Film Festival Alliance (FFA), North America’s only networking organization for film festivals and the people who run them, will expand its membership opportunities to mission-aligned film organizations and festival professionals around the world. The move comes amidst a growing desire for greater global connection from festivals outside of North America, and the shared intention of advocating for a sustainable and inclusive environment for the film festival industry within the cinema exhibition ecosystem.
“The Alliance has grown steadily over the past five years, and now there is an increased interest in widening our membership reach,” said FFA Board President & Cucalorus Festival’s Chief Instigating Officer Dan Brawley. “As an organization, we’ve created a collective voice for film festivals and we want to expand that conversation so that we can share stories, resources, and challenges with our peers around the world. We see this as an essential step in order to address the constant shifts in our industry related to technology, consumption, and culture.”
Launched in 2010 as a program of IFP, FFA was established in 2015 as an independent non-profit networking organization and currently serves more than 180 organizational and individual members. This base represents a diverse array of festivals in terms of size, geographic location (including 42 states, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia and Canada), programming mandate and annual budget. FFA members share common mission-driven values and adhere to ethical practices in order to build lasting and transparent relationships with film industry stakeholders, developing a sustainable network of support and trust.
FFA’s programming includes year-round professional development and engagement opportunities, including the annual Art House Convergence and several Regional Roundtable micro-conferences held at member festivals around the country. The Alliance offers multiple money-saving benefits and a host of online resources including a Seasonal Staff Roster, a Festival Pass Exchange Program, monthly virtual roundtable webinars, industry surveys and more. The majority of current benefits will be available to global members as well.
In addition to all of the literal membership benefits, the greatest is the sense of kinship that is fostered by the group, and the solidification that film festivals of all types and sizes play an essential role in the independent filmmaking community,” said FFA Executive Director Lela Meadow-Conner. “We understand that there are some fundamental differences with festivals outside of North America – namely in funding and programming structure – but the commonalities of our digital world are overwhelming. We’re looking forward to learning new perspectives from our international colleagues and as we grow our membership, we’ll plan to have a greater presence at festivals around the world, setting our sights on holding a Regional Roundtable outside of North American in 2021.” Next up, the Alliance heads to TIFF to celebrate its inclusion of festivals from around the world.