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By Mark Bell | February 23, 2010

Even a month ago, if you’d have told me I’d wind up buying Film Threat during the Sundance Film Festival, I’d have laughed in your face. I know this because, up until the day I bought Film Threat from Chris Gore, that was exactly how I had reacted. In all honesty, I couldn’t imagine a Film Threat that wasn’t owned by Chris Gore. Grander than that thought, though, was the one where I couldn’t imagine a world without Film Threat. Now I won’t have to suffer that nightmare because I’m happy to announce that Film Threat is back!

Film Threat is back to bring you all the independent and underground film you didn’t know you were missing; to quench a cinematic thirst you may not even know you had. We’re getting back to the basics, championing and appreciating the lesser known of the filmmaking community. Film criticism? I like to think of it as Aggressive, Opinionated Film Appreciation. Not saying its going to be all puppy dogs and flowers, but I’ve never gotten off on how insulting I can be with my written word anyway. Finding an undiscovered movie gem and getting it in front of all my friends? THAT’S the ticket!

But I’m rambling. Perhaps you want to know how Film Threat is going to be different from here on out. Save spilling the beans on a number of exciting ideas I’ve got for the rest of 2010, there are a few key differences. For one, we’ve got a new system for accepting films for review. If you’re a filmmaker looking to send us your film, it all starts with the Submission for Review. I have a feeling there will be questions and clarifications on this one, and, to be honest, I’m still wrapping my head around the best way to keep the door open to all filmmakers while simultaneously giving the audience something they can actually use. Start the discussion in the comments below, and we can explore it together.

Will all your favorite writers be back? Depends on who your favorite writers are. We’re going a decidedly “Jerry Maguire” route with this one, focusing on fewer writers, more writing. I think we allowed ourselves to get spread too thin, quality writing-wise, over the last few years and I’d much rather focus on bringing that quality level back up. I think fewer voices, though loud ones, will go a long way towards achieving that goal.

On a technical note, while I don’t want to poison the water, I should warn you that this new is a work-in-progress. There was some damage that occurred to the site back in December, and I’m still coming across random issues because of it… which means you’re going to come across random issues too. I request that you remain patient, and help us diagnose the idiosyncrasies of this new web body as you come across them. Drop us a line via our Feedback page, and we’ll investigate.

And I know there’s more to touch on, but I’m going to stop now and see what you have to say. Comment away and let us know what you think of the new site. If you’ve got questions, comment and I’ll respond. There’s a lot of fun stuff coming Film Threat’s way over the next year, and I’m hoping to bring you all along with me!

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  1. Joel Schlosberg says:

    Welcome back! I’d been afraid that the site was going to be gone permanently. And it’s especially gratifying to see that Phil Hall is still writing for the relaunched site.

  2. Mark Bell says:

    Slateboy is around, particularly with the reviews.

  3. Sean Burns says:

    Welcome Back! Not used to the new look yet, but I’m giving it a chance to grow on me. I’ve been with FT since issue #3 of the print mag (yay Traci Lords!) and I’m not about to let an ugly brown layout scare me off. One complaint though: where the hell’s Slateboy?!?!?

  4. Amy R. Handler says:

    Kit Vane Tempest raises a very interesting issue about the sometimes sticky role film critics find themselves in. I agree that it’s very easy to fall into the realm of nastiness. Still, it’s the critic’s job to give a fair and honest evaluation that at times may be negative. I know when I’m at the other end of the page, I welcome sincere criticism of my films that offer me new insight.

  5. Brad Gibson says:

    So very happy to see FilmThreat back up!

    I read the reviews here all the time, and I wrote some of them!

    When I got that site not found error a while back, my heart was in my throat.

    Welcome back FT!!


  6. Ricky Shore says:

    I used to read hard copies of Film Threat. Glad it’s still around.

  7. Kit Vane Tempest says:

    the birds can sing again, I’m glad you are back.

    It was a terrible when I thought that all film conversation would go the way of ‘three popcorns’ review. Also glad to see that giving bad reviews/criticism isn’t a necessary focus. It is too easy to write angry words on bad things, and therefore too easy to find bad things in films.

  8. Peter John Ross aka sonnyboo says:

    Glad to see the site back up and running. Nice design too!

  9. Felix Vasquez Jr. says:

    I was certain Film Threat was gone for good. Glad to see it’s back.

  10. dwnicolo says:

    Glad you’re back! Can’t wait to see what is coming.

  11. Moish Friedman says:

    Guess who’s back… Nice! Rock it! Already friended on facebook. Peace and good things!

  12. Stina Chyn says:

    Brilliant! Shake it like a papaya pup that won’t stop yapping.

  13. Dhaval Mehta says:

    Whoa. I didn’t even know FilmThreat was gone. I stopped writing/directing films and stopped participating in the forums a while ago. But I just came today – Feb 26 – to see what was up with the site and here it is!

    It looks GREAT. Hopefully I’ll participate more as well.

    Good luck with everything. All my love and best wishes.

  14. David Lawler says:

    Every time I try to come up with an adequate response to this, admittedly, surprising news, I wind up ranting about the truly pathetic state of film, indie or otherwise. I’m glad Bell took over the site, though I can’t fathom why Gore would abandon it. Film Threat is supposed to be Gore’s bread and butter, a print fanzine, becomes a magazine (Larry Flynt is right!), becomes a web site … unusual history. I think Gore’s too busy tweeting or Facebooking or something, put down your cell phones, people! Climb out of your holes! Actually, in all my dealings with FTDVD and FT, Bell was the one who showed me the most courtesy and (in my opinion, undeserved) respect. Good luck with the site!

  15. RB says:

    This is the sound of being added back to the bookmark toolbar.

  16. Merle Bertrand says:

    I lived in world without Film Threat once before, and it wasn’t pretty. Different without the Gore-man? Sure. But think David Lee Roth Van Halen & Sammy Hagar Van Halen. They both rocked. Long live Film Threat!

  17. Jasper Gonzales says:

    Welcome back Film Threat! & congratulations Mark on your acquisition of the site, I spoke to Chris during his book signing in Vegas about 3 months ago & there was no inclinations about what was going to happen to the site, but then again I never mentioned to ask; I assumed it was under maintenance. I’m glad everything worked out for the best!

  18. Chris Thilk says:

    This is great news, Mark. Congratulations on taking on the site and I’m sure it’s going to continue to be one of the best showcases of film writing out there. You guys leave so many of the other blogs out there in the dust when it comes to quality, so here’s hoping for even more success in the years to come.

  19. Mark Bell says:

    Thanks for the kind words. Tom, that’s a good point. At the time, I was pretty intent on getting something online that indicated the site would still exist as opposed to, you know, nothing. Could’ve been more informative, but I really enjoyed the Hell out of that image…

    So far I’ve gotten one negative response, but it was via email and the person who sent it didn’t include their real contact info. I know this is the internet and all, but does anonymous negativity now expand to email as well? I thought that was for comments and messageboards. I’m so internet innocent, apparently…

  20. Mr B Natural says:

    Welcome back. I’ve missed this site.

  21. theDia says:

    Finally the waiting is over. I reread all Issues of the print-version again in the downtime and with each page I learned more about what I was missing in the last 3 months.

    A FT without Chris Gore is hard to imagine, but I´m sure it´s possible. All the best luck from a german long time fan. FT is back on my daily visit list. 🙂

  22. About time. My only criticism is that “coming soon” placeholder that stayed up for weeks and weeks. You might have put something more informative and hopeful instead of a coffee cup stain…like a little bit of your post above. For all we knew, Film Threat could have been bought by Rupert Murdoch, and we’d have to hear rants about the Evil Black President along with film reviews.

  23. saad says:

    welcome back! and stay put!

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