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Having just completed its fifth year, the Annapolis Film Festival has become a highly anticipated and well-attended event embraced by the City of Annapolis. Nestled on the banks of the Chesapeake Bay, Annapolis is best known for its rich colonial, African-American, and naval history. As a vacation destination, it charms its tourists with many restaurants, museums, and galleries. The film festival has had an extraordinary first five years screening at unique venues in the town’s historic district. All venues are walkable within the city center and provide filmmakers with a high-quality digital presentation. Attendance last year exceeded 14,000. The Annapolis Film Festival is seeking a total of 70 films to be shown March 22-25, 2018. The festival is known for its quality slate and astrong line-up of both documentary and narrative films (both short and feature-length) from emerging and established filmmakers. We present a balanced program consisting of films with a common emphasis on storytelling excellence and/or innovative vision and cinematic artistry.In addition to our commitment to screen the newest acclaimed films and premieres, we are also interested in films with nautical and environmental themes, films highlighting diverse cultures includingAfrican American, Latino, Asian and Jewish experiences as well as LGBTQ and women-centric perspectives.For the first time we will present Jury Awards for our Best Narrative Feature and our Best Documentary Feature. Returning will be the Short Film Juried Competition with awards presented for Best Narrative Short and the Best Documentary Short. All films will be awarded for displaying exceptional creativity, originality, and skill in script, direction, acting and high-quality production values. A select number of films in each category will be nominated and judged by a jury of industry professionals. The Audience Awards in all categories will be presented as well.The 2018 Annapolis Film Festival will introduce our “Shorts Challenge” with a live pitch competition during a programming block. The winner will receive a camera/sound/post-production package to help get their short film made. For more details on this exciting new opportunity please see our website at annapolisfilmfestival.com. Beyond the screenings, the festival offers ample networking opportunities with industry and filmmaker guests, as well as top-notch panels which cover current industry topics, a Tech Talk and our popular Coffee Talks all with leading industry professionals. Filmmakers will have an opportunity to participate in these events, as well as numerous parties and receptions that provide a fun and relaxed environment to meet and discuss your work with industry colleagues.Past season guests have included iconic director, Rob Reiner (LBJ), esteemed documentarian Albert Maysles (Grey Gardens, Gimme Shelter), Waldo Salt award-winning filmmaker Matt Spicer (Ingrid Goes West), Oscar-winning screenwriter David S. Ward (The Sting), actor/director S. Epatha Merkerson (Law and Order & Lincoln), actor Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice), Rory Culkin (Gabriel) and noted speaker/writer/producer Ambassador Shabazz.As a relatively new and rapidly growing festival, the AFF plans tocontinue to strengthen the reputation of our festival by bringing topfilms to this beautiful city and to invite filmmakers to showcase globalperspectives and independent thought to a community that truly embraces the art of filmmaking. Visiting filmmakers have been thrilled with the community’s response. One filmmaker claimed, “this festival has the smartest audiences and the most community engagement we have seen on the festival circuit”.