Festival season is nearly upon us! Downtown Dubuque will soon be buzzing with activity as filmmakers, movie buffs, and industry pros make their way to and from screenings, workshops, panels, and parties as part of the Julien Dubuque International Film Festival.

In its 11th year, JDIFF has fine-tuned its formula – a myriad of film, fun, and entertainment offerings spread over five days – but Executive Director Susan Gorrell always finds a way to make each year stand out.

“We always like to throw in something new and different each year,” said Gorrell, who has been in the driver’s seat of the festival since 2015.

It’s that mindset that creates a festival named one of the Top 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine, recognized as one of the top 100 best reviewed festivals on FilmFreeway, and consistently chosen one of the top 50 film festivals worth the submission fee by MovieMaker Magazine. Gorrell is proud to see the growth in the festival – and the quality of film submissions it is attracting.

“Our submissions were just extraordinary,” she said. “Filmmakers have been spreading the word. They talk about the audiences in Dubuque, how interested they are to hear their stories, watch their movies, and ask questions. Plus, they say our parties are among the best!”

As always, each submission is viewed at least once – most more than once – by teams of screeners. They narrow the films down to the best of the bunch, which are then named JDIFF Official Selections. This year, 126 features, shorts, and documentaries have been chosen from all over the world. Many will have a filmmaker in Dubuque to host a Q&A after each screening.

To read this and other featured articles in their entirety, pickup the April 2022 issue of Julien’s Journal magazine. Click to subscribe for convenient delivery by mail, or call (563) 557-1914. Single issues are also available in print at area newsstands and digitally via the Issuu platform.

Julien’s Journal, the Dubuque area lifestyle magazine, is a monthly regional feature magazine for and about Dubuque and the tri-state region.

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