The New Media Film Festival envisions the future of media, a ‘New School’ Film Festival

Interview with Susan Johnston, the Founder/Director of the New Media Film Festival

What sets the New Media Film Festival apart from other festivals?
New Media is all media and ever evolving. We implement innovative ideas that honor stories worth telling via the global community, we are trademarked! This past year we launched a 2D online channel and a curated crowdfunding platform  We also added  Virtual Reality (VR) and Drone categories. The VR content accepted into the festival this year will have an opportunity to screen at a prestigious event in Europe as well. In addition, we connect submitted content whether screened or not to opportunities that arise i.e. interviews, distribution, networking, free events etc. all items to empower content creators with opportunities for their highest good.

Do you have a favorite film that has showcased at your Festival?
I do love all of them, each and every one that is selected.

Is there something in particular that you look for in submissions? Or are there multiple factors?
Multiple factors. We redesigned the web site this past year for an even effortless explanation of the process.  This page gives an overview and when you click submit directly you get deeper definitions.

Each year your donate to a different non-profit and give tickets to students. How important is giving back as a festival?
It is very important to give back, to your community, to innovative ideas, we now donate to each crowdfunding campaign that is on our curated site,   so basically now we are soft funding as well!

Do you have an interesting story that has taken place during a past festival?
There are many that I know of and I’m sure a lot more that I do not. We have a Snipler Category (a 30 second pitch). The creator of a Snipler that screened in the festival let us know he brought his money people to the screening of the 30 second clip and received full funding for his feature! A 3D category winner let us know that he was not getting calls back from a major studio and after he won this category, he not only got the call returned, he received distribution. A week before Ray Bradbury was to have accepted the Legend Award, sadly, he passed away. We started receiving emails from all over the world with people sharing their stories about Ray as we were the last event he was attached to at that time. Everyone (Staff, Venue, NEA, Oscar Nominee Sally Kirkland, Publicist Brenda Feldman, Ben10 creator Duncan Rouleau came together to create a wonderful tribute to the man who wrote so many amazing stories.

Your festival has grown immensely since 2009. Where do you see or would like to see your Festival in 5 years?
Thanks so much! I’d like to create innovative pods where you are immersed in the discipline you would like to excel in, a definition of that will be given as each pod is unveiled. I’d also like to continue building strategic alliances with innovative industry leaders, working together helps all of us.

What is one piece of advice a filmmaker in today's film industry?
Be nice. Know what a deliverable is and deliver it on time. Tell stories that move you. Most of all ask yourself what you would like the future to be like, that is the story you need to create today. Submit the content to us, use code twitter10 and save $10 in any category at for consideration to screen in a State of the Art Theater in Los Angeles CA, be in competition for $45,000.00 in Awards, be considered for distribution and other opportunities.

Insight into the New Media Film Festival

Based in Los Angeles, the New Media Film Festival celebrates the ever-changing world of new media. Declared "worth the entry fee" by MovieMaker Magazine and hailed for making "the cutting edge accessible" by Huffington Post, NMFF accepts new media entries across a variety of categories. The jury includes reps from Marvel, Oscars, Emmys, Grammys, among others. A total of $45K USD in awards will be presented at the 2016 festival, June 7, 8 & 9th 2016.  Join filmmakers from around the world, hear industry leaders, and network with distributors and investors...submit today! 

As noted by Academy Award-winning producer Nicholas Reed, “The New Media Film Festival seemed like an outlier when it started in 2010 with their strange categories. All of a sudden, web series, 3D storytelling, and digital comics have become the new normal. The NMFF is always looking to the future, challenging creators, the market and the audience to discover new storytelling. There are not many festivals pushing the limits. Go NMFF!”

While many festivals have stuck with “old-school” programs of shorts and features, the NMFF exhibits a stunning diversity of emerging media across 20 categories, including Digital Comics, 3D, VR, Drone and Mobile content. Besides envisioning the future of media, the festival is also concerned with the future of the world  Honoring Stories Worth Telling, June 7-9 2016