Ashfield FilmFest deadline approaching

For the Recorder
Published: 8/1/2019 9:41:12 AM
Modified: 8/1/2019 9:41:02 AM

The deadline to enter the Ashfield FilmFest is approaching. Submissions are due by Aug. 12. There is no entry fee. All residents of Ashfield, Buckland, or Shelburne can submit short documentary, historical, musical, or fictional films. If one does not live in these towns, all that’s required to enter is that the film be about, or set in Ashfield, or mention Ashfield in some creative way. Learn more at The films will be showed on Sept. 21 at the festival gala.

On the eve before the gala event, the Ashfield FilmFest will screen the multi-award-winning movie “Sembene!,” a look at the life and career of Ousman Sembene, the first African person to direct feature films. It is co-directed and narrated by Mount Holyoke College professor Samba Gadjigo, who will be present at the Friday night event’s post-film discussion to answer questions about his adventures with the father of African filmmaking.

The showing of “Sembene!” will begin Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. at the Ashfield Town Hall, 412 Main St. Tickets are $6 and will be available via the festival website ( and a limited supply of paper tickets will be available at Ashfield Hardware and Elmer’s Store.

During the Ashfield FilmFest gala event, the original short films will be screened and receive $200 in cash prizes in an array of categories including best documentary, best narrative feature, best youth-made film, best music video and more, plus a grand prize of $400 will be awarded to the film judged to be the best in all categories.

Everyone interested in filmmaking, Senegal, documentary films, or Africa in general is invited to the screening of “Sembene,” profiling this African freedom fighter who used stories as his weapon. Weaving segments of his most famous films with dialogue between the filmmaker and Gadjigo, the film presents an honest and fascinating profile of this ordinary man who accomplished extraordinary things.

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