‘We Are One’ – Global Film Festivals Partner with YouTube for free online Film Festival

With the COVID-19 pandemic causing film festivals around the world to be either indefinitely postponed or cancelled altogether, the global film community has been desperately awaiting a solution to what has effectively brought the entire industry to a standstill. That solution came this morning.

A joint-venture by Tribeca Enterprises and YouTube, We Are One: A Global Film Festival will run for ten days (May 29 – June 7). The festival is set to feature an assortment of feature films, documentaries, shorts, masterclasses, live music, and comedy – though further specifics are yet to be confirmed. The programming for the event will be curated by some of the world’s most prestigious film festivals, including Cannes, Berlin, Sundance, Venice, Tribeca, San Sebastian, and Toronto.

Although the event is free, the Festival will be accepting donations to benefit the World Health Organisation’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund as well as other domestic organisations around the world.

Sydney Film Festival also confirmed its attachment to the event via an announcement on their website. Nashen Moodley, the director of the festival, said:

Image Source: We Are One

“The Festival is truly delighted to partner with these great festivals to celebrate our international community of storytellers and audiences. Sydney Film Festival looks forward to presenting Australian cinema in this global arena, and to bring joy and entertainment to audiences in need of relief.”

This comes after the festival announced its cancellation on March 18, the first time it has had to do so in a near 70-year consecutive run. We Are One presents a challenge to traditional festival programming, with each participant facing limited program space and the complexities of international distribution copyright regulations. Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald Moodley said:

“We want to focus on Australian cinema, stuff that had a big impact here at the festival but hasn’t necessarily registered overseas…I would ideally like to invite some films by the end of the week.”

We Are One joins a host of other entertainment and cultural events that have made the move to the online space. SXSW recently announced a streaming partnership with Amazon, and a number of live streaming-based music festivals have sprung up in lieu of live performances.

Various artists and independent organisations have also taken to organising their own online events, including an immersive VR experience, a Minecraft music festival, and a Travis Scott ‘event’ in Fortnite that drew millions.