The 26th New Orleans Film Festival featured 201 films and brought more than 375 filmmakers to share their work with local audiences. In recent years, the Film Society has developed new programming to serve the New Orleans community, including a mentorship program for filmmakers of color and an education program to promote media literacy for public school students.

Sayde Finkel and Britt Galloway served as Gala Committee Co-Chairs. Alexa Georges and Jerry Armatis were the Honorary Chairs. Alex Glaser, NOFS Board President, was also in attendance.

Approximately 500 patrons attended this year’s event at the home of John and Yulia Houghtaling. This year’s Celluloid Hero award was given to the cast and crew of “NCIS: New Orleans” to honor their commitment to the city.

The décor included a neon theme complete with LED screens under the arches of the porch, which included images of sweeping landscapes and views of the city. When DJ Mannie Fresh started performing on the front porch, the screens switched to abstract images of popcorn with neon overlay. DJ Matty performed on the back porch, while the Loyola Jazz Trio played indoors. Robin Barnes and Trio played the Patron Party.

Guests also had the opportunity to experience virtual reality firsthand. StoryUP had headsets and multiple scenes to experience, including a high school football field for guests to enjoy. Domenica catered the Parton Party, followed by a fleet of eight restaurants to cater the main event, including Delachaise, Dat Dog and Manhattanjack.

John Calhoun emceed the live auction, which ended with a “Fund-a-need” for patrons to contribute directly to a grants program for local filmmakers.


What: “New Orleans Film Society Patron Party & Gala”
When: Saturday, April 16
Where: Home of John and Yulia Houghtaling