» Posts Tagged ‘filmfestivals’

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Video thumbnail for youtube video Submitting to Tiff - No Film SchoolIf you’ve never submitted to a film festival before, the idea can be a little daunting at first (though we’ve been covering them recently in the Menthol Micro-budget Case Study and Cannes Short Film Corner series of posts). Thankfully, the process has been getting much simpler, especially if you’re submitting short films. Even so, having step-by-step instructions ensures that no mistakes are made, and the Toronto International Film Festival, whose submissions are now open for the September festival, has put together a video detailing exactly what needs to be done to submit to the fest. More »

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Menthol World Premiere at SBIFF

In Part 1 of this series, I talked about the decisions in creating the seminal piece of marketing (the trailer) for my first narrative feature Menthol. We just had our world premiere last month at the 29th Santa Barbara International Film Fest and, being my first festival experience from the filmmaker’s side, I wanted to share a little bit about the experience and what it’s got me thinking about — the philosophical, the social, and the pragmatic. More »

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Not Another Sundance MovieSundance 2014 is winding down, and after a week of red carpets and world premieres, everyone is heading back home to begin plotting how to make it back to next year’s festival. But let’s talk a little bit about the types of films that play at Sundance. It’s no secret that the people who moderate and judge at Sundance have a particular taste in films, and that the films that do well at the prestigious festival often deal with similar themes. Some might even argue that many of the films that make it to Sundance border on cliché. While I think that’s a little bit of a stretch, it certainly leaves room for some well-crafted satire. Prepare for a good laugh, because this spoof trailer for Not Another Sundance Movie will leave you in stitches: More »

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ben fowlie camden international film festival

Film festival programmers — those enigmatic figures in a dark screening room who decide the fate of so many films with one push of the eject button. Ever wonder who they are, and how they decide what films to program? Ben Fowlie, the Executive Director and Head Programmer of Camden International Film Festival was cool enough to sit down with NFS over Skype and give us a rare glimpse into the inner workings of his film festival. Continue on to check out our video interview. More »

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projectorIn many ways, making your film is the easy part. There are innumerable resources out there for budding filmmakers, including websites (ahem), books, and audio commentary tracks, that will help a novice become a seasoned vet in no time (well, not no time. Probably a long time. But it’s a journey, no? Yes.) But one thing a lot of indie filmmakers are unfamiliar with, especially those just starting out, are the ins and outs of distribution. Well, have no fear. Sheri Candler and Chris Holland offer some great insight into indie film distribution. Click below to learn the answers to 3 questions every filmmaker should ask themselves as they contemplate distributing their film! More »

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Tom+Hall+Sarasota+Film+Festival+2013+Red+Carpet+cG9kkP5pMEklDirector of Sarasota Film Festival Tom Hall gave an upbeat and honest speech at IFP Filmmaker Conference today, encouraging filmmakers to build relationships with programmers at film festivals long before they apply. He acknowledged the “inherently arbitrary and subjective process” of film festival selections, and said what we all know, but never hear: the best way to get your film selected as this year’s industry darling is to make friends with the industry. More »

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TFF-2014-submissions-open-224x186In thirteen short years, the Tribeca Film Festival, started by Robert De Niro, among others, has built itself into one of those few film festivals with serious name-brand recognition: it’s the red-carpet NYC festival that your non-film friends have actually heard of! It’s also insanely competitive, with Tribeca having received nearly 9,000 submissions in 2013. If you’re interested, read up on the guidelines below because the Tribeca Film Festival submissions have begun! More »

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tiff filmmaker boot camp ira deutchmanYou made your film, and thanks to the great internet content democratization, you can now buy it on Amazon. Let the champagne flow! Until you realize, however, that without a better plan, selling 5 DVDs a year simply won’t earn you enough to make your next film. In this 2013 Toronto International Film Festival Filmmaker Bootcamp video, keynote speaker Ira Deutchman, who started marketing for Cassavetes and today advocates a rise-from-the-dead for theatrical distribution, breaks down how you can use film festivals to distribute your film to a growing audience. More »

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Sundance FFIt’s an exciting time when a project you’ve been working on for months or years is finally complete. However, even after going through all of the stress and chaos of production, looking for film festivals to submit your film to can be just as daunting and complicated as actually making it. But, if you’re interested in submitting to Sundance, two of their programmers, Kim Yutani and Lisa Ogdie, offer some considerations for those interested in entering their films, as well as addressing common misconceptions about the festival. More »

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points north-pitch forumFor all the producers who ever wished that a common application existed for documentary film grants, pitching forums might be as close as we’re gonna get to efficiency in the fundraising process. It’s like an elevator pitch in the best possible elevator a documentarian could hope to get stuck in. There’s only room for 6 pitches at Camden International Film Festival’s Points North Pitch this coming September, but those selected will have a captive audience of representatives from the likes of HBO, ITVS, Participant Media, and ARTE.  Details after the jump. More »

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Full house at Fletcher Hall for the Opening Night Film, "Guilty Pleasures"

Film festivals are to directors what higher education is to high school graduates: either a launchpad for success, or a hangover with a helluva price tag. Best fest lists are all over the interwebs, but lists of festivals that cover your costs are harder to find, and for good reason. Which fests treat filmmakers right, on and off the carpet? Read on for the definitive unscientific list. More »

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arri-alexaWhen thinking about your upcoming project, do you ever catch yourself dreaming about the latest greatest buzz camera? I know I do. It’s easy to get caught up in the tech and forget that finding the right tool for a given project is just as important as thinking about the right project for the tool you have at hand. As the good folks at Indiewire found out at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, filmmakers are using a great variety of cameras to make their projects happen. More »

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Even though we wax poetic about how rewarding the art of filmmaking can be, at the end of the day, we need audiences to see the finished product. They don’t have to rabidly declare it their favorite film (though that would be nice), but there’s really no point spending all this time and money on a feature if the only person who owns the DVD is your mom. In a series of videos posted by IFP from Mark Litwak, the entertaining Entertainment Lawyer explains how to prepare yourself for the do-or-die of distribution. More »

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Has Instagram become the new mutoscope? Well — not completely, but the folks at the Toronto Silent Film Festival have come up with an inventive way to replicate this visual illusion in order to draw attention to their upcoming event. By uploading stills from famous silent films on Instagram, users can quickly scroll down the images and watch a scene play out — kind of like a mutoscope or flip book, only digital. Despite a few technical kinks, these stroboscopic “trailers” are bringing silent films to life to a brand new generation of moviegoers. More »

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Length is always a tricky issue when it comes to short films. Some advise that you should keep them as short and sweet as possible, others say you should let them be as long as they need to be to properly tell the story. Continuing the great conversation with HollyShorts co-founder Daniel Sol, Film Courage asks with the clip below “How long should a short film be?” Click through to check it out. More »

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We recently shared a terrific conversation about film festivals with HollyShorts co-founder Daniel Sol, and now Film Courage has released a few more excellent clips from the interview. This time, Daniel talks about great production values and mediocre execution vs. great execution and mediocre production values, and how you can know whether your film is finally ready to be submitted to a festival. Click through to check them out. More »

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You finished your short film and it’s the perfect calling card. It embodies you as a director: your range of styles, the twists and turns of your scriptwriting skills, and your ability to create high production value on pennies. In short, you’ve made it awesome. Unfortunately, the programmers at your favorite film festival disagree. You cry on your keyboard, eat a roll of raw cookie dough, and shout “Why?!” to no one in particular. Maybe that’s a tad dramatic (or is it?) but nevertheless, I think everybody can agree that it’s frustrating not being able to find out why your film got chopped. In the videos below, HollyShorts Film Festival Co-Founder Daniel Sol talks about why shorts might get rejected from a festival, goes into detail about how they program their festival, and mentions why you might want to make a short before a feature. More »

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Yesterday, March 4th, coincidentally the only calendar date that doubles as a complete sentence, the Sundance Institute announced a new summer film festival to take place in Los Angeles from August 8th-11th. NEXT WEEKEND, intended to celebrate the “renegade spirit of independent filmmaking,” will feature screenings, panels, parties, and workshops. The festival promises to bring eight unreleased feature films, including selections from Sundance’s NEXT section and new feature films from elsewhere. There will also be a shorts program and the annual ShortsLab: Los Angeles, a half-day filmmaking workshop centered on short films. More »

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If you’ve ever entered a film into a festival, whether it was a short, documentary, or feature, you’ve probably had to pony up some decent cash just to be considered — and that doesn’t include the additional costs once you’re accepted. What about festivals without entry fees? Do those even exist? The answer, as you probably guessed based on the title of the post, is yes, and you can find plenty of them over at No Entry Fee Festivals, a site that focuses specifically on the free ones. Click through to learn more about it. More »

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Every once in a while I am reminded that I live in an age with an eerie yet delightful attribute: I can ask why isn’t there a device or piece of software that does a certain thing, and then usually within 6 months the thing I wanted becomes a reality. Case in point: I was wondering how a friend of mine went about keeping track of a bunch of major film festival deadlines. The most obvious answer was that he probably spends time on Withoutabox and enters in deadlines into some calendar software. Still, I couldn’t help but ask myself “why isn’t there an all-in-one app that helps filmmakers keep track of film festivals?” As if on cue, a few days later iFilmfest popped up on my digital radar. More »