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Awards Radar Community: What is Your Favorite Film Festival?

Yesterday, I was among the folks who received acceptance letters to cover the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival. For yours truly, it’ll be an inaugural TIFF experience (though I haven’t yet decided if I’ll be attending in person at all or not). First of all, a hearty congratulations to those who also are covering it for the first time, including some of the Awards Radar staff. All of the TIFF chatter, on top of the recent Venice Film Festival lineup announcement, not to mention the Cannes Film Festival wrapping up, got my thinking, however. That in turn led to our latest Community question…what is your favorite film festival?

I’m talking in general terms here, too. If you’ve attended a festival, definitely use that as a criteria. However, if you’re just someone who pays attention to the buzz and reviews out of a fest, that’s totally cool. Whichever strikes your fancy most, that should be the one you cite. Consider this a totally open-ended prompt…

The Palme d’Or is displayed prior to the 74th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, July 5, 2021. The Cannes film festival runs from July 6 – July 17, 2021. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)

If you’re on the high art end of things, something like Cannes or Venice certainly could be your pick. There’s also the Berlin International Film Festival (or Berlinale). This is where a ton of international titles screen, with some Oscar crossover, but largely exists as a place for capital F films to play. There’s nothing wrong with that, though it admittedly does play to more of a certain kind of cinephile than others.

On the somewhat more populist side of things, there’s the Sundance Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival, not to mention South by Southwest. That’s not to say there’s no prestige of high art to be found, or that this is a showcase for low art in any way, but genre can reign supreme here. If you prioritize entertainment, these can be the fests for you, by and large.

NYFF

Splitting the difference, things like the New York Film Festival, Telluride Film Festival, and obviously Toronto round out the options. These are the ones most often attended (aside from Sundance) by the film community, so they could easily have the leg up. Then again, Telluride has a financial barrier of entry, so perhaps that knocks it down a peg or two?

Check out all of our festival coverage here, but be sure to let us know…what is your favorite film festival? No matter the fest that you fancy, we’re curious to hear/see your answer!

Sundance

Which film festival is your favorite? Chime in and tell us in the comments section!

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Written by Joey Magidson

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