THE PBS ONLINE FILM FESTIVAL RETURNS… | Louisiana Public Broadcasting
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The Webby Award-nominated PBS Online Film Festival will return for a ninth year on July 13, 2020 and will feature 25 short-form independent film submissions from multiple public media partners and PBS member stations including Louisiana Public Broadcasting. This is the eighth straight year an LPB submitted film has made the national festival. Among those featured in this year’s festival are independent filmmakers and LPB nominees Gabriel Savodivker, Aaron Fisher and Jonathan Bullington. The PBS Online Film Festival is part of a multi-platform initiative to increase the reach and visibility of independent films, and to provide a showcase for diverse storytelling that inspires and engages. “Louisiana is known internationally for its food and music. Today, our filmmakers are also increasingly gaining a reputation for producing thought-provoking and quality content,” said Jason Viso, LPB’s Director of Programming & Content. “We are proud to support these filmmakers and help them amplify their stories to a larger audience.”

Beginning July 13, the Festival will be available via and PBS digital platforms including As in previous years, all 25 films will be available to stream on YouTube and Facebook. Viewers are encouraged to vote for their favorite film to win the “Most Popular” award, and a distinguished panel of eight jury members will select their favorite film of the festival for the “Juried Prize.”

LPB’s 2020 Festival entries:

To Infinity A dying father helps his young daughter carry an imaginary mission into space in order to reunite her with her mother, which leads to an unimaginable revelation. The Filmmaker: Gabriel Savodivker Gabriel Savodivker was born in Los Angeles, California, but raised primarily in Argentina. In 2002, Savodivker graduated from the Art Institute of Miami with a degree in Film Direction. Once he returned to Hollywood, Savodivker interned and became a production assistant with several production companies. In 2011, he wrote and directed the award-winning short film THE CROSS. In 2013, Savodivker directed a claustrophobic horror short film titled BLIND DATE. In 2017, he completed his most celebrated work: TO INFINITY which has garnered several awards for best short film around the country and has been shown in prestigious film festivals. Currently, Savodivker is working on a psychological thriller for his feature directorial debut.

Preston’s Gone Preston Thornton, an Army veteran, was experiencing paranoid delusions at his home. After calling the Veteran’s Crisis line, deputies arrived to transport Preston to a hospital, and tragedy followed. This film asks how a veteran ended up dead and what could have been done to prevent his death. The answers lead to a broken mental health care system that’s failing Louisiana’s most vulnerable residents. The Filmmakers: Aaron Fisher & Jonathan Bullington Aaron Fisher (Director & Filmmaker) is an award-winning documentary filmmaker and editor based in New York City. His previous work at | The Times-Picayune has been recognized by the Association of Healthcare Journalists and the Louisiana-Mississippi Associated Press Broadcasters and Media Editors. His short documentaries have screened at the Brooklyn Film Festival, New Orleans Film Festival, DC Shorts, and the Chicago International Music and Media Festival. Jonathan Bullington (Producer) is currently an investigative reporter with the Louisville Courier Journal. Jonathan previously worked as a lead investigative reporter for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans.

The PBS Online Film Festival has become a popular annual online event, generating more than six million streams over the course of the festival’s history. The festival also received a nomination in the 2015 Webby Awards category for Online Film & Video: Variety (Channel).

For updates on the festival, follow #PBSFilmFest on Twitter or visit

About Louisiana Public Broadcasting Since 1975, Louisiana Public Broadcasting has been the public television network for the state of Louisiana with stations in Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe and Shreveport. LPB is also affiliated with WLAE-TV in New Orleans. In addition to its award-winning documentaries about the history and people of Louisiana, LPB is dedicated to helping children throughout the state develop their literacy, math and science skills through its numerous educational outreach programs.

About PBS PBS, with nearly 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and digital content. Each month, PBS reaches over 90 million people through television and 30 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. Decades of research confirms that PBS’ premier children’s media service, PBS KIDS, helps children build critical literacy, math and social-emotional skills, enabling them to find success in school and life. Delivered through member stations, PBS KIDS offers high-quality educational content on TV – including a 24/7 channel, online at, via an array of mobile apps and in communities across America. More information about PBS is available at, one of the leading dot-org websites on the internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile and connected devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.

LPB Contact: Colleen Spillane, Louisiana Public Broadcasting, - 225-767-4453