Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What I learned from the festival circuit

After more than a year and almost 40 festival screenings, Enter the Dark's World Tour 2010 - 2011 is finally at an end.  It's been a great experience and I've learned quite a few things that will help me as I move forward with new projects.  I figured I might as well pass along some of these hard-earned nuggets to anyone who dares venture forth into the world of indie filmmaking.

First, in order to keep track of all the festivals I submitted to, I created a big-ole spreadsheet, including festival name, date of upcoming deadline, cost of entry, dates of the festival, location of festival, date when they would notify filmmakers of their decisions, whether I got in or not, and if we won any awards.

From these magic columns I can extrude the following data:

YES:  40
NO:    42

Almost a 50% batting average - not too bad.  I can tell you this - in the future I would not submit to as many festivals.  Since this was my first time, my main goal was getting as much exposure as possible and finding out which festivals were worth the entry fee.  Having submitted to that many festivals, I now have a pretty good idea which are the good ones, and which are the shady ones.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Rhinos' Flight

When I'm not scaring myself silly with new story ideas or ranting about media wackiness, I actually have a real job (sort of) as video editor.

Outside magazine recently posted a short film "Rhinos' Flight" I edited for the series "The New Environmentalists." Check out the story of Raoul du Toit, working to save the last of Africa's black rhinos. To see the whole six-part series, narrated by Robert Redford, check your local PBS listings.