WHY

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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.

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ABOUT WENCH FILM FESTIVAL 2022

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 tagline:

Shaping Perspectives By Shifting the Gaze.'

Wench Film Festival is India's First Fantastic Film Festival showcasing films made by women filmmakers inclusive of BIWOC, LGBTQ+ women, and non-binary.
“Women” includes all those who identify as a woman. Period. 

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 Women’s Day events into its programming.
 

DATES 

MARCH 4-5 2022 PHYSICAL @ WHISTLING WOODS
MARCH 4-14 2022 VIRTUAL @ MOVIESAINTS


We have tied up with NYX Horror Collective, Final Girls Berlin, and Etheria Film Festival to have this conversation on a BLOODY WORLD STAGE and will screen their selections to our audiences in India.

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.

 

Even though Edition One, 2021 was virtual because of COVID, we still succeeded in curating:


41 Films -
18 Features
12 Shorts
11 Kids Films
ALL DIRECTED BY WOMEN !
7 Important Panels -  52 Panellist's
-Consent and Intimacy on Set
-Inclusivity Matters!
-Scream Queens
-Inside Out
-Genre Films
-Sound of Music
-Women In Advertising

Over 500 tickets in Year one of the festival with titles that were largely discovered at the festival is a stellar testimony to what the festival set out to achieve and is probably the best response received for any online festival from India.

ARE YOU READY TO SMASH THAT BLOODY CEILING WITH US?                                               

RULES

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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 submissions@wenchfilmfestival.com

 

- 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

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As a pioneer entrepreneur, Sapna Bhavnani founded the hair salon Mad O Wot16 years ago in Bombay and changed the way Indian youth looked at themselves.  Through her versatile avatars such as writing an intimate weekly column for a well-known publication and authoring a self-help book for teenage girls “Style O Wot” to launching the avant-garde clothing line “So Fake” and acting in 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; Sapna Moti Bhavnani 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 her award winning documentary Sindhustan. Sindhustan started its festival journey in 2019 and is her first feature length documentary. The film is about the largest migration of a culture in history told through tattoos on her body.  Sindhustan has won 10 Awards and travelled to 23 festivals and is now streaming online on Movie Saints.

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Actor, spoken word artist, hair stylist, writer, director, producer - Sapna embodies it all as a visionary and a change maker. In July 2020 she launched her production company called Wench Films to push female talent primarily from India to the world and keeping that philosophy in mind also launched a successful edition 1of Wench Film Festival in March 2021introducing 81new women talent to the world. She has just completed her feature My Dog IS Sickwhich was an official selection at the prestigious Visions Du Reel Film Market in April 2021and had its World Premiere in August 2021 at the Prestigious New Horizons International Film Festival in Poland. The film will  start its festival  journey in July.  The script for Sapna’s next feature Bearlike Man just got officially selected at NAFF (The Network of Asian Fantastic Films) presented by Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival making her the first Indian woman director to ever be selected in that market.She is also developing a VR series of 3 shorts I Did Not Screamwhile writing a book -Chapter One for Harper Collins.

The rest, like they say, is herstory.