Prior to the 13th century, the term 'wench' referred to a young woman. Over time, the connotation changed from girl child to prostitute to racial slur. The goal of Wench Film Festival is to take back the ownership of the word Wench and return it back to it's original girl child status.
Our first logo ∴ was created before the festival launched. It was distinctive and significant but it was also extremely easy to get wrong as it is a universal sign for therefore. The black and white colours were also very limiting and as we break out into our new avatar in 2022 it became important to showcase it in our logo.
The 3 Diamonds in our new Logo are very symbolic to us. They stand for Clarity, Resilience and Brilliance. The Shards of Light are like our Eyes - Speaking all the Words our Mouths Couldn't.
ABOUT WENCH FILM FESTIVAL 2023
Wench Film Festival is India's First Horror / Sci Fi / Fantasy Film Festival inclusive of BIWOC, LGBTQ+ women, and non-binary filmmakers.
“Women” includes all those who identify as a woman. Period.
At Wench Film Festival, our intention is to showcase female filmmakers who don’t just have the ability to tell origin stories but to go beyond normative roles, mediums, and genres to tell good stories. This is encapsulated in our slogan -
‘Shaping Perspectives By Shifting the Gaze.'
WFF supports, encourages and celebrates women and non-binary storytellers by not only providing a platform to showcase their craft but also through film screenings, discussions, and professional development opportunities as well as incorporating International Womans Month in its programming.
MARCH 10-20 2023 ONLINE @ https://wenchff.festivalsaints.com/
MARCH 17-19 2023 OFFLINE @ HARKAT STUDIOS AND VEDA FACTORY
This year we have tied up with Court Métrange to have this conversation on a BLOODY WORLD STAGE and will screen their selections to our audiences in India.
WFF Screens films Directed by Women and Non-Binary Filmmakers but We do however have a special category for Male Filmmakers who have directed films with a central female plot or key female HOD's.
HERE IS A GLIMPSE OF THE LAST 2 YEARS IN NUMBERS.
41 Films, 7 Panel Discussions, 300+ tickets sold, 9k unique visitors, Media Reach 1.3M across platforms & an engagement rate of 5%- 25%.
2022 - 2 EVENTS
FILM FESTIVAL (MARCH - HYBRID)
47 Films, 6 Panel Discussions, 15 acclaimed international jury members, 6 awards
500+ tickets sold (ONLINE), 250 Attendees (PHYSICAL), Media Reach 2.7M across platforms.
DISCO BLOOD BATH (OCT- PHYSICAL)
SCREENING (HARKAT STUDIOS) AND HALLOWEEN BASH (THE DEN)
100 Tickets (Sold Out) Screening
350 Attendees at The Den
ARE YOU READY TO SMASH THAT BLOODY CEILING WITH US?
WFF IS A FANTASTIC FILM FESTIVAL- ONLY FANTASY, SCI-FI AND HORROR FILMS WILL BE ACCEPTED (Documentaries, Narratives and Hybrids)
Should the submitted film not adhere to this eligibility requirement or to the following rules and terms, WFF retains the right to disqualify said film and is under no obligation to contact the submitting party and/or refund the submission fee.
Please carefully read the following terms and rules, including Selection and Notification, Submission Rules, and Terms and Conditions.
- WFF Will ONLY Screen films Directed by Women and Non-Binary Filmmakers. We do however have a special category for Male Filmmakers who have directed films with a central female plot.
- Films completed after March 2018 are eligible.
- By submitting to the festival you confirm that you own the rights of the film, including the rights to the music in the film.
- We Welcome Narrative, Animated, Experimental, Documentary and Music Videos
- All entries should be sent via Film Freeway or Festho me with a secure Online Screener.
- Filmmakers may submit multiple entries as long as each film is submitted with its own Entry Form, Online Screener and paid Entry Fee.
- Submitted films that are not eligible will be withdrawn. Please check eligibility before submitting. Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- You agree to indemnify and hold harmless Wench Film Festival from and against any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney's fees, and costs of the court) which may be incurred by reason of any claim involving copyright, trademark, credits, publicity, screening, and loss of or damage to the screening videos entered.
- The entrant expressly agrees that the film may be shown at the festival and used for promotional purposes in connection with the festival. This includes, among other things, the distribution of the film to all jury members, the use of excerpts for advertising clips and other uses within the framework of the festival. In addition, the submitter agrees that the film may be shown at events after the festival.
- Submitted films must not have undergone commercial exploitation – for example, an official theatrical release and a DVD and Blu-ray release – by the time of the festival. „Private“ screenings such as premieres, festival participations, and self-distributed DVDs and Blu-rays are exempt from this restriction
ABOUT THE FOUNDER
As a pioneer entrepreneur, Sapna Moti Bhavnani founded the hair salon Mad O Wot 18 years ago in Bombay. Through her versatile avatars such as writing a bitingly intimate weekly column for Mumbai Mirror and Mid-Day, authoring a self-help book for teenage girls Style O Wot, launching the avant-garde clothing line SoFake, to producing One Billion Rising at Carter Road (2013), acting in award-winning plays like NIRBHAYA – a searing testimonial play which won the Amnesty Freedom of Expression Award, The Fringe First Award and The Angel Herald Award in 2013 for cracking open the cone of silence around sexual and gender-based violence in India to JATINGA in 2017 –inspired by Kamathipura and highlights human trafficking worldwide; she traverses mainstream success with just as much ease as she skirts the underground youth art and culture movement.
Sapna is best known as Producer/Director of the award winning documentary Sindhustan(2019) which is about the largest migration of a culture (Sindhi) in history told through tattoos on her body. Sindhustan has won 11 Awards, travelled to 23 international festivals and is now streaming on MovieSaints. In July 2020 Sapna launched her production company called Wench Films to empower the female gaze. Keeping the same Wench philosophy, she founded Wench Film Festival in 2021 and has successfully finished 2 editions while spotlighting 174 women. The 2022 edition was India’s first genre film festival which showcased 44 films directed by women.
Her second hybrid feature My Dog IS Sick was an official selection at the prestigious Visions Du Reel Film Market and World Premiered at New Horizons International Festival in 2021. The story for Sapna’s next feature Bearlike Man was officially selected at NAFF (The Network of Asian Fantastic Films) presented by Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival 2021 making her the first Indian Woman Director to ever get selected. She has been invited back to BIFAN in 2022 as an official mentee at the Fantastic Film School.
Bearlike Man is an official selection at BIFFF Market 2022 (Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival). It is currently in script development stage at Sundance Collab.
She is currently editing her short Cataclysm, developing a VR series on sexual assault I Did Not Scream (Selected at a lab with root.ax 2022) and researching a documentary on one of the first Cabaret Bars In Bombay (Blue Nile) managed by her father titled Finding Tamiko The Tomato while finishing a book - Chapter One for Harper Collins.
The rest, like they say, is herstory.