Joe Bob Takes Over the Mahoning Drive-In 7/16-7/18; Film Submissions Now Open

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JULY 16-18


Joe Bob Briggs and Virgil Cardamone, partner and chief programmer for the beloved , are teaming up to bring you the first annual Joe Bob’s Drive-In Jamboree, a three-day event billed as “the drive-in Woodstock,” on July 16-18, 2021.

The three-day event will include an indie festival for guerrilla filmmakers, a live double-feature hosted by Joe Bob, a family-friendly “haunted drive-in” event with live zombies and monsters, and days filled with bands, cosplay contests, custom cars, free seminars conducted by professionals for ultra-low-budget filmmakers, movie memorabilia vendors, sideshow attractions, and the presentation of the Joe Bob Briggs Lifetime Achievement Award, better known as the Hubbie–because it’s engraved on a Chevy hubcap.

Tickets will go on sale in April.

“We’re calling this The Gathering of the Mutants,” said Briggs. “As I’ve traveled around the country the last three years, meeting our fans at conventions and live shows, they’ve all expressed a hunger for getting away from their on-line lives and celebrating the movies and sub-cultures that we all love. What better place than the Mahoning Drive-in, saved from extinction because a handful of film fans put their lives on hold and worked for free to preserve it?”

“We are honored to host Joe Bob’s incredible fandom here at The Mahoning Drive-in as part of our 2021 season,” said Cardamone. “This ever-growing legend of The
Mahoning is strengthened each year by setting the bar for what a classic drive-in can represent in the new era, and teaming with a king of the culture like Joe Bob Briggs and The Last Drive-in crew to deliver a one of a kind experience will be nothing short of epic!”

The story of the Mahoning Drive-In is told in the award-winning
documentary At the Drive-In, directed by Alexander Monelli, dramatizing how
the property opened in 1949 only to be threatened by closure in 2014 when the film
world went digital. A determined group of film enthusiasts turned it into a retro 35-
millimeter destination and the gamble paid off, thanks to their unmatched programming and dedication to the fan experience, so that they eventually earned a reputation as “America’s Coolest Drive-in.”

The Mahoning is nestled in the ridge-and-valley region of the Appalachian Mountains,an area rich with history dating from the eras of coal mines, railroads and factories clustered along the Lehigh River. The nearby town of Jim Thorpe, which bills itself as “the Switzerland of America” because of its location on a steep mountain incline, is a popular tourist spot.


Mutant Fest will be the first day of Joe Bob’s Drive-In Jamboree. Mutant Fest is a celebration of low-budget exploitation films made outside the financial support systems of Los Angeles and New York. Filmmakers can submit feature films and shorts for consideration, with no entry fee.

“The purpose of the festival,” said Briggs, “is to bring attention to films that have no marketing budget. Some of these guys mortgage their homes to make the film, then discover they can’t get into the major festivals without spending several thousand dollars on the various fees charged—fees required simply for ‘consideration,’ guaranteeing nothing. We have a team set up to screen films continuously right up until the cut-off date of May 1. We also have an educational component, with industry professionals conducting practical seminars on filmmaking with impossibly low budgets. These are basically ‘how to get stuff free’ classes.”

The two winning feature films and the ten winning shorts will all be screened at the Mahoning Drive-In on the night of July 16th, with Briggs hosting and presenting the awards. Runner-up films will be screened throughout the day at a location to be announced later.

Submissions will remain open until May 1, winners will be notified July 1. Filmmakers can learn more and submit their films via Film Freeway here:


Founder/Co Owner of TN Horror News Co Host of The Horror Basement Podcast

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