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Geena Davis launches successful film festival to celebrate women and diversity in film

May 20, 2015

Academy Award®-winning actor, founder and chair of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, and Linkage keynote faculty member Geena Davis defines what it means to be a woman leader. And earlier this month, she played an integral part in launching the Bentonville Film Festival that’s specifically designed to celebrate women and diversity.

Ms. Davis chaired the inaugural event that took place in Bentonville, Arkansas, May 5-9. It was hosted by ARC Entertainment, Walmart, Coca-Cola, and AMC Theatres and approximately 75 films, ranging from studio premieres to independent features and documentaries were screened. And the Festival’s Advisory Board was comprised of entertainment heavy hitters including Angela Bassett, Bruce Dern, Samuel L. Jackson, Randy Jackson, Eva Longoria, Julianne Moore, Paula Patton, Natalie Portman, Nina Tassler and Shailene Woodley.

“I have been an advocate for women for most of my adult life,” she says. “The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media is dedicated to improving the representation in gender and diversity of talent, filmmakers, and business leaders by growing awareness through research, education and advocacy. The Bentonville Film Festival is a critical component of how we can directly impact the quantity and quality of females and minorities on screen and behind-the scenes.”

And as you can see in this clip from the awards gala hosted by Soledad O’Brien and Nick Cannon, the festival was a huge success.

Needless to say Geena Davis is an inspirational and extremely busy advocate for women and girls. And she’ll be sharing the stage with many other powerful women leaders at our Women in Leadership Institute taking place from November 2-5 in Phoenix, Arizona.

You should be there too.

Dark haired woman watches from audience of conference event

Women in Leadership Institute

NOV. 13–16, 2023 | Orlando, Florida, or Virtual
A 4-day immersive learning experience designed to equip women leaders with actionable strategies to overcome the hurdles women often face in the workplace.

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