True Lies Film Festival 2010. On September 30th 150 guests flooded into Allen Hall Theatre for the fourth annual True Lies Film Festival. This event, organized by DESI322 students, showcased short films from various student’s from the same paper. Our planning and hard work came together to create a night that will be remembered by all.
The Dinner. To change things up from previous years and to provide a prelude to the night’s festivities, we had the idea to include a dinner to begin the evening. It became an intimate affair for forty of the design department’s staff, students and friends- an excellent way to socialize with one’s peers outside of the classroom and celebrate the nearing end of a busy year. We transformed Lab 1.07 into Dunedin’s premier restaurant, serving a homemade European fare of Ribollita Tuscan vegetable soup with crostini, Italian meatballs with pasta, and decadent tiramisu, accompanied by wine and beer.
The Venue. Our choice of location for True Lies experienced a tumultuous journey. At the beginning stages of our preparation, we had decided on holding the film festival in an open air courtyard outside of the upscale bar Pequeno, located off Moray Place. However, as other plans for décor and lighting were discussed plus the erratic nature of Dunedin weather, our team felt that too much effort and time would have to be put into transforming this courtyard/parking lot into a viable location to hold 150+ guests in a comfortable setting. When discussing alternatives, the idea of using Allen Hall came up. This theatre, part of the University’s theatre department, already boasted full lighting and sound thus reducing cost and preparation time for us. In addition, its location on campus meant we would not have to pay for it’s use which lessened the restraints on our already tight budget. Our next step was the set design. Our initial vision had clouds and lights strung from the ceiling creating a dream like atmosphere. However after further discussion and brainstorming, we decided using gauze and projections as our main decorations in the theatre would be far more effective and cost-efficient. The tiered seating and stage area proved to be a fantastic base to work with, leaving us with the sides of the hall where we kept the food stall, and later in the night had additional seating.
Media. With the ‘dream’ theme having been decided early on, the branding team had a central idea to work with to build the brand image. Branding was elicited through various print media including posters, flyers, tickets, projections, packaging and the Facebook page. The logo was used as the central focus on all forms of media; however, a more simplistic version of the logo was used for the food packaging at the event and for the venue projections.
We took a minimalistic approach to marketing trusting mostly the powers of Facebook. Other marketing avenues included outreach and flyer distribution and chalk art advertising.
- Facebook – We trusted Facebook to recruit and spread awareness of the event. This viral type marketing was effective and by having the Facebook page open for anybody to look at made sure that the word spread quickly. Facebook was an easy outlet to keep attendees updated and created a pre-event vibe having the guest list numbers viewable to others. Facebook was a great marketing tool that worked well with our non existent marketing budget.
- Posters – These were put up around the Design Studies Building to create awareness for students and staff. The posters were an effective way to reinforce the details (time and venue) through a pass by approach. The posters were a good way to establish the brand image for ‘True Lies’ and the style continued through to the ticket design.
- Outreach/Flyer distrubition – On the day of the festival flyers were distributed over lunch time. Over 250 flyers were handed out that created a pre-event buzz.
- Chalk art advertising – Chalk advertisemtns were drawn the morning of the event on the pavement and pathways of high foot traffic locations around the university. The chalk advertisements specified price, date, venue and time. Arrows above the details directed people to the venue – Allen Hall Theatre. Unfortunately the rain over the later morning meant that the chalk advertisements were very short lived.
- Word of mouth – When posters went up and the Facebook page was started students and staff started talking about the ‘True Lies Festival’ which spread the events details through word of mouth.
Overall, the marketing of the event and word of mouth of staff and students brought in a pleasant sized crowd for the evening.
Check out the photos
The Team. Solei Amokura Paul, Robert Bell, Mikaela Brookland, Emma Burtt, Rikke Harker, David Redfern, Thomas Matthew De Litto, Mark Smith, Sarah Clinton-Baker, Amy McCormick
This year’s films: