They say good things come in threes. Apparently, this logic applies to film festivals in the Tampa Bay area as well. The Clearwater Film Festival is set to open its doors for the first time ever on the evening of September 29th. In doing so, the virgin festival is hoping to do its part in giving aspiring filmmakers, from all over the world, a chance to get their product out there.
TCFF is the brainchild of actor/writer/director Mike Rembis. His “Triple Threat” resume has seen him credited on all levels in film and television. Rembis is no stranger to the film festival circuit. As recently as 2008, Rembis won the grand prize in the Cannes 24 hour Film Challenge. In just eleven hours, Rembis created a 5 minute short film using just a flip video camera and a laptop. By taking part in various festivals, Rembis believes he has the proverbial fingers on the pulse of what the filmmaking community looks for in a film fest.
Opening night will kick off four days of film watching, educational panels and of course…the after-parties! Seventy-two films will be screened including ten world premieres. Genres on display will range from animation to comedy. Plenty of short films will be running along with heralded features sumbitted from Australia to Spain. Of course, a variety of Florida films will be on display as well.
To find a detailed layout regarding the education panels, guest speakers and hosting venues, The Clearwater Film Festival web site has a plethora of information. Including analysis of the films to be screened during the festival.
Finally, Rembis is looking to deliver a popular tradition seen in many of the well-known film festivals (Cannes, Sundance, etc.). The market. Film festivals weren’t solely created for people to mingle with celebrities and get a first glance at new films. It’s about business. Something the other local film festivals and the overall region has yet to explore. Rembis and TCFF is trying to become the first film festival in the Southeast to fire up this concept (The Film Boutique), so filmmakers can attain possible distribution and get to the next level with their film. Let’s be honest. Having people see your film is great. Being able to make money off it is even better.
For more information about this inaugural event, the best source is The Clearwater Film Festival web site. Be sure to click on the links included in the article above as well. A variety of passes are still available for what is shaping up to be the most unique film festival in the area.
Hear from the man himself as the press release has been included below:
THE CLEARWATER FILM FESTIVAL TO SCREEN 72 FILMS
Festivals Inaugural Year To Host 9 World Premiers and Multiple Florida Premiers
Films came in from around the world. Animation from Israel, documentaries from China and Argentina, drama from Italy and comedy from Australia. The screening committee had their hands full. When the last DVD was finally ejected and scores were tallied a third of the 200 submission were accepted and will find their way onto a screen for the first annual Clearwater Film Festival set to debut in Clearwater Florida, September 29 – October 3, 2010.
Created by actor / writer / director Mike Rembis, the festival focuses on the “Triple Threat Filmmaker”, what he defines as a multi-talented “filmmaker who does it all to get a movie made” in front of and behind the camera.
The festival introduces the Wavecrest Award to honor the best triple threat filmmaker along with competitions for best films, actors, writers, directors and film score. The Wavecrest was designed as a collaboration between Mike Rembis and San Jose CA sculptor Jeff Owen. The Wavecrest is a sleek, shiny plate of solid steel wrapped with by hand punched steel filmstrip atop a marble base. TCFF aims for this to become a coveted award for every filmmaker from now on.
The international vibe of this event will be evident on opening night, where in addition to a locally produced animated film, A Soldier’s Mission, TCFF will screen a short film from Spain, Lastrain, and a feature from Australia, Twenty Ten, with Aussie filmmaker Byron Kaye expected to be in attendance.
The festival also intends to host a trade show called The Film Boutique to attract production companies to Tampa Bay and Central Florida. It will start small, for only three days during the festival, alongside the theater at Largo Cultural Center and will provide an outlet for filmmakers, even those with only one DVD to sell, to have a place to set up shop for a nominal fee.
The Clearwater Film Festival is focused on prosperity for filmmakers and becoming the next important rung on the ladder of filmmaking success.