Alumnus Alex McFry Debuts Film at Cannes


Recent JSU alumnus Alex McFry is participating in the 72nd annual Cannes International Film Festival in France as a recipient of the inaugural Colin Higgins Ambassador Scholarship from The American Pavilion. 

McFry, who graduated from JSU with a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies in 2017, is currently pursuing an MFA in film/video and photographic arts at Florida State University’s College of Motion Picture Arts. He is screening his short film, “Heads Up,” at Cannes as part of the Emerging Filmmaker LGBTQ Showcase.

Written and directed by McFry, “Heads Up” is a loosely autobiographical six-minute film that follows the journey of Ethan as he learns to cope with his HIV diagnosis and the stigma it carries. McFry was diagnosed with HIV during his senior year at JSU. He told the Anniston Star, “It’s the most terrifying thing to do to put a character on paper that is based on your own experiences. It’s not me obviously, but it’s based on kind of what I went through and how I coped.”

Michael Bremer, director of Student Programs for The American Pavilion, said that McFry is an exemplary example of “perseverance and grace in the face of adversity.”

McFry enrolled at JSU as a prestigious Elite Honors Scholar in 2013 after graduating as valedictorian of White Plains High School. He was heavily involved on campus, serving as president of the Film Club, vice president of the Honors Program, and writer and associate editor of The Chanticleer. He also starred in several productions for JSU Drama.