The world premiere of CrimeFighters (i.e. not for cast and crew) was, I must say, a complete triumph!
We got a warm round of applause from the audience as we stepped up to introduce the film, then within minutes of it starting there were ripples of laughter around the room which developed into belly laughs and groans of recognition at the predicaments of the characters, and finally a round of applause for the film's twist and punchline. Really a dream premiere!
It gave me a wonderful feeling knowing that this was a room full of complete strangers (save the few cast and crew and a couple of friends that were there). These folks had picked up the EIFF brochure, read this:
...and decided to take a chance on a small unknown film, much the same way the festival had. So far the film had screened to friends and family, cast and crew, and some had loved it and some thought it was OK, but this screening cemented in my mind (because after making a film you can lose perspective when it comes time to actually watch it) that we did our best and made the film we set out to make.
And then we got this rather nice 4 star review.
Now, I am fully aware that not everyone is going to like this film and we may have some scathing or lacklustre reviews coming up (and a few good ones from what I hear) but at this point I am kind of beyond caring. This was the best launch we could have had and I finally have that feeling of breaking out of just showing films in York, and now having the chance to share them with the rest of the country/world.
I get the feeling that whether or not CrimeFighters ends up being popular with critics, it will be with audiences, and I'm really looking forward to the upcoming cinema tour. David Lynch said that every time he watched one of his films with a different audience, it made the film different. That's certainly true of CrimeFighters at EIFF; it's hard to watch your own films sometimes after slaving away at them for months, but our audience made it an absolute joy.
The next day I did one of those TV interviews where you sit in front of a poster of the film which was pretty cool:
...and chatted with various journalists about the making of the film and future of our production company.
All in all, my first big film festival experience was just perfect. Let's hope there are many more.