MISSOULA – The Big sky Film Documentary Festival has brought stories from around the world to Missoula for several years.

Over 170 films from 40 different countries are on the big screen this year with some of them entering in competitions.

Some 23 of the 35 films were world premieres, with many more showing for the first time in North America. The film ‘My Country No More’ won the Feature competition, and ‘No Mans Land’ won the Big Sky award.

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Short and mini-doc winners were are also automatically given consideration for Oscar awards.

Executive director Rachel Gregg says the sheer amount of submissions and the exceptional community support made this year’s festival a challenge in the best way possible.

“We had about 2,000 submissions this year so that’s a whole new level for us. Working through all those films to come down to a final program was an exciting challenge really,” Gregg said.

“It’s fun to be growing in stature in that way. It’s fun to exhibit art that our town is experiencing a little bit of growth and change, people who come back to the festival year after year notice that and they’re curious about what’s going on, Gregg added.

The annual festival wrapped up on Sunday.

Reporting by Donal Lakatua for MTN News