Webfest Berlin Founder and Director, Meredith Burkholder - AMA

(Meredith Burkholder) #41

I think it’s super important to be involved. At these webfests, important conversations are going on between broadcasters and creators and platforms and MCN’s and distributors. You can learn SO much, and from people on the cutting edge of the industry. Personally, I believe that when we can all get in the same room together we have a much better chance of really moving things forward so that web series remain a place where independent creators can succeed. As well, you can never underestimate the power of a face to face communication, even in the digital world.

(Meredith Burkholder) #42

Everyone who submits. Even in the first look category which is just for 2 minute videos (trailers, rough cuts, pitches, etc).

(Meredith Burkholder) #43

No impact at all. No matter when the project is received, it is given the same amount of attention and consideration. I do know that some festivals release parts of their selections before submissions close though, so in that case it would matter. But we do not do that at Webfest Berlin, specifically so that we can make sure that everything has been considered before making any decisions.

(Meredith Burkholder) #44

Definitely steer clear of online only festivals. Those won’t do you a ton of good and are often just taking creators money and not giving much in return. Research the festivals and see what they’ve done in the past. Their websites and social media presence can show a lot about the festival and it’s initiatives.

(luc f dasilva) #45

Hi Meredith. Any way someone living in Berlin, or anywhere else, can volunteer or otherwise support the festival?

(Hailey Harper) #46

(I know your time is up but if you have a bit more free time I have a follow up!!) Is there really no benefit to online-only festivals? Is there any case where they might be useful, or do you know of an online-only festival with a good reputation that offers something more beneficial?

(Meredith Burkholder) #47

You can have a look at the shows in their past selections. Some festivals choose really arty, edgy experimental series, some choose big studio series, some choose really marketable series, some tend to choose more series from certain countries. As well, it’s a good idea to submit to your local festival, even if you can’t travel to them all, it’s great to be able to experience at least one in person!

(Bri Castellini) #48

Alright that’s the end of the event folks, but if @Meredith_Burkholder has a few extra minutes, I’m sure she’ll stick around! In any case, thank you SO MUCH to Meredith for being here, being wonderful, and using emojis to put us anxious filmmakers at ease!

(Meredith Burkholder) #49

Absolutely!! We’re always looking for volunteers!! Just shoot us an email to info@webfest.berlin :slight_smile:

(Meredith Burkholder) #50

The only one I know personally that is not cheating you, is the Asia Web Awards. The thing to understand is that if they’re taking a submission fee, that fee should be going to organizing and paying for an event which draws industry professionals and/or the public to the festival. When you don’t have anything to spend that money on, but your website, you have to wonder where that money is going.

(Bri Castellini) #51

added some emphasis here because I’m also very curious about this!

(Meredith Burkholder) #52

Thanks so much everyone!! That was super fun! I only wish I could type faster! :wink: Feel free to reach out via FB or email if you have more questions down the road. I’m here for you!

(Pablo Andreu) #53

Thank you for this, Meredith. I very much appreciate your insight.

(Meredith Burkholder) #54

it absolutely has an impact on buyers and viewers alike. USE those laurels and shout from the mountain tops when you are selected or win. people definitely get more curious about a show when they see it having success in the festivals. As well, if you can, attend the festival - face to face goes a long way.

(Pablo Andreu) #55

Fine, I’ll go to Berlin :wink:

(Meredith Burkholder) #56

thank YOU!! so much fun!! :blush:

(Meredith Burkholder) #57

at web series festivals, creators with projects in selection sometimes skip the screenings in favor of a break or exploring the city between networking opportunities. i think it’s really important to see what other people are doing and what the trends are in order to understand the market and to find inspiration and even possible collaborators. there are a lot of projects you can see which aren’t publicly released online. so don’t think, ‘oh I’ll just go look it up when I’m home’, because it may not be accessible!

Who should we get to host an AMA next?