I’m a filmmaker, and I’m passionate about short films. I know how hard it is to get a film in front of viewers. Yes, some shorts get a million hits on YouTube. But others, equally good, get just a handful.
It shouldn’t be like this. Because I truly believe that we are about to see a new golden age of short films as an artistic format.
What? I hear you say. Why? How?
Because there’s a perfect storm, happening right now, under our noses. Three factors have come together.
One, shorts can be made cheaply.
Two, shorts can be distributed online, often for free.
Three: there’s a huge new audience, wanting to watch stuff on smartphones and tablets, in short viewing windows (on a train, over lunch or a coffee, or before bed). And wanting decent quality, because we’re all fed up with clickbait.
Why is this audience untapped? We think it’s because there’s no “cultural infrastructure” around short film, the way there is around features, or indie music. There’s virtually no way to discuss short film (except filmmakers talking among themselves). There’s very few review or ratings sites, and none that help you pick a film you might want to see, for example a 7-minute comedy or a 15-minute horror film.
So, Short Film Reviews will be a free site, with:
- An ever-increasing number of reviews of short films from all around the world, in any genre, animation, documentary, all rated 1-5 stars;
- Search and sort functions, by genre, length, free/ or pay-for, release date, nationality, director etc;
- An embedded screener to view free-to-view films within the site, and links to paid platforms;
- An annual festival with awards, recognising the best submissions of the year;
- Add-ons: newsletter, blog, podcast with guest reviewers, twitter and facebook feeds;
- A future stage will include a “Trip Advisor for shorts”, so the public can join in, with their own reviews and ratings.
SFR aims to be vital for film-makers, who get a a festival submission plus a guaranteed review plus screener link. We’ve kept fees down to below most festivals, so SFR will be the essential place for filmmakers to promote new shorts. It really is a no-brainer!
Short Film Reviews will transform the landscape around short films, helping build a new cultural infrastructure to expand audiences and develop the form.