Final preparations underway for Julien Dubuque International Fil - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Final preparations underway for Julien Dubuque International Film Festival

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Organizers of the Julien Dubuque International Film Festival are busy putting the final touches on this year's anticipated event. The four day fest kicks off this Thursday.

"Lots of film makers coming in, producers, directors. We have some great panels, the producer from 'Mudbound,' that sold for $12.5 million at Sundance is here," said Susan Gorrell, executive director.

The festival is now in its sixth year, and as a relatively new film festival, gets a tremendous amount of submissions. "We had nearly 700 films that were submitted, and we've narrowed it down to about 108," Gorrell said.

They include a mix of features, documentaries and short films scheduled to be shown throughout different venues in Dubuque, bringing an international spotlight to the city.

There will be filmmakers from all over the world, including representatives from the Canadian Consulate attending the opening night event.

Every year, the festival grows more in popularity. "We had about 3,500 people who attended last year, in just pre-sales, which we do up until Thursday. We had over 200 different communities and 10 different states purchase tickets. I think that's pretty impactful, too, that they're traveling to Dubuque to watch these films," said Tyler Daugherty, sports and events manager for the Dubuque Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Organizers say the fest is a chance to see films not even released yet. "A lot of them are ones that haven't been purchased yet, or you'll eventually see on Netflix, or in Vudu or in Redbox. Some end up going to the theaters," added Gorrell. 

There are also numerous panels scheduled where attendees will be able to meet filmmakers.

The Julien Dubuque International Film Festival has numerous events scheduled during its four days, which runs Thursday through Sunday. 

On opening day, all films will be free.

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