SOMA Film Festival to move to The Woodland

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MAPLEWOOD, NJ — After two successful seasons at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, SOMA Film Festival will move the bulk of its events to The Woodland in Maplewood for its third year.

The festival will take place from March 16 to 18, 2018, and with film programs being screened in the Great Hall of The Woodland while the more intimate Parlor space will be used for a visual arts exhibit, food area and other related events.

“Leaving SOPAC wasn’t easy and we appreciate all the effort put forth on their part but we feel this move to The Woodland will prove to be highly beneficial as we take the festival to that next level,” festival founder and Director Matt Smollon said in a press release.

“We are excited to welcome the SOMA Film Festival to Maplewood and The Woodland,” Maplewood Mayor Vic DeLuca said in the release. “It makes perfect use of the facility and furthers the township’s mission to support arts and culture in the Maplewood and South Orange communities.”

The SOMA Film Festival was established in 2015 and has quickly become a favorite of fans and filmmakers alike. In a mere two years, the festival has screened more than 100 films including Academy Award nominee “Fire at Sea,” held numerous question-and-answer sessions with filmmakers, garnered successful sponsorships for many local companies and businesses, and become a recognized creative entity with a nomination for “The Best Film Festival” by the NJ Arts Council in its inaugural season. The 2017 festival saw attendance rise by 50 percent from from the previous year, with ticket sales increasing by more than 30 percent.

“Being in downtown Maplewood will be a great addition for the festival as its ready-made appeal of retail, and restaurants will only add to the festival-goers experience,” Smollon said.

SOMA Film Festival will return with the highly successful “Kids” and “Youth Filmmaker” programs as well as more excellent, exciting and enlightening independent films from around the world, with many of the filmmakers and talent in attendance.

The film schedule will be released in mid-January with single program tickets as well a festival passes going on sale shortly afterward.