×

Indie rejects welcome

Fest feasts on second-best pix

What do fledgling filmmakers do when constantly faced with rejection from increasingly competitive fests? Besides accepting dad’s advice to join the family business, they can swallow their pride and enter the Reject Filmfest, a Philadelphia festival where the primary acceptance requirement is that pics must have been rejected by every other fest they’ve been submitted to.

When their film “… clayfest” was denied entry into last year’s Philadelphia Fest of World Cinema, D. Mason Bendewald and Don Argott decided to take matters into their own hands and started the Reject.

Last year’s debut drew more than 2,000 attendees during the three days of screenings, attracting the attention of the Philadelphia Inquirer, which deemed it “deliriously twisted.” The fest was a small success.

Waters roped in

For this year’s installment (Oct.15 -17), Reject will screen more than 100 features, shorts and video projects. Ticket sales are up and eccentric Baltimore-based scripter/helmer John Waters will be the guest speaker.

Co-founder and Reject exec director Bendewald is thrilled about the way it’s developing, despite the lack of interest from distributors in the films. “Cannes and Sundance are festivals where filmmakers hope to get picked up. We’re not concerned with getting picked up, we’re just interested in getting films shown,” Bendewald said.

All rejects who are interested in submitting their unloved films, can call (215) 574-0911. But be warned: The Reject fest is not above rejection itself. It’s a competitive fest, and a lot of submissions get turned away. If that happens, it’s probably time to take advantage of dad’s business connections.

More Scene

  • Andy CohenThe Shops and Restaurants at

    Andy Cohen to Receive Vito Russo Award at GLAAD Media Awards

    Mazel, Andy Cohen! Bravo’s late-night talk show host is set to receive the Vito Russo Award at the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards on May 4 in New York City. Sarah Jessica Parker will present him with the award, which is named in honor of GLAAD founder Vito Russo. The annual award goes to openly [...]

  • Variety TV Summit Europe

    Variety TV Summit Europe Coming to London on June 13

    Variety’s TV Summit Europe will coincide with London Tech Week this year, returning to the city on June 13. The international conference will be held at the Royal Lancaster and is co-produced by global events company Informa’s KNect365 division, the world’s largest business-to-business organizer. The one-day summit will focus on the intersection of content and [...]

  • David Furnish, Bryce Dallas Howard, Taron

    'Rocketman': Paramount Previews Footage of Elton John Biopic

    “Rocketman” is ready for lift off. Paramount Pictures threw a cocktail party Monday night to preview 15 minutes of the upcoming Elton John biopic, set for release on May 31, at the Troubadour in Los Angeles, the legendary rock club where John made his U.S. debut nearly 50 years ago. The footage featured pieces of [...]

  • The CalArts REDCAT Gala 2019 Honoring

    Pixar's Pete Docter Honored at CalArts REDCAT Gala

    Pixar’s Pete Docter reminisced about his days as a student at CalArts on Saturday night at the 2019 CalArts REDCAT Gala, where he received the Distinguished Alumni Award. For the wide-eyed boy from Minnesota, where life was more routine, attending CalArts “was a free-for-all. It was eye-opening in a lot of ways,” he recalled. “But [...]

  • Sasha Pieterse, Eli Brown, Sydney Park

    'Pretty Little Liars' Spinoff Unexpectedly Coincides With College Admissions Scandal

    It was a case of art imitating life at Saturday night’s Hollywood premiere of “The Perfectionists” — Freeform’s “Pretty Little Liars” spinoff about a scandal involving college students striving for excellence by any means necessary. The TV show’s debut was coincidently preceded by a real-life college scandal involving Hollywood celebrities who allegedly didn’t let a [...]

  • Keira Knightley'The Aftermath' film screening, Arrivals,

    Keira Knightley Talks 'Aftermath,' Alexander Skarsgård and Another Itchy Wardrobe

    The reigning queen of period pieces, Keira Knightley, knows a thing or two about historical clothing. “Lining. Lining is always important,” the Oscar-nominated actress playfully advised on Wednesday at the premiere of her post-WWII drama “Aftermath.” “If you get a lot of itchy stuff always put lining in it. I have learned that from having [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content