Re: festival responses

From: atrowbri (email suppressed)
Date: Sun Jun 14 2009 - 22:08:12 PDT

On Mon, Jun 15, 2009 at 12:31 AM, Bryan McKay<email suppressed> wrote:
> As a director of a [redacted] Underground Film Festival in a big city,
> though maybe not the same you're thinking of, venue costs are enormous, when
> we can even get venues to cooperate with us in the first place. The money we
> raise from submission fees covers some of our operating costs, but we still
> bring in a lot of additional sponsorship money to pay for the festival. If
> we chose to do away with submission fees (which I sonetimes wish we could)
> running a week-long film festival would no longer be viable.

I understand the pressure and the desire to put on something that will
make a stance for art, draw an audience but just one question here:

Running [a] week-long festival or running [the] week-long festival
would not longer be possible?

I'm sorry, I really am, to anyone this makes uncomfortable. I'm not
self-righteous and I am trying to be realistic. Artists aspiring to
show their work are a dumb, easy source of money. I was one, I *am*

> And for what it's worth, we do waive submission fees for any artists who had
> films in the festival in the past, and of course for any filmmakers we
> invite to submit.
> I'm not saying submission fees are great, and as a filmmaker I certainly
> don't look forward to them, but they can be a necessary evil when it comes
> to putting on a fringe film festival of any substantial size.
> Best,
> Bryan
> Sent from my iPhone
> On Jun 14, 2009, at 11:17 PM, atrowbri <email suppressed> wrote:
>> I'm responding late to this (for the internet 11 days is late) but I
>> find it totally inexcusable to fail to respond to people who send you
>> work (unless you did try to respond to everyone and simply missed
>> someone through an error).
>> I'm relatively inexperienced in this but in 2005 we put together the
>> Polymer show for the Hunter Museum of American Art. I am still
>> ambiguous about having charged money for submissions. It was only $15,
>> we had NO other budget, and the money went towards costs and
>> programming, but I still feel a bit ashamed of having done so. It was
>> sort of disturbing how quickly and easily we raised over $1000 in
>> doing so. I cannot even imagine the sums that the big "experimental"
>> film festivals make. (Not to pick on anyone, but how much does
>> [redacted] Underground Film Festival rake in? I've gotten a huge
>> number of reminders from them this year. Send us your work, big city,
>> $35!!!) So the charging money part, which I defended here in the past,
>> really alienates me now. Charging money to artists hoping to connect
>> to people? Charging ARTISTS who just need to score lines on a CV in
>> hopes of making a living in academia because ways of living as an
>> artist are slim? Charging artists to maybe show their work? It's
>> pretty vile. I only paid a few entry fees since then and stopped
>> completely within a year of that. I apologize to anyone here who we
>> charged, whether we showed your work or not. Ultimately I'd say refuse
>> to pay anyone, ever, for any reason, to show your work. Yes, there are
>> some good shows you can score with but ultimately the best location
>> for your work will be those venues that WANT to see new work, who
>> understand that the PRIVILEGE of seeing new work is paid by watching
>> the many, many mediocre or bad works that are submitted. Thank you to
>> every festival that's reviewed my work, whether you showed it or not,
>> without trying to take my money. I know the counterarguments about
>> time and effort, cost of putting something together, etc and I reject
>> them. The second showing of Polymer was all curated from work we saw,
>> scouted on youtube, friends we knew and it didn't feel gross at all. I
>> specifically sought out work from people I respected or knew would
>> benefit from a show. I hope to re-implement open calls, no fees, for
>> the next show and see even more work. (And if it's terrible in the
>> first 30 seconds? I can shut it off without feeling someone paid me to
>> watch it.)
>> So, back on topic, if you ask something of EVERYONE you owe a response
>> to everyone who responds. If not, you are rude and deserve the
>> reputation to cultivate.
>> Love,
>> Adam
>> On Wed, Jun 3, 2009 at 8:01 AM, Caryn Cline<email suppressed> wrote:
>>> Dear Frameworkers,
>>> I’m submitting my experimental films to festivals again, after a hiatus
>>> of
>>> several years.  When I submitted before, in the early 2000s, I always
>>> received a response from the festival, whether my work was accepted or
>>> rejected.  Now, I find that festivals that reject my work rarely contact
>>> me
>>> at all.
>>> I wonder why this is the case?  I’ve paid a fee to enter, usually, and it
>>> seems to me that the very least the programmers, or their interns, can do
>>> is
>>> to send me a form letter letting me know that my work didn’t make the
>>> cut.
>>> It would be even better to receive a thoughtful response with some
>>> feedback
>>> about my work.  I realize that programmers often have a lot of entries to
>>> view and judge, but shouldn’t a response, even a canned response, to each
>>> and every filmmaker, be a standard of professional courtesy?
>>> I know that there are curators and programmers on this list.  I will
>>> appreciate hearing their perspectives, as well as those of other
>>> filmmakers.  I would also be interested to hear about festivals that do
>>> respond to all applicants.
>>> Thank you,
>>> Caryn Cline
>>> New York City
>>> __________________________________________________________________ For
>>> info
>>> on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
>> --
>> Adam Trowbridge
>> __________________________________________________________________
>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
> __________________________________________________________________
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.

Adam Trowbridge
For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.