Put away your Versace frock and tear up your plane tickets: the world’s major film festivals are heading online. Despite trading in fairy tales and fiction, film festivals have also been affected by the coronavirus pandemic, just like everyone else. So, for the first time ever, 20 of the world’s biggest film festivals are going online.
Spearheaded by the Robert DeNiro-founded, Manhattan-based Tribeca Film Festival, which was meant to be held earlier this month, We Are One: A Global Film Festival is the world film festival circuit’s response to Covid-19. It will be joined in the online cinematic celebration by other top festivals including Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Toronto, Sundance and San Sebastian, as well as Australia’s biggest international film festival, Sydney Film Festival in co-curating the festival. It will run on YouTube from May 29 to June 7, with a free program of films, shorts, documentaries, music and conversations.
The collective will also be raising money for the World Health Organisation’s Covid-19 Solitary Response Fund, though it hasn’t yet announced what form this fundraising will take.
“Over the past 67 years, Sydney Film Festival has been a platform for discovery, discussion, shared experiences and the exchange of ideas through film,” said the festival’s director, Nashen Moodley, in a statement. “In this challenging and uncertain climate, film is more vital than ever – bringing people together, online, to collectively explore the world and our times.
“Though we can’t be together in a cinema at the moment, we are excited to bring the festival, and other international film festival selections, to homes around the world.”
Sydney Film Festival was slated to run from June 3 to 14, but was cancelled in March, in the wake of the government’s ban on gatherings of more than 100 people. When it was cancelled, organisers said they intended for the festival to proceed as normal in 2021.
We Are One: A Global Film Festival is slated to run from May 29 to June 7 here.