St. John's Antigua- It’s a very good time to be a filmmaker in the Caribbean, as two film festivals recently sent out calls for local filmmakers to submit their works to be considered for inclusion in their events.
Aruba Spotlight on Culture
First there is the Aruba International Film Festival (AIFF), which is asking filmmakers to participate in the Caribbean Spotlight Series (CSS) at the festival from June 22-28.
The event, which has proved enormously popular with festival attendees, showcases the work of regional filmmakers or productions dedicated to the subject of Caribbean culture, society and history. “Judges and audiences were very impressed with last year’s selections,” commented Aaron Hosé, program director of the AIFF Caribbean Spotlight Series. “We feel the winners were outstanding examples of the fascinating elements Caribbean life brings to the table.
“Jury Award-winner Voices From Mariel from Cuba/USA was poignant while informative, and Audience Award-winner Children of God, from Bahamian filmmaker Kareem Mortimer, was riveting. We had several sold out screenings and had to schedule additional showings throughout the festival.”
The competition has strict criteria in that submissions must be focused on subject matters pertaining to the Caribbean region. Only full-length feature films or documentaries with a runtime of 50 to 120 minutes will be eligible (no short films accepted), and rules require they were completed after January 1, 2012.
The AIFF CSS committee and jury will consist of local and Caribbean filmmakers, AIFF staff, representatives from prestigious international film festivals, and members of the local press.
As incentive for submitting a film, aside from the potential of earning a prestigious award and cash prize, AIFF will provide airfare and accommodations for the creators of selected films. Package includes travel for two including a 3-night staying at a resort, and all-access passes to the screenings and events.
Entry fee is US $40, and deadline for submissions is May 18, 2012. Full criteria and requirements for entries are available on www.arubainternationalfilmfestival.com
Trinidad Showing Caribbean Life
The Trinidad+Tobago Film Festival (TTFF) is also issuing a call for submission of films for the 2012 edition of the festival, which takes place from September 19 to October 2.
The TTFF seeks to highlight excellence in filmmaking through the exhibition of films made either in the Caribbean region (including Latin American countries in the Caribbean Basin); by Caribbean people of the Diaspora; or by international filmmakers that reflect Caribbean culture and way of life both in the region and the Diaspora.
Selected films screened at the Festival are eligible for the following five jury prizes: best narrative feature film (US $4,000); best documentary feature film (US $4,000); best short film (US $2,000); best local feature film (TT $20,000); and best local short film (TT $10,000). There are also three people’s choice awards, for best dramatic feature, best documentary and best short, each worth TT $5,000.
Filmmakers wishing to have their films considered must submit them no later than May 31.
All initial submissions should be made either in digital or NTSC DVD format and must be in English or with English subtitles. There is a submission fee of TT$60 (or US$10) per entry and submitted materials will not be returned.
For full details of entry requirements, visit www.ttfilmfestival.com/submit