Guide to screening films

Top tips on screening films in your community

We’re excited you have decided to organise a screening of an If Not Us Then Who film.

This page is designed to help you think about your event planning to make sure it’s a success.

Getting started

  1. Select a film or two that resonate with you most, or are most relevant to your studies or your passions.
  2. We have created educational packs to go alongside nearly all of our films, here you will find lots more information behind the film, context and updates as well as suggested activities. You will find the relevant educational packs here:
  3. Take a look at our partner films as well, we do not have as much supporting content at this time but can help put you in touch with the right group
  4. Think about who you would like to show these films to, your family? Your fellow students? Your community? Your work? Consumers? Remember it is often more effective to aim for a smaller but engaged group.
  5. How much time and resources do you have to put into this? You probably are working or studying and organising screenings is not your full time job! Be realistic about the time you can invest in organising a screening, maybe find a friend or colleague to help you.
  6. Do you have a budget? We only have a limited budget to support screenings at this time. It is very possible to host an engaging and effective event with minimal cost but it does take some planning.
  7. Think about what venue or location might be the best place to reach the people you want to target? It could be something as simple as your university hall or your lounge. Or you could approach different community buildings to see if they will host a free screening. Perhaps a library, a local cafe, some restaurants have private rooms you can book. Are there already regular screenings taking place where you could submit the films or theme? Get creative.
    1. Is the venue easily accessible?
    2. Do you need to borrow a projector or does the venue provide it?
    3. Screenings often work better with less natural light, if your event is outdoors, perhaps think about an evening event
    4. What is the sound quality like?

Here are more tips on screening films in your community, particularly outdoor screenings, from Independent Cinema Office: http://www.independentcinemaoffice.org.uk/projectionforbeginners

If you would like to get in touch about your screening event ideas please email sophia@ifnotusthenwho.me – we can arrange a Skype chat for a 121 discussion about your event.

Now you have a venue

  1. Who can you partner with? A friend to help you organise? A local company to host? The local bakery might supply some snacks? The local newspaper or vlogger could help you promote the event to your community?
  2. Decide the format of your event
  3. We can provide the film files offline if you require
  4. Select a theme for your event
  5. How many films will you screen? How long are they?
  6. Will you host the event? Or invite an expert or activist? Maybe your local Fairtrade group could talk about consumption? Or Amnesty International group about social injustice? If there is good speed internet at your venue we might be able to live stream a team member or partner in, let us know!
  7. Will you have group activities or discussions after each film?
  8. What time of day will you host your event?
  9. Sometimes people like incentives to attend events, you could think about supplying some snacks?
  10. Could you include other green initiatives like recycling or use reusable cups for water instead of bottled water for example?
  11. We usually recommend an event lasting 2 hours

Send us the details of your event and we will add a blog to the website – let us know why you are hosting an event too! Let us know at sophia@ifnotusthenwho.me.

Marketing tips

  1. Tell people about your event – now that you have confirmed all the details, it’s time to starting telling people about your event. Allow as much time as possible to do this, this can often be the hardest part!
  2. Create posters for online and print. We have created a series of branded templates with different images you can use to suit your event:
  3. Set up a Facebook event (add us as hosts and we will try and reach people in your area too), share this event and ask your friends to share it too
  4. Create an Eventbrite page
  5. Create a Calendar meeting and invite your colleagues – be sure to add a notification reminder!
  6. Reach out to your local newspaper and radio
  7. Invite local journalists
  8. Add your event to different online listing websites
  9. Don’t forget good old fashioned email!
  10. Use #ifnotusthenwho in your social media, we’ll be sharing it too
  11. A few days before your event, confirm your logistic details and get an idea of numbers
  12. On the day, take behind the scenes photos to build a buzz for your event, don’t forget to use #ifnotusthenwho. Ask a few friends to come early to help you set up. Ask a friend to be in charge of social media, especially if you are hosting the event yourself.
  13. Collect email addresses at your event and ask if they want to join our mailing list

Good luck!

Now take a rest. When you have some time, let us know

  1. How your event went?
  2. How many people attended your event? What were their interests?
  3. Send us your photos
  4. We would love you to write a short blog post about your event that we can use on the website – our new screening champion!