Film Festivals: Easy Step For A Strong Application
Film festivals are undoubtedly an exciting, glamorous aspect of film-making. But preparation for them can be hard, gruelling work. Ensuring that your work is as good as it can be, that you have met all necessary requirements, and left yourself enough time, are all key to a successful application. Acceptance into a film festival can bring good publicity, encouragement, and even prize money to be invested in your next project. It might simply be a great opportunity to network and get your film seen. Whatever the potential rewards, you must first give yourself the best chance. Film festivals are more competitive than ever, but with a few easy steps you can ensure that your application is as strong as it can be.
Nothing kills creativity like being in a rush. There are a handful of gems out there that have been produced at short notice under heavy time pressure. For the most part, however, a good film and a strong festival application take time and consideration. Try to find out the deadline and requirements for your chosen festival well in advance. This gives you time to assemble any necessary materials and still have time for a check through afterwards. Nothing is more frustrating than realising you skipped a step that could have secured your spot in the screenings.
Many festivals require you to prepare a package for your film, meaning a synopsis, treatment, or description of the film. This might include its genre, an interesting description of the story (with no spoilers), or a statement of intent – such as what the film meant to you or what you were trying to communicate. Double check what you are being asked and think about your responses carefully. Know your film’s message and what is unique about it. What has your film done that hasn’t been done before? What is it about this film that stands out? Perhaps the relationships at the heart of the story are powerful and compassionate. Perhaps the film’s message is uplifting and important. Whatever makes your film unique is what you should emphasise. It will immediately strengthen your application.
Follow The Rules
No-one likes rules and they tend to be the first thing we all skip or only skim read. Do this for a film festival at your peril. Film festivals are very over-subscribed and rules help them to quickly filter out films. Don’t let yours be one of the rejected films. It may be dull but it could secure your place. Be boring and follow the rules to the letter! Let your film be the unique and creative one.