An independent film is a short film or full-length feature film that is created outside of the primary film studio system of companies. Independent, usually smaller, entertainment companies, or individual artists tend to produce and distribute works that are distinct for their artistic qualities, specific content and unique styling. Generally, independent of ‘indie’ films are produced with lower budgets than those within the commercial industry, as well as far less staff involved.
The marketing surrounding independent films is commonly minimal and distinguished by the limited release of screenings, often at independent theatres and an array of film festivals including local, national and international gatherings. Sometimes, this kind of release is used as a final editing process, to attain and digest critical reviews before the final adjustments are completed. The film is distributed to major theatres and on the retail market. This page offers advice for those interested in creating and producing independent films, and for those who are merely interested in the art form.
There are many reasons to attend a film festival if you’re interested in becoming involved in the artistic process of filmmaking. Seeking inspiration, gathering advice and experience, networking with industry professionals, attending film screenings and premieres, and attending Q&A’s with directors and film producers can all be beneficial to enthusiasts and artists alike. All of these activities are packed into week-long events.
Notable international film festivals include the Toronto International Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival, the Sundance Film Festival, and the Cannes Film Festival, just to mention a few. These festivals also support independent filmmakers by providing a platform for them to showcase their work, judging and reviewing the films, providing opportunities for networking and in some cases connecting them with major film studios, allowing the filmmaker to expand their career in the industry.