Film Festival Mastery – A Free Course on All You Need to Know to Get into Top-Tier Festivals & Advance Your Career! (Without Celebs, Connections, or Piles of Cash!)

Event Date September 12, 2023 @ 11am – 12:30pm PDT (2pm - 3:30pm EDT)
Location LIVE Online - so you can attend from ANYWHERE!
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Hi everyone,


Here’s info on a great event coming up on FILM FESTIVAL MASTERY – which will tell you everything you need to know on how to get into top-tier festivals and advance your career!


A FREE COURSEand it’s ONLINE, so you can take it from ANYWHERE!


Details are below – as always, feel free to forward if you know someone who might be interested, and be sure to mention I sent you!


Good luck, have a great day, and don’t forget to dream big!




Jeffrey R. Gund

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You are invited to attend



How to Get into Top-Tier Festivals & Advance Your Career

(Without Celebs, Connections, or Piles of Cash)!




Slamdance co-founder Jon Fitzgerald & filmmaker Justin Giddings

break down the insider secrets to getting your film screened (on a budget)!


TUESDAY, September 12th, 2023

11am – 12:30pm PDT (2pm – 3:30pm EDT)


LIVE ONLINE – so you can attend from ANYWHERE!


It’s common knowledge that the success of an indie film can be heavily influenced by whether or not a film has a successful festival run.


If your film makes even the tiniest of splashes, it can lead to distribution, sales, financing, representation, connections, exposure/street cred, and future (paid!) gigsThat’s a pretty bad-ass list, amiright?!?


The problem is that so many filmmakers don’t know what they don’t know and they end up sabotaging their own film, killing its chances of making an impact on the circuit!


You may spend THOUSANDS of dollars on submissions, but because you’re not “an insider,” it seems like a huge waste – especially if you can’t tell whether an actual programmer even watches your screener!


Plus, the events of the last two years have completely changed the film festival landscape.


Bottom line:  everything you know about film festivals may need some updating…


So here’s where FILM FESTIVAL MASTERY comes in…


Slamdance co-founder Jon Fitzgerald & festival-winning filmmaker Justin Giddings have teamed up to break down the insider secrets to maximizing your film festival experience – on a budget AND in the context of this industry-shifting pandemic.



•   How to get into top-tier film festivals (and determine which ones are the actual “top-tier” fests for your specific film)!
•  One simple trick to saving $1000+ on submission fees – without begging programmers for freebies & handouts!
•  How to ensure your film has the highest chance of being seen by the ACTUAL festival decision-makers!  No more wondering if your film was even watched!
•  How to leverage your festival experience to secure distribution & push your career forward!  So when you do get in, you make the most of it!
•  BONUS:  How to maximize your film’s festival run during the strike!
•  Live Q+A!!  Pepper us with questions related to film festivals, filmmaking, and even film financing!


Whether you have a completed film or the rough outline of a good movie idea, it’s never too early to be incorporating a solid film festival strategy into your process – especially in the global context of COVID-19!


“Jon supported our first feature, inviting it to play both Slamdance and AFI Fest. From there, always a thoughtful and creative champion of independent, undiscovered talent, he made introductions that helped launch our career.


“Jon as a visionary, and really connects with filmmakers. He continues to be a guiding force for emerging filmmakers, and as a seasoned film festival expert, dedicated to supporting the art form and all of its possibilities.”

     — Joe and Anthony Russo, Filmmakers



Register for this FREE COURSE now at the link below so you can learn all you need to make the most of film festivals:


Can’t wait to meet you!


Got questions you want us to try to cover?  Email them to!





Jon has twenty-five years of experience in the independent film, internet, and film festival communities – a rare leader with a unique combination of skills.  As a filmmaker, he has produced a number of award winning documentaries; and as a consultant, he has guided many independent film projects through the maze of festivals and hybrid distribution models.


As a co-founder of the Slamdance Film Festival (1995), he led the event the next two seasons before being named the Festival Director for the prestigious AFI Film Festival in 1997.  After running AFI Fest for three years (1997-1999), he created a consulting business, guiding the launch of numerous film festivals (Bahamas, Lone Star, Orlando), directing many others (Santa Barbara, Naples, Hollywood), and consulting to dozens more.


In October of 2012, Jon authored his first book, entitled Filmmaking for Change: Make Films That Transform the World.  Again, based on the premise that powerful stories can create change, Jon founded Cause Cinema & Cause Pictures, connecting social impact films to related causes.  After serving as Head of Acquisitions for several distributors, Jon Founded in 2019 as a guide to engaging movies and series.



Justin Giddings is an award-winning actor, writer, and director who got sick and tired of waiting for permission to be creative.  Despite success as an actor on shows like Shameless, Nashville, Pretty Little Liars, and General Hospital, Justin decided to get behind the camera.  His and his partner’s first two shorts played at over 100 film festivals around the globe, winning multiple awards and best-ofs and gaining distribution and development deals with Gaiam TV and Gunpowder & Sky.


While he continues to work as a writer and director, Justin also has the distinction of being the Kickstarter Guy, the #1 crowdfunding coach for filmmakers.  He’s coached over 170 clients, helped raised $6 million, and has a 97% success rate.  He’s an official Kickstarter Expert, a Forbes Business Coach, and regularly teaches with organizations such as Film Independent.  The empowerment of a filmmaker to totally control their creative expression in the world continues to drive Justin’s coaching and educational work.



Register for this FREE COURSE now at the link below so you can learn all you need to make the most of film festivals:




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