AJFF Slips to No. 2

AJFF Slips to No. 2

Atlanta has lost the unofficial title of world’s largest Jewish film festival.

The original festival of its kind, the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival, reports drawing attendance of 40,000 for its 18-day 36th annual festival, which ended July 31. That figure tops the record 38,600 the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival drew in 2015 to wrest the title of world’s largest from San Francisco.

The AJFF attendance slipped to 36,092 this year, largely because of reduced capacity caused by remodeling at Lefont Sandy Springs, festival Executive Director Kenny Blank said.

“Large or small, Jewish film festivals are united in a mission to celebrate a rich cultural heritage and showcase the finest in world cinema. We congratulate the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival in achieving such far-reaching impact across their 30-plus-year history,” Blank said in a statement.

He previously said the festival was making plans to increase capacity in 2017 and beyond.

“AJFF anticipates another record-setting year in 2017, growing our audience with a focus on inclusiveness, diversity, and social and cultural understanding through film,” Blank said Aug. 18. “Bragging rights as world’s largest may temporarily fluctuate, but support for the AJFF phenomenon in our community and industry remains undiminished.”

The AJFF will have its shot at regaining the top spot at its 17th annual festival Jan. 24 to Feb. 15. The festival will again open at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and close at the Woodruff Arts Center’s Atlanta Symphony Hall.

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