Audience members are craving and demanding equitable representation in film in an industry that has been historically white and male. As more industry executives hold themselves accountable and seek to honor inclusion riders, and as filmmakers seek platforms to have their diverse stories told, the Media Done Responsibly Film Festival stands in the gap, bridging divides and providing sustainable accessibility between worlds.
The Media Done Responsibly Virtual Film Festival ("Festival") is a program of the nonprofit, Media Done Responsibly (MDR) whose mission is to amplify the practice of social responsibility in media while providing education, voice and access to diverse media makers and consumers. MDR's Film Fest is a project of its Media Production and Media Justice pillars.
The Festival accepts entries that center the lived experiences of Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), LGBTQIA+, disabled, immigrant, women, nonbinary/non gender conforming, intersectional or other traditionally marginalized communities. The main protagonist must fall within at least one of these categories. Submissions must reflect the complex humanity of these diverse groups and stay away from stereotypes. All genres are accepted including drama, comedy, romance, adventure, horror, science fiction, Afro Futurism, social justice, investigative journalism, and more.
The Festival's goal is to disrupt the *single story that feeds institutional racism. It grants agency to people to tell their own stories and in so doing, to reflect their fully-embodied humanity. The MDR Film Festival amplifies counterstories that center the humanity of BIPOC and traditionally marginalized communities. It centers stories of people with intersecting oppressions and shines light on their joy, their complexities, their cultures, their customs, and their contributions to our society and world.
Its mission is to provide power and platform for the repetition of our collective humanity using the mediums of art and film. We do this not to grant storytellers fleeting permission to be a shooting star in a limited purview world, but to help us recognize that we all belong to each other in a vast expanse where our destinies are intricately and tangibly linked. Its principle is Ubuntu, "I Am because We are."
The Media Done Responsibly Virtual Film Festival judges films based on both technical qualities and inclusive storytelling. It incorporates the Mediaversity scale (https://www.mediaversityreviews.com/how-we-grade) and accounts for the Bechdel Test, the Riz Test and the DuVernay Test in its judging standards.
*In her TED Talk on "The Danger of the Single Story," Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie states, “How [stories] are told, who tells them, when they're told, how many stories are told, are really dependent on power. Power is the ability not just to tell the story of another person, but to make it the definitive story of that person.”
Official Jury Prizes:
Best Humanity-Centered Media
*Select Jury prize winners will receive one-on-one meeting, film review and advisement with industry executive.
RULES AND REGULATIONS:
Please review the following carefully. By submitting, you indicate that you have read, understood, and complied with all eligibility requirements of the Festival and of the categories for which you would like this film to be considered.
1. MDR Virtual Film Festival accepts entries that center the lived experiences of Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), LGBTQIA+, disabled, immigrant, women, nonbinary/non gender conforming, intersectional or other traditionally marginalized communities. The main protagonist must fall within at least one of these categories.
2. Submissions must reflect the complex humanity of these diverse groups and stay away from stereotypes.
3. All genres are accepted including drama, comedy, romance, adventure, horror, science fiction, Afro Futurism, social justice, investigative journalism, and more.
4. The Festival accepts submissions for narrative feature films, narrative short films, feature documentaries, short documentaries, animation, web series, music videos, screenplays, and scripts for television/web series.
5. All submissions must be in English or have English subtitles. World Cinema Films can be in any language but must have English subtitles.
6. Submissions must include the title, author(s) and any relevant registration or copyright information.
7. Screenplays must be submitted in PDF or MS WORD. Submitted screenplays can not have been optioned, purchased, or otherwise produced at the time of submission.
8. Your submission must be accompanied by a submission fee paid in full and a working screener in order to be considered. All screeners must be submitted ONLINE.
9. By submitting, you agree that you own all copyrights and intellectual properties to this work and you are duly authorized to submit this film to the Festival. You certify that this film is not subject to litigation nor is it threatened by any litigation. We will not accept watermarked films for public presentation.
10. We reserve the right to use any part of your submission for promotional purposes on our website and social media accounts.
11. All submission fees are nonrefundable. Once a project is listed “In Consideration” on FilmFreeway, we are unable to offer refunds for any reason.
12. Media Done Responsibly Virtual Film Festival DOES NOT PAY SCREENING FEES for submitted films. By submitting your project, you acknowledge that the Festival will not pay to showcase your work.
By submitting, you certify that you have read and agree to the rules and regulations above.
Response from festival:
Thank you so much, Omilani! We really enjoyed your participation, and our attendees are still talking about the impact of your story on their lives! You are an exemplar of the art, story, and perspectives that impact communities and reflect their full humanity. Thank you for your kind words, and know that it is mutual. We look forward to having you back soon!