The 2012 Beneath the Earth Film Festival kicked off with an international selection of independent films Thursday. This year’s official selection, which includes films from the US, Taiwan, Germany and London, consists of five dramatic shorts, one dramatic feature and one documentary short.
Head film critic for The Moving Arts, Eric Armstrong, was selected as one of 26 Grand Jurors who will award the festival’s Best Film, which includes a $1,000 cash prize. The other top prize, the Audience Award, will be decided by Facebook Likes. Audience Award voting is open to all visitors to the site.
Beneath the Earth is an online only festival that seeks to use technology to circumvent the gatekeeper that is the Hollywood studio system. From the website:
“Beneath the Earth is an online film festival that was created out of the idea that the Internet has given us new power to influence what content gets consumed and who gets noticed. We’ve already seen it happen in music, where musicians are discovered through the followings they create online. And now we’d like to see it happen for film and use this new-found power to shine the light on the little guy who’s created something beautiful but hasn’t been able to cut through the red Hollywood tape.”
The Beneath the Earth Film Festival is running through Nov. 30.
Check out the official promo video.