Role of Film Festivals in Cinema


           Film festivals play a crucial role in the cinema industry, the gathering of creatives to share each other's work that stems back to the beginning of modern cinema and remains a staple in the industry. These festivals go further than a cultural meet-up of like-minded individuals and creators, they are principal in marketing the films showcased for a  number of reasons.


The audiences that attend these events can be described as 'curated' not your ordinary folk-off-the-street that you would find at your local cinema. Nonetheless, this crowd is infinitely diverse; from fans to critics and actors to producers, they represent all corners of the cinema world.


            Events like this are the ideal platform for new talent to share their work and gain recognition from the industry; here independent filmmakers can have their work premiered at a film festival and gain the recognition they deserve. Amongst the previously mentioned audience there are also film buyers. These individuals keep a close eye out for what they believe might be sold to cinemas, or more recently, streaming platforms for the following year, doing their best to stay ahead of the competition to spot a success early on. This is important to both parties as producers allow projects to gain traction, searching out the next potential hit show or movie.


            Here there are strong opportunities for both learning and networking. Aside from film screenings there are classes offered by the best of the best, sharing knowledge with both fellow producers, actors and fans. This attracts up-and-coming enthusiasts or simply those who want to learn more about what goes on behind the screens of the elusive cinema world.


            As with any industry, networking is vital to success. These gatherings of like-minded people provide the perfect grounds for establishing connections, expanding their circle. This might ultimately prove priceless with strong future opportunities. In addition to festivals brand promoters are often found pushing their products, evidence of lateral growth throughout the industry for those involved.


            Lastly, and potentially less related to the promotion of the film itself, there can be strong opportunities in hosting film festivals with benefits they bring to local economies and tourism industries. Both Cannes and Venice, staples in the history of film festivals, attract millions in revenue to local economies by hosting annual events.


            Consequently, we see that film festivals are still hugely important to all involved, not only through promotion within the industry - and the opportunities it provides - but reaching further into local ecosystems, ultimately driving success for production in early stages and - with luck and hard work - the next step for the big-screen.

Laurent Zahut