Starting at 19:30 this Wednesday evening, the 66th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen will then go live via streaming opened - this year completely on the net due to the Corona crisis. For 6 days from 12-18 May, more than 350 short films will then be available online - a festival pass for unlimited access to all sections, such as the festival's five competitions with a total of 152 works, costs 9.99 euros and is valid for 48 hours.
In addition to the various short film programmes - new programmes are put online every day and can then be seen for 48 hours at a time - there will also be additional content such as live talks on the films and new DJ sets every evening. This year the festival's country focus is on new short films from Portugal.
A special feature for a streamed film festival is the decision not to use geoblocking in order to limit the audience to the country of the venue - the short films of the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen can thus be viewed online worldwide. The opening on Wednesday, 13 May at 7.30 p.m. and the awards ceremony on Monday, 18 May at 7.30 p.m. will be streamed freely accessible via the Short Film Festival website and Facebook page.
For festival director Lars Henrik Gass, the step into the net offers many opportunities, for example to reach a wider audience:
We are on the way to a film festival that is no longer limited to place and time. That is new, and it is irreversible. And above all, it opens up the possibility of reaching an audience that we could never have reached locally in Oberhausen, far beyond national borders, through a novel structure. In any case, we will continue and further develop some formats that we have developed in need this year.>/quote>
The success of the online experiment will probably also determine what the festival will look like in the future - but unlike in the past, it will remain determined.