If we’ve learned one thing in 39 years, it’s that connection with a filmmaker dramatically magnifies the impact of his or her film.
Back this project and you can take credit for some of that impact. With this money, we are able to fly filmmakers from across the world to our festival and make those important connections between artist and audience.
In case you haven’t heard, the Atlanta Film Festival is the city's premier film event—a 10-day showcase for 200+ films and the people who make them. In addition to feature and short film screenings, the Festival hosts parties, a 5-day Creative Conference, the highly popular Sound & Vision night of music and film, red carpet events, a screenplay competition, and more. Now turning 40-years-old, the Atlanta Film Festival is one of the longest-running and most prestigious film festivals in the world. The 2016 festival runs April 1st through April 10th.
In the past, the festival was lucky enough to receive donated flights and hotel rooms (or the money to buy them) so that we could bring filmmakers, actors, distributors, press and other members of the industry to Atlanta to participate. We are still blessed to receive gifts and donations through generous sponsors, but maintaining a strong hospitality budget is difficult as a non-profit arts organization. Filmmaker participation is an essential part of the festival experience, and we want to return the travel and lodging budget to its former strength. All funds this campaign collects will bring filmmakers & industry members to Atlanta in April.
Meeting an audience is a powerful experience for a filmmaker, but it's just as important to the audience. If you're a movie lover, the opportunity to meet those responsible for your new favorite films is one of the best parts. Have you ever watched a movie and wished you could ask the filmmaker what their intention was in a particular scene? Have you ever wished you could explain why a film touched you to the person who made it? This is what we are all about.
If you are a local filmmaker, a festival is one of your few opportunities to meet and connect with others in the industry from outside the city. The funds we raise will bring more filmmakers to the festival and key members of the industry to the ATLFF Creative Conference in an effort to provide new connections and build their careers.
Our festival passes and memberships to the Atlanta Film Society are tied together. So, if you want to attend the 2016 Atlanta Film Festival and you buy any of the festival-access perks from a MovieHopper Card ($50) to an All-Access Pass ($325), you are automatically a member of the Atlanta Film Society through December 31, 2016! To celebrate our 40th birthday, however, we are lowering the price of the MovieHopper Card/membership to only $40 JUST FOR THE DURATION OF THE KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN! This is an incredible deal for all-you-can-watch movies during the festival and the year-round benefits that a membership affords.
This ain’t our first time at the Kickstarter rodeo. For the last two years, you all have been gracious with your support and have helped us exceed our goals. This year, we are attempting to raise $40,000 so that we can have our 40th festival filled to the brim with filmmaking talent, enriching the experience for everyone.
One new way to be involved is by contributing through one of the top tier levels, thus becoming one of the Atlanta Film Society’s first ever patrons. Patron levels range from $1,000 - $10,000 and carry all the benefits included with membership and then some, but enable us to have a great impact on the community.
You don't have to live in Atlanta to be part of the festival! The Backers Jury includes everyone who contributes $25 or more and wants to participate.
The Backers Jury will have the opportunity to watch 8-10 of the selected short films before the festival begins. The jury will then vote to pick a winner. Watching and voting will take place online, so you can participate anywhere you have an internet connection. Once a winner is chosen, we'll fly one of the creators of that film to the festival, present them with "Filmmaker-to-Watch" award, and invite them to the Backers Mixer.
Last year the winner of the Filmmaker to Watch award was Ian Samuels with his film Myrna the Monster. As promised, Samuels attended the festival and received his trophy at the awards ceremony.
- Every penny collected during this campaign will be used to bring filmmakers and other industry members to Atlanta and to show them a good time while they're here. This includes flights and hotels, of course, but also infrastructure like ground transportation.
- The historic Plaza Theatre will once again serve as home base for the festival. As in recent years, we want to keep the festival as "walkable" as possible in Poncey-Highlands and the surrounding neighborhoods. 7 Stages Theatre and The Highland Inn Ballroom are also part of the main campus. Additional screenings will take place at the Rialto Center for the Arts, the High Museum and other spectacular venues across the city.
- We’ve received over 4,500 submissions this year—a new record! This means more to chose from in programming our festival, and ultimately, a better festival.
- The Atlanta Film Festival is an Academy Award® qualifying festival. The winners of our animated short, documentary short and narrative short jury awards may qualify to be on a short list for Oscar® nominations.
- We will announce our first wave of programmed films during the course of this Kickstarter campaign.
- MovieHopper Cards and festival Passes all provide all-you-can-watch access to the regular films at the festival and are tied into year-round Atlanta Film Society membership. You can become a member or renew through the Kickstarter campaign and get your 2016 passes in the process!
- Membership to the Atlanta Film Society comes with all kinds of year-round perks, like invitations to free advance screenings, discounted registration to classes and more.
Risks and challenges
This is our third year running a Kickstarter campaign to dramatically increase our hospitality budget. In doing so, we can bring in as many of our featured filmmakers as possible. There is always a chance that even if we raise the funds, an invited filmmaker won't be able to attend. In that unfortunate case, we will simply be able to invite someone else.
In accordance with our 40th anniversary, we are raising the stakes this year. We are attempting to raise $40,000—more than twice last year's goal—in 40 days. With this money, we will be able to bring more filmmakers to town than ever before, and we will be able to extend an invitation to festival alumni that have made the biggest impact on us in the past. Are we nervous about raising so much money? You bet! But we know we can do it with your help.
All Passes and MovieHopper Cards purchased as part of a reward level may be picked up beginning March 31st, prior to the 40th annual Atlanta Film FestivalLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
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