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"One must remember that in choosing the lesser of two evils, one still chooses evil." --Hannah Arendt, Philosopher, Activist
For an ever growing schedule of films please click here.
The SURGE Film Festival was established to enable filmmakers and screenwriters to present professional or Do-It-Yourself films, scripts, music videos and multimedia content.
Multimedia is media and content that uses a combination of different content forms. The term is used in contrast to media which only use traditional forms of printed or hand-produced material. Multimedia includes a combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content forms. Multimedia is usually recorded and played, displayed or accessed by information content processing devices, such as computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live performance.
AT SURGE, you will have the opportunity see numerous films from around the world, attend educational panels, hear scripts read by the screenwriters, meet filmmakers and hear from activists from all over the world about the social movements in which they are involved.
SURGE is the first international activist film festival which is not only an annual film, script, music video and multimedia festival but it is also a film festival network which enables people worldwide to bring the festival into their area of the world through the SURGE film festival network! Now in our sixth year our festival promises to be more amazing than ever!
In 2011, SURGE was scheduled to take place for only 3 days in Austin, Texas. Yet, because of increased international interest in SURGE, the SURGE Film Festival took place for a total of over 10 days nationwide, showing a total of over 40 films in the cities of Austin, Texas; Urbana, Illinois; and Portland, Oregon! Films from over 15 different countries were shown. These films included a vast array of independent features and world premiers by new filmmakers as well as feature films such 'In The Footsteps of Elie Wiesel' with internationally recognized Emmy and Golden Globe winning actors such as RICHARD GERE, and feature films such as 'Love & Valor - The Intimate Civil War Letters' with Golden Globe winning actors such as BRIAN DENNEHY.
SURGE recognizes that it is extremely difficult for small, independent films to find a wide audience. That is why in 2011, SURGE started the S.U.R.G.E. Collection DVD Compilation which circulated over 1,000 DVDs with two films selected from the 2011 SURGE Film Festival. After filmmakers are officially selected for SURGE they are given a questionnaire and filmmakers who choose to have their film included in the SURGE DVD Collection may receive a wider audience all over the world.
In Addition, in 2012 at least one filmmaker and/or screenwriter will receive our annual “Love & Encouragement” Award. This award is presented to a filmmaker and/or screenwriter who presents an excellent film that simply strives to create art and media that does not promote or cater to politicians or multinational corporations. The filmmaker will receive round-trip airfare from their city to the film festival, housing during the film festival, a spending stipend and much more. In 2011, SHAWN JUNE was honored at the SURGE Film festival in Austin, Texas for his film Asphyxious. He also received round-trip airfare from his home in Des Moines, Iowa to the Portland, Oregon screening of his film at the Historic Academy Theater that screened during the Grand Finale of the Portland, Oregon portion of the 7 day SURGE Film festival! Many films were shown with the directors attending Question & Answer sessions after their films and receiving the distinguished SURGE 'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of equality and social flame burning bright for all the world to see. It is notable that the budget for Asphyxious was estimated at $1,000.00. At SURGE, it is not the cost of the film that matters, but the courage to encourage other people to follow their dreams in the quest for a better world.
SURGE also offers officially selected filmmakers user accounts on the SURGE website so they can upload as many trailers for their films as they like to our website. Trailers for their films will remain on our website for at least a year to help promote their films. In addition, when visiting the SURGE website, people will see the “Love to S.U.R.G.E. - Film Festival Directory.” This directory not only extensively profiles the officially selected films of the prior year, but it also features photos and a great deal of press kit material highlighting the filmmaker and some of their biography and/or cast and crew..
SURGE is a non-competitive film festival so all participants are winners. Because we remain a non-competitive film festival, when a film, script or music video is officially selected by our film festival, each member of the cast and crew is permitted to display our official selection SURGE laurels on their website and materials. The SURGE laurels not only distinguish you as being a part of an official selection of SURGE, but more importantly the laurels distinguish you as someone who works for equality and social justice on behalf of all people. In addition, each member of the cast and crew are eligible to receive a certificate. SURGE has also begun interviewing members of the cast and crew who attend SURGE and placing the video interviews on our website through Vimeo as well as Youtube channels. This enables the video interviews to appear not only on the SURGE website, but these video interviews can also appear on the filmmakers website through links.
Each and every year admission and ticket fees for people to attend the SURGE film festival has remained free-of-charge! This enables the largest possible audience, from all different financial, cultural and ethnic backgrounds, to participate in the film festival.
Registration fees to submit films into the SURGE film festival remain low. This enables the largest possible audience, from all different financial, cultural and ethnic backgrounds to submit films...
+...in which anonymous entries are accepted as we encourage whistle-blowers to expose injustice!
+...in which some of the entries that are not included in the festival are still published along with all the other entries in our International, S.U.R.G.E. Multilingual Film Festival Directory! This enables all entries to receive exposure and networking with people from all over the world.
SURGE is so much more than just another film festival: it is in word and in action the sixth annual international Social Uprising Resistance and Grassroots Encouragement (S.U.R.G.E.!) Film Festival!
"Once people understand the strength of non-violence - the force it generates, the love it creates, the response it brings from the total community - they will not easily abandon it."
--Cesar Chavez, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America, Union Activist, Ethical Vegetarian, Philosopher, Activist