THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

A forum for sharing views on the art of film, video and AV sequence making as well as on competitions, judging and festivals.
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Dave Watterson
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Dave Watterson » Tue Nov 27, 2018 7:15 pm

Very late response to a comment from Michael Slowe in this thread.
Withoutabox will be operational through the next festival season, but be disabled on September 16, 2019.

The surviving service on similar lines is FilmFreeway.

Howard-Smith
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Howard-Smith » Wed Nov 28, 2018 12:32 am

To reply to Tim, my perception was that the vast majority of entries were from amateur filmmakers not professionals. There was only one film I saw on Tuesday which appeared to be a professional production, called The Overcoat. The people I chatted to on my table at the awards were all amateurs and I also met a hairdresser from Kidderminster named Fernando A. Maffei who used to cut my hair when I lived there, whose feature length film was shown which he had made in his spare time. Also the woman I sat next to named Elaine Ward had a short dramatic film shown which she directed and starred in, in which her mother was played by a Maura Judges who starred in my film IT’S NOT ME.
One of the organisers of the festival is an actress and film producer named Sophie Canare who I’d already lined up to be in my next film working for just travelling expenses. I found her on Star Now.
No there’s no feedback at this festival but there was a good comprehensive programme/ booklet with details of all the films selected and interviews with some of the filmmakers. I got a buzz from my film being shown at a huge cinema regardless of how few were in the audience. And I thoroughly enjoyed the Awards evening and the suspense of waiting to see if I’d won anything.
Anyway, whatever the entry fee is, I for one will want to send in several entries next year to try my luck again.

Michael Slowe
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Michael Slowe » Thu Nov 29, 2018 9:30 pm

Howard and Tim, I've often entered these competitions with films that had done well in our limited environment, mainly to see just how we compare. I have been selected for exhibition very rarely and, like Howard, got quite excited - that is until I attended the screening! I regularly found that practically the whole (small) audience consisted of film makers and the crews there to see their films. There have been exceptions, I recall a festival held in the Soho Hotel's excellent cinema, (forgotten the organisers) where there was an enthusiastic attendance generally. The Open City festival organised by UCL here on the Tottenham Court Road campus is great, with about five screens running at the same time. All these events are for pros or budding pros which is why I like to see how my stuff compares to theirs. Not too badly on occasions but the successful documentaries (my field), are all featuring controversial subjects, political, ethnic,social and are generally pretty darn good. Most of us are not being imaginative enough for modern day broadcast requirements. I was told by Channel Four some years ago that they want 'cutting edge' material.

So, it would be interesting to get entries from these young film makers into BIAFF because we may learn something and the whole thing would be stimulated by a wider selection of film makers. As we've seen, films from Europe, particularly the Eastern part, have done very well recently, and some of those people are either in the industry or hoping to be.

Michael Slowe
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Michael Slowe » Thu Nov 29, 2018 9:31 pm

Thanks Dave, I already heard. FilmFreeway has taken over as the favourite now, possibly that's the cause of withoutabox's demise.

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TimStannard
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by TimStannard » Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:52 pm

Howard and Michael, thank you both for your comments. I was very surprised to learn the Birmingham was well attended by amateurs. My impression (as you will have gathered) was that these are attended by would-be pros as per Michael's experienece. Indeed my impression was partly formed from previous posts and discussions with Michael.

Well done for waving the IAC/BIAFF flag Howard. Michael, I fear that the young people who attend the festivals you have occasionally attended would not be making films which would be eligible (contravening Rule 1, which is that films should be made for pleasure and non-payment of anyone).
Tim
Proud to be an amateur film maker - I do it for the love of it

Jon Pegg
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Jon Pegg » Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:10 pm

Howard-Smith wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 10:47 am
Here's my report about the BFF (The Birmingham Film Festival) Gala Awards evening on Saturday evening at The Canalside, The Cube, Birmingham.
It was an enjoyable event which was streamed live on the BFF Facebook page. I'd estimate there were about 150 people present. We sat at round tables seating 10 people per table. There was a free glass of Prosecco on arrival.
No films were shown during the evening. All the films had been screened during the week at the giant Millennium Point cinema (which used to be an IMAX!) Amazingly, around 850 films were submitted to the festival, of which 200 were selected for showing. I say amazingly, because the average submission to BIAFF is around 250 films.
There were numerous awards on offer - and the trophy was a 5-pointed star on a plinth. On each plinth was a metal plate engraved with the award, the film title and the winner's name. How I would have liked to have won one of them!
OK, let's list all the award categories:
BEST FILM OVERALL
BEST FEATURE FILM
BEST SHORT FILM
BEST MICRO SHORT (UNDER 5 MINUTES)
BEST DOCUMENTARY
BEST SCREENPLAY
BEST MUSIC VIDEO
BEST ANIMATED FILM
BEST MALE ACTOR
BEST FEMALE ACTOR (what's wrong with the word 'actress'?)
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
BEST COSTUME
BEST EDITING
BEST STUNT
BEST HAIR & MAKEUP
BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
BEST TRAILER
BEST YOUNG FILMMAKER (UNDER 18)
BEST YOUNG MALE ACTOR
BEST YOUNG FEMALE ACTOR
BEST LOCAL FILM
BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
BEST SPECIAL EFFECTS
Phew! A comprehensive list.
As you'll realise by what I said above, my film Hollie won nothing but it was a tremendous honour to have been nominated for Best Short Film (which went to BLACKOUT, made by someone sitting at my table), and Best Local Film (given to SUICIDE BLONDE). Unfortunately I didn't get to see either of these films. One drawback of the festival was that it was mainly on weekdays, and I had to take the day off work to attend when my film was shown. I couldn't justify taking further days off to attend and had other things on during the evenings.
Best Feature Film went to NEW YOU. Best Overall Film was EPIPHANY.
I spoke to several people during the evening and not one had heard of BIAFF so I tried to spread the word and encourage people to enter.
Unlike at BIAFF I was one of the oldest people present! The vast majority of people seemed to be well under 50.
So, good meal, good company, an exciting evening. It was the third year for BFF and the first time I'd entered. I'll definitely throw in a handful of films for submission for next year. I recommend other IAC members do the same!
I have told the organiser of bham film fest about BIAFF and hes coming along to a couple of the days and hes bringing some of the programs from this year if anybody wants one.
Bham film fest is a lot like this one with lots of feedback from the organisers and a good set up to watch yr films and mix with film makers

Howard-Smith
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Howard-Smith » Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:22 pm

Well done Jon.
Please remind me...
What’s the name of the organiser of the Birmingham Film Festival who’ll be attending BIAFF? I’ll look out for him.
One of the organisers was actress/producer Sophie Canare, who I managed to recruit to act in my 4 star BIAFF film LIKE A BULLET which is being shown on the Saturday. And she was great. I had such high hopes that LIKE A BULLET would be 5 stars or even a Diamond as many of my friends had predicted but it wasn’t to be!

Jon Pegg
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Re: THE BIRMINGHAM FILM FESTIVAL

Post by Jon Pegg » Thu Apr 11, 2019 9:33 pm

Kev Mcdonagh is coming along mate.On the awards night hes the guy with the beard rushing about trying to be everywhere at once.

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