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(Credit: Denise Jans)


Amazon Prime to turn SXSW 2020 into a ten day online film festival


Following SXSW’s cancellation due to concerns over the coronavirus, filmmakers who were due to premiere their work at the festival were left in limbo but this looks to have been resolved thanks to Amazon.

SXSW organisers have announced that they recently struck a deal with Amazon to allow their 2020 film titles to be streamed as part of a virtual festival which will be available for ten days on Prime Video and, most importantly, the films will not just be accessible to subscribers as their will no paywall on the films which will make sure they are seen by the widest audience possible.

There is still yet to be a date announced for Prime Video presents the SXSW 2020 Film Festival Collection doesn’t have an exact date, although the plan is for late April. This year’s crop of filmmakers will have the choice to opt-in as it is not mandatory however those who agree will receive an undisclosed screening fee.

Janet Pierson, SXSW Director of Film has said that since the festival’s cancellation the organisers have been busy working morning, noon and night for an opportunity like this, revealing: “Ever since SXSW was cancelled by the City of Austin, we’ve been focused on how we could help the incredible films and filmmakers in the SXSW 2020 Film Festival lineup.

Adding: “We were delighted when Amazon Prime Video offered to host an online film festival, and jumped at the opportunity to connect their audiences to our filmmakers. We’re inspired by the adaptability and resilience of the film community as it searches for creative solutions in this unprecedented crisis.”

This deal offers a much needed positive outcome for filmmakers who have put blood, sweat and tears into their work and potentially allows their films to reach a wider audience than it would have done at SXSW.