Texas that organizes and implements the internationally recognized PrintHouston Biennial.



John Rash is a filmmaker, photographer, and video artist who has worked both creatively and as an educator for more than 15 years in both the United States and China. Rash is originally from North Carolina and earned his M.F.A. in Experimental and Documentary Art from Duke University. John currently works as an Instructional Assistant Professor and Producer / Director for the Southern Documentary Project at the University of Mississippi.



Grahame Weinbren is a media artist and filmmaker. He completed six full-scale interactive cinema installation projects between 1983 and 2006, which are exhibited in museums and galleries internationally.Weinbren is credited as filmmaker on a number of widely screened and broadcast documentaries, including "George" (HBO, 2000), about an autistic 12 year old and "Umbrellas," about Christo's Umbrellas artwork for Japan and California (for Maysles Films, winner FIFA 1993). He has worked with software engineer Isaac Dimitrovsky on the development of LimoHD, an early low-cost full-quality high definition cinema technology. He teaches in the graduate division of the School of Visual Arts in New York, and has held visiting positions at Harvard University, the Slade School of Art, and the Brauschweig Hochschule für Bildende Kunst. He is the senior editor of the Millennium.


Mississippi Jury 


Katherine Dieckmann

Writer-director Katherine Dieckmann’s most recent feature is Strange Weather (2016), starring Holly Hunter, which was shot in and around Jackson, MS. Other films include Motherhood (2009); Diggers (2007); and A Good Baby (2000). Dieckmann began her career as a journalist and has directed music videos for bands including R.E.M. and, most recently, Sharon Van Etten. She was also the originating director on Nickelodeon’s groundbreaking serial “The Adventures of Pete & Pete.” Dieckmann is Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia University’s School of the Arts Film Program, where she teaches Screenwriting.

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Lee Caplin

Lee Caplin is founder and chairman of Picture Entertainment Corporation, co-owner of Keystone Studios and author of the book The Business of Art. In Oxford, however, he is best known as the Executive Producer of the literary estate of William Faulkner.

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Elizabeth Weitzman

Elizabeth Weitzman is a journalist, film critic, and the author of more than two dozen books for children and young adults. She currently covers movies for the Wrap, and has written about film for the New York Times, the New York Daily News, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, and many others. Her most recent book is Renegade Women in Film & TV, a new history of kickass ladies onscreen and behind the scenes.