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Film Festival types - the ones to watch out for and the ones to avoid!
by Trevor Gensch

Anyone who has been to a film festival anywhere has seen them - festival types, the different sorts of people that seem to be a staple part of any film festival anywhere in the world.

Its almost as if they are wearing a tag they are that recognisable. I've been going to festivals for a few years now and have come up with a list of what I think are the definitive festival 'types'. I am sure we all personally know somebody in at least one of these categories.... perhaps one of them is you!

The Socialite - black jacket skivvy wearing trendy type who can be found in the bar chatting with filmy types about nothing in particular. Isn't actually there to see any films as 'they have been soooo busy lately and haven't have the time". Different from The Veteran in that they won't have a clue what is showing at the festival.

The Rubbish Collector - never has a nice thing to say about any film. 'That was garbage - worst film ever' etc etc. Will say that all film is crap but be first in line the day the new Austin Powers movie opens.

Work-a-holic - the festival goer that sees odd sessions during the day - sneaks away from work to see a film and then goes straight back.

The Ever Present Friend - 18-22 year old (male) who has bought a season pass and spends his time bothering the attendants and volunteers with his inane banter. In most cases this guy has been involved in the production of a video clip or short film (usually as a Production Assistant) and feels qualified to act like he is running the festival.

The Art House Activist - only awakens from his lethargy as they leave a festival screening - usually bemoaning the lack of its quality and comparing it to more favourable films that nobody has ever heard of. Often cries about the 'decline of modern cinema' and aches to have been of cinema-going age during the late 60s or early 70s.

Look at Me, Look at Me! - like the Ever Present Friend they have a season pass to the festival but are content to hang around in the foyer and have people notice the pass around his neck. Will actually delay entering the cinema till the last minute to guarantee maximum exposure for his neck attire.

The Veteran - he/she is the one that has bought the $15 telephone book version of the festival program and holds it on his chest like a badge of honour - they can usually be seen in consulting it in cinema foyers over coffee more times than they actually see the films listed within.

The Knitting Club - often a retiree who has spent a lifetime watching film. These festival types hunt in packs and will never be seen alone in the wild. More often than not they take advantage of the cheap passes during the day and proceed to see anything with 'Unreserved' in the listing.

The Survivor - hardened festival goer, comes armed with a backpack packed with all sorts of tasty treats (usually with water bottle slung on the back like a combat rifle)

Red Eye - very similar to The Survivor in that they love the festival but will make the mistake of seeing too many films per day and end up looking like they haven't got any sleep for two weeks (which is probably pretty close to the mark).

The Great Unwashed - the type of festival goer who only seems to come out of their self imposed hibernation for a trip to see an Iranian masterpiece about a man and his goat. As their title suggests they usually forget to bathe.

and finally...

The Festival Reviewer - an individual of impeccable taste and manners who is there to review approximately 400 films and shorts for an online film site. Constantly grinning cause they got in for free and nobody else did. Will take great delight in making a direct bee-line for the reserved/media seats, especially if the rest of the cinema is crowded.

Anyone got any others? Pop a message on the Forums if you have! I'll add the best ones to the end of this article.

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originally posted: 07/19/03 09:19:44
last updated: 01/03/04 13:25:20
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