For most film students the utmost pride they brace themselves for is getting an award, getting to be recognized through the festivals. Getting the acclamation and just trying to make a name for yourself before actually getting the big challenge of doing a feature film. The film industry is not easy to hack especially if you are just a new bee, however all is not lost. You can always judge where you lie and how good you really are when you give yourself a challenge and what a better way to do that than to actually place your work in an international forum?
Film is a very expensive venture one that needs to be well thought off. Most films that get such acclamation are feature films which are even more expensive especially for students. Students normally rely on probono services, trading in their services to get equipment , experience, among other negotiations that deem friendly and convenient at that time. While most of them just make films to learn a few arts, for school projects, others do it to have the experience while others for international if not national acclamation. So for those who believe they have what it takes to have this year’s awards what can you do to hack these festivals?
There are few steps you need to be aware of:-
Know the type of festivals present all around the year and their qualifications. There are many festivals that run through out the year. The most known one is our very own Kalasha awards, Zanzibar Film Festival(ZIFF),Udada Film Festival ,Slum Film Festival, Cannes Film Festival, Arusha African Film Festival, Durban International Film Festival, Africa World Documentary Film Festival ,Pan African Film Festival among many others. In each of these festivals they have sub branches where each genre of film lies as well as a theme to go hand in hand with the timing of the festival.
Know the dates of their deadlines for submission as well as the time and place of the said events .Then work your film to fit in to those specifications as acquired.
Most film festivals have submissions running during the first quarter of the year, i.e. from January all the way to around April-May. The ceremony happens during the period of the second quarter running through to the third quarter of the year then it is the festive season.
You can take a case study of this year’s film festivals schedules and get to know how things really work and how to manipulate them to work in your advantage. Getting to know the specifications required is also important. They help curve your idea to fit their requirements, which brings me to the next step.
Having that in mind then you have a clear picture of what you want to do with you film. You will know what kind of genre to work on and the theme to base your film on as per the festivals. In most cases than not, you will set your productions running through the last quarter of the year. This is advisable because by the time the year is ending you already have a feel of what might be on the look out for the next festivals. It will be easy for you to make a film that goes hand in hand with the themes as well as with the requested specifications.
Step four :-
Once pre, post and production is done you submit you films to the different festivals in different categories and wait for you to win an award.
There you go,you now hold the key and a step further to that award.Please remember that The most basic thing to do is to plan yourself very well in order for you to have it successful. They say failure to plan is planning to fail.
I wish you all the best..