Our sponsors provide vital support that enables the Chesapeake Film Festival to bring exceptional films, filmmakers and programs to the Eastern Shore. In return, sponsors receive benefits such as passes to the festival, priority seating, and prominent mention in promotional materials and festival program.


$7,500 and above — Festival Producer
• Festival Producer may introduce a selected film or sequence of films.
• Brand prominent on screen and signage at all film screenings and receptions.
• Brand/name included in all printed materials and on social media.
• Brand and/or name included on the Festival trailer and website.
• 10 all­‐access passes, with priority seating, for Festival films, receptions, and opening and closing parties.
• Full-­page ad (8” X 5”) in Festival program.
• 2 season tickets to the 2019 Reel Gems, the winter/spring 2019 film series (6 films)

$5,000-$7,499 — Festival Director
• Brand prominent on screen and signage at all film screenings and receptions.
• Brand and/or name included on the Festival trailer and website.
• Brand/name Included in all printed materials and on social media.
• 8 all­‐access passes, with priority seating, for Festival films, receptions, and opening and closing parties.
• Full­‐page ad (8” X 5”) in Festival program.


Select a film or reception to sponsor by placing a check next to your choice on the attached list.

$2,000-$5,000 — Reception Sponsor
• Brand and/or name included on the Festival trailer and website.
• Brand/name in Festival program next to reception.
• Brand/name on screen at the Festival.
• Brand/name Included in printed materials and on social media.
• 4 all­‐access passes to the Festival films, receptions and opening and closing parties.
• Half-­page ad (4” X 5”) in Festival program.

$1,000-$2,000 — Film Sponsor
• Brand and/or name included on the Festival trailer and website.
• Brand/name in Festival program next to your film.
• Brand/name on screen before film or sequence of shorts.
• Brand/name Included in printed materials and on social media.
• 2 all-­access passes to the Festival films, receptions and opening and closing parties.
• Quarter‐page ad (2” X 2.5”) in Festival program.

Download the sponsorship form.

For more information, please contact Karen Footner at 410-745-5494 or executivedirector@chesapeakefilmfestival.com.

What can I sponsor?

Below, a list of films accepted to date for the 2018 Chesapeake Film Festival. A complete list will be available after our June 15 submission deadline.

Select your favorite film or reception to become a Sponsor of the Chesapeake Film Festival. (Film and Reception Sponsorships are not exclusive.)


Opening Night: New Chefs on the Block directed by Dustin Harrison-Atlas
Thursday, October 11 at the Avalon Theatre, Q & A.

Synopsis: Two chefs in DC struggle to open and maintain their first restaurants. Against all odds, one becomes Bon Appetit Magazine’s Best New Restaurant in America. The other is forced to redefine success. Starring Aaron Silverman of Rose’s Luxury and Frank Linn of Frankly…Pizza. Featuring legendary chefs and restaurateurs Danny Meyer, Michel Richard, Mike Isabella, and Washington Post food writer Tim Carman. (2018 96 minutes)

Opening Night Reception, Taste of Mid-Shore’s Best Chefs & Food Emporiums
Thursday, October 11 at the Academy Art Museum, 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Closing Night: Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story – directed by Alexandra Dean
Sunday, October 14 at the Avalon Theatre, Q&A

Synopsis: When Nazi U-Boats torpedo a ship carrying 83 school children during World War II, Hollywood movie star Hedy Lamarr decides to exact revenge. At night, after shooting her scenes on set, she works on a secret radio system that will allow the Allies to torpedo Nazi U-Boats with deadly accuracy. Her sketches remain ideas until a chance encounter with an eccentric composer enables her to transform them into useful technology. The secret communication system she creates is groundbreaking and eventually changes the course of history. (2017 120 minutes)

Special Guest: Arthur McTighe, nephew of George Antheil, Hedy Lamarr’s partner in the development of frequency hopping.

Closing Reception & Awards Ceremony
Sunday, October 14 at the Academy Art Museum, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm


Five Seasons: The Gardens of Piet Oudolf – directed by Tom Piper
Synopsis: Revolutionary landscape designer Piet Oudolf is known for designing public works like New York City’s popular High Line and the Lurie Garden in Chicago’s Millennium Park that redefine our conception of gardens as works of art in themselves. This gorgeous, meditative documentary immerses viewers in his work, taking us inside Oudolf’s creative process. (75 minutes)

The Gardener – directed by Sebastien Chabot
Synopsis: The Gardener is a documentary reflecting on the meaning of gardening and its impact on our lives. At 86, influential gardener and horticulturalist Frank Cabot recounts his personal quest for perfection at Les Quatre Vents, his 20-acre English-style garden and summer estate that has become one of the world’s foremost private gardens. Created over three generations, it is an enchanted place of beauty and surprise, a horticultural masterpiece of the 21st century. Through the words of Cabot and his family, and of gardening experts and writers, the film looks back at this remarkable man’s artistic philosophy that gave birth to one of the greatest gardens in the world. (88 minutes)


Moving Stories – directed by Rob Fruchtman, produced by Cornelia Ravenal and Mikael Sodersten
Synopsis: Six dancers from an acclaimed NY company travel the world, working with youth who’ve experienced war, poverty, sexual exploitation, extreme prejudice, and severe trauma as refugees. In India, they work with girls rescued from gender violence; in Romania, with Roma kids from one of Europe’s worst slums; in South Korea, with North Korean escapees; and in Iraq, a gifted young dancer fighting to survive.  As they prepare to perform in public in an impossibly short time, all experience surprising transformations, unlocking feelings and stories in wellsprings of creativity.  (85 minutes)

Boko Haram: Journey from Evil – directed by Beth Mendelson
Synopsis: Boko Haram: Journey from Evil, shows not all is lost in Nigeria, despite the country being mired in conflict and nearly a decade of suffering. Indeed, the spirit and determination of ordinary Nigerians – committed to education, family, community, and peace – remain very much alive. (55 minutes)

The Elephant’s Song – directed by Lynn Tomlinson
Synopsis: The Elephant’s Song tells true and tragic tale of Old Bet, the first circus elephant in America, as recounted in song by her friend the old farm dog. Their story is portrayed in colorful, handcrafted animation, created frame by frame with clay-on-glass animation, where oil-based modeling clay is spread thinly on a glass sheet and moved frame-by-frame like a moving finger painting. Old Bet the elephant sings the choruses, which are animated with oil pastel on video frames printed from archival films, paintings, and photographs. Animated and Directed by Lynn Tomlinson. Written by Lynn Tomlinson and Sam Saper. Music and lyrics by Sam Saper, Instrumentals and arrangement by Trucker Talk. Sound Effects by Elsa Lankford. Sound recorded and engineered by Shea Springer. (7:40 minutes)

Into the Okavango – directed by Neil Gelinas for National Geographic
Synopsis: A passionate conservation biologist brings together a river bushman fearful of losing his past and a young scientist uncertain of her future on an epic, four-month expedition across three countries, through unexplored and dangerous landscapes to save the Okavango Delta, one of our planet’s last pristine wildernesses. (88 minutes)

Saving Sea Turtles: Preventing Extinction – directed by Michelle Gomes and Jennifer Ting
Synopsis: Narrated by renowned scientist Dr. Sylvia Earle, the film tells the larger natural history story of the Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle and how humans pushed a healthy population to the precipice of extinction and are now slowly helping it to recover. From the beaches of Massachusetts to Mexico, Texas and Georgia, this documentary highlights the collaborative work that is being done to save a species from extinction. It highlights “the largest airlift of an endangered species anywhere in the United States, quite possibly the world.” (69 minutes)


In the Executioner’s Shadow – directed by Maggie Burnette Stogner
Synopsis:  In the Executioner’s Shadow takes a penetrating look at the consequences of the death penalty through three powerful stories –  the rare perspective of a former state executioner who comes within days of executing an innocent person; a Boston Marathon bombing victim who struggles to decide what justice really means; and the parents of a murder victim who choose to fight for the life of their daughter’s killer. As the battle to overturn capital punishment comes to a head in the U.S., this provocative film challenges viewers to question their deepest beliefs about justice. (2018 55 minutes)

Panel discussion led by filmmaker Maggie Burnette Stogner, co-producer/author Rick Stack, and Vicki Scheiber, who lobbied to eliminate the death penalty in Maryland

The Sentence –  directed by Rudy Shank
Synopsis: Cindy Shank, mother of three, is serving a 15-year sentence in federal prison for her tangential involvement with a Michigan drug ring years earlier. This intimate portrait of mandatory minimum drug sentencing’s devastating consequences, captured by Cindy’s brother, follows her and her family over the course of ten years. (2018 85 minutes)


Environmental Shorts (each under 20 minutes)
Saturday, October 13 at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. Films accepted to date:

An Unlikely Partnership – directed by Chris O’Leary
Synopsis: The clean energy revolution is well underway in the United States. This is the story of how a wind farm in Muenster, Texas has contributed to the local community, and how Procter & Gamble uses nearly 80% of the electricity from that wind farm to power its fabric and home care plants in the U.S. and Canada. (5:32 minutes)

Pavel: I Protect Tigers – directed by Martin Stirling
Synopsis: Pavel Fomenko, man of the wilderness and Head of the Rare Species Conservation Unit at WWF Russia’s Amur branch, is a tiger protector. The short film, shot in the snowy landscape of the Russian Far East, follows Pavel in his conservation work both out in the wilderness and at the Animal Diseases Diagnostics Centre in Ussurysk, where he undertakes a forensic examination of a dead female tiger. (3:37 minutes)

Commissioned as part of WWF UK’s I Protect Tigers campaign explores Pavel’s relationship with the natural world and his passion for protecting the endangered Amur tiger.

Tidewater – Written/Directed by Roger Sorkin in association with American Resilience Project
Synopsis: With 14 military installations spread across 17 local jurisdictions, the Hampton Roads area of Virginia has the highest concentration of military assets in the country, where 1 in 6 residents are associated with our nation’s defense. It is also an area most vulnerable to sea level rise. Homes, schools, hospitals, and families are struggling to keep up with the effects of rising waters, while the military and surrounding municipalities are working towards solutions to strengthen national security and enhance economic prosperity. (2017 42 minutes)

Panel Discussion includes Judy Rolfe, associate producer and Caitlin Werrell and Frank Femia at the Center for Climate & Security.

Restoring the Clearwater – directed by Jon Bowermaster, an Oceans 8 Film
Synopsis: The Sloop Clearwater was built to save New York’s Hudson River.  50 years later, a community rallies to save her.  Built under the visionary leadership of musician/activist Pete Seeger, the Clearwater continues to fulfill the original mission he envisioned to help educate and share the plight of our local Hudson River environment as it luffs its sails and roams America’s “First River.”  (2017 20 minutes)

Edna E. Lockwood: Bottoms Up! – directed by Sandy Cannon-Brown
Synopsis: Edna E. Lockwood, a registered National Historic Landmark, takes her place as the queen of the fleet of historic boats at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum during OysterFest October 27, 2018. After a three-year replacement of her log hull, the 1889 bugeye will share the history, culture and traditions of watermen and their boats on the Chesapeake Bay. This film follows the work of the shipwrights as they meticulously restore Edna to her historic glory. (2018 20 minutes)

Panel discussion to follow Tidewater and Edna with Shipyard Manager Michael Gorman and Shipwright Joe Connor. Audience may also visit Edna after the event.

The Marshall’s of Smith Island – A film by Tom Horton, Dave Harp and Sandy Cannon-Brown
Synopsis: This is a film about a remarkable couple, Mary Ada and Dwight Marshall, whose lives on Smith Island personify Chesapeake Bay’s watermen, seafood harvesting culture and history. It’s also about the four children who chose to break with that tradition and why. Written by Tom Horton, the film – like his 1996 book, An Island out of Time – is both celebration and elegy for a place beset with rising sea levels, erosion, pollution, and harvest restrictions. Mary Ada’s and Dwight’s families have been on the island for centuries. Will they stay on their ancestral island or follow the example of their children and leave? (2018 20 minutes)

Panel discussion with the filmmakers.

Environmental Film Reception
Saturday, October 13 at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum


Student Showcase
Saturday, October 13 at the Academy Art Museum
Films TBD


Buck Run – directed by Nick Frangione
Synopsis: Upon the death of his mother, Karen (Amy Hargreaves), 15-year-old Shaw Templeton (Nolan Lyons) is forced into the care of his estranged, shame-addled father, William (James Le Gros), who lives modestly in a hunting cabin far outside town. As Shaw struggles to find a father in William, he seeks a funeral for his mother. Set in small town Pennsylvania, ‘Buck Run’ is an atmospheric, insightful drama about the tumult of teen grief and the fallibility of parental love. It is a look through a peephole at Director Nick Frangione’s deeply personal story. (82 minutes)

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