Marketing: Film Festivals!
Update: Film Festivals!
We always begin with the following disclaimer: It is impossible for you to know less about filmmaking than what we knew when we began the Salted Christmas journey. This series of articles is not designed to teach anyone in the industry anything. The series is simply intended to share with our friends some of what we’ve learned about the art, the skill, and the business of filmmaking.
Many people say that the hardest part of making a film is obtaining the financing. While it is true that financing presents a monstrous hurdle for any independent film, it is not the highest hurdle. What could be more difficult than finding the money to make a film? Getting someone to watch it!
The earliest stage in the marketing plan for #SaltedChristmas (we will cover the entire marketing plan in another post) is the submission to several film festivals. So far we’ve chosen to submit to two specifically Christian festivals, three secular festivals, and one purely online festival. In general, we hunted around for festivals that were either very well established or were targeted to our audience. We have no idea at the point if we will be admitted to any of them. But we’ve applied because we regard festivals as a potential opportunity to introduce ourselves and the film to the industry as well as hopefully receive feedback from people who look at a lot of films. Of course, if we won any awards, that would be an incredible gift we could use in other areas of the marketing plan.
The festivals to which we’ve already submitted are (in order of event date):
The Christian Worldview Film Festival in San Antonio Texas always attracts a large number of participants, wonderful speakers, and great films. If they accepted us, this would be the world premier of Salted Christmas. @CWVFF
The Depth of Field International Film Festival is a purely online event. We were attracted to this festival due to the feedback that all filmmakers who submit to the competition receive. Whether or not we are accepted to the festival and considered for an award, this festival will provide feedback. If we are not accepted, we receive a letter explaining what it was about the film that kept us out. If we are admitted, we are guaranteed a review by at least one potential distributor. So we look forward to getting feedback from this festival one way or another. The festival takes place on March 20, 2017.
We chose the Sarasota Film Festival for three reasons: 1) it is a well-establish, we-respected festival, 2) it’s close to home, and 3) the dates work well for us. As a secular festival, they may not be interested in Salted Christmas at all. But we really wanted to test the waters on several festivals to know for sure. The dates for the 19th annual Sarasota Film Festival are March 31-April 9. If we are admitted, we will attend on our screening date and publicize it in case you want to join us! @MySFF
So when you apply to college, you always include a stretch school. So we’ve submitted to Tribeca. Tribeca is one of the best-known, important film festivals in the world. Founded by Robert DeNiro and a couple of others, this is our version of applying to Princeton. We don’t think we’ll get in; but hey, what’s the worst they can say??? NO! So we submitted. The dates for @Tribeca this year are April 19-30. If by some chance we were admitted, they would give us a screening date which we would attend and publicize. Oh, by the way, all films admitted to Tribeca automatically qualify for the Academy Awards. Just sayin’…
The Nashville film festival is a well-established and respected festival in the southeastern United States that attracts important industry figures and cutting edge films. We have no idea how a secular festival will respond to Salted Christmas, but we wanted to give it a try. The dates for Nashville this year are April 20-29. If we were admitted, they would notify us about the date they were screening Salted Christmas and we would let everyone know. Also, Nashville is another festival that automatically qualifies a film for the Academy Awards. @nashfilmfest
We’ve attended the International Christian Film Festival in Orlando, Florida for the past two years. We love the festival and hope they might accept us this year. The festival is well attended and attracts industry leaders every year. The dates of this year’s festival are May 4-6, 2017. @
It is possible we could submit to additional festivals in the future but we hope that these submissions will tell us what we want to know!