Join us in celebrating #WelcomingWeekNWA by watching selections from our Bentonville Film Festival 2021 Program during September 10-19 as part of BFFoundation’s initiative to bring audiences year-round programming.

Welcoming Week NWA brings together NWA Leadership Pledge supporters and the broader community to build strong connections and affirm the importance of welcoming and inclusive places in achieving collective prosperity.

For Welcoming Week this year, EngageNWA is proud to declare that #BelongingBeginsWithUS. Each and every one of us has the power to make sure everyone feels seen, embraced, welcomed and included in our communities.

Learn More about Welcoming Week NWA Here!


BFF 2021 Alumni Film Program

















Date: September 11, 2021 – Available for 24 hrs.

A FIRE WITHIN U.S.A.; Director: Christopher Chambers

Type: Documentary  Feature | Only available to Arkansas audiences.

Length: 90 Minutes

Audience Age Suggestion: 16 +

A Fire Within chronicles the incredible, true story of three Women who are immigrants from Ethiopia and torture survivors, who one day discover that their torturer is in the U.S…working at a hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. It is a thrilling story about three immigrants, three refugees, three survivors taking a stand to make their voices heard and their courageous fight to bring a notorious torturer from Africa to justice — right here in America.

Date: September 13, 2021 – Available for 24 hrs.

YOUTH v GOV.  U.S.A.; Director: Christi Cooper

Type: Documentary  Feature | Only available to Arkansas audiences.

Length: 107 Minutes

Audience Age Suggestion: All ages

A story of global importance that has already inspired numerous legal actions around the world, YOUTH v GOV is the story of America’s youngest citizens taking on the world’s most powerful government. Twenty-one courageous youth lead a groundbreaking lawsuit against the U.S. government, asserting it has willfully acted over six decades to create our climate crisis, thus endangering their constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property. If these young people are successful, they’ll not only make history, they’ll change the future.
























Date: September 15 -17, 2021 – Available for 48 hrs.

Type: Shorts Block

Length: 90 Minutes total

Audience Age Suggestion: All ages, except Americanized (13+)


BJ’S MOBILE GIFT SHOP Director/Writer: Jason Park

A young Korean-American hustler runs throughout the city of Chicago making sales out of his “mobile gift shop”.

Cast: Johnnyboy Tellem, Soonshim Shin, Gwangwee Jung

AT LAST Director/Writer: Lorena Gordon

***This film will only be available for Arkansas Audiences. 

A timid high school girl reveals her truth during the most important night of the year.

Cast: George Lopez, Zack Gottsagen, Katie Burton, Marlene Forte, Tricia Brooks

SELAHY Director/Writer: Alaa Zabara

A short narrative film that takes place in war-torn Yemen and follows a young deaf girl, Saleemah who has one major love in this world; her camera which her brother Aqeel introduced her to. Aqeel works as a news reporter and is unable to take her out to film because he is preoccupied covering the war. Frustrated, Saleemah wanders out of the house during an impending air strike. To make matters worse, she loses her hearing aids.

Cast: Malak Nassar, Mohammad Nizar

TELL ME ABOUT ORANGE  Director: Robin Noonan-Price, Writer: Rachel Ament

When his best girl friend expresses her romantic feelings, a Blind teenage boy struggles to express his. He realizes that sometimes love really is blind. Airing as part of the LGBTQIA+ Shorts Showcase, this film’s cinematographer, Nasreen Alkhateeb, is disabled.

Cast: Ian Toppell, Vivian Pope, Liam Hamilton, Talia Williams, Carly Dagilis, Jack Haley

#WHITINA Director/Writer: J.Sean Smith

Inspired by coming of age cult classics, #WHITINA is a film about exploring the crossroads of the inner and outer struggles of being Mexican-American against the backdrop of a social media obsessed society. High School cheerleader and whitina (white acting Latina) Genesis Valdez is forced to go on the run with her two former best friends (Bella and Chris) after a confrontation with undercover I.C.E. Agents. The altercation is filmed by two middle schoolers and the group goes #viral. While on the run Chris reveals he is a dreamer and could get deported. Genesis makes a decision to help Chris escape and learns what it really means to be “down for La Raza.”

Cast: Xolo Maridueña, Inde Navarrette, Keyla Mejia

AMERICANIZED Director/Writer: Erica Eng; BFF 2021 Jury Award for Best Short

Growing up in Oakland’s hip-hop culture, Eng struggles with her Chinese American identity. To her high school basketball team, she’s just that girl who sits on the bench; but to the Asian kids she’s “Americanized.” As her sophomore year of high school comes to an end, Eng tries to find a sense of belonging within the two worlds that don’t accept her.

Cast: Terry Hu, Amber Gaston, Helen Ong, Charles Yan, Shannon Dang, Sharar Ali-Speaks, Mark A. Neely

Ages 13 +

















Date: September 18 & 19, 2021 – available for 48 hrs.

AMERICANISH U.S.A. Director: Iman Zawahry, Writers: Aizzah Fatima, Iman Zawahry

Type: Narrative  Feature | Only available to Arkansas audiences.

Length: 90 Minutes

Audience Age Suggestion: Okay for all ages but 13 + recommendation


In Jackson Heights, Queens two sisters and their fresh off the boat cousin try all the conventional ways to earn the love and respect of the matriarch of their family only to learn that life works out in the most unconventional ways.

Cast: Aizzah Fatima, Salena Qureshi, Shenaz Treasurey, Mohammed Amer, Kapil Talwalker, Godfrey, Ajay Naidu, David Rasche

Date: September 19, 2021 

Exclusive Live Panel and Conversation following Film Screening

Join President of Bentonville Film Foundation, Wendy Guerrero, and Americanish filmmakers Iman Zawahry (Director) and Aizzah Fatima (Writer, Lead Actor) in a live discussion after at 9 PM after the 7:30 PM CT screening of the film as a closing to the BFFoundation’s participation in WelcomingWeek NWA.

This panel will be accessible via our Virtual Platform and as a Facebook Live event on the Bentonville Film Festival Facebook page. You do not have to have a facebook account to access this conversation.


Get your free tickets to all screening HERE!


Complimentary Pass Instructions 

  • Click the link above of here to go to: BFF Welcoming Week Film Pass
  • Click on green box ‘Add to Cart’ and then on ‘Checkout’
  • Go through ‘Purchase information’ and input a few simple contact details  to create an account.
  • Your order will show as complete and you will receive an email with viewing login information.
  • Click on ‘Login into the screening portal here’ & insert your email & password. Be sure to bookmark & save your password for fast future access.
  • Use this account to view all the Welcoming Week NWA films here.