Brooklyn Film Festival Goes Virtual for Its 23rd Edition- Turning Point

No Rest for the Weekend
4 min readApr 29, 2020

This article comes to us from our friends at the Brooklyn Film Festival

Brooklyn Film Festival (BFF), New York City’s longest running international-competitive film festival, stands together with all New Yorkers to flatten the curve and stop the spread of COVID-19, announcing that its 23rd edition, themed TURNING POINT, will go on in the form of a virtual festival with its full film lineup of more than 140 films viewable for free from May 29 through June 7 at All festival films will play for free via BFF’s website for the whole duration of the festival, but viewers must first open a free account and can begin to pre-register starting today on the BFF website. The video server will be hosted by Vimeo. Audience voting will be limited to one vote per account. BFF will also organize parallel live events such as filmmaker introductions and Q&A sessions on the BFF website, Facebook and other social media.

BFF, a Canadian Screen Award qualifying festival, received for the current edition 2,590 film submissions from 92 countries and selected more than 140 film premieres programmed into 36 different, two-hour program blocks. The films are divided in six categories: Feature Narratives, Feature Documentaries, Short Narratives, Short Documentaries, Experimental Films and Animation. All types of short films, whether they are narrative, doc, experimental or animation, will play as part of the two-hour program blocks and each Feature Narrative and Feature Documentary film will play within their own program blocks. BFF’s selection criteria, a 23-year-old set of rules, constitute the true festival’s trademark. Participating films cannot be older than two years. Films are selected from submissions only. All the selected films participate in the competition. And the smallest film can win the top festival award: The Grand Chameleon.

BFF Executive Director Marco Ursino said of the 23rd edition: TURNING POINT, “Just a few months ago, nobody, not even the most daring sci-fi screenwriter, could have predicted the current situation and/or the extent of the COVID-19 takeover. Besides the fact that we are all still dealing with the basics and a resolutive approach feels still far away, one thing seems certain: we won’t be able to go back to the pre-virus thinking and lifestyle anytime soon. The fear of the ‘invisible danger’ that threatens our life is radically modifying our own life routine and the way we deal with our neighbors. It is a ‘Turning Point’ in history. It is a moment that will ultimately reveal who we are as human beings. The Brooklyn Film Festival, with its 2020 event, plans to highlight and dissect people’s character and problem solving attitude as it shifts from one time zone to the next. The international role BFF has always played on the world’s stage, will now come truly handy while with our film lineup we travel from one corner of the planet to another. ‘Turning Point’ is about refreshing our own point of view. It’s about rethinking our old assumptions and learning from the people who share our screen whether they live in a different continent or across the street. ‘Turning Point’ is about reinventing our planet and our life.”

BFF’s list of sponsors for 2020 includes WNET-Thirteen, Yelp, Sobre Vista Resort, AbelCine, Be Electric, Xeno Lights, Big Screen Plaza, Final Draft, MPE, Media Services, The Pod, Noble Jewelry, Brooklyn Film Society, and for the 8th consecutive year, the “disruption company,” TBWA/CHIAT/DAY, will create the 23rd BFF promotional campaign.

In terms of special events, we are sad to announce that the ninth BFF Exchange has been cancelled while the 16th Kids Film Fest will follow the BFF’s steps and be staged online via the BFF’s website from May 29-June 7. kidsfilmfest, aims to discover, expose and promote the youngest generation of filmmakers. The film program is tailored for children of all ages (films are rated “G”), and consists of numerous animated shorts, documentaries and live-action films.

In each of the six film categories, BFF’s judges will select the Best Film,while the festival will select the Spirit Award, and the audience the Audience Award winners. Among all the six categories combined, BFF will award one of each of the following: Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Composer, Best Style, Best Editor, Best Cinematographer, Best Screenwriting, Best Producer, Best New Director, and Best Brooklyn Project. Through the resources of our sponsors, BFF will assign to the winning filmmakers more than $60,000 in prizes (cash, products, and services).

The film lineup, which also includes Narrative and Documentary Shorts, Experimental Films and Animation, will be announced soon on the BFF site at

Originally published at on April 29, 2020.



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