The current movie awards season may be coming to a close, but there’s plenty of excitement to come throughout the year for film lovers. Film festivals seem to take on more importance each year as filmmakers use these events as high-profile premieres of their latest works. Some, like Sundance, are known for launching the careers of new directors. Others stir up excitement for new work from established filmmakers.
GET READY FOR SXSW WITH ONLINE MOVIE TRAILERS
The South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference & Festivals in Austin, Texas, isn’t strictly a film festival. The 10-day affair also focuses on music and interactive video technology, but the SXSW Film Conference & Festival component is a big draw. A highlight of this year’s festival is the North American premiere of Go for Sisters, the latest from independent film giant John Sayles (Eight Men Out, Lone Star). Also, Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers, starring James Franco and Selena Gomez, will make its U.S. debut at SXSW, which is scheduled for March 8 – 16, 2013.
You can watch trailers of select SXSW Film Festival entries on its YouTube and Vimeo channels. In addition to screenings, SXSW features conversations with actors and filmmakers, moderated panels, and hands-on workshops. SXSW is also hosting its first Come & Capture Film Factory, which allows participants to use the latest filmmaking tools to capture their experiences at the conference and share the results on SXSW’s online channels, bringing even more of the festival’s atmosphere to online viewers.
TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL ONLINE OPTIONS
Online video is beginning to enhance the film festival experience, bringing even greater exposure to the movies being showcased. The Tribeca Film Festival, for example, hosts a simultaneous Online Film Festival, showcasing a few features and several short films during the run of the festival. Established in 2002 by Robert De Niro and two partners, the Tribeca Film Festival has quickly become one of the most prestigious festivals in the country. The fact that some films are made available online during the event is a boon for movie buffs.
This year the Tribeca Film Festival will be held April 17 – 28, but you don’t have to fly to New York to get a front-row seat. Just create a Tribeca Film Festival account online and reserve a screening time for the films you select. Also, you only have a 24-hour window to watch a movie after you check-in to your screening. Despite all the hoops you’ll need to jump through, it’s a good way to get a piece of the Tribeca Film Festival experience. You can also watch Tribeca Online Film Festival movies on your iPad.
LIST OF 2013 FILM FESTIVALS
For those on the look out for the latest film festivals, you likely don’t have to look very far, these days there seems to be a different film festival every week – there’s even a film festival dedicated to YouTube funny cat videos. According to FestivalFocus, an online database of films and film festivals, there are over 2,000 festivals. There you can find out information about how to send in a submission to an upcoming festival and find out if there is a festival happening in your area. If you’re more interested in the major festivals that everyone will be talking about, here is a list of the major film festivals of 2013:
- Sundance Film Festival – Park City, Utah (January 18-24, 2013)
- Slamdance – An even more indie version of the Sundance film festival that runs simultaneously.
- Berlinale – The Berlin Film Festival is one of the premiere film festivals in the world (February 7 – 17, 2013)
- Tribeca Film Festival – New York (April 17- 28, 2013)
- Hot Docs – Toronto – The premier film festival for documentary filmmakers (April 25– May 5, 2013)
- San Francisco International Film Festival – One of the oldest film festivals in the country (April 25 – May 10, 2013)
- Cannes Film Festival (May 15 – 26, 2013)
- Marche Du Film – Cannes Film Market shows additional screenings during the Cannes Film Festival.
- Seattle International Film Festival – Although the festival overlaps with the Cannes Film Festival it often offers many stellar premiers for the North American market (May 16 – June 9, 2013)
- Montreal World Film Festival – This hugely successful film festival features British and Francophone Canadian films (August 22 – September 2, 2013)
- La Biennale di Venezia – The exclusive Venice Film Festival (August 28 – September 7, 2013)
- Telluride Film Festival – Many mainstream box office hits are unveiled at this festival (August 29 – September 2, 2013)
- Toronto International Film Festival – This festival is one of the most popular in the world and runs screenings at over 300 venues (September 5 -15, 2013)
- New York Film Festival – This festival is typically held in late September, but the formal dates for 2013 haven’t been announced as of this writing.
- Raindance Film Festival – This is the largest independent film festival in the UK (September 25- October 6, 2013)
- Vancouver International Film Festival – This festival brings films from around the globe to its festival (September 26 – October 11, 2013)
- Montreal French Film Festival Cinemania – A film festival showcasing French language films subtitled in English (November 7-17, 2013)
Which film festival produces your favorite films of the year? Which one would you attend if you could?