Australia’s premier independent digital filmmaking competition, DigiSPAA, is calling for entries for 2012.
“There is a lot of vibrant activity due to the new digital arena and it will be interesting to see some of the projects that come out of all this,” muses producer and DigiSPAA’s co-ordinator and judge, Daniel Scharf (pictured). “Digital technologies have ensured that this buzz is not just about high budget successful films but also films from the independent and low budget arena.”
Indeed, the digital revolution can be said to be well underway now, and it’s a movement that has transformed the art of filmmaking. The once elusive goal of making a film is now a reality, and it’s also shaken up the way things go down in Hollywood. Yet these digitally shot productions – despite their quality – often still fly under the radar and that is something DigiSPAA is hoping to change.
“DigiSPAA aims to give public platforms to filmmakers who have made their films in purely independent ways using their own resources and financing,” Scharf says. “These filmmakers are talented and passionate and DigiSPAA gives them the opportunity to have their work seen where otherwise it wouldn’t have been noticed. Since the competition’s launch in 2005, it has built a reputation for showcasing new talent to the industry.”
As well as gaining a spotlight for their work, Scharf says the competition is also an ideal opportunity for emerging talent to test their ideas and skill set. “If filmmakers aren’t sure, they can always start small, test the waters and experiment. By entering competitions like DigiSPAA it helps filmmakers gauge their skill sets against others in similar situations and help them get access to industry networks like SPAA [Screen Producers Association of Australia], producers and executive producers and even cast.”
And for the winner, there are lucrative prizes to boot. “It’s an incredibly good prize pool,” Scharf says. “There’s cash [$15,000] that most independent filmmakers will welcome, screening on the MOVIE EXTRA Channel which is very hard to source independently, and the ability to use Movie Network Channel’s state-of-the-art post production facilities. In addition to access to Australian producers, the winner gets the opportunity to mix with the world’s leading producers, distributors and sales agents at the American Film Market.”
The latter makes for an impressive addition to this year’s prize pool with the competition partnering for the first time with the American Film Market. “AFM is an incredible place for upcoming talent to be at to understand how films are marketed and understand the reasons behind strategies,” Scharf says. “The experience that an upcoming filmmaker can glean at a global gathering of industry leaders from over seventy countries is invaluable.”
The deadline for entries is September 14. For more information or to apply, head here.