On the first day of my internship here at Raindance Film Festival I was asked to write an article so I thought I would focus on my feminist side. As a Mexican Woman, I am not only looking for a feminist film festival, but for a festival that wants to create change in societies that need it the most, and that maintain true to their main beliefs. It is difficult to know how to judge a film festival, however all of these festivals stay true to their feminist viewpoints and help independent filmmakers around the world that have been underrepresented. As I am organising a feminist film festival in London and these is the list of festivals that I look up to.
This has an important year for women in film, from Hollywood where the heart of the industry is changing to give a voice to women, to every movement that now stretched around the world to stop normalising the abuse of women in the film industry. Most of all I believe this is how film and festivals should be used, to create a movement and develop new perspectives in their viewers.
These festivals have all focused on creating recognition for women behind the camera. In the film industry women around the world have been fighting for the chance to create what they believe in. All these festivals have have started a revolution in Film. They have spread the work of women that are worth watching and listening to. Especially relevant is the fact that no matter how big these Festivals, each one of them has began to create a change for all women around the world. They are one step closer to creating a change in women’s rights. There is no ranking within this list, all these festivals are worth following and if possible going to check them out.
Here is the list of Festivals I made, enjoy:
1) Cineffable (c.1989)
Cineffable is focused on presenting films made by Feminists and Lesbians. It has been going on for almost 30 years and they present over 50 screenings every year. They present films in French and English. MARCH
2) Women in Film and Television Vancouver (c.1989)
Created by women filmmakers, this film festival focuses on not only presenting films made by upcoming women filmmakers but it also educates them to go further. In addition this festival created an education center that focuses on getting education for indigenous women. MARCH
3) Feminale (c.1984)
Based in Dortmund and Cologne, this festival accepts films from all over the world and gives studying opportunities. Their prices vary in different amounts of money and most of the viewers are important people within the film industry. The festival looks for interesting feminist, political and social views within film.This festival is especially relevant because it is one of the few that have an audience of renowned filmmakers. APRIL
4) African American Women in Cinema (1998)
Based in New York, the festival focuses on presenting films made by African American Women. The festival is one of the largest and feminist film festivals in the USA and one of the few focused on African American women. It has created a big change for female jobs in film. MARCH
5) London Feminist Film Festival (2013)
A small London-based festival that focuses on presenting films made by upcoming international women directors. Presents short films, documentaries, short documentaries and fiction films. The festival is completely volunteer run. The main focus is to create a movement and help women that have just began in the industry and have been underrepresented. Presenting films from all over the world no matter what language or background. AUGUST
6) Seoul International Women’s Film Festival (1997)
This is one of the most renowned feminist festivals in the world. It has given the opportunity to many female Korean filmmakers to study and create their projects. Not only that but it is very passionate and true about their beliefs to change women’s rights. As a result it has become a forefront to discovering female filmmakers in Asia. SEPTEMBER
7) Femcine (2016)
A film festival based in Chile. It has a very passionate group of people looking for a change within the industry. The Festival focuses on presenting documentaries from all over the world. It is a very politically charged group with a clear aim. In addition this festival is one of the most renowned one’s in Latin America. MARCH
8) Davis Feminist Film Festival (2005)
Focuses on underrepresented artists and particularly women and people of colour to raise consciousness about gender, race, class, sexuality, and other dimensions of social inequality. They look for films that will link together art and social issues. This festival presents films for free as a result they teach about feminism and many political opinions through film. AUTUMN
9) Chicago Feminist Film Festival (2016)
The Chicago Feminist Film Festival showcases independent, international film, predominantly shorts, spanning documentary, fiction, and experimental genres, and aims to address issues of gender, sexuality, race, and other forms of inequality often missing from mainstream media. This festival has been going on only for two years but it already has a strong presence therefore it is one to follow. MARCH
10) Cascadia Film Festival (2002)
This Festival created by an ex-academy award president is presented in Bellingham WA. The festival contains a variety of films from all over the world with an incredible quality and level. The festival contains talks and appearances of some of the most prestigious women in the film industry. APRIL
These Film Festivals are opening new doors for women by putting together film and feminist. I have chosen these Festivals because they are still fighting for their feminist believes and they are more radical, actively trying to make a change. Hope this list gives everyone something to think about. If anyone is interested here is a list of 90 more Feminist Film Festivals around the world. Lets change the Film industry and create equality within it.