How Film Festivals Have Thrived in a Year of Pandemic

“Necessity is the mother of invention, and I think we all in the industry are doing this in a way we never expected,” says Film at Lincoln Center director Lesli Klainberg

While the COVID-19 pandemic has shut down movie theaters across the country, it has proved an unexpected win for the nation’s film festivals in 2020.

In the wake of the high-profile, 11th-hour cancellation of The South by Southwest Film Festival in mid-March, as well as postponements of the Cannes Film Festival and cancellation of the Telluride Film Festival, one might have expected smaller festivals to follow suit.

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Diane Haithman

Diane Haithman

Senior Entertainment Business Reporter • diane@thewrap.com • @dhaithman