Bentonville Film Festival Announces Gala Selections and Competition Films

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The Bentonville Film Festival (BFF) announced on Thursday, April 11, its film line up of gala selections and competition films for its 5th edition taking place May 7 through 11.

Joey Travolta’s, Carol of the Bells, and Haroula Rose’s, Once Upon a River, will be making their world premieres as Centerpiece Screening Selections, according to a BFF press release. 

BFF will open on Wednesday, May 8, with a screening of Tom Donahue’s documentary, This Changes Everything, at Record North (104 SW A St), the release states. 

The film features some of the following names:

  • Meryl Streep
  • Reese Witherspoon
  • Natalie Portman
  • Zoe Saldana, Rosario Dawson
  • Cate Blanchett

Two films will make their world premieres as Centerpiece Selections at the Bentonville Film Festival on Friday, May 10.

Joey Travolta’s Carol of the Bells will screen at Record North at 4:00 p.m., with Haroula Rose’s Once Upon a River screening at the Skylight Cinema (350 SW A St) at 6:30 p.m. 

Carol of the Bells stars Breaking Bad’s RJ Mitte as a troubled young man looking for his biological mother, according to the news release. 

The film stars a trio of television stars, Donna Pescow, Lee Purcell, and Donna Mills.

Based on the best-selling novel by Bonnie Jo Campbell, Once Upon a River, was described as “one of the most anticipated films of 2019” by Filmmaker Magazine, the release states. 

The film is a tale of redemption involving love and loss for a young woman who embarks on a life-changing personal odyssey along the Stark River, according to the release. 

Cast members attending the world premiere screening with Haroula Rose will include:

  • Kenadi DelaCerna
  • John Ashton
  • Tatanka Means
  • Ajuawak Kapashesit 
  • Coburn Goss
  • Sam Straley
  • Arie Thompson
  • Evan Linder

Also in the Narrative Feature Competition will be:

  • Miranda Bailey’s Being Frank
  • Emily Ting’s Go Back to China
  • Jeremy Teicher’s Olympic Dreams
  • Alex Johnson’s Saint Frances
  • Tom Quinn’s Colewell 
  • Flavio Alves’s The Garden Left Behind
  • Miranda de Pencier’s The Grizzlies
  • Amber McGinnis’s International Falls 
  • Gregory Dixon’s Olympia 
  • Ani Simon-Kennedy’s The Short History of the Long Road
  • Sara Zandieh’s Simple Wedding
  • Tchaiko Omawale’s Solace 
  • Jose Daniel Freixas’s Vandal
  • Diane Paragas’ Yellow Rose

The Documentary Feature Competition is led by Jaqueline Olive’s Always in Season, and Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan’s Pahokee, both of which won critical acclaim at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, according to the news release. 

Rebecca Stern’s Well Groomed and Katen Day’s Bamboo and Barbed Wire will also help lead the comeption. 

Also in the Documentary Feature Competition will be: 

  • Fernando Villena’s Any One of Us
  • Julie Getz’s Care to Laugh
  • Amy Goldstein’s Kate Nash: Underestimate the Girl 
  • Fanny Veliz’s Our Quinceanera
  • Katie Galloway and Dawn Valdez’s The Pushouts
  • Carl Lindstrom’s Queen of Paradis
  • Linda Midgett’s Same God
  • April Wright’s Stuntwomen
  • Leana Hosea’s Thirst for Justice
  • Linda Goldstein Knowlton’s We Are Radical Monarchs

For additional programming and talent updates, ticketing information, or general information about the Bentonville Film Festival, click here.

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