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If you were looking for a great way to spend a weekend in February and wanted to somehow work in groundbreaking films and the awesome ladies involved in making them, then the Athena Film Festival is the place you want to be.

Considered a majorly successful celebration of women and leadership in the film industry, the festival is back in its fifth year for a four-day weekend of feature films, documentaries, and shorts at Barnard College. From February 5-8, talented women from across the U.S. and abroad will gather for conversations with directors, workshops for filmmakers, and much-anticipated premieres.

Kicking things off Thursday night in a powerful way will be the New York premiere of Dreamcatcher, a documentary directed by Kim Longinotto that follows the life of Brenda Myers-Powell—a former Chicago prostitute whose mission is helping women and teenage girls break the cycle of sexual abuse and exploitation. The rest of the lineup is sure to inspire as well, with feature films like Obvious Child starring Jenny Slate and shorts such as Stop Telling Women To Smile.

“These films were selected for the power of their stories to inspire us to think about women’s leadership differently,” said Melissa Silverstein, co-founder and Artistic Director of the festival. “We are proud to unveil a 2015 lineup that continues to provide a place for audiences to learn, experience, and connect.”

In addition to the weekend full of kickass films, there will also be the annual awards ceremony where Academy Award winning actress and filmmaker Jodie Foster will receive this year’s Laura Ziskin Lifetime Achievement Award. Additional awardees include Sheila Nevins (President of HBO Documentary Films), Gina Prince-Bythewood (director, writer, and producer behind films such as Love & Basketball, The Secret Life of Bees, and Beyond the Lights).

Check out the full lineup of films, ticket prices (student rates are great!), and additional information on their site, athenafilmfestival.com

Image via columbiaspectator.com

 

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