deadCenter Film Festival 2021

Oklahoma Film + Music Office “Zooms In” on State’s Film Industry at 21st Annual deadCenter Film Festival

The Oklahoma Film and Music Office (OF+MO) is proud to be a returning partner of the 21st annual deadCenter Film Festival. The festival, which will be presented as a hybrid event this year, will host many screenings and events virtually as well as a limited selection of in-person events throughout Oklahoma City June 10-21, 2021.

The largest event of its kind in Oklahoma, deadCenter promotes, encourages and celebrates independent films with both the organization’s annual film festival and their year-round educational outreach via the deadCenter Institute.

Carrying over the success of last year’s model, which was hailed by Smithsonian Magazine as one of eight virtual festivals worth attending, deadCenter will feature a record-breaking lineup of more than 175 films that will screen throughout this year’s festival. Of those selections, 28 films were made by Oklahomans, including the feature film “Agnes”. Directed by local filmmaker Mickey Reece, “Agnes” was lensed in Oklahoma, and will have a special one-time only in-person screening at Oklahoma City’s Rodeo Cinema as part of the festival Saturday, June 19, at 8:00 p.m.

“As we look forward to launching this year’s festival, we’re incredibly grateful to our partners at the Oklahoma Film + Music Office who have supported us since the beginning, and like our own organization, have continued to grow, adapt and collaborate with us year after year,” said deadCenter’s Executive Director Alyx Picard Davis. “It’s an exciting time of change for both deadCenter and OF+MO, and this year’s festival will reflect that in its record-breaking programming and presentations.”

As part of the partnership with the festival, OF+MO will host the “OF+MO Zoom Series” on Saturday, June 12, which will highlight the state’s film workforce, infrastructure and education with a variety of special guests, including industry professionals, partners, educators and state leaders. The hour-long sessions will be free and open to the public via the festival’s screening portal and on deadCenter’s and OF+MO’s Facebook pages. After premiering, the panels will then be available to stream throughout the duration of the festival via those same platforms.

The Zoom Series includes:

Show Biz: The Impact of Oklahoma’s Film Industry on Local Businesses
Saturday, June 12 at 10:00 a.m. CST
Join the Oklahoma Film + Music Office for a presentation highlighting the impact of Oklahoma’s film and television industry on local businesses and learn more from Oklahoma film producers and business leaders about how companies have expanded their services to support and benefit from new revenue generated by statewide film and television production. Moderated by OF+MO Outreach and Production Manager Yousef Kazemi, this panel features Kelley Gann (President, Freestyle Creative), Kyle Kauwika Harris (Filmmaker, “Out of Exile”), Nathan Gardocki (Production Supervisor; “13 Minutes”), Jennifer Suleiman (Champion Hotels), Dylan Brodie (Production Manager, “Minari” / Associate Producer, “Reservation Dogs”) and Todd Ruffin & Greg Bollinger (Midwest Drone Productions).

Breaking New Ground in Oklahoma with Prairie Surf Media
Saturday, June 12 at 11:00 a.m. CST
With the largest soundstage in the Midwest, this presentation will highlight the leadership of Prairie Surf Media who, alongside local city leaders, are making history and breaking new ground for Oklahoma’s film and television industry. Moderated by Brandy McDonnell (Features/A&E Writer, The Oklahoman), this panel features Rachel Cannon and Matt Payne (Co-Founders, Prairie Surf Media) and Mayor David Holt (City of Oklahoma City).

Take Ten with Oklahoma Film Education – Vol. 1
Saturday, June 12 at 12:00 p.m. CST
The growth of the local workforce remains a critical component of further developing the state’s film and television industry. Join representatives from Oklahoma’s universities, colleges, tech schools and other organizations as they highlight their respective film education programs and additional ways to join the state’s film workforce. Moderated by OF+MO Outreach and Production Manager Yousef Kazemi, this panel features Rafael Barreiro (Oral Roberts University), Melodie Garneau (Oklahoma Film & TV Academy), Man Fung Yip (University of Oklahoma), Mark Scott (University of Central Oklahoma), Jeff Van Hanken (University of Tulsa) and Cori Gray (Career Tech Oklahoma).

Take Ten with Oklahoma Film Education – Vol. 2
Saturday, June 12 at 1:00 p.m. CST
The growth of the local workforce remains a critical component of further developing the state’s film and television industry. Join representatives from Oklahoma’s universities, colleges, tech schools and other organizations as they highlight their respective film education programs and additional ways to join the state’s film workforce. Moderated by OF+MO Outreach and Production Manager Yousef Kazemi, this panel features Bryan Cardinale Powell and Billy Palumbo (Oklahoma City University), Trevor Rogers (Film Education Institute of Oklahoma), Clifton Raphael (Jenks High School), Harry Wolohan (deadCenter University) and Sean Lynch, Greg Mellott and Academy Award winning producer Gray Frederickson (Oklahoma City Community College).

Senate Bill 608: Setting the Stage for New Growth & Development in Oklahoma
Saturday, June 12 at 4:00 p.m. CST
With the recent passage of Senate Bill 608, Oklahoma’s threshold to host the production of major motion pictures and television series is stronger than ever. Join our panel featuring leadership from the State of Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Department of Commerce as well as renowned film industry producers as they discuss how this new legislation will pave the way for the future growth of Oklahoma’s film workforce, infrastructure and economic impact. Moderated by Senior Vice President and Practice Leader of Production Incentives at Entertainment Partners Joseph Chianese, this panel features Oklahoma Film + Music Office Director Tava Maloy Sofsky, Secretary of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce Scott Mueller, Representative Scott Fetgatter, Senator Chuck Hall, Chris Freihofer (Freihofer Casting) and Kevin Downes (Producer; Co-Founder of Kingdom Story Company whose Oklahoma film credits include “I Can Only Imagine and the recently wrapped Lionsgate films “The Unbreakable Boy” and “American Underdog: The Kurt Warner Story”).

“We are proud to be a longstanding partner of the deadCenter Film Festival who remain steadfast in their commitment to champion independent filmmakers, particularly our local industry members who help shine a light on what Oklahomans can accomplish through commerce and creativity,” said OF+MO Director Tava Maloy Sofsky. “Similarly, our office remains committed to supporting the future of Oklahoma’s film and television industry as we move into a new era, and we value the platform to amplify the state’s workforce, infrastructure, educators and leadership who vitally contribute to the success of these industries.”

Watch now! As we count down to the 2021 deadCenter Film Festival, OF+MO is excited to share our OF+MO Film School video series, which originally streamed at the 2020 festival. OF+MO Film School provides introductory courses on film topics from some of the state’s top working film professionals. All episodes have now been released with topics such as costuming, post production, location scouting, art department and more! Watch this series on OF+MO’s YouTube page, and stay tuned for this year’s panels to be available on the platform for extended viewing once the festival wraps.

For a complete schedule of screenings and events as well as information on purchasing all-access passes, visit deadcenterfilm.org.

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About Oklahoma Film + Music Office
Created in 1979, the Oklahoma Film + Music Office (OF+MO) strives to share all that Oklahoma has to offer by welcoming filmmakers and music professionals to the state and by creating a network of support to develop Oklahoma’s film and music industries. For more information about the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program or the Oklahoma Film + Music Office, visit okfilmmusic.org.

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