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SUNY Wide Film Festival To Be Held April 9-10 At Purchase College

Award winning alumni Hal Hartley and Chris Wedge to Serve as Jury President and Executive Director respectively.

Purchase College, SUNY is has announced a distinguished panel of judges, special guests, and an esteemed keynote speaker for the SUNYWide Film Festival (SWFF) April 9 and 10. Due to Covid safety precautions, the festival's events will also be live-streamed or virtual, in addition to offering limited attendance for certain events and screenings.

SWFF was launched in 2009 as an opportunity to showcase the cinematic work of students and faculty from the SUNY system. Now in its 10th year, the festival is one of the top student film festivals in the Northeast. This is the first year it will be held at Purchase College, which is well known for its acclaimed School of Film and Media Studies. In addition to films, the festival will also hold a screenplay competition for the first time.

The judges have selected 49 finalists from across 15 SUNY colleges. For a full list of finalists, films, screenplays, and jury bios visit the festival website at

Bombshell screenwriter Charles Randolph will deliver the keynote address on April 9. Randolph was named the recipient of the Writers Guild of America West's 2020 Paul Selvin Award in recognition of his script for "Bombshell," which focuses on sexual harassment at Fox News. Randolph is known for his powerful screenplays including "The Life of David Gale" (2003), "The Interpreter" (2005), "Love & Other Drugs" (2010), and "The Big Short" (2015), which won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

Acclaimed alumni of Purchase College's film program, Hal Hartley ('84) and Chris Wedge ('81) will serve as President of the Jury and Executive Director of the festival respectively.

Hal Hartley is an American filmmaker, writer, director, producer, and composer who has made twelve feature films since 1988. Popularly associated with the American independent filmmaking scene of the early nineties, he wrote and directed such films as "No Such Thing" (2001) and "Fay Grim" (2006). Hartley has won numerous awards at Cannes and Sundance, and has had his work shown in retrospectives around the world.

Chris Wedge is an Oscar winning film director, producer, and co-founder of Blue Sky Studios. Beginning his career as a stop-motion animator, Wedge later joined MAGI/SynthaVision, where he was one of the principal animators for the groundbreaking Disney movie "Tron" (1982).

Wedge wrote and directed Blue Sky's first film, the touching short, "Bunny" (1998), which won an Academy Award for best animated short film. He went on to direct Blue Sky's first feature length film, "Ice Age" (2002), which was nominated for an Academy Award for best animated feature film, and launched one of the most successful worldwide animation franchises in history. He then directed "Robots" (2005), "Epic" (2013), and "Monster Trucks," (2017).

Judges will include distinguished individuals working in multiple aspects of the film industry including filmmaker and producer Daniel Armando; film producer Cecilia Mejia; costume designer Lisa Padovani; and director Jason Silverman. Full bios for all the judges can be found on the festival website.

Visit, for the full schedule and links to all events as they are announced.

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