Filmfest DC
Kelvin Harrison Jr. stars CHEVALIER, which opens this year's Filmfest DC. Photo by Larry Horricks. Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2022 20th Century Studios All Rights Reserved.

In a city with no shortage of film festivals, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd. But Filmfest DC, the District’s longest-running film fest, continues to do just that. With 65 films spanning 35 countries, this year’s event was originally intended to kick off on April 20, but has already been extended an extra day. The fest now opens on April 19 with the D.C. premiere of Chevalier. Directed by ​​Stephen Williams, a Black film and television-maker from Canada, and written by Stefani Robinson, an award-winning writer for Donald Glover’s Atlanta, Chevalier is a biography about the real-life Chevalier de Saint-Georges, aka Joseph Bologne. Born in 1745, the illegitimate son of an enslaved African woman and a French plantation owner, Bologne was a musical prodigy who became a celebrated violinist, composer, and fencer; he conducted Paris’ leading symphony orchestra and had a famous falling out with Marie Antoinette (about—what else?—racism and regime change). The Embassy of France will host the opening celebration and screening; the 11-day fest will be held throughout the city, with a full lineup coming soon. The 36th Annual Filmfest DC runs April 19 through 30 in various D.C. movie theaters. $13–$40.