South by Southwest (SXSW) Conferences & Festivals has announced that Current, the new cable network launched by Al Gore and partner Joel Hyatt, will be the official television partner for the 2005 SXSWclick Festival. The two companies will work together to cross-promote events through the summer.
“The mission and scope of Current is something that seems ideologically linked to the mission and scope of SXSWclick. Both organizations have a commitment to showcasing independent video creators,” said Matt Dentler, a Festival Producer at South by Southwest. “We know this partnership will offer greater exposure for the artists submitting their work to SXSWclick.”
The SXSWclick Festival is a new event, a new online film festival that incorporates mobile technology. Producers will be able to submit their films through the SXSW website. The festival is open to all forms of graphic storytelling—from music videos to flash animation and beyond—but works must be five minutes or less.
On July 1, a set of finalists will be chosen by the SXSW selection committee. These finalists will be posted on the SXSW website, and the general public will be invited to vote for their favorites. There will also be a jury evaluating the same finalists. On July 29, SXSW will announce this year’s winners, who will be automatically accepted into the 2006 Film Festival, to be held March 10-18, 2006 in Austin, TX. The winning submissions will also be accessible on the web site, and the winners will receive a prize package that includes software and festival passes.
Current will help promote the festival through its website and award an undetermined amount of “Reel Current” awards. The Reel Current award is given to aspiring filmmakers, and the recipient of these awards will have their pieces air on the Current network after it starts broadcasting on August 1.
“South by Southwest provides a unique platform for independent creators to meet each other, share ideas, and showcase their work,” added Suemyra Shah, Associate Manager, Partnership Marketing and Promotions for the Current network. “By partnering with the SXSWclick, Current is extending our commitment to independent media, and we hope it’s the first step of a larger collaboration.”
For more info, visit the SXSW website.

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