Impact Distribution: A 12 Step Guide

If you’ve got an impact project, distribution can be even more complex but it can also mean there are more opportunities available to you.

With impact projects your primary goal should be to 1) get your film seen by as many people as possible and 2) to get it seen by the right people in order to achieve the outcome you wanted when making the film.

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BRITDOC’s Impact Guide: has some great information on how to successfully merge distribution and impact in a way that in mutually beneficial, cost effective and efficient.  Impact Distribution is about compromise and ensuring that both the impact and commercial return are optimised. The two can even feed into each other, creating the widest possible distribution using marketing and press buzz helps to build strong relationships with movements, charities, the press and influencers and these relationships then help with marketing and outreach. Continue reading “Impact Distribution: A 12 Step Guide”

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Putting it out there: Festivals OR Online? Why Choose?

I have seen the majority of the short films selected for the 2016 Sundance Film festival and it isn’t because I traveled to Utah for the festival. Many of the shorts in their lineup are already available to people through Vimeo and Youtube allowing audiences around the world to actively engage with the festival virtually. Sundance has paved the way for many festivals, being a pioneer by embracing the submission of films that are already available online.

For years, filmmakers have been discouraged from uploading their films online if they want to be in with a chance of getting into a festival. But Short of the Week has a frequently updated page on their site which keeps filmmakers up to date with the changing landscape of film festival submissions. When I checked in January 2016, 2/3 of the ‘Top Film Festivals’ now accept films available online.

Trailer for Sundance Short Limbo Limbo Travel (available in full on Vimeo) 

Although festivals are changing their policies, there is still a stigma attached to ‘successful’ online films, which are regarded to be ‘viral’. Festivals, aiming to maintain a sense of exclusivity and mystery, are turned off from showing these films. Festivals should be about showcasing new talent and engaging audiences, if a dialogue around the film is happening online  it is for a reason. This reason may be a controversial central topic or, which is often the case, just a unique example of story telling. It is a real shame filmmakers still face a dilemma when it comes to what to do with their film once it has been created. Why must filmmakers compromise between getting into a prestigious festival and attracting online audiences?

This is why what Sundance (and other forward thinking festivals such as SXSW and Uppsala International Short Film Festival) are doing to change things is important. Sundance’s aim is  ‘actively advance the work of independent storytellers in film and theatre’ and allowing a wider audience to engage with the festival virtually means Sundance are doing just that.

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