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A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of
film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of used to simulate experiences that communicate ideas, stories, perceptions, feelings, beauty, or atmosphere through the use of moving images. These images are gen ...

film
s in one or more
cinema Cinema may refer to: Film * Cinematography Cinematography (from ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in ancient Greece and the classical antiquity, ancient world from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It ...

cinema
s or screening venues, usually in a single city or region. Increasingly, film festivals show some films outdoors. Films may be of recent date and, depending upon the festival's focus, can include international and domestic releases. Some festivals focus on a specific filmmaker, genre of film (i.e.
horror films A horror film is one that seeks to elicit fear in its audience for entertainment purposes. Horror films additionally aim to evoke viewers' nightmares, fears, Disgust, revulsions and Horror and terror, terror of the unknown or the macabre. Init ...
), or subject matter ( LGBTQ+ film festivals). Several film festivals focus solely on presenting
short film A short film is any motion picture A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experiences that communicate ideas, stories, perceptions, feelings, beauty, or atmosphere through t ...
s of a defined maximum length. Film festivals are typically annual events. Some film historians, including
Jerry Beck Jerry Beck (born February 9, 1955 in New York City New York City (NYC), often simply called New York, is the List of United States cities by population, most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2019 population of 8,336,817 ...
, do not consider film festivals as official releases of the film. The most prestigious film festivals in the world, known as the "Big Three", are:
Venice Venice ( ; it, Venezia ; vec, Venesia or ) is a city in northeastern Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a Northern Italy, continental part, d ...
,
Cannes Cannes ( , , ; oc, Canas) is a city located on the French Riviera The French Riviera (known in French language, French as the ; oc, Còsta d'Azur ; literal translation "Azure (color), Azure Coast") is the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean ...

Cannes
and
Berlin Berlin (; ) is the and by both area and population. Its 3,769,495 inhabitants, as of 31 December 2019 makes it the , according to population within city limits. One of 's , Berlin is surrounded by the state of , and contiguous with , Brande ...
. The most prestigious film festivals in North America are
Sundance
Sundance
and
Toronto Toronto (, ) is the capital city of the Canadian province of Ontario. With a recorded population of 2,731,571 in 2016 in 2016, it is the most populous city in Canada and the fourth most populous city in North America. The city is the anch ...
.


History

The
Venice Film Festival The Venice Film Festival or Venice International Film Festival ( it, Mostra Internazionale d'Arte Cinematografica della Biennale di Venezia, "International Exhibition of Cinematographic Art of the Venice Biennale") is the world's oldest film fest ...
in
Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of delimited by the and surrounding it, whose territory largely coincides with the . Italy is located in the centre of th ...

Italy
began in 1932 and is the oldest film festival still running.
Raindance Film Festival Raindance is an independent film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experiences that communicat ...
is the
UK's
UK's
largest celebration of independent
filmmaking Filmmaking (film production) is the process by which a is . Filmmaking involves a number of complex and discrete stages, starting with an initial story, idea, or commission. It then continues through , , pre-production, shooting, sound recordi ...
and takes place in London in October.
Mainland Europe Mainland or continental Europe is the contiguous continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven regions are commonly rega ...

Mainland Europe
's biggest independent film festival is ÉCU The European Independent Film Festival, which started in 2006 and takes place every spring in Paris, France.
Edinburgh International Film Festival The Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF) is an annual fortnight of cinema screenings and related events taking place each June. Established in 1947, it is the world's oldest continually running film festival. EIFF presents both UK and int ...
is the longest-running festival in
Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of , it is the largest of the British Isles, the List of European islands by area, largest European island, and the List of i ...

Great Britain
as well as the longest continually running film festival in the world.
Australia's
Australia's
first and longest-running film festival is the
Melbourne International Film Festival The Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to ...
(1952), followed by the
Sydney Film Festival The Sydney Film Festival is an annual film festival held in Sydney, usually over 12 days in June. The competitive film festival draws international and local attention, with films being showcased in several venues across the city centre and inclu ...
(1954).
North America's
North America's
first and longest-running short film festival is the
Yorkton Film Festival Yorkton Film Festival (YFF) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experience ...
, established in 1947. The first film festival in the United States was the
Columbus International Film & Video Festival The Columbus International Film + Animation Festival is a Columbus, Ohio, United States annual film festival which is designed to encourage and promote the use of film and video in all forms of education and communication. It is the first and old ...
, also known as
The Chris Awards The Columbus International Film + Animation Festival is a Columbus, Ohio, United States annual film festival which is designed to encourage and promote the use of film and video in all forms of education and communication. It is the first and old ...
, held in 1953. According to the Film Arts Foundation in
San Francisco San Francisco (/Help:IPA/English, ˌsæn fɹənˈsɪskoʊ/; Spanish language, Spanish for "Francis of Assisi, Saint Francis"), officially the City and County of San Francisco, is a cultural, commercial, and financial center in Northern Calif ...

San Francisco
, "''The Chris Awards'' (is) one of the most prestigious documentaries, educational, business and informational competitions in the U.S; (it is) the oldest of its kind in North America and celebrating its 54th year". It was followed four years later by the
San Francisco International Film Festival The San Francisco International Film Festival (abbreviated as SFIFF), organized by the San Francisco Film Society, is held each spring for two weeks, presenting around 200 films from over 50 countries. The festival highlights current trends in int ...
, held in March 1957, which emphasized feature-length dramatic films. The festival played a major role in introducing foreign films to American audiences. Films in the first year included
Akira Kurosawa was a Japanese film director, screenwriter, and producer who directed 30 films in a career spanning 57 years. He is regarded as one of the most important and influential filmmakers in the history of cinema. Kurosawa entered the Japanese film ...
's ''
Throne of Blood is a 1957 Japanese historical drama film A historical drama (also period drama, costume drama, and period piece) is a work set in a past time period, usually used in the context of film and television. Historical drama includes historical fiction ...
'' and
Satyajit Ray Satyajit Ray (; 2 May 1921 – 23 April 1992) was an Indian filmmaker, screenwriter A screenplay writer (also called screenwriter for short), scriptwriter or scenarist, is a writer A writer is a person who uses written word ...

Satyajit Ray
's ''
Pather Panchali ''Pather Panchali'' (; ) is a 1955 Indian Bengali language, Bengali-language Drama (film and television), drama film written and directed by Satyajit Ray and produced by the Government of West Bengal. It is based on Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay ...
''. Today, thousands of film festivals take place around the world—from high-profile festivals such as
Sundance Film Festival The Sundance Film Festival (formerly Utah/US Film Festival, then US Film and Video Festival) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or mov ...

Sundance Film Festival
and
Slamdance Film Festival The Slamdance Film Festival is an annual film festival focused on emerging artists. The annual week-long festival takes place in Park City, Utah, in late January and is the main event organized by the year-round Slamdance organization, which also h ...
(
Park City, Utah Park City is a city in Summit County, Utah Utah ( , ) is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper) ...
), to horror festivals such as Terror Film Festival (
Philadelphia Philadelphia (colloquially known simply as Philly) is the largest city in the of in the . It is the in the United States and the city in the state of Pennsylvania, with a 2020 population of 1,603,797. It is also the in the Northeastern U ...

Philadelphia
), and the
Park City Film Music Festival The Park City Film Music Festival is a film festival with a special emphasis on film music, which takes place annually in Park City, Utah, United States, and showcases American and International films. It was founded in 2004 and awards films with a ...
, the first U.S. film festival dedicated to honoring music in film. Film Funding competitions such as Writers and Filmmakers were introduced when the cost of production could be lowered significantly and internet technology allowed for the collaboration of film production.


Notable film festivals

The "Big Five" film festivals are considered to be
Cannes Cannes ( , , ; oc, Canas) is a city located on the French Riviera The French Riviera (known in French language, French as the ; oc, Còsta d'Azur ; literal translation "Azure (color), Azure Coast") is the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean ...

Cannes
,
Venice Venice ( ; it, Venezia ; vec, Venesia or ) is a city in northeastern Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a Northern Italy, continental part, d ...
,
Berlin Berlin (; ) is the and by both area and population. Its 3,769,495 inhabitants, as of 31 December 2019 makes it the , according to population within city limits. One of 's , Berlin is surrounded by the state of , and contiguous with , Brande ...
,
Sundance
Sundance
and
Toronto Toronto (, ) is the capital city of the Canadian province of Ontario. With a recorded population of 2,731,571 in 2016 in 2016, it is the most populous city in Canada and the fourth most populous city in North America. The city is the anch ...
. In North America, the Toronto International Film Festival is North America's most popular festival. ''
Time Time is the continued of and that occurs in an apparently succession from the , through the , into the . It is a component quantity of various s used to events, to compare the duration of events or the intervals between them, and to of ...
'' wrote it had "grown from its place as the most influential fall film festival to the most influential film festival, period". The
Seattle International Film Festival The Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF), held annually in Seattle Seattle ( ) is a port, seaport city on the West Coast of the United States. It is the county seat, seat of King County, Washington, King County, Washington (state), W ...
is credited as being the largest film festival in the United States, regularly showing over 400 films in a month across the city.


Competitive feature films

The festivals in
Berlin Berlin (; ) is the and by both area and population. Its 3,769,495 inhabitants, as of 31 December 2019 makes it the , according to population within city limits. One of 's , Berlin is surrounded by the state of , and contiguous with , Brande ...
,
Cairo Cairo ( ; ar, القاهرة, al-Qāhirah, , : ⲕⲁϩⲓⲣⲏ) is the and of . The , with a population of 21.3 million, is the 2nd and in the , and the in the world. Cairo is associated with , as the famous and the ancient city of are ...
,
Cannes Cannes ( , , ; oc, Canas) is a city located on the French Riviera The French Riviera (known in French language, French as the ; oc, Còsta d'Azur ; literal translation "Azure (color), Azure Coast") is the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean ...

Cannes
,
Goa Goa () is a state on the southwestern coast of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous country, the ...
,
Karlovy Vary Karlovy Vary (; german: Karlsbad, ) is a spa town, spa city in the Karlovy Vary Region of the Czech Republic. It has about 48,000 inhabitants. It lies on the confluence of the rivers Ohře and Teplá, approximately west of Prague. It is named a ...
,
Locarno , neighboring_municipalities= Ascona, Avegno, Switzerland, Avegno, Cadenazzo, Cugnasco, Gerra (Verzasca), Gambarogno, Gordola, Lavertezzo, Losone, Minusio, Muralto, Orselina, Tegna, Switzerland, Tegna, Tenero-Contra , twintowns = } Locarno (, ...
,
Mar del Plata Mar del Plata is a city in Buenos Aires Province Buenos Aires (), officially the Buenos Aires Province (''Provincia de Buenos Aires'' ), is the largest and most populous Provinces of Argentina, Argentine province. It takes its name from the cit ...
,
Montreal Montreal ( ; officially Montréal, ) is the List of the largest municipalities in Canada by population, second-most populous city in Canada and List of towns in Quebec, most populous city in the Provinces and territories of Canada, Canadian pro ...
,
Moscow Moscow (, ; rus, links=no, Москва, r=Moskva, p=mɐˈskva, a=Москва.ogg) is the capital and largest city of Russia Russia (russian: link=no, Россия, , ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe ...
,
San Sebastián San Sebastian, also known as Donostia-San Sebastián (official names in both local languages: ''Donostia'' () and ''San Sebastián'' ()) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geograp ...
,
Shanghai Shanghai (, , Standard Mandarin Standard Chinese, in linguistics known as Standard Northern Mandarin, Standard Beijing Mandarin or simply Mandarin, is a Mandarin Chinese#Subgrouping, dialect of Mandarin that emerged as the lingua fra ...
,
Tallinn Tallinn (; ) is the most populous, primate A primate ( ) (from Latin , from 'prime, first rank') is a eutherian mammal Mammals (from Latin language, Latin , 'breast') are a group of vertebrate animals constituting the class (biol ...
,
Tokyo Tokyo (: , ''Tōkyō'' ), historically known in the west as Tokio and officially the Tokyo Metropolis (, ''Tōkyō-to''), is and most populous . Located at the head of , the prefecture forms part of the on the central Pacific coast of 's m ...
,
Venice Venice ( ; it, Venezia ; vec, Venesia or ) is a city in northeastern Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a Northern Italy, continental part, d ...
, and
Warsaw Warsaw, * la, Varsovia (Polish Polish may refer to: * Anything from or related to Poland Poland ( pl, Polska ), officially the Republic of Poland ( pl, Rzeczpospolita Polska, links=no ), is a country located in Central Europe. I ...
are accredited by the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF) in the category of competitive feature films. As a rule, for films to compete, they must first be released during the festivals and not in any other previous venue beforehand.


Experimental films

Ann Arbor Film Festival The Ann Arbor Film Festival is an annual film festival held in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Ann Arbor in the U.S. state of Michigan. Established in 1963, it is the fourth-oldest film festival in North America (after the Yorkton Film Festival, 1947; Columbus ...
started in 1963. It is the oldest continually operated experimental film festival in North America, and has become one of the premier film festivals for independent and, primarily, experimental filmmakers to showcase work.


Independent films

In the U.S.,
Telluride Film Festival The Telluride Film Festival (TFF) is a film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experiences ...
,
Sundance Film Festival The Sundance Film Festival (formerly Utah/US Film Festival, then US Film and Video Festival) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or mov ...

Sundance Film Festival
,
Austin Film Festival Austin Film Festival (AFF), founded in 1994, is an organization in Austin, Texas Austin (, ) is the capital city of the U.S. state of Texas, as well as the county seat, seat and largest city of Travis County, Texas, Travis County, with por ...
,
Austin Austin (, ) is the capital city A capital or capital city is the municipality holding primary status in a country, Constituent state, state, province, Department (country subdivision), department, or other administrative region, usually ...

Austin
's
South by Southwest South by Southwest, abbreviated as SXSW and colloquially referred to as South By, is an annual conglomeration of parallel film, interactive media, and music festivals and Convention (meeting), conferences organized jointly that take place in ...
,
New York City New York, often called New York City to distinguish it from New York State New York is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of ...

New York City
's
Tribeca Film Festival The Tribeca Film Festival is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art The visual arts are art f ...
,
London London is the Capital city, capital and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom, largest city of England and the United Kingdom. It stands on the River Thames in south-east England at the head of a estuary down to the North Sea, and has b ...

London
's London Eco-Film Festival, and
Slamdance Film Festival The Slamdance Film Festival is an annual film festival focused on emerging artists. The annual week-long festival takes place in Park City, Utah, in late January and is the main event organized by the year-round Slamdance organization, which also h ...
are all considered significant festivals for independent film. The Zero Film Festival is significant as the first and only festival exclusive to self-financed filmmakers. The biggest independent film festival in the UK is
Raindance Film Festival Raindance is an independent film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experiences that communicat ...
. The
British Urban Film Festival The British Urban Film Festival (BUFF) was formed in July 2005 to showcase urban independent cinema in the absence of any such state-sponsored activity in the UK. Supported by filmmakers and British actors, the organisation was set up by Emman ...
(which specifically caters to Black and minority interests) was officially recognized in the 2020 New Year Honours list.


Subject specific films

A few film festivals have focused on highlighting specific issue topics or subjects. These festivals have included both mainstream and
independent film An independent film, independent movie, indie film, or indie movie is a feature film A feature film, or feature-length film, is a narrative film (motion picture or "movie") with a running time long enough to be considered the principal or sole ...
s. Some examples include military films, health-related film festivals, and human rights film festivals. There are festivals, especially in the US, that highlight and promote films that are made by or are about various ethnic groups and nationalities or feature the cinema from a specific foreign country. These include
African-Americans African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans) are an ethnic group An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being t ...
,
Asian-Americans Asian Americans are Americans of Asian people, Asian ancestry (Naturalization, naturalized Americans who are Immigration to the United States, immigrants from Asia may also identify as Asian-Americans). Although it had historically been used to ...
,
Mexican-Americans Mexican Americans ( es, mexicano-estadounidenses or ) are Americans Americans are the Citizenship of the United States, citizens and United States nationality law, nationals of the United States of America.; ; ''Ricketts v. Attorney Genera ...
,
Arabs The Arabs (singular Arab ; singular ar, عَرَبِيٌّ, ISO 233 The international standard An international standard is a technical standard A technical standard is an established norm (social), norm or requirement for a repeatable technica ...
, Italian,
German German(s) may refer to: Common uses * of or related to Germany * Germans, Germanic ethnic group, citizens of Germany or people of German ancestry * For citizens of Germany, see also German nationality law * German language The German la ...
, French,
Palestinian The Palestinian people ( ar, الشعب الفلسطيني, ''ash-sha‘b al-Filasṭīnī''), also referred to as Palestinians ( ar, الفلسطينيون, links=no, ''al-Filasṭīniyyūn''; he, פָלַסְטִינִים) or Palestinian A ...
, and
Native American Native Americans may refer to: Ethnic groups * Indigenous peoples of the Americas, the pre-Columbian peoples of North and South America and their descendants * Native Americans in the United States * Indigenous peoples in Canada, the indigenous p ...
. The
Deauville American Film Festival The Deauville American Film Festival (french: Festival du cinéma américain de Deauville) is a yearly film festival devoted to Cinema of the United States, American cinema, which has taken place since 1975 in Deauville, France. It was establ ...
in France is devoted to the
cinema of the United States The cinema of the United States, often called Hollywood, has had a large effect on the film industry in general since the early 20th century. The dominant style of American cinema is classical Hollywood cinema, which developed from 1913 to 1 ...

cinema of the United States
.
LGBTQ+ ' or ' is an initialism An acronym is a word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phonemes that can be uttered in isolation with semantic, objective or pragmatics, practical meaning (ling ...
and Women's Film Festivals are also popular.


North American film festivals

The
San Francisco International Film Festival The San Francisco International Film Festival (abbreviated as SFIFF), organized by the San Francisco Film Society, is held each spring for two weeks, presenting around 200 films from over 50 countries. The festival highlights current trends in int ...
, founded by Irving "Bud" Levin started in 1957, is the oldest continuously annual film festival in the United States. It highlights current trends in international
filmmaking Filmmaking (film production) is the process by which a is . Filmmaking involves a number of complex and discrete stages, starting with an initial story, idea, or commission. It then continues through , , pre-production, shooting, sound recordi ...
and
video production Video production is the process of producing video Video is an electronic Electronic may refer to: *Electronics Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and contro ...
with an emphasis on work that has not yet secured U.S. distribution. The
Toronto International Film Festival The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF, often stylized as tiff) is one of the largest publicly attended film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion pictur ...
, founded by Bill Marshall, Henk Van der Kolk and Dusty Cohl, is regarded as North America's most important film festival, and is the most widely attended. The Ottawa Canadian Film Festival, abbreviated OCanFilmFest, was co-founded by Ottawa-based filmmakers Jith Paul, Ed Kucerak and Blair Campbell in 2015, and features films of various durations and genres from filmmakers across Canada. The
Sundance Film Festival The Sundance Film Festival (formerly Utah/US Film Festival, then US Film and Video Festival) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or m ...

Sundance Film Festival
founded by
Sterling Van Wagenen Sterling Gray Van Wagenen (born in Utah, United States, July 2, 1947) is an American film and stage producer, writer, director, and convicted sex offender A sex offender (sexual offender, sex abuser, or sexual abuser) is a person who has committ ...
(then head of Wildwood, Robert Redford's company), John Earle, and Cirina Hampton Catania (both serving on the Utah Film Commission at the time) is a major festival for independent film. The
Woodstock Film Festival The Woodstock Film Festival is an American film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to simulate experiences ...
was launched in 2000 by filmmakers Meira Blaustein and Laurent Rejto to bring high-quality independent films to the
Hudson Valley The Hudson Valley (also known as the Hudson River Valley) comprises the valley of the Hudson River The Hudson River is a that flows from north to south primarily through eastern in the United States. It originates in the of and flows ...

Hudson Valley
region of
New York New York most commonly refers to: * New York City, the most populous city in the United States, located in the state of New York * New York (state), a state in the northeastern United States New York may also refer to: Film and television * New ...
.
Indiewire IndieWire (sometimes stylized as indieWIRE or Indiewire) is a film industry and review website that was established in 1996. The site's focus is independent film. IndieWire is a subsidiary of ''Variety'', which is part of the Penske Media. ...
has named the Woodstock Film Festival among the top 50 independent film festivals worldwide. The Regina International Film Festival and Awards (RIFFA) founded by John Thimothy, one of the top leading international film festivals in western Canada (
Regina, Saskatchewan Regina () is the capital city of the Provinces and territories of Canada, Canadian province of Saskatchewan. The city is the second-largest in the province, after Saskatoon and is a commercial centre for southern Saskatchewan. As of the Canada ...
) represented 35 countries in 2018 festival. RIFFA annual Award show and red carpet arrival event is getting noticed in the contemporary film and fashion industries in
Western Canada Western Canada, also referred to as the Western Provinces and more commonly known as the West, is a region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the stud ...
. Toronto's
Hot Docs The Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival is the largest documentary festival in North America. The event takes place annually in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The 27th edition of the festival took place online throughout May and June 2 ...
founded by filmmaker Paul Jay, is a North American documentary film festival. Toronto has the largest number of film festivals in the world, ranging from cultural, independent, and historic films. The
Seattle International Film Festival The Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF), held annually in Seattle Seattle ( ) is a port, seaport city on the West Coast of the United States. It is the county seat, seat of King County, Washington, King County, Washington (state), W ...
, which screens 270 features and approximately 150 short films, is the largest American film festival in terms of the number of feature productions. The
Expresión en Corto International Film Festival The Guanajuato International Film Festival or GIFF is an annual international film festival, held since 1998. It is held during the final week of July in San Miguel de Allende and Guanajuato City, Mexico. GIFF was formerly known as Expresión en Cor ...
is the largest competitive film festival in
Mexico Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organi ...

Mexico
. It specializes in emerging talent, and is held in the last week of each July in the two colonial cities of
San Miguel de Allende San Miguel de Allende () is the principal city in the municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subna ...

San Miguel de Allende
and
Guanajuato Guanajuato (), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Guanajuato ( es, Estado Libre y Soberano de Guanajuato), is one of the 32 states that make up the Federal Entities of Mexico Mexico ( es, México ; Nahuan languages: ), officially ...

Guanajuato
. Other Mexican festivals include the
Guadalajara International Film Festival The Guadalajara International Film Festival (Spanish: Festival Internacional de Cine en Guadalajara) is a week-long film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion pictur ...

Guadalajara International Film Festival
in
Guadalajara Guadalajara ( , ) is a metropolis A metropolis () is a large city or conurbation A conurbation is a region comprising a number of metropolis in the background A metropolis () is a large city or conurbation which is a significan ...

Guadalajara
, Oaxaca Film Fest, the
Morelia International Film Festival The Morelia International Film Festival (''Spanish'': ''Festival Internacional de Cine de Morelia''; FICM) was founded in 2003 in the city of Morelia, Michoacán, México. It is an annual event that takes place during the second week of October. FI ...
in Morelia, Michoacan
Mexico Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organi ...

Mexico
, and the Los Cabos International Film Festival founded by Scott Cross, Sean Cross, and Eduardo Sanchez Navarro, in Los Cabos, Baja Sur, Mexico are considered the most important film festivals in Latin America. In 2015, Variety (magazine), ''Variety'' called the Los Cabos International Film Festival the "Cannes of Latin America".


South American film festivals

The Cartagena Film Festival, founded by Victor Nieto in 1960, is the oldest in Latin America. The Festival de Gramado (or Gramado Film Festival) Gramado, Brazil. The Valdivia International Film Festival is held annually in the city of Valdivia, Chile, Valdivia. It is arguable the most important film festival in Chile. There is also Filmambiente, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, an international festival on environmental films and videos.


The Caribbean

For Spanish-speaking countries, the Dominican International Film Festival takes place annually in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. As well as the Havana Film Festival was founded in 1979 and is the oldest continuous annual film festival in the Caribbean. Its focus is on Latin American cinema. The Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, founded in 2006, is dedicated to screening the newest films from the English-, Spanish, French- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean, as well as the region's diaspora. It also seeks to facilitate the growth of Caribbean cinema by offering a wide-ranging industry programme and networking opportunities. The Lusca Fantastic Film Fest (formerly Puerto Rico Horror Film Fest) was also founded in 2006 and is the first and only international fantastic film festival in the Caribbean
Lusca Film Fest Official Website
devoted to Sci-fi film, Sci-Fi, Thriller film, Thriller, Fantasy Films, Fantasy, Black comedy film, Dark Humor, Bizarre, Horror film, Horror, Anime film, Anime, Adventure film, Adventure, Virtual Reality and Animation film, Animation in Short film, Short and Feature Films.


European festivals

The most important European film festivals the
Venice Film Festival The Venice Film Festival or Venice International Film Festival ( it, Mostra Internazionale d'Arte Cinematografica della Biennale di Venezia, "International Exhibition of Cinematographic Art of the Venice Biennale") is the world's oldest film fest ...
(late summer to early autumn), the Cannes Film Festival (late spring to early summer), and the Berlin International Film Festival (late winter to early spring), founded in 1932, 1946, and 1951 respectively.


Animation

Many film festivals are dedicated exclusively to animation. * Annecy International Animated Film Festival (f. 1960—the oldest) * Animafest Zagreb, Zagreb (f. 1972) * Ottawa International Animation Festival, Ottawa (f. 1976) * Hiroshima International Animation Festival, Hiroshima (f. 1985) * KROK International Animated Films Festival, KROK (f. 1989) * Anima Mundi (event), Anima Mundi (f. 1992) * Fredrikstad Animation Festival (f. 1994) * Animac (f. 1996) A variety of regional festivals happen in various countries.
Austin Film Festival Austin Film Festival (AFF), founded in 1994, is an organization in Austin, Texas Austin (, ) is the capital city of the U.S. state of Texas, as well as the county seat, seat and largest city of Travis County, Texas, Travis County, with por ...
is accredited by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, which makes all their jury award-winning narrative short and animated short films eligible for an Academy Award.


African festivals

There are several significant film festivals held regularly in Africa. The biannual Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou (FESPACO) in Burkina Faso was established in 1969 and accepts competition-only films by African filmmakers and chiefly produced in Africa. The annual Durban International Film Festival in South Africa and Zanzibar International Film Festival in Tanzania has grown in importance for the film and entertainment industry, as they often screen the African premieres of many international films
The Nairobi Film Festival (NBO)
which was established in 2016, with a special focus on screening exceptional films from around the world that are rarely presented in Nairobi’s mainstream cinema and spotlighting the best Kenyan films, has also been growing in popularity over the years and has improved the cinema-going culture in Kenya. The Sahara International Film Festival, held annually in the Sahrawi refugee camps in western Algeria near the border of Western Sahara, is notable as the only film festival in the world to take place in a refugee camp. The festival has the two-fold aim of providing cultural entertainment and educational opportunities to refugees, and of raising awareness of the plight of the Sahrawi people, who have been exiled from their native Western Sahara for more than three decades.


Asian film festivals


India

The International Film Festival of India, organized by the government of India, was founded in 1952. The Kolkata International Film Festival, founded in 1995, is the third oldest international film festival in India. The International Film Festival of Kerala organised by the Government of Kerala held annually at Thiruvananthapuram is acknowledged as one of the leading cultural events in Indian. The International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK), hosted by the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, is a major documentary and short film festival. The Mumbai Women's International Film Festival (MWIFF) is an annual film festival in Mumbai featuring films made by women directors and women technicians. YathaKatha International Film & Literature Festivalhttps://www.bollyorbit.com/2021/11/first-edition-of-yathakatha.html (YKIFLF) is an annual film & literature festival in Mumbai showcasing the collaboration of literature in cinema via various constructive discussions and forums. 1st edition of festival is being held from 25-28 November in Mumbai, Maharashtra India.


Others

Notable festivals include the Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF), Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival, and the
Melbourne International Film Festival The Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art used to ...
(MIFF).


Arab World film festivals

There are several major film festivals in the Arab world, such as the Beirut International Film Festival, Cairo International Film Festival, the only international competitive feature film festival recognized by the FIAPF in the Arab world and Africa, as well as the oldest in this category, Carthage Film Festival, the oldest festival in Africa and the Arab world, and Marrakech International Film Festival.


Festival administration


Business model

Although there are notable for-profit festivals such as South by Southwest, SXSW, most festivals operate on a nonprofit membership-based model, with a combination of ticket sales, membership fees, and corporate sponsorship constituting the majority of revenue. Unlike other arts nonprofits (performing arts, museums, etc.), film festivals typically receive few donations from the general public and are occasionally organized as nonprofit business associations instead of public charities. Film industry members often have significant curatorial input, and corporate sponsors are given opportunities to promote their brand to festival audiences in exchange for cash contributions. Private parties, often to raise investments for film projects, constitute significant "fringe" events. Larger festivals maintain year-round staffs often engaging in community and charitable projects outside the festival season.


Entry fee

While entries from established filmmakers are usually considered pluses by the organizers, most festivals require new or relatively unknown filmmakers to pay an entry fee to have their works considered for screening. This is especially so in larger film festivals, such as the Jaipur International Film Festival in Jaipur India,
Toronto International Film Festival The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF, often stylized as tiff) is one of the largest publicly attended film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion pictur ...
,
Sundance Film Festival The Sundance Film Festival (formerly Utah/US Film Festival, then US Film and Video Festival) is an annual film festival A film festival is an organized, extended presentation of film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or mov ...

Sundance Film Festival
,
South by Southwest South by Southwest, abbreviated as SXSW and colloquially referred to as South By, is an annual conglomeration of parallel film, interactive media, and music festivals and Convention (meeting), conferences organized jointly that take place in ...
, Montreal World Film Festival, and even smaller "boutique" festivals such as the Miami International Film Festival,
British Urban Film Festival The British Urban Film Festival (BUFF) was formed in July 2005 to showcase urban independent cinema in the absence of any such state-sponsored activity in the UK. Supported by filmmakers and British actors, the organisation was set up by Emman ...
in London and Mumbai Women's International Film Festival in India. On the other hand, some festivals—usually those accepting fewer films, and perhaps not attracting as many "big names" in their audiences as do and Telluride Film Festival, Telluride—require no entry fee. Many smaller film festivals in the United States (the Stony Brook Film Festival on Long Island, New York, Long Island, the Northwest Filmmakers' Festival, and the Sicilian Film Festival in Miami, Florida, Miami), are examples. The Portland International Film Festival charges an entry fee but waives it for filmmakers from the Northwestern United States, and some others with regional focuses have similar approaches. Several film festival submission portal websites exist to streamline filmmakers' entries into multiple festivals. They provide databases of festival calls for entry and offer filmmakers a convenient "describe once, submit many" service.


Screening out of competition

The core tradition of film festivals is competition, that is, the consideration of films with the intention of judging which are most deserving of various forms of recognition. In contrast to those films, some festivals may screen (i.e., projector, project onto a Projection screen, movie screen before an audience) some films without treating them as part of the competition; the films are said to be "screened out..." (or "outside...") "of competition".


See also

* Arthouse film * Cult film * Foreign film * List of film festivals ** List of film festivals in Africa ** List of film festivals in Asia ** List of film festivals in South America ** List of film festivals in Europe ** List of film festivals in North and Central America ** List of film festivals in Oceania ** List of short film festivals * Online film festivals * Outdoor cinema * Outline of film * Short film


References


Further reading

*Turan, Kenneth, ''Sundance to Sarajevo: Film Festivals and the World They Made'', Los Angeles, University of California Press, 2002, hardback, . * Watson, Nigel, "The Sense and Sensationalism of Film Festivals"
Talking Pictures website
{{DEFAULTSORT:Film Festival Cultural festivals Film festivals,