press release

Contact Information:

Deborah Medenbach, Press Director, Woodstock Film Festival, 

(845) 679-4265,,



WOODSTOCK (Oct. 3, 2016) -- The next generation of filmmakers take the 17th Annual Woodstock Film Festival by storm, learning the process of filmmaking, submitting shorts for group screenings and finally, expanding short films into full-length feature films in a way that would have been financially impossible just a few short years ago.

16-year-old Jack Fessenden came to the festival last year with a short in youth films, which he expanded into a feature narrative called Stray Bullets that justly takes its place among the features without mention of his age. His parents, Larry Fessenden and Beck Underwood of Glass Eye Pix, have been making films for decades and now nurture their son’s burgeoning talent as a film professional.

This year, 13-year-old Benny Rendell has two films in the youth initiative screening: Listen and Cracked.  His website, shows these and other shorts that the teen developed and completed that are currently making their way around the regional film festival circuit.

Since its inception as an educational not-for-profit arts organization, the Woodstock Film Festival has been committed to youth and education as a means to positive development, conflict resolution and growth opportunity. The festival proudly presents its Teen Film Program each year as an event that encourages young filmmakers and showcases some of the best young talent from the local region and across the world.

Filmmakers, actors, producers, writers, animators and others from the film industry will give area students a first-hand look at the film business at Woodstock Film Festival's annual CAREER DAY on Friday Oct. 14 at Onteora High School in Boiceville.


This year’s Youth films are:

Benny Rendell, Director of  Cracked  &  Listen

Benny Rendell, Director of Cracked & Listen

Cracked, directed by Benny Rendell

Day By Day, directed by Nihal Dantluri

Domar: To Tame, directed by Benjamin Ades

He, She, directed by Maia Liebeskind

The Last Night of the World, directed by Harrison O’Clair

Screenshot from the film,  He, She

Screenshot from the film, He, She

Listen, directed by Benny Randell

Marquis, directed by Maya Suchak

One Day on Carver Street, directed by Azure Allen

Spiral, directed by Tatum Lenberg

Click Here for this year’s Youth Initiative film lineup!

We welcome your coverage of these films and are happy to provide photos and arrange interviews as needed. For screening times, locations and tickets, go to

For press credentials for working media, go to the  Woodstock Film Festival Media Accreditation Form.


Hailed as "A True American Maverick Among Fests" and named among the top 50 film festivals  worldwide, the Woodstock Film Festival premieres exceptional films, hosts the most talented emerging and established professionals in the movie industry; presents A-list concerts, panels and parties, and creates stimulating, innovative programming year-round. The Woodstock Film Festival is a non-profit, 501c3 with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music and art-related activities that promote artists, culture, inspired learning and diversity. The 17th Woodstock Film Festival returns October 13-16, 2016 with an extraordinary lineup of fiercely independent films, panels and special events in Woodstock, Rhinebeck, Kingston, Rosendale and Saugerties.

Sponsored by: Markertek, 120dbFilms, Gigantic Pictures, Ketel One, Gray Krauss, Stratford, Sandler, DeRochers LLP, Heineken, BMI, SAGIndie, Black Magic Design, Films We Like, Miller Howard Investments, Technicolor and Panavision.




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