Cary Theater

BEYOND Film Festival Returns to Cary for “Heroic” Second Year

Cary, NC – The Cary Theater’s original BEYOND: The Film Festival is back for its second year, with a new theme, new films and even more workshops.

Stories About Heroes

BEYOND runs from Thursday, June 20 to Sunday, June 23, 2019 at the Cary Theater, kicking off with a free outdoor screening of “Captain Marvel” at the Cary Downtown Park on Wednesday, June 19, 2019 at 7:15 PM.

The festival features short films, both narratives and documentaries, with submissions coming from around North Carolina and all across the United States, including some international submissions. This year’s theme is “heroes” and the Cary Theater’s Operations and Program Supervisor Joy Ennis said they intentionally left the interpretation up to filmmakers.

“The films are all over the place, which is great. That’s exactly what we wanted,” Ennis said. “There’s a film about a 96-year-old power lifter, there’s a film about a matador, there are some films that look at superheroes and sci-fi. The interpretations have been varied.”

From Thursday to Saturday, there are four blocks of shorts with sub-categories Tormented Heroes, Everyday Heroes, Fantasy/Super-Heroes and Unlikely Heroes. At each screening, audiences will vote on their favorite shorts, and those will get played in one final block on Sunday, June 23, 2019.

One big change over last year is there are more filmmaking workshops that last year, which include topics such as screenwriting and getting an independent movie sold and distributed.

“Our screenwriting workshop last year was very popular so we wanted to offer more classes like that,” Ennis said. “It’s also a great way to reach out to additional local filmmakers to lead our workshops.”

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Behind the Scenes

Through the workshops and the variety of short films shown, Ennis said the goal is to appeal to all audiences and visitors.

“Each day, we’re trying to reach out to different groups. There’s something for everyone,” Ennis said. “We want people to come downtown and understand that there’s something here to appeal to all backgrounds, all ages.”

To appeal to different demographics and audience tastes, there will also be screenings of other films in addition to the blocks of shorts. These range from a documentary about people fighting to cure adolescent cancer to mainstream Batman hero stories.

The festival also has a screenwriting competition, and Ennis said this year saw far more screenplays being submitted than last year. The winning screenplay will be read aloud by actors, all curated and directed by the Cary Playwrights Forum on Saturday, June 22 at 2 PM.

“From the very beginning, we wanted to highlight the ‘behind-the-scenes’ of filmmaking, and the screenplay is the foundation of the entire film,” Ennis said.

You can find full details on BEYOND: The Film Festival online or on our calendar.

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Story by Michael Papich. Photos courtesy of the Town of Cary and Hal Goodtree.