Saturday, May 2, 2009

LA Film Festival Rejection (Night Before the Wedding)

I awoke this morning to find this message in my mailbox...

Dear Filmmaker:

Thank you for the opportunity to preview your film. We appreciated seeing your work, but I am sorry to tell you that it has not been selected for the 2009 Los Angeles Film Festival.

Our selection process is very competitive, and many wonderful and deserving productions will not be included in this year's program. We wish you success with the film and hope you will keep us informed about your future projects.

Thanks again for your interest in the Los Angeles Film Festival.

Best regards,

Rachel Rosen
Director of Programming

I cannot say that I do not care. Yet I started to anticipate this news shortly after submitting. That feeling I had was the reason why in addition to the LA Film Festival, I submitted NBTW to Dances With Films, which doesn't have the prestige of the LA Film Festival but it prides itself on being an independent film festival for true independent films.

The way I take this current rejection is that me and my team simply could not connect ourselves with key decision makers at the LA Film Festival. And if you are not connected with these 'big name festivals', the likelihood of your film getting accepted drops considerably.

I have certainly learned from this rejection coupled with the rejection from the SXSW Film Festival. I am sure the day will come when one of my films gets into one of these 'big name festivals.' The bottom line is that these festivals do not break me. My end goal is to get the masses to see my film(s). Whether my films play at the festivals or not, isn't going to stop me from doing what I have to do to get people to see my work.

My view is that the current state of independent film has become too dependent on these film festivals. We have become too dependent on whether this small pool of festival judges approve our work. I am working on changing that. I am working on building my audience with or without the help of any festival I submit to.

With that, I should hear word from Dances With Films in the next couple of days. Other than that, I am done with the local Festivals. Any festivals after DWF will be outside of the Los Angeles area.

(Underneath this news, there is a silver lining. NBTW will be screening in Los Angeles in August. Going to wait on this festival news to clear, then update you with more details)

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