A massive film festival is coming to YouTube that will unite Cannes, Sundance & more

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So many changes have come to the film and entertainment industry that it’s hard to know how things will change. Going to the movies is one of my favorite things to do and I’m really hoping that movie theaters still exist after this. I also hope that red carpet premieres, events and film festivals still happen too as they’re an important part of my job. (Not that I go to them, although once this is over that may change.) If we get a vaccine, at-home tests and antibody tests somewhat quickly, we could go back to normal with some needed changes. In the mean time we have so many streaming and on-demand options for entertainment. The film festivals are adapting, because of course they can’t premiere films in theaters now. After the cancellation of major festivals, including Cannes, they’ve just announced that 20 film festivals, including Cannes, Sundance, Toronto and Berlin, will have a ten day streaming even open to the public and on YouTube! It will be called We are One and is airing on May 29th.

More than 20 film festivals around the world have joined together to stream movies for free on YouTube after the coronavirus pandemic closed cinemas and forced the cancellation of annual showcases in Cannes and New York.

The 10-day We Are One: A Global Film Festival will feature content curated by the Berlin, Cannes, Sundance, Toronto, Tribeca and Venice film festivals, among others, starting on 29 May, the organisers Tribeca Enterprises and YouTube said in a statement on Monday.

The festival will showcase films, documentaries, music, comedy and conversations. No details of the programming were announced and it is unlikely that major new movies that generally launch at film festivals would be included.

The cancellation of the May Cannes film festival in France and uncertainty around festivals in Venice and Toronto in September has robbed film-makers and movie studios of crucial windows to promote their new releases to the media and the public.

The organisers of the Cannes film festival said on Monday they were proud to join in the YouTube event “to spotlight truly extraordinary films and talent, allowing audiences to experience both the nuances of storytelling from around the world and the artistic personalities of each festival”.

[From The Guardian]

As they mention, of course they’re not showing the big films that they want to eventually sell to VOD or theaters, but this is still exciting. Over the weekend I watched a live streaming documentary, it was a film I saw in college and never forgot called The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter. I swear I thought of the movie, googled it to see if it was on YouTube, and found that it was still under copyright but would be streamed as part of the Detroit Free Press Documentary film festival the very next day. It was so special to watch it live on YouTube and they even had a Q&A with the filmmaker afterwards! I loved that this film I saw 30 years ago still held up.

Can you imagine being able to watch Parasite live for the first time with everyone around the world? I know those types of films aren’t going to be screened but it still gives me goosebumps. I’m going to put this on my calendar now, I’m excited for it . I do worry, though, that this will affect the film industry negatively, especially if they’re aiming for numbers and are trying to please the public instead of more discerning film critics. After all, Tiger King is now the biggest documentary of all time.

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