Crown Heights Film Festival

AwesomeNYC is pleased to award a grant to the Crown Heights Film Festival to help them expand to a new venue in 2020. In founder Cynthia Chatman's own words:

Since 2016, I've been organizing Crown Heights Film Festival. We bring indie short films from around Brooklyn, around the U.S. and around the world to our wonderful neighborhood. Over the course of three evenings every October, we've hosted well-attended free screenings, providing free popcorn and free bottled water. Then we follow up by serving free cookies and wine at our after party with live music - free of course.

We feel strongly about keeping the events free for our audiences. In recent years, we've noticed a trend whereby more and more cultural institutions here in New York that used to be free or offered suggested admission, have gotten to be so expensive that they're no longer affordable for many people. We want people to feel that they can come to our screenings night after night, which many people did.

Our submission fees are only $20 per film and we offer 50% discounts for students, and waivers to filmmakers from sanctioned countries. We’d like to expand our influence and make Crown Heights a go-to destination for viewing indie films, and for aspiring filmmakers to meet each other, learn, and collaborate.

We're planning on starting a Crown Heights Film Festival Meetup where people can come and rate film submissions. The idea is just a seed right now, but I think it'll be a good way to engage people in our community and keep them thinking about the festival in between the screenings.

Funded by New York City, NY (January 2020)