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The Provincetown Film Festival has been in existence since 1999. This five-day film festival held in June yearly presents a wide range of international and US narrative features, short films and documentaries to underscore the rich and diverse history of Provincetown. It also has special programs like Portuguese film sidebars, archival events, panel discussions that allow participants to have a deeper understanding of the films selected and screened for the festival. Through the years, it has played a significant role in promoting the works of up and coming actors, directors, and producers. It also has attracted a wide audience that is appreciative of independent films while promoting the rich diversity of the Provincetown community.
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Provincetown, through the years, has attracted big names in the arts like writers, filmmakers and artists thanks to its diverse and creative environment. Some of those who have worked and performed in the oldest art colony in the United States are Eugene O’Neil, Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, Billie Holiday, Richard Gear, Connie Francis, and John Waters. The film festival helps promote the reputation of the area as an art colony by providing film programming that reflects the rich artistic diversity of the community. Aside from being an art colony, Provincetown in Massachusetts, USA is also a former Portuguese fishing village and a Mecca for gays and lesbians.
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The highest honors given during the festival is the “Filmmaker on the Edge Award” which honors the most outstanding innovation, achievement in filmmaking. The award is given to a film artist who has pushed the boundaries of the medium towards the advancement of the filmmaking craft. Some of its most notable winners are Quentin Tarantino (2008) and John Walters (1999).
The festival also gives out HBO Audience Awards to winners in the Best Short Film category with a cash prize of $1,000, Best Narrative Feature with a cash prize of $1,500, and Documentary category with cash prize of $1,500. There is also a category for student works called Best Student Short Award.
The most recent winners of the HBO Audience Awards are Undertow (Best Narrative feature), Wasteland (Documentary Feature), Come On Down (Short Film), and She’s the Fox (Student Film).
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Call for Entry
Filmmakers who are interested in joining the film festival should submit their entries in these formats: 35mm, digit-beta, and beta SP. Call for entry usually starts every February, and early deadline in October. Submission of entries can be done by visiting the Provincetown Film Festival's official website.
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There are seven exciting venues for screening of films participating in the film festival, most of the venues a short distance away from the town center. One of these is the Crown Cabaret which plays host to various special events like movie premiers. Then there is the Art House Cinema 1 & 2 which shows adventurous art films and has a state of the art sound and video projection. Other venues of the Princetown Film Festival are the Payomet Performing Arts Theater, Provincetown Theater, Schoolhouse Center, Whaler’s Wharf Cinema, Wellfleet Drive-in, and the Vixen.