Columbia, MO

Getting Ready for the True False Film Fest in Columbia, Missouri

Anita Durairaj

Photo by Chris Murray on Unsplash

One of the highlights of living in a small college town like Columbia, Missouri is the annual True/False Film Fest.

The True/False Film Fest is exclusively a documentary film festival. Usually, it takes place in February or March, but in these unusual times of COVID-19, the festival is being scheduled a little later for May. The dates are specifically May 5 - 9 2021.

When I lived in Columbia, it was a big deal to get tickets to be able to attend the True/False Film Fest. This film fest may not be glamorous like the Cannes Film Festival and you are unlikely to see any Hollywood stars but it is certainly a big event for Columbia. You are going to see artists, musicians, and filmmakers all gathering together to celebrate the beauty of filmmaking and making documentaries.

True/False offers a heightened long weekend of creative placemaking in which filmmakers, artists, musicians and others remake the mid-sized college town of Columbia, Missouri, into a one-of-a-kind utopia. The transformative, rambunctious, ecstatic experience of True/False creates a cathartic journey that invites participants to do nothing less than to reimagine reality.- True/False Film Fest website

The True/False Film Fest is a project of the Ragtag Film Society which is a non-profit institution. The mission of the Ragtag Film Society is to promote and provide film and media art in Columbia. The Ragtag Film Society runs an arthouse cinema.

Here is what you can expect at the upcoming True/False Festival in May 2021.

Details About the Film Fest

The film festival will be held at Stephens Lake Park. It is supposed to look quite different from the festival held in previous years. The Stephens Lake Park is the perfect location with the background of the lake, the beach, and all the green space.

According to the True/False Fest website, there will be 4 screening locations at the park. The festival concerts will also take place at these locations.

Events at the festival include screenings at Ragtag Cinema as well as the locations in the park. There will also be a drive-in screening which will be located in the Holiday Inn Executive Center parking lot.

Here is a list of the special ticketed events:

  • Flick-nic
  • @CTION
  • Campfire Stories
  • Gimme Truth!
  • Kickball
  • Waffles with Wilson
  • Buskers Last Stand

There is also a special virtual True/False film fest called The Teleported Fest. The Teleported Fest is essentially a package of goodies and the opportunity to watch new films from the comfort of your home. A schedule is provided for the Teleported Fest and the films will only be available for 24 hours. The platform that is used as well as the information for technology you can use for the screening will be sent out by email. Currently, the Teleported Fest is sold out!

As for what is going to be screened, there will be 16 features and 23 short films to be shown at the festival. There will also be film premieres of international and US movies.

Health Precautions

The Ragtag Film Society is working with the Columbia/Boone County Department of Health and Human Services to ensure that safety protocols regarding COVID-19 will be followed.

Having the festival outdoors at the park is one aspect of the safety consideration. The ticketing system is also digital. The seating will be done in accordance with physical distancing and there will be handwashing stations throughout the event activities. Masks will be enforced.

The festival will have a dedicated team that will solely focus on ensuring that health and safety regulations are followed.

Sources: Columbia Daily Tribune,

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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