ASBURY PARK, NJ -- TAPintoTV caught up with David W. Schoner, Jr., Associate Director of the New Jersey Motion Picture and Television Commission, at the 2021 Garden State Film Festival

Schoner, a board member of the festival, spoke about this year’s hybrid format necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and what we can look forward to in 2022 when the festival celebrates its 20th anniversary. 

“It was a bit of a challenge this year, but we made sure that we pulled it off,” Schoner said. “You can feel the excitement with filmmakers and people wanting to get back out.” Many of this year’s events were hosted online with some in-person festivities held in compliance with New Jersey COVID regulations. 

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“Filmmaking and the process of it is a very difficult thing and you really want to be in the audience and hear the audience react,” Schoner explained. 

With New Jersey’s financial incentives for filmmakers, Schoner said that production in the state “is booming. We are busy as ever and more and more productions are coming to New Jersey.” 

For the 20th anniversary of the Garden State Film Festival in 2022, Schoner says to stay tuned. “There are so many things in the works,” he said. “It’s going to be big-time, massive.” 

For more information about the Garden State Film Festival, visit them online at