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Tori Collatos, Julie Mitchell, John F. Kaiser III, Jay Jones, Markus Baldwin, and Ashton Kantor discuss program ideas for debuting a film festival in Corsicana in fall of 2020.

An informal meeting was held July 26 to discuss developing initial plans for a film festival in Corsicana.

The event was hosted by Markus Baldwin and Julie Mitchell, owners of Outside the Lines Creative Studios. Also in attendance were members of the local arts community and Ashton Kantor of the Corsicana Main Street and Tourism Office. The group sat down with Tori Collatos, Program Coordinator of the USA Film Festival, to get insight on the inner workings of film festivals.

Baldwin and Mitchell, having previously worked with the film industry in Los Angeles, moved to Corsicana two years ago and absolutely fell in love with the town.

“There's a lot of films shot here,” Baldwin said, regarding the recent influx of productions that have been filmed in Corsicana for the last few years. “So why not show off the town?”

“It's such an artsy feel downtown,” Baldwin continued. “It feels tailor-made to host a film festival, and get visitors to shop locally and support local businesses.”

Baldwin believes that hosting a film festival in Corsicana is a great way to not only introduce new people to Corsicana, but also get them to come back, while bringing additional revenue to the city.

In these initial stages of planning, the group is considering having the Corsicana Film Festival (name subject to change) focus on films that are shot in Texas, with an emphasis on recognizing and awarding these filmmakers and their efforts. Filmmakers will be able to submit their films, and have it judged by a panel. Winning selections will be viewed by festival attendees throughout various venues in downtown Corsicana.

However, Baldwin acknowledges that for a first year event, they will need to start small.

“We know enough artistic people, but we also need a lot of help,” Baldwin said.

Baldwin recognized that the success of the event is dependent on the enthusiasm and support of the community, and encourages people to get involved.

“We can't do this on our own, and this experience is open to anyone who wants to help,” Baldwin said.

The Corsicana Film Festival plans a scheduled premiere in the fall of 2020.