Interview: SmartFone Flick Fest

Interview: SmartFone Flick Fest

We caught up with Ali Crew, co-founder of the new Smartphone film competition to find out what it’s all about and how to enter this innovative new festival.



SF3It is an oft repeated semi-joke amongst film-makers that “these days you can just about make a film on your Smartphone”.

Well apparently…you CAN.

Not only can you make films on your Smartphone: you can have them judged by a panel of experts in a film festival.

The inaugural SmartFone Flick Fest (SF3) is on this year and both budding and experienced film makers are encouraged to submit an entry.

The brain-child of Ali Crew and Angela Blake, this festival gives anybody the chance to enter a film into a festival. All entries must be made entirely on a Smartphone or tablet and must be no longer than six and a half minutes.

We asked co-founder Ali Crew about this exciting initiative and how it all started:

“I met Angela [Blake] at a short-play festival and we wanted to bring the same ease of access to film-making; a chance for anyone to have a chance at filming, writing, acting or any other part of the creative process,” she explained. “It’s taken us 18 months to get to this stage. A lot of work has gone into this…it truly is a labour of love.”

Crew and Blake have run a crowd-funding campaign to raise prize money and so can offer $1000 for Best Film, plus an array of great industry-related prizes for other categories. Donations have come from Final Draft, Movie Slate, Celtx, Sydney Theatre School Screen Actors Workshop and FilmInk. These will be awarded in an array of categories such as Director, Actor, Actress and Screenplay, so the festival is offering lots of opportunities beyond the coveted “Best Film” gong.

Depending on the amount and type of entries they receive this year, the organisers may offer further, genre-categories in coming years, such as Documentary, Horror, Romance and so forth.

We asked if there is a danger – because film-making is now technically, relatively easy – of a lack of solid scripts underneath the films? Of directors being so caught up in the shots that they forget to tell a story?

Crew replied: “There is potentially that danger, but this is our first year, so it remains to be seen what standard of entries we attract. Good film is about good story, as well as good shots.”

Judges for the Flick Fest include Jason van Genderen and Anthony Montes, with further judges to be announced over the coming weeks. Crew hopes that the final judging panel will comprise around ten people.  On 28 August 2015, the ten short-listed films will be shown at the Gala Finals Screening at Palace Chauvel Cinema in Sydney, and these will also be shown on the SF3’s YouTube channel.

Rules (of which there are relatively few) can be found on the website, which is also the address from which to make submissions.

The site also contains some fantastic hints and tips for entrants: so good, they are almost a film-making tutorial. Even if you aren’t going into the competition, check it out.

Entries close on 16 August 2015.

Local film-makers get onto it. Let’s see the inaugural festival won by a South Australian!

Interviewed by Tracey Korsten


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