The 19th Big Sky Documentary Film Festival rolled out its lineup on Thursday for Feb. 18-27, with in-person screenings at venues in Missoula, and a virtual festival available to anyone, anywhere Feb. 21-March 3.
A total of 50 nonfiction feature films and 95 shorts from around the world will play.
Executive Director Rachel Gregg listed off highlights such as a high number of movies relevant to Montana and the West, adventurous titles (including Antarctica), a series of Indigenous short films, quirky offerings like “Cat Daddies,” and more.
This far along into the pandemic, Gregg said, “we’re starting to see some passion projects” that filmmakers have saved until the timing was right.
“They’re very excited that we’re having in-person screenings of their films,” she said, and many plan on visiting.
When deciding to move back into theaters, the organizers talked about “how much is lost when we don’t have that collective experience,” she said. The reactions of others (even under masks), and the sense of civic engagement is much-needed, she added.
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After an online-only festival in 2021, movies will screen at the Wilma, the Zootown Arts Community Center