Posts Tagged ‘bad’

Filmmakers Avoid La Femme Film Festival

January 7, 2010 1 comment

Terrible and expensive place to screen. For the submission fee of $70, you get a room with a couple of chairs and none of your posters nowhere to be seen. We were also “lucky” enough to have our screening scheduled against the opening party of the festival. Needless to say that nobody had any idea we were showing, besides our friends.
Also needless to say, that there was no effort from the festival organizer to put any attention to our film, because our time slot was in competition with the film crew, that paid huge money to the festival publicist.
During the closing ceremony, we struggled to find parking place, because place dedicated to VIP only was not for us. The parking attendant laughed when we asked and said : “Well, are you a celebrity?” Foolish of us to think that since our film was at the festival, we might have been the VIPs. At that point, we were so upset, that we approached the organizer Ms Leslie La Page to find out what exactly happened with our screening, our posters and her festival. She was very busy standing around carrying a baby, I guess her son…
Upon our approach, she started looking very uncomfortable, claiming she is very busy and cannot talk to us. We did mention we emailed her earlier with no feedback. She started getting more upset, looking for any way out. We left. We didn’t bother to attend award ceremony, that was dedicated to people, who paid thousands of dollars to receive her award.
How does this woman sleep at night? Scamming filmmakers of their money, taking their promotional materials and trashing them right away? If this woman is really a mother, I feel very sorry for the children she will raise. Nothing good comes from family of thieves, liars and con artists. Avoid this place if you are a serious filmmaker. If you film is no good, this place might be a great for you, because for few thousand $, you can buy attention, great screening time, publicity and award. No respect though. That you can only buy with good film.

Final evaluation:
Price: expensive
Perks: some if you have extra
$ to pay for them
Media: Ms Leslie has some friends that lent their names to the festival, they are as interested in indie film as I am in farming
Professionalism: appears good until personal contact
Interaction with filmmaker: only with the rich ones

Rating on a scale from 1-10:  3 (at least the “festival” takes place)


Final thought: After receiving emails from other filmmakers that attended La Femme, wanting to stop Ms LaPage from running

the festival another year, I realized, that we came out OK. We didn’t pay any additional money besides the submission fee, we didn’t get

scammed into her bogus publicist, we didn’t travel across the country to attend this circus. We came out OK, just smarter. Will you?


AOF (Action on Film) Festival Review

October 8, 2009 4 comments

Let me just start with: What a great place to screen your film and meet other equally dedicated filmmakers!
AOF Film Festival runs during the last week of July in Pasadena, which is roughly 15 min drive from the center of Los Angeles.
What’s great about this place is that Pasadena lives and breaths filmmakers during this week.
Right upon arrival, we were welcomed with a nice goodie bag filled with helpful filmmaking things, magazine subscriptions, some gifts and invitations to local places.
Also, the full festival schedule and promo material for each film screening was included.

Our film poster was framed in front of the theater and other posters kept rotating throughout
the week inside the main screening hall.
We were first advised to walk few block over to get our filmmaker interviews videotaped and enjoy
free coffee and wifi.
While there, we met the organizer of the festival, Del Weston, who introduced himself and
immediately recognized the film we were representing. He was very excited to meet us and helpful
with whatever questions we had.
Let me just point out, that this was our first feature film. Nobody in the film has a name, there are
no celebrities, the budget is minimal. The welcome was great! We kept running into festival
filmmakers throughout the whole week and made lots of new connections.
Whenever we had a question or concern, somebody took care of us immediately and solved or fixed whatever was needed.
There were 2 parties happening every night after the screenings where both of the organizers attended and hand out free drink coupons to filmmakers.

Considering press and media, there definitely were opportunities to meet people involved and get your word about your film out. Most screenings were properly announced and filmmakers were invited for Q&A after their film finished.

To be fair, I also need to point out the few of the weaknesses of this festival:
First of all, there were some films we saw that should have never been screened at a festival.
I am sure it is all politics and friends of friends, but there were films with production quality
worse than home made videos. That being said, it wasn’t many and the worse films were all scheduled at “less convenient” times. 🙂
Also, all filmmakers have to pay for their Award Show tickets, which are $150 per person and do not include free alcohol!!!! This is a “bit” much for any indie filmmaker especially if you have a larger crew attending.
But, if you do have a good project in your hands, the film festival will reward you for your art with
special acknowledgment, nomination or award.

The submission fee is anywhere between $45-$70 depending what and when you are submitting and I think it is absolutely worth the money. The connections we made, the films we saw and the treatment we received was exceptional. The screening rooms quality is exceptional and there were no major technical issues throughout the whole week!!! 🙂

Final evaluation:
Price: expensive
Perks: some goodies, some free drinks

Media: some
Professionalism: excellent
Interaction with filmmaker: better than awesome

Rating on a scale from 1-10:  9

Final thought: Would I screen here again?

Yes, Absolutely! This is really a great place to showcase your film and meet filmmakers from all around the world ( I can briefly recall connecting with artists that flew all the way from UK, India, Netherlands or Germany).
I am hoping to submit here again next year! And yes, I will mostlikely pay the $150 Award Show ticket again and will start saving for it right now! 🙂

Please, let me know if reviews of this type are helpful to you.
What other information shall I add?
Shall I be more detailed? Shall I give shoutouts to films that are screened?
Please, leave a comment with your feedback or experience 🙂
Thank you filmmakers. Cheers!

Film festivals YES or NO?

September 28, 2009 2 comments

We have started our festival tour this year and found out that not all film festivals are there to help filmmakers. Some are only established by posers, who failed as filmmakers and use the festival cover to scam others of their money, while raising money for their next project. I have finally decided, that I will cover our experiences in a blog so you can see, which festivals worked for us, and which are a waste.
Looking forward to hear your feedback as well. Let’s make this blog a helping tool and collaborate together on festival advice. The best and worst of all should be reviewed here, so filmmakers know where to invest their submission $.