AFI Fest on Wednesday officially announced dates and a call for entries for its 36th edition, which will take place in Los Angeles from November 2-6, 2022. Entries open today and filmmakers are invited to submit fiction, documentary, experimental and animated short films .
Once again placing the fest in the heart of awards season, AFI Fest is planning to fully return to its usual place in the run-up to Oscars, and seems to be returning to some level of normality if Covid cooperates — though today’s announcement didn’ t give details on what the fest will look like or if it will be fully in-person or partially virtual once again. In November, Netflix’s strong Oscar contender tick, tick…Boom! opened what was a hybrid edition.
AFI also said today that because of that ongoing uncertainty due to the pandemic, AFI Fest will expand its programming with nonfiction films traditionally presented at AFI Docs, usually held in early summer in Washington, DC
“AFI’s goal is to provide a safe environment for artists and audiences alike,” AFI president and CEO Bob Gazzale said. “Uniting our events this year to be held in the fall will allow us to achieve this at a standard worthy of AFI and the storytellers who devote their lives to inspire and educate.”
AFI Fest will have submission deadlines — early (March 2), official (April 20) and final (June 15) — for fiction shorts (under 40 minutes) and nonfiction shorts (under 40 minutes). The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognizes AFI Fest as an Oscar-qualifying festival for the Live Action and Animated Short Film categories.
The American Film Institute recently announced rescheduled dates for its long pandemic-delayed Life Achievement Award ceremony for Julie Andrews, now to be held June 9. Also, the Covid-delayed AFI Awards luncheon will now take place March 11, after its previous January date was postponed.
In other festival news, the TCM Classic Film Festival in Hollywood is moving full speed ahead with its planned return to being a fully live event, today revealing that the 40th anniversary screening of ET: The Extra Terrestrial will be its opening-night film on April 21.
Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall are set to be in attendance for opening night at the festival, which was forced to go virtual for the past two years. It is now set to run April 21-24.