Step 19. - It’s your job to get an audience out to see your film.
If you can’t hire a producer’s rep, you will have to do all of the work. One of the major goals at film festivals is to get reviewed by movie critics. Be proactive. Check to see if the local TV station or newspaper has a film critic. Call the critics directly to get them to see your film.
If your movie is not loved by one critic, move on. That’s just one person’s opinion. If you work at it, you will find a critic somewhere who is going to love your movie. Try to get your film into as many festivals as possible to generate positive word of mouth outside and inside the critics circle. It’s always better to approach a distributor with positive press and reviews. It can only help you.
You also can’t count on the festival to do your marketing. Being in a film festival does not help your cause unless you have an audience to see your movie. That means you may have to take out local ads to promote your film. You’ll have to pay for posters, promotional materials, and EPKs to help get the word out about your film. Don’t expect the film festivals to necessarily help with your press. You’ll probably have to set up your own interviews with magazines, newspapers, etc. The bottom line is you have to take responsibility for the success of your movie. You can’t count on anybody to help, and that includes the film festival director. It’s your job to get an audience out to see your film.