Genre Film Festivals and Rethinking the Definition of “The Festival Film”

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The academic coverage of film festivals has improved immeasurably in the last decade, extending our understanding of festival mechanics, organization, and cultures. Festival studies scholars have increasingly demonstrated how such events are conceived, constructed and connected by varying networks of industry professionals, local residents, tourists and fans. Importantly, the Film Festival Yearbook series has demonstrated the sheer breadth, size and varied agendas of festivals and how they connect with a variety of client groups. Concomitantly, there is now an increasing awareness of the reductive nature of researchers focusing only upon large, glamorous “A-list” festivals, such as Cannes, Berlin and Venice, given that they make up only a small proportion of such events worldwide. An increased understanding of the geographic breadth and continued growth of festivals and, in particular, of identity-based festivals, has led to a gradual and ongoing reconfiguration of the ways in which their significance is perceived. This chapter furthers such work by examining the ways in which an underexplored but growing form of event type -- the genre film festival -- has programming imperatives that differ from other festivals. Specifically it looks at the way genre film festivals challenge conventional notions of the “festival film,” the sustainability of film festivals, and how the nature of genre film fandom affects festival programming, film circulation, and audience identities.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe International Film Festivals: Contemporary Cultures and History Beyond Venice and Cannes
EditorsTricia Jenkins
PublisherI. B. Tauris
ISBN (Print)9781788310901
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sept 2018


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