In response to this serious and unprecedented reality of the COVID-19 pandemic and with the cancellation of SXSW, Rainforest Partnership’s Films for the Forest screening scheduled for March 15 as part of SXSW Community Screening is cancelled as well.
The 2020 Films for the Forest saw us receiving submissions with an incredible diversity of important stories from 20 countries spanning 6 continents, and we even had a microshort from Antarctica that we were to screen.
Seven continents, oh my! The Films for the Forest team at Rainforest Partnership, as well as the judges had a challenging task of figuring out how to showcase the best and most important stories out to the widest possible audiences. We felt a responsibility and an obligation to give a voice to these stories, many untold.
While the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss demand an urgent response from all of us as an existential threat to humanity and all that coexists with us, the very immediate threat that the coronavirus pandemic poses demands that we respond with care even as we remain focused on our increasing urgent mission and work.
We remain committed to determining the way to both continue our important work with minimal disruption as well as the best way to screen Films for the Forest in 2020. This includes the announcement of the winning films that would have occurred at the March 15th, 2020 screening.
A lot goes into getting ready and leading up to screening Films for the Forest against tight deadlines. Our Films for the Forest poured in hours of work in communicating with filmmakers, obtaining films, watching them, getting them to the judges, getting them ready for screening, graphic design, program planning and the various logistics around it all. We are fortunate that none of that is lost, just delayed.
Currently, Rainforest Partnership plans to host a global online streaming of Films for the Forest during Earth Day Week in April, this April, 22, 2020 being the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Other details are still being determined. Our team will share more details in the following weeks, by email, social media and on our website.
We are immensely grateful to all the filmmakers that submitted films to us and trusted us with your important stories; our sponsors that allow us to do our important work in protecting tropical rainforests; and our supporters for your patience and understanding during this time of fast unfolding unprecedented reality.
The Rainforest Partnership team urges everyone to stay safe. Please do continue sharing your love for rainforests. We commit to keeping our attention on protecting our forests even as we adapt to how we do that during this time.
The Rainforest Partnership headquarter office closed as of Friday, March 13th and the team will be working remotely for the time being, as is our Peru team. We are very fortunate that we already had long-standing and newly adopted systems, platforms and policies that make it seamless to continue work effectively remotely.