Thursday, March 12, 2020

Oxford Film Festival Postponed Indefinitely Due To Coronavirus

Posted By on Thu, Mar 12, 2020 at 4:16 PM

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The 2020 Oxford Film Festival, scheduled to take place March 18-22, has been postponed indefinitely due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. “We have concluded that the only responsible decision is to postpone the 2020 festival until later in the year," says OFF board chair Sparky Reardon. "While we are heartbroken to have to make this decision, our first priority must be the health and safety of our community, our attendees, our supporters, and our filmmakers."

The annual film festival, which was scheduled to kick off next Wednesday with a selection of Mississippi films before proceeding with a gala screening of the 1990s cult classic Pump Up The Volume on Thursday, attracts filmmakers and cinephiles from all over the United States. Several Memphis filmmakers were scheduled to present their work at the festival, which maintains close ties to the Mid South filmmaking community.

Earlier today, Mississippi health officials confirmed the first case of COVID-19 had been identified in the state. The patient is an adult male from Forrest County who recently returned from a trip to Florida. There is no indication the patient has connections to the film festival, but state health officials have recommended citizens avoid mass gatherings.

Given the fluid situation, the OFF has not yet set a date for the rescheduled festival. “It is our intention to present the full slate of exceptional films, speakers and panels at a later date when the festival may be held under conditions deemed safe by governmental and health authorities,” says Reardon. 

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