POV’s 2012 Call for Entries is Officially Open! New Guidelines & Tips from Series Producer Yance Ford

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With the announcement of POV’s 2011 schedule behind us, the programming department is gearing up for the Open Call deadline on June 30, 2011. This year POV has made two significant changes to our submission system that we hope will make our process clearer and simpler for filmmakers racing to make the deadline.

POV Series Producer Yance Ford

Yance Ford

First, we have renamed the “In the Works” category. Over the years many filmmakers have confused this category as a “works-in-progress” category with funding attached to it. Hopefully the new name, Early Introduction, says it all. You can read more about Early Introduction in our guidelines, but simply put, Early Introduction is not for broadcast or funding consideration — think, “Getting to know you, getting to know all about you…

Second, in addition to a DVD, we’re allowing for two digital options for delivering your submission to POV: a thumb drive (thumb drives only!) or a Vimeo* link. Sorry, you can only choose one delivery format. The specs for digital delivery are detailed in the CFE instructions and in the online form. Please note, thumb drives will not be returned and we cannot accept un-compressed full HD files for submission. Our digital specs are identical to DVD specs to keep the playing field (and our servers) level.

We are excited to see what filmmakers from around the world have been working on! Send an email (and have some patience) to cfe[at]pov.org if you have questions and thanks, as always, for your interest in POV.

For specific tips on how to navigate our online form, read on…

Submission Categories:

  • Standard: Finished films, or films that are at rough/fine cut stage. (Will be ready for broadcast in 2012.)
  • Shorts: Finished films, or films that are at rough/fine cut stage AND whose final running time is 30 minutes or less. (Will be ready for broadcast in 2012.)
  • Completion Funds: Films that are at assembly/rough/fine cut stage AND are seeking completion funds. (May or may not be ready for broadcast in 2012.)
  • Early Introduction: This category is exclusively for projects are either too early in development or production to be considered in POV’s highly competitive selection process. If you plan on submitting to our open call in the future but would like to introduce your project to POV’s programming team now this is the way to do it.

All films must be submitted through our online submission system, and the arrival deadline for entries this year is 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 30, 2011. Start by going to http://cfe.pov.org and follow the instructions to complete an entry form.

Here is a quick primer on how to use the online POV submission form:

  1. Add cfe[at]pov.org to your email address book so that none of our correspondence to you is lost in a spam folder.
  2. Make sure your browser will accept pop-up windows, and visit http://cfe.pov.org.
  3. Click either of the two “Register” links (at the top and middle of the page) and complete the registration page.
  4. Check your email for your registration confirmation. The confirmation email will usually arrive instantly, but may take up to 24 hours. Check your spam folder as well.
  5. Click on the link within the confirmation email to activate your account. This is an obvious, but important step.
  6. Once you’ve activated your account, log in at http://cfe.pov.org to complete your application. Enter your film’s title and click the button that says “Create New Call for Entries form.”
  7. And that’s it! You’ve started a new entry! The rest of the form is pretty self-explanatory.

If you want better idea of whether the film you’ve made is a good fit for POV and to learn more about what POV looks for in a film during our selection process, check out this post. If you’re not sure if you should submit, drop us a line at cfe[at]pov.org or call 212-989-8121 x380.

The 2012 POV Call for Entries is officially open!

* A note about Vimeo submissions and riding the stats: If you submit via Vimeo, POV will download your film for pre-screening purposes, rather than sending the link to pre-screeners. Consequently your stats will show a single download. If you’re not comfortable with that, then we’ll ask you to send a thumb drive or DVD. Why? Because this is where the trust factor comes in. We value your work and know how much time and effort goes into making each film we receive. Our entire pre-screening process is built on acknowledging that each submission often represents years of effort and deserves our full attention. You have to trust that we will screen your film and decide if it fits POV’s criteria, without riding the Vimeo stats page to keep an eye on us.

Yance Ford
Yance Ford
Yance works closely with POV's executive director and programming director to evaluate films submitted to POV She is instrumental in curating the series, a showcase of acclaimed documentary film on PBS. Yance frequently represents POV | American Documentary at conferences, festivals and markets, procuring work from filmmakers both nationally and internationally. Yance also oversees POV's annual call for entries, which yields upwards of one thousand entries, and coordinates POV's annual programming advisory board. Yance is a Programming Consultant and Pre- Screener for film festivals around the country, including the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, the Black Maria Film Festival, the Newport International Film Festival, Latino Public Broadcasting, Creative Capital and the Sundance Film Festival. She has served on festival juries at Full Frame and Silverdocs, appeared on panels at Sunny Side of the Doc and DocuClub and served on the IFP Advisory Committee. A graduate of Hamilton College and the production workshop at Third World Newsreel, Yance is a former Production Stage Manager for the Girls Choir of Harlem and has worked as a Production Manager on numerous independent productions for the Discovery Health and History channels. Ford has also worked in various capacities on the documentaries The Favorite Poem Project, Juanita Anderson, Executive Producer, Brian Lanker's They Drew Fire (PBS), and Barry Levinson's Yesterday's Tomorrows (Showtime). Yance's favorite documentaries include: 1. Hands on a Hard Body 2. Tongues Untied 3. Harlan County, USA 4. Cul de Sac 5. When We Were Kings 6. The Thin Blue Line 7. Night and Fog