After six years in Atlanta, the Kingdomwood Christian Film Festival is relocating to Hilton Head Island.
The four-day festival includes film screenings, workshops and symposiums for faith-based filmmakers and fans.
“The Holy Spirit told me it was time to move,” founder Audrey Thomas said. “And when you love where you’re going, you’re already guaranteed to have a good time.”
Thomas started Kingdomwood in 2008 because she was tired of seeing so much cursing, violence and sex in movies, she said. She wanted to create an event that screened films that promoted and inspired Christian teachings and values while providing opportunities to educate and encourage faith-based filmmakers.
“We wanted to create an event where filmmakers could get together to be creative, network and share their faith,” Thomas said.
This year, Kingdomwood will be Oct. 2-5 at the The Beach House Resort.
Thomas said she expects the festival to be bigger than ever this year, thanks in part to a renewed interest in Christian-based films in Hollywood.
“Studios are seeing that this is something worth buying into. The market for faith and family-rated films is growing,” said Taylor Owensby, Kingdomwood’s creative director.
Films like “Son of God,” “Noah,” and “God’s Not Dead” put up impressive numbers at the box office this year, showing that movies involving God and faith are capable of crossover appeal.
This year’s festival keynote speaker is “God’s Not Dead” star Kevin Sorbo.
Film entries for Kingdomwood don’t have to be soley focused on God, either, Thomas said, as long as they are clean and are capable of inspiring or sparking discussion.
Of the festival’s 20 or so entries so far, the selection ranges from a documentary about Irish Catholic missionaries to a short about a janitor confronted with a school shooting to a feature-length surfing movie starring Scott Eastwood.
The bottom line for a Kingdomwood film to be successful, Taylor said, is its ability to portray a positive message.
“For so long, films were portraying negative messages. People want to see hope, to see something positive, and they find that with these types of films.”
For more information about the Kingdomwood Film Festival, visit www.kingdomwoodfilmfestival.com