We think that festivals need some rejuvenating and these speakers are all very actively doing just that. Personally, I've been rather skeptical of most other festivals acting as business conduits for filmmakers though they do act as filters which might make acquisitions jobs and perhaps digital exhibition a bit easier. I think there are too many festivals, and too many are "trying" to be markets. Here are questions addressed by this panel that all festivals should be answering as well. Sydney
TIFF Hosts "Talks With" and The Changing Role of the International Film Festival.
Speakers: John Cooper, Director, Sundance Film Festival; Wieland Speck, Director Panorama and Member Selection Committee Competition, Berlin International Film Festival; Piers Handling, Director & CEO, TIFF; Geoff Gilmore, Chief Creative Officer, Tribeca Enterprises. Moderator Sean Farnel, Director of Hot Docs
There’s no doubt the economic crisis has taken - or, more accurately, is about to take - a toll on the film industry. This session discussed the role international film festivals should play in this uncertain market.
· Locally festivals serve as a great way to see undistributed films, but shouldn't the filmmakers reap some benefit beyond a free trip (if they're given that)?
· Can the festival be beneficial to the filmmaker if they are making a DIY distribution plan, giving them a sort of “platform” release in the territory / locale of the festival?
· What are the new initiatives of your festival and what brought them about, what do you expect them to deliver. e.g. international activities, cooperation, events with government local and national?
· What, if any, online components does the festival promote? · Is the festival creating any new actions vis a vis its “market” component e.g., distribution of films through the festival’s efforts?
· Is there any financial aid, or are cash prizes offered?
· Are there alliances between festivals which are helping?
· Are the festivals solving any problems for filmmakers themselves?
My blog is currently looking at festivals and online exhibition initiatives. I'm acting more as an aggregator of what I consider important news than as an original voice, but my comments (always in italics) are true to my own vision.
You can see my blog at http://sydneysblog.blogspot.com/.
From Sydney Levine
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