For film industry workers, film festival can be regarded as a common thing in their daily routine. In addition to the stars of the awards, film festivals often carry a variety of functions such as cultural exchanges, market transactions and film exhibition. Especially for practitioners in the film industry, film festivals are both opportunities and challenges.
I also had a general understanding of how to prepare for the festival after film maker Manila’s sharing in the previous class. From my personal view, the preparation for a film festival consists of three parts: registration preparation, media public relations and business considerations. For filmmakers and publishers, attending film festivals is an important way for films to attach the outside world. Once a film enters the festival system, it is followed by a news conference of communication significance, the building of influence through awards, and the opportunity to find buyers directly in the festival’s trading market. Therefore, attending a film festival is not only for simple exposure, but also for other economic effects hidden behind the festival.
To prepare for a film festival, the first point is to make clear the application requirements, referring to the preference of the jury. Before attending any film festival, the background investigation must be completed. Background surveys generally include two aspects: enrollment requirements and panel preference. Most film festivals will not offer specific limitations. There is no explicit requirement for the movie itself. However, some film festivals have special rules, such as requiring the film to be the director’s maiden work, or the length of the film cannot be longer than three hours, the film has not been shown elsewhere and so on. Before signing the application, make sure that these registration requirements are clearly understood. In addition, different film festivals have preferred aesthetic taste, which means jury members have a preference for a certain type of film. You can analyze the types and styles of historical award-winning movies in advance to better understand everyone’s aesthetic preferences.
After deciding which festival to attend, the second step to pay attention is the film you submit. It is also important to pay attention to deadlines, entry fees and premiere issues. The issue of premiere is also an important factor to consider. Obviously, a film has only one global premiere. Only if the quality of the film is high enough, then for the festival, it is worth letting it involved in. At the same time, film festival will welcome the high-quality films to make global premiere to help increase the reputation of the festival as well. Thus, the choice of premiere can be used as a bargaining chip to negotiate with the film festival you want most or the competition unit you want to enter. In addition, when applying for film festivals, it is necessary to classify the film festivals so that a film can be included in one of the festivals with as few applications as possible. After receiving an invitation to a film festival, you can also use it as a bargaining chip to negotiate with other film festivals for a more substantial invitation.
During the preparation process, your film will be told which unit to enter, the competition unit or the exhibition unit. Films entering the competition will be judged by members of the jury, which will be composed of critics, scholars, film practitioners and audiences. After watching the film together, they will discuss the results and announce them at the award ceremony. Therefore, in the early preparation, media public relations will become an important part of the award-winning. Large commercial studios usually pay huge public relations costs. Through the manipulation of the media, it is easier to guide public opinion to achieve the purpose of the award.
Therefore, for a filmmaker, preparing for a film festival is not simply a submission or an event, but a complete process that is integrated by several phased tasks.