Multimedia Localisation Strategies For 2018 Raindance Film Festival

You’ve finished your film, be is a short, feature or documentary and now you want to share it around the world. It’s an exciting prospect which includes new audiences as well as financial reward. But one that will require careful planning of your film’s multimedia localisation.

What is multimedia localisation?

Mutimedia localisation is the strategic pathway used to get your sparkling content to survive borders of geography, culture and language. Images and language need to be presented correctly in each country and culture you wish your content to be distributed to.

Delivery requirements

Before you make your film you need to have a full and complete understanding of the delivery requirements – the long list of technical specs and legal paperwork required before you can sell your film to a distributor.

Read Distribution Essentials here
Raindance class: Basic Legal contracts – you can join online if you can’t make the live event in London.

Key multimedia localisation issues

    1. Sound
      Different broadcasters and different delivery formats each require their own technical specs to satisfy their requirements.
    2. Language
      Different broadcasters and different delivery formats each require their own technical specs to satisfy local markets. In some cases a film needs to be dubbed, in other cases it needs to be subtitled. And sometime your film will need to be dubbed and subtitled. With 7,909 languages in the world, thats a lot of dubbing and sub-titling.
    3. Images
      Censorship issues will crop up depending on the topic of your film. china, for example, will not allow any mention of, nor images of ghosts. this is another potential minefield a filmmaker needs to navigate when considering multimedia localisation.

Multimedia localisation strategies in 2018

Raindance Film Festival and Higher Education see continued disruption in both media production and distribution. These changes has affects online video distribution and how it is localised. Short films, for example, seem to be getting shorter and shorter.

If your film is designed for social media, remember the well-known fact that social media users don’t stay on videos very long. Videos on social media like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are particularly short.

Social media visual content consumers also expect customisation. Filmmakers creating content for these markets are creating larger suites of videos with slight tweaks to appeal to different users. Filmmakers are also creating suites of content that users can cycle through. For example, a slightly different video for every Facebook timeline visit.

When you are considering foreign markets for your films remember that you should consider an ever-enlarging project language sets. Your production timelines will be even shorter.

Social media loves films that can be seen with the sound turned off – making the need for subtitling even more important than ever. Upbeat Productions, a London based film production company recent delivered thousands of short adverts subtitled in dozens of different languages.


There are many different tools available on the market. The one that caught my eye is VoiceQ. This is also applicable to screenwriters. Not cheap, but one can book a 30 day license to their software making it affordable on a project by project basis.



Photo Credit David Martinez / BIFA 2018

Few people know more filmmakers and screenwriters than Elliot Grove. Elliot is the founder of Raindance Film Festival (1993) and the British Independent Film Awards (1998). He has produced over 700 hundred short films and five feature films: the multi-award-winning The Living and the Dead (2006), Deadly Virtues (2013), AMBER (2017), Love is Thicker Than Water (2018) and the SWSX Grand Jury Prize winner Alice (2019). He teaches screenwriting and producing in the UK, Europe, Asia and America.

Raindance BREXiT trailer 2019

Elliot has written three books which have become industry standards: Raindance Writers’ Lab: Write + Sell the Hot Screenplay, now in its second edition, Raindance Producers’ Lab: Lo-To-No Budget Filmmaking and Beginning Filmmaking: 100 Easy Steps from Script to Screen (Professional Media Practice).

In 2009 he was awarded a PhD for services to film education.

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