written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/7/2011
Here is a look at the Palm Springs International Film Festival and some tips for submission.
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The Palm Springs International Film Festival has been traditionally one of the better known and respected film festivals in the country, and often has a large amount of participation both because of its location in relation to the industry and its respect for the filmmakers. The Palm Springs International Film Festival ends up being one of the premiere locations for independent feature films, especially on the international stage where it has been known to help launch many of the more popular foreign language films in the United States. In the film festival circuit the Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) is one of the staples, so anyone who is serious about having their feature film looked at by the professional film industry and wants distribution should drop into PSIFF. Here are a few details and tips for those who are looking to submit their film to this film festival.
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The Palm Springs International Film Festival only accepts feature films, but does so both for narrative films and documentaries. For narrative films the running time must be over seventy minutes and documentaries must be at least fifty minutes. The Palm Springs International Film Society, which runs the PSIFF, runs the Palm Springs Shortfest for short films specifically.
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The types of formats allowed at the Palm Springs International Film Festival are very specific and are going to limit a lot of low budget filmmakers in general. They will allow Beta Sp, DIGIBETA, 35 MM, DVCAM and HDCAM formats, but not DVD. This does not mean that you cannot send a DVD of your film in for consideration, which you can, but you cannot use this for the actual exhibition. This will mean that if you do not want to provide a different format for screening then you should ignore the Palm Springs International Film Festival altogether.
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There are a lot of general limitations that may exclude your film from the festival. Though you do not have to premiere your film at PSIFF, you cannot have shown it before in the Coachella Valley. You need to have made the film in the current year that you are submitting, and if it was made the year before then you must have not premiered it until that current year. It is important to remember that the submission year is the year before the Palm Springs International Film Festival will actually take place. You cannot have placed the film on the internet or shown it on a broadcast medium before the festival takes place.
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The submission fee is only fifty dollars if you submit by September third, but jumps up to seventy five dollars for the final October first deadline. It is important to try for the first deadline as this is going to be both cheaper and will have a better effect on judgment. You will receive your notice of acceptance by December third and it will never come later than this date. What this means is that you are going to then have ten days to get the approved print to the Palm Springs International Film Society. You can submit a rough cut, but this is allowed so that major films can be shown as part of their pre-promotion.