Are Film Festivals Worth It?

To many filmmakers starting out – a film festival is the shining goal, the end zone of the production pipeline. Nothing could be further from the truth – a festival is just the start of the distribution game. Amber Sherman tackles the question – are festivals worth it?


The film festival circuit is supposed to be the golden ticket to success, money, and to hopefully making your next film. So, I pose the question: Are they worth it? The purpose is to get the exposure needed to get your movie out there, seen, and sold. Call film “art,” all you want, but the main objective is to make a living.

Being in acquisitions, I see the initial marketing materials a sales rep or filmmaker will send my way. Of course, what comes with that is the laurels. I see the familiar festivals and then I come across some, and think to myself, “What the hell festival is that?”

The first thing I’m going to say about this whole process is it costs money to get into any festival. The bigger the festival, the higher the price to submit with of course the chance of being rejected. (A quick tip: Make sure you set aside a good amount in your budget for the festival submission process.) This can cost anywhere from $40 to $400 and upwards from there.

No-name festivals aren’t going to get you anywhere, unless it is in a city that you want to make connections in or if it is connected to a certain charity or social issue.

Everyone likes to think that the slew of “Official Selection” laurels will buy your audience or whomever you’re trying to sell it to. (I will say the winning laurels, of course, mean a ton more.) This is a case of quantity over quality. Just because you were an official selection of a ton of festivals doesn’t make your movie great, or even good. I’ve seen some movies that were at the big festivals and just wondered… Why?!

Filmagon | Read the Full Article

My RØDE Reel 2015 – Tips & Tricks – Data Wrangling

In this segment RØDE discuss a few guidelines we like to follow when managing our data. Management of the physical media is just as important as the transferred data to ensure that each memory card is identified as safe to use. Creating a template folder with an internal structure can also save time when starting new projects.

To enter this year’s competition be sure to check out My RØDE Reel


Secrecy on the Set: Hollywood Embraces Digital Security

Adi Ruppin, chief technology officer of WatchDox, which helps secure files; he says he has seen a surge of demand from studios.

Adi Ruppin

For years, Lulu Zezza has played one of the toughest roles in Hollywood.

Ms. Zezza, who has managed physical production on movies like “The Reader” and “Nine,” also oversees the digital security of everything that goes into the making of a film on set, including budgets, casting, shooting schedules and scripts.

Not all that long ago, keeping tabs on Hollywood secrets was pretty simple. Executives like Ms. Zezza could confiscate a crew member’s company-issued computer or cellphone once shooting ended.

But personal smartphones that receive company emails, and apps that store data on cloud computers? That is not so easy to manage if your co-workers aren’t willing to play along.

Enter North Korea, stage left. After hackers believed to be from North Korea revealed embarrassing emails and other personal details at Sony Pictures late last year, Hollywood studios — like so many businesses in other industries before them — realized they had better find a better way to protect their most sensitive files.

And people like Ms. Zezza, who were once considered paranoid because they worried about mundane security measures like passwords and encryption, suddenly looked prescient.

New York Times | Read the Full Article

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