Bring Your Own Film At BYOFF!

Sun, sand, sea….and movies! Set in a perfect ambiance, ‘Bring your own film festival’ is considered a small movement in independent cinema, where you can bring your own film and show it to hundreds of enthusiastic movie lovers. Every year, the festival is held from 21 Feb to 25 Feb in Puri district of Orissa. “This is 10th year of the festival, which began in 2004. It has been a huge success since then. We have seen filmmakers pouring in numbers from all parts of the country just for this fest,” says Susant Mishra, an independent filmmaker and co-founder of BYOFF.

Puri district of Orissa is an offbeat location for the festival, where you can stay away from hustle bustle of the city and relish some indigenous cuisines along with sharing your passion with like-minded crowd. “When we were making films around 1998 or 1999, we had this idea of organizing an artistic gathering, which became a reality after five years. We thought why not hold a festival at the small place rather than in a big city hall. It started like an experiment. Puri is a tourist destination with lot of accommodation options available for visitors. People could stay here in very economical price. Hence, we spread the words,” recounts Susant Mishra, who along with other budding filmmakers and film enthusiasts founded the gathering. Popular television actor Gurpal Singh played a prominent role in establishing the artistic meet.

So far, over 5000 filmmakers have taken part in BYOFF in the last one decade. The number is still scaling high as the five day long fiesta continues to enthrall the young creative art lovers. “In our first edition of the festival, we had kept only three days for screening but having witnessed the huge number of participants, we had to stretch the days from three to five. Since then, the festival became a five day event. Now we register the films on first cum first serve basis for whole five days.”

BYOFF is a self-funded festival. The organizers do not accept any corporate funds to maintain the authenticity of the carnival. Thisbyoff_09_029 is one of the reasons, why the participants are required to pay a small amount of registration fees that range from Rs. 1000 to 1500, as per to the length of their film. “We do a take little bit of sponsorship here and there, but don’t opt for corporate funds. Throughout the night till morning, we have film screenings, music and dance. People from other artistic backgrounds such as dance, music, poetry, paintings, photography etc. also take part with equivalent zeal. It’s a great platform to share your experiences where you can interact as much as you want,” says Mishra.

Now days, everybody is a filmmaker. With the digital cinema revolution, young people and students are keenly trying their hands on filmmaking. They need a platform to showcase their work, which BYOFF offers. There is no selection process and competition involved. Everyone is welcomed, irrespective of films, language and region etc. The festival is open to all formats of movies including 35 mm film or 60 mm film, yet DVD format is the most preferable one.

‘Bring your own film festival’ is a sure shot democratic carnival, where you can share your passion for films freely!

To participate, log on to Film Submission

Bring Your Own Film At BYOFF!


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