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The experiences of the average Torontonian are largely passed over by the Toronto International Film Festival, which by its very nature has an international focus. However, a parallel festival has emerged that will bring exposure to Toronto-themed (and hopefully locally-created) films. The Toronto Urban Film Festival just put out a call for submissions to local, Canadian, and international filmmakers to create one-minute silent films. Ever wonder what it’s like to have your work seen by thousands of bored commuters? This could be for you.
Despite some of our staff’s issues with the ONESTOP Network, we can’t help but be impressed when it continues to provide exposure to local art. Budding filmmakers can send in their films and those that are selected will be screened at the same time as TIFF (September 8–14) on the TTC’s in-station LCD screens. The festival is not quite as glamorous as its international counterpart, but hopes to “bring film into the day-to-day space of the commuter while the city is engulfed festival fever.” The festival also seems to be designed with the amateur urbanite as well as the not-so-amateur filmmaker in mind—films can be shot on cameras or even cell phones, and can be uploaded to TUFF through the magic of the internets.
Entries will be judged by a handful of folks in the Toronto film industry, such as Jeremy Podeswa whose film, Fugitive Pieces, will be opening up TIFF this year. Submitted films need to address one or more of TUFF’s abstractly Torontonian themes, such as “Urban Ennui” or “The Imaginary City.” Even though this is only TUFF’s first year, Torontoist hopes that this sort of thing becomes a trend and that we can soon see a fewer ads on our TTC LCD screens in favour of more local art.
It’s free to submit your films, and the deadline for entries has been extended to August 27. This could be the start of an exciting trend—give it a go.
Photo by Marc Lostracco.