COVID-19 has disrupted all facets of life as we know it worldwide and that includes film festivals. For the safety of everyone involved including filmmakers, audience members, and festival staff, we are changing the format of this year's planned festival. We remain firmly committed to supporting independent filmmakers from around the globe and are going to provide the best possible alternative to a conventional film festival that we can, given the unique circumstances that we are all currently facing. The revised structure of STIFF 2020 is as follows:
- Online screening of select films beginning on the originally planned weekend of Thursday August 27 - Sunday August 30. Instead of holding screenings in a physical location, we will screen a portion of the films online so that viewers may watch films from the comfort and safety of their own homes. Though it is a different experience than a conventional festival setting, holding an online screening allows everyone involved to plan on a known date which is unaffected by current gathering restrictions. This also allows filmmakers from outside the Seattle area to be a part of the festival remotely.
- Safe live viewing. In the months following the online screening, we will be having limited size live screenings as permitted by local and national safety guidelines. Possible options include outdoor screens, pop up drive-ins, and isolated kiosks.
- Post-pandemic mini-festival. When the world gets the COVID-19 virus under control and we regain normalcy, we will have a mini-festival which will include a limited amount of screenings, filmmaker networking, and of course a party!
Although it isn't the same as the usual STIFF event, we are dedicated to putting on the best and festival possible while still complying with the appropriate safety guidelines. We will continue to update on all available channels as dates, times, and locations are confirmed. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we all adapt to the extenuating conditions put upon us by the pandemic.