American South

In partnership with New Orleans Film Society, five projects focusing on the American South were selected to enter the IF/Then Shorts pitch competition at the New Orleans Film Festival on October 19, 2018.

The winner was selected by a professional jury consisting of:

Bryce Norbitz, Manager of Artist Programs at Tribeca Film Institute
Luisa Dantas, Independent Filmmaker
Amanda Salazar, Programmer at SFFILM
Kareem Tabsch, Filmmaker and Co-Director of O Cinema
Basil Tsiokos, Director of Programming at DOC NYC

The Jury chose "Blood Peach" by Zuri Obi as the competition winner to receive $20,000 in project funding and the opportunity to participate in TFI’s IF/Then Shorts Program, which provides year-round mentorship and career development opportunities.

"Blood Peach" was selected from the following five projects:


Director: Zuri Obi

Logline: Wild peach groves grow full and lush along the Mississippi River. Tantalizing as they may be, they remain untouched for the people of Natchez know the bloody history of the land that feeds these strange fruit.

  • Dixie's Last Stand

Directors: Emily Harrold; Kelly Creedon, Seth Gadsden

Logline: Set in Orangeburg, South Carolina this film follows a battle over a Confederate Flag flying in the center of town in the wake of the 2015 Charleston Massacre. Through the battle, the film challenges audiences to consider if the Flag has a place in Southern culture of the 21st Century. 

  • Dependent

Director: Ashley Panzera; Producers: Angela Tucker, Lauren Domino

Logline: Caught in the crosshairs of the War on Drugs and the pro-life movement are women who become pregnant while struggling with substance abuse. DEPENDENT follows one woman’s journey into recovery while managing life and motherhood.

  • Natour's Grocery

Director: Nadine Natour

Logline: A first person portrait of a popular grocery store run by an offbeat Arab-American immigrant family in the rural Virginia town where the Civil War ended.

  • The Sixth Wall

Directors: Emily MacKenzie; Noah Collier 

Logline: Located in the carpet Capitol of the world, Dalton Georgia, a self fashioned Scottish cowboy wields the influence of American identity as her prepares to move his textile business from one of the last remaining American manufacturers to China. Where does the myth of American identity begin and end and who is entitled to manipulate it for profit?


  • Online registration opens: June 15, 2018
  • Project application deadline: August 31, 2018
  • Notification of project selection: mid / late September
  • IF/Then pitch competition in New Orleans: October 19, 2018


All stories and storytellers coming from the American South. These states and one federal district include: Alabama, Arkansas, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.