Now that one festival has come to a close and hardcore film fans start preparing for the next big international festival, I thought it would be useful to offer up some tips that I have recently learnt about film festivals in general. Hopeful this list of dos and don’ts might left to make your next film festival as stress-free as possible.
Film Festival Do’s…
Do your research on the films that are to be showing before the event starts: It is a good idea to know what will be showing and where as soon as the programme becomes available. Ususally tickets will become available after that point, so giving it a quick once over beforehand will make sure that what you are able to book tickets for films that interest you. Also, it is wise to look for multiple films showing in a particular venue.
Do give all films a chance: It is common for people to choose the films that are in competition (ie. Shorts, Animation, Features,…). However, these are not the only films being shown, and it is definitely worth it to check them out also. Remember, they made it into an international film festival for a reason!
Film Festival Don’ts…
Don’t book your tickets at the last minute: Tickets for film festivals sell out quickly, especially if they are large public events. Do yourself a favour and buy your tickets online days before the film is shown. That way you avoid the hassle of going directly to the box office and pleading for the last tickets they have left. On the flip side, if it is last minute and the film you really want to see is sold out online, give the box office a visit as sometimes they tend to have more available that what is online.
Don’t blab about the films prematurely: Some films are premiered at international festivals and if you are fortunate enough to have a festival pass, that means you will get to see them before most. If it is showing well before its release date, you may have to sign an embargo preventing you from discussing the film immediately. Follow the guidelines of the embargo, there are some nasty consequences for those who don’t. Resist the urge.