At a time of global challenges to peace, film fest educates and inspires
ORLANDO, Fla. (August 18, 2023) – Continuing its mission to use creative media as a catalyst to inspire and educate people to initiate positive change in their local communities and worldwide, the Global Peace Film Festival (GPFF) celebrates its 21st anniversary this year. GPFF will once again employ a hybrid format to deliver a robust program of thought-provoking films and art exhibits to people all over the world.
Starting on Tuesday, Sept. 19 and running through Saturday, Sept. 23, a selection of feature length and short films will be presented in person at locations in Winter Park and Orlando. These films highlight themes such as civil rights, environmental justice, ethics, human rights, immigration, LGBTQ+, music, social justice, voting, wellness and wildlife. By design, GPFF is programmed to intersect with the International Day of Peace (United Nations), September 21.
In years past, this unique festival has brought up to 7,000 filmmakers and filmgoers from all walks of life to Central Florida, inspiring them to take action in their daily lives and to leave the world a more peaceful place than they found it. GPFF continues this tradition with a full in-person program as well as virtually through online feature, documentary and short film screenings, panel discussions and art exhibits.
Like last year, there will be both a ticketed and a free way to watch the virtual films that will be available from Monday, Sept. 25 through Sunday, Oct. 1. Both ticketed and free films will be accessible at the GPFF website – as will the filmmaker interviews and information about the in-person events.
Passes and individual film tickets are now on sale at peacefilmfest.org. Tickets for in-person films at the Winter Park Public Library and Rollins College are $10 each. Patrons may purchase a $150 Festival Pass that provides access to all films in person including the Opening Night film or a $100 pass that includes all films except Opening Night as well as other ticket and pass options.
The Festival’s opening night film to be screened at Enzian Theater on Tuesday, September 19 at 6:00pm is The League, a film that celebrates the dynamic journey of Negro League baseball’s triumphs and challenges through the first half of the twentieth century.
Every year, the GPFF encourages and programs work from local Florida filmmakers and diverse audiences. This year’s program includes a total of 37 films, 21 of which directed by women, as well as the premier screening of FusionFest’s MYgration Films, where local filmmakers tell personal stories of how their heritage has shaped them.
Other Orlando-based films include Crosses in the Dust, Evan Ever After, Halls of Power, Marching Forward, Overdose and Oppression, Shattering the Gender Matrix and We Support You. GPFF also welcomes back Festival alumni returning with new films: Opening Night film The League (Sam Pollard), 2020 Chaos and Hope (June Beallor), Agora: Six Stories of Resilience in Athens (Sam George), Crosses in the Dust (Christine Kane), A Good Day (Julie Bayer Salzman), Halls of Power (Janay Joseph), In Search of Resolution (Robert E. Frye), Living Wine (Lori Miller), Marching Forward (Lisa Mills), OnBoard: and The Story of Black Women on Boards and Versailles ’73: American Runway Revolution (Deborah Riley Draper). A complete list of films can be found online at peacefilmfest.org.
Joining GPFF’s programming are three distinctive official events:
- NELSON MANDELA THROUGH THE LENS OF PETER MOREY, a photography exhibition by renowned South African photographer and Nelson Mandela’s personal photographer in the last years of Mandela’s life will be on view at CityArts, at 39 S. Magnolia Ave. in downtown Orlando September 21 through October 15. For more information, visit peacefilmfest.org/cityarts/.
- GPFF works in collaboration with visionary Orange County Public Schools arts educators to present the Student Peace Art Exhibit, on display in the Orange County Administration Building September 18-29. The exhibit gives students the opportunity to discuss and reflect upon conflict resolution and peace — whether in their own lives or events in the news. All students who submit artwork receive recognition; a jury of art teachers and invited guests award the best work that is then published in a calendar to further teach peace and highlight the students’ artwork. The theme for the 2023 exhibit is “The Road to Peace.” Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings is scheduled to attend the exhibit closing reception on September 29th.
- On Saturday, Sept. 23 at 2 PM, the Timucua Arts Foundation will host Chopin. I Am Not Afraid of Darkness followed by a pianist’s performance and discussion about the film.
- Also on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 12 Noon, GPFF will screen Sew to Say at the Winter Park Library simultaneously with the Lunenburg Doc Fest, in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada. The simultaneous screening will be followed by a panel in both places, live and via Zoom.
Said Founder and Festival Director Nina Streich, “There is nothing quite like gathering as a community to watch amazing films. What sets the Global Peace Film Festival apart is that we look for films that inspire the audience not just to enjoy the experience but to do something about what they’ve seen, do something to help make the world a better place.”
About the Global Peace Film Festival
Established in 2003, the Global Peace Film Festival (GPFF) uses the power of the moving image to further the cause of peace on earth. From the outset, the GPFF envisioned “peace” not as the absence of conflict but as a framework for channeling, processing and resolving conflict through respectful and non-violent means. People of good faith have real differences that deserve to be discussed, debated and contested. GPFF works to connect expression – artistic, political, social and personal – to positive, respectful vehicles for action and change. The festival program is carefully curated to create a place for open dialogue, using the films as catalysts for change.