Festival Research

A major focus for this film has to be how and where I will market the film, what festivals I will send it to and what is required for submissions into those festivals. As part of research for this I discovered a site called withoutabox.com which is run under the IMDB umbrella, The idea of this site is for filmakers to post and submit their film to the sites formatting, this covers aspects such as genre, length, background, etc… and then compares the focus points against those of registered festivals. This was a very helpful resource as it allowed me to set up my film (although at point of submission certain elements had to be left blank) Below is a comparison between my film and the submission requirements for the Los Angeles Movie Awards

It shows that my film is certainly NOT suitable for submission to this festival, as my film has a running time of 12 minutes and the minimum requirement for this festival is a 60 minute piece. what this site does help to understand is the sheer amount of detail I need to provide for the festivals I plan to submit to, This website would save me a lot of time with online submissions as I would only need to fill out the form once and then apply to later submissions (assuming they accepted online submissions and were registered with the website) This would not help with festivals that require a physical hand in as I would still need to fill out the paperwork the old fashioned way.

Looking through this site as well as further research from my 360MC post on the matter I have found several festivals I would be interested in submitting to. To be able to afford the cost of festival submissions I would be looking at starting a kick-starter on the film to fund ‘distribution’ costs. Some other projects have setup fund-raising accounts online during pre-production to raise costs of filming to varying degrees of success, but I felt that this was not approiate for my film as I found it quite hard to show off my technical skill and really ‘sell’ the idea, I know I would find it difficult to fund a student project without seeing ‘something’ related to the project. However with the film ‘near enough’ finished, I think it will be much easier to raise support around promotional materials I can post (such as trailers) and this may raise interest and hopefully funding to cover some of the distribution costs.

I am currently in the process of getting a press kit organised, I have asked for help from journalism student, Cormac Kelly who has helped organise press kits for a number of other projects, according to E-How.com these are what I should be putting into my press kit

  • Film synopsis
  • Cast photos
  •  Cast bios
  • Crew bios
  • Film reviews
  • Tickets to screenings
  • Technical stats sheet
  • Director’s statement
  • An EPK (electronic press kit)
  • Ten frequently asked questions

Of course some of these do not really apply to me such as the tickets to the screening, but the rest will be information I will be passing on into my press kit.

Example press kit. This is a press kit for the 1982 film ‘Blade Runner’

With this in mind I need to consider what festivals I will apply for with this film, assuming I get funding to cover costs I will apply for entry in the following festivals:
Some of festivals will ask for exclusive rights to show the film and will ask that the film has not been screened at any other festival, these festivals I will likely have to avoid unless I feel that it is a big enough festival that can get my film out to a wide audience and also suit the style of the film.
As well as the above festivals I would be looking to present the film and several film nights, primarily local ones such as Roots To Shoots which is based in Coventry. I will also consider in time possibly entering into contests on vimeo BUT this would be a last resort at the end of the film’s ‘shelf life’ as many festivals will not show films if they are easily available on vimeo.
Festivals did present a concern when I was editing my FMP, I did aim to get my final project down to 10 minutes to enter into more short film festivals as there appears to be a much bigger market for those than ‘longer’ shorts (11-59 mins in length) I decided to keep to my current length as I felt that the film would not work with any further cuts.

Read more: How to Put Together a Film Press Kit | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_2325415_put-together-film-press-kit.html#ixzz1uSyKyQL8

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