Rewind: The 2015 Savannah Film Festival


The 2015 Savannah Film Festival might be over, but it’s hard to forget its final days — the talented stars, engaging screenings, packed theaters, incredible awards and constant applause.

Meg Ryan received this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award and made her directorial debut with the screening of ‘Ithaca.’ After the showing, the entire attending cast took the stage to answer questions from the audience. The panel ended with a standing ovation from the room.

This year, the star-studded Gala Screenings weren’t the only must-see films. More than 20 documentaries screened and included panel discussions with the brainpower behind the films. Some of the top stories shown included producer Kristin Davis’s and composer Jack Douglas’s “Gardeners of Eden”; SCAD’s very own “Ovation for Oscar”; and, on the last day, the awe-inspiring "He Named Me Malala" screened, spreading chills and hope throughout the audience.

Different chills occurred Friday night with this year’s continuation of the After Dark Series. The line of people eager to enjoy the thrilling stories trailed outside and wrapped around the block. The series showcased the heart-racing “Room,” “Bram Stroker’s Dracula” (which SCAD sound design professor David Stone worked on), and the darkly twisted “Goodnight Mommy.”

Elizabeth Olsen walked the red carpet on closing night before the highly anticipated screening of ‘I Saw the Light.’ After the applause died down, Olsen and writer, director, producer Marc Abraham discussed their work with the audience.

The festival continued its legacy of celebrating the spirit of the film industry, sharing beautiful stories worth telling. Although this year’s event has come and gone, we all look forward to what the next holds. 

Flashback Friday: Winners of the 2014 Savannah Film Festival


With the 18th annual Savannah Film Festival coming to a close, we wanted to take a look back at the winners of last year's festival. Fifty-five films competed for more than $80,000 in cash and prizes. Below are the winners of the three student awards.

Student Awards

  • HBO Films Student Competition Award 2014 — "Sweet Corn," a 20-minute dramatic comedy about a stubborn old farmer who takes extraordinary measures to save his corn field and ends up with some surprising results.
  • Best SCAD Student Competition Award — "Southsouthwest," a 14-minute drama about a photo enthusiast tormented by local bullies who faces a test of courage his ailing grandfather's camera is stolen and placed at the top of a fire tower.
  • Silver Screen Society Award — "Southsouthwest"

2015 Savannah Film Festival Kicks Off With Stars and Screenings


The 18th annual Savannah Film Festival hosted by SCAD is underway, celebrating creativity in film with exclusive screenings and discussions with industry professionals. The red carpet and opening night reception welcomed actress Olivia Wilde and director Reed Morano ("Meadowland"), Vasant and Champa Patel ("Meet the Patels"), director Hank Bedford ("Dixieland") and many others.

After a screening of the striking and emotional film "Suffragette," director Sarah Gavron and producer Alison Owen participated in a Q&A session with the audience as part of the Savannah Film Festival Conversation Series. Prior to a screening of her film "Meadowland," Wilde received the Spotlight Award at the Lucas Theatre for the Arts.

On the second night of the festival, actress Saoirse Ronan was welcomed to the red carpet prior to a screening of her new film "Brooklyn." After the show, The Hollywood Reporter's Scott Feinberg moderated "An Evening with Saoirse Ronan" and a Q&A session with the audience.

The opening weekend events are just a prelude to the exciting experience the rest of Film Fest has to offer. The schedule for upcoming events can be found on the Film Festival website.

18 Things About the Savannah Film Festival


The 18th annual Savannah Film Festival is finally here! From Oct. 24-31, industry professionals from all fields of the film, television and digital media businesses will participate in panel and Q&A discussions alongside film screenings. Here are 18 fun facts about the festival.

  1. The first Savannah Film Festival launched in 1998.
  2. The festival is hosted by SCAD every year.
  3. More than 1,000 films have screened at the festival since it began.
  4. All films screen out of two historic theaters: The Trustees Theater and Lucas Theatre for the Arts. In addition, some features screen at the SCAD Museum of Art.
  5. The Trustees Theater originally opened in 1946. The theater operates year-round as a large venue for the performing arts department, in addition to hosting lectures, live performances, concerts and films.
  6. The Lucas Theatre was built in 1921 by Arthur Lucas and architect C.K. Howell. Lucas owned more than 20 theaters across the South, but the Lucas Theatre in Savannah is the only to bear his name.
  7. The festival has honored more than 70 award-winning film industry professionals, including Ellen Barkin, Aaron Eckhart, Liam Neeson, Michael Douglas, Woody Harrelson and Emmy Rossum.
  8. More than 50 films screened during the festival have gone on to receive Oscar nominations.
  9. Last year, The "Docs to Watch" series launched, focusing on must-see documentaries. The series continues this year with nine titles.
  10. The festival has welcomed over 500,000 patrons and guests to SCAD and Savannah.
  11. More than 50,000 attended last year's festival.
  12. There are 118 films screening this year.
  13. As part of the annual competition screening event, 85 films will compete to win more than $80,000 in cash and prizes.
  14. There are more films produced and directed by women than men being shown at this year's festival.
  15. This year's Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Meg Ryan, makes her directing debut with the film "Ithaca."
  16. Olivia Wilde, this year's Spotlight Award recipient, will make her next on-screen appearance in the drama "Meadowland," scheduled for release this month.
  17. Alfie Allen is this year's Rising Star Award recipient. Last year's recipients were Asa Butterfield and Analeigh Tipton.
  18. Volunteer students staff the festival, providing excellent opportunities for networking within the film industry.

10 Cool Things You Should Know About SCAD FASH


The new SCAD FASH museum brings a momentous cultural addition to the heart of Midtown Atlanta. The inaugural exhibition, “Oscar de la Renta,” features more than 80 garments by the late designer and Peter Copping, the creative director de la Renta hand-picked to be his successor. Many of the looks on display are on loan from celebrities such as Taylor Swift, Sarah Jessica Parker and Oprah Winfrey, as well as de la Renta’s closest friends and family members. But that’s just the beginning of the SCAD FASH experience.

Read on for 10 more fascinating details about the museum.

  1. Come for the fashion, stay for the film: SCAD FASH is unique in pairing two of modern culture’s most prevalent fascinations: fashion and film. The museum will screen some of the world’s best fashion-focused flicks on an ongoing basis, and for each exhibition, SCAD will commission an exclusive accompanying film. For “Oscar de la Renta,” SCAD FASH’s state-of-the-art Film Salon (featuring a 90-inch plasma display) is showcasing “Ovation for Oscar.”
  2. Even the walls are works of art: SCAD alumna Whitney Stansell (M.F.A., painting, 2008) and her husband Micah Stansell worked together to design and install the multimedia works that frame the“Oscar de la Renta” exhibition. The installation features yards upon yards of fabric in a series of undulating cloth walls, lit in color and projections in beautiful botanical motifs and sparkling compositions that create a paper-lantern effect, adding a subtle sense of movement and energy to the garments.
  3. It’s a teaching museum: SCAD FASH is directly connected to 27,000 square feet of academic studio and classroom space dedicated to SCAD’s top-ranked fashion programs. Within the space, students have access to the most advanced technologies and resources, preparing them for careers in the world’s billion-dollar fashion industry. SCAD students and alumni also have a myriad of opportunities to share their work at SCAD FASH through design showcases, fashion shows, and exhibitions.
  4. Attention, learners of all ages: It’s not just students of SCAD who study and learn at SCAD FASH. K-12 classes are invited to visit the museum for a one-of-a-kind experience. Educators have access to SCAD’s award-winning curriculum guides with exercises customized to each exhibition and mapped to National Visual Arts Standards to share with their students.
  5. Climb the stairway to heavenly views: Every SCAD FASH visitor enters the museum by the elegant Grand Staircase leading to a magnificent terrace that offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the Atlanta skyline. Inspiration for the entrance’s design was drawn from Hong Kong and Lacoste, France to pay homage to SCAD FASH’s connection to the university’s global community.
  6. The interiors are tailor-made:  SCAD FASH includes many custom-made touches that reflect the latest in architectural and design prowess. The state-of-the-art features include Terrazzo floors consisting of marble, quartz, granite and glass; walls detailed with everything from wood paneling to fabric to copper to Venetian plaster; and custom rough-hewn wood shelving in the Film Salon.
  7. Take home a custom keepsake: Through SCAD FASH 300, visitors have a chance to expand their art collection and support the university’s mission of educating future leaders in fashion, film, and fine art. For the current “Oscar de la Renta” exhibition, SCAD commissioned Atlanta artist and SCAD graduate Lucha Rodriguez created a print inspired by the intricate patterns and dynamic use of color in de la Renta's work. These exclusive works of art are available for purchase in the Film Salon.
  8. Become a quick study on all things Oscar de la Renta: Also available for purchase is the new Rizzoli book, Oscar de la Renta: His Legendary World of Style, by André Leon Talley. Designed and prepared for press by SCAD, the volume is a work of art in itself and includes Talley’s recollections of his dear friend’s life and legacy, as well as personal essays by Anna Wintour and SCAD President Paula Wallace.
  9. You can look, and yes, please touch: SCAD students and faculty are invited to use the newly refurbished Fashion Resource Library that offers an up-close, tactile learning experience. The library gives students direct access to an extensive garment study collection consisting of fabric swatches, snaps, buttons, and threads, as well as a set of skins and leather samples donated by Michal Kors.
  10. Now that’s vintage: The SCAD FASH Study and Conservation Lab houses selections from the SCAD Museum of Art’s permanent collection of 4,500 fashion garments, accessories, and photographs. Many of these items, some of which date back to the 16th century, will be featured in future SCAD FASH shows. Through scheduled appointments, SCAD FASH guests are able to view items from the collection to deepen their understanding of how garments are constructed.

Click here to request more information or apply to SCAD.

Savannah Film Fest lineup and honorees announced


The wait for the announcement of this year's Film Fest honorees is finally over! Meg Ryan will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award; Olivia Wilde will receive the Spotlight Award; and Alfie Allen will receive a rising Star Award. There will also be a special "An Evening with Saoirse Ronan" following a screening of her film "Brooklyn."

As part of the Conversation Series, director Marc Abraham and actress Elizabeth Olsen ("I Saw the Light"), director Catherine Hardwicke ("Miss You Already"), director Sarah Gavron and producer Alison Owen ("Suffragette"), and composer David Lang ("Youth") will participate in moderated discussions.

The following gala screenings have been added to the lineup:

  • Dixieland
  • Ithaca
  • Legend
  • Meadowland
  • Spotlight

The Signature Series films — a curated selection of premiere films that will conclude with an in-depth discussion with representatives of the film — have also been announced to include:

  • Coming Through the Rye
  • Dead of Winter: The Donner Party
  • Ek Harzarchi Note (1000 Rupee Note)
  • He Named Me Malala
  • Jasmine
  • Krisha
  • Mia Madre
  • One Day in Auschwitz
  • Return to Nuke 'Em High: Vol. 2
  • Song of Saul
  • Tab Hunter Confidential
  • The Prophet
  • Touched with Fire

More details, tickets and passes are available for purchase online, by telephone at 912.525.5050 or in person at the Trustees Theater, located at 216 E. Broughton St., Savannah, Georgia.

The 2015 Savannah Film Festival is almost here


The annual SCAD-hosted Savannah Film Festival is coming to town, opening on Saturday, Oct. 24 with a screening of “Suffragette,” the drama inspired by the early 20th century campaign of the suffragettes’ fight for women’s right to vote. The 18th annual festival — held in downtown Savannah — will take place from Oct. 24-31. The first wave of films confirmed to show at the festival include the following:

  • Brooklyn
  • I Saw the Light
  • Krisha
  • Mia Madre
  • Miss You Already
  • Room
  • Son of Saul
  • Touched With Fire
  • Truth
  • Youth

The additional lineup — including the Docs to Watch, After Dark Series and Competition Screenings — will be announced on Thursday, Oct. 1 where additional tickets and passes will be available for purchase online, by telephone at 912.525.5050 or in person at the Trustees Theater, located at 216 E. Broughton St., Savannah, Georgia.

Coming this fall to SCADshow


Built in 1986 as the Academy Theater and then acquired by SCAD in 2014, SCADshow plays host to aTVfest and other SCAD Atlanta events. The 13,000 square-foot building features two stages with a total of 560 seats and made its debut at the 2014 aTVfest.

The fall programming schedule has been released, which includes these signature series:

SCAD Creativity, Design and Innovation Series
  • Brings world-class artists, designers and thinkers to celebrate art, design, creativity and innovation
  • This year's guests include Welby Altidor, Dr. Brian Greene, Kathy Supove and Anab Jain
SCAD Cinema Circle
  • Showcases essential classic films every student should see on the big screen
  • Features post-show discussions hosted by SCAD professors
  • The Fashion Documentary Series include "Bill Cunningham New York," "Dior and I" and "Iris"
SCAD Unplugged
  • Presents some of today's best singer-songwriters in an intimate, unplugged setting
  • Guests include SZA and Son Little

For more information and updates on events, visit

Watch me whip, watch me nae nae, watch me SCAD


Things got crunk at the Fall 2015 Orientation when hip-hop sensation Silentó took to the stage and performed his viral hit "Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)" at the Savannah Civic Center. His performance closed out the warm welcome given by SCAD President and Founder Paula Wallace, and alumnus Zach Parish (B.F.A., animation, 2007).

Just before the performance, President Wallace announced the new university initiative #WatchMeSCAD, inviting incoming students to post a video on social media explaining why their accomplishments should be "watched" throughout the 2015-16 academic year. Select students will be documented at various upcoming SCAD events, and videos of their journeys will be shared through SCAD's social media channels.

You can watch Silentó's full performance right here.

Welcome to SCAD, class of 2019! Your creative future starts here.

Hero image courtesy of SCAD. Video by Associated Press, commissioned for SCAD.

SCAD FASH: Off the red carpet and into Atlanta


Have you heard the great news, fashionistas, fashion designers and enthusiasts? In October, SCAD Atlanta will open the doors to the first distinguished southern fashion museum: SCAD FASH.

Here in this tribute to style and craft, expect international fashion exhibitions, films and lectures available to students and the public. It even grants the rare opportunity to engage with one-of-a-kind garments created by the world’s leading fashion houses, as well as looks from the SCAD permanent collection, including designs by Saint Laurent, Oscar de la Renta and Givenchy.

Situated in one of the country’s largest metropolitan areas, the museum is connected to our main building in Atlanta at 1600 Peachtree St. With an extension of 10,000 square feet, the museum will add a public gallery space, fashion conversation lab and a media library for educational film and digital presentations to the existing 27,000 square feet of academic studio space dedicated to our fashion students. As one of the largest fashion museums in the United States, SCAD FASH will enhance and engage the visual design perspectives of students and the public.

The inaugural exhibition, ‘Oscar de la Renta,’ celebrates the house of the late Oscar de la Renta. It's not quite the same exhibition that premiered in Savannah; this Atlanta presentation includes more. It will again showcase garments from the mid-1960s through the present, including gowns on loan from former first lady Laura Bush, Taylor Swift and Oprah Winfrey, but the expansion includes select garments by Oscar de la Renta’s new creative director Peter Copping.

Bonus: the exhibition will screen the film, “Ovation for Oscar,” which debuted at the Marché du Film at the Cannes Film Festival. Created by our alumni and students, the short documentary provides an intimate look at the making of a major museum exhibition honoring the famous artist.

Future programming at SCAD FASH will include praised exhibitions such as ‘i feel ya: SCAD + André 3000 Benjamin,’ and ‘Art x Fashion,’ an exploration of the relationship between art and design. Laurie Ann Farrell, executive director of SCAD museums and exhibitions, oversees all programming.

Need we say more? We'll see you at SCAD FASH.