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Surge Film Festival

Social Uprising, Resistance and Grassroots Encouragement (S.U.R.G.E.)Film Festival and Film Festival Network. Great food, great after-parties, great music and a great activist networking film festival experience like no other!

SURGE Film Festival

Festival presentation: 

"One must remember that in choosing the lesser of two evils, one still chooses evil." --Hannah Arendt, Philosopher, Activist

The SURGE Film Festival was established
to enable filmmakers and screenwriters to present all styles of films, scripts, music videos and multimedia content.

Multimedia is media and content that
uses a combination of different content forms. The term is used in
contrast to media which only use traditional forms of printed or
hand-produced material. Multimedia includes a combination of text,
audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content
forms. Multimedia is usually recorded and played, displayed or
accessed by information content processing devices, such as
computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live

AT SURGE, you will have the opportunity
see numerous films from around the world, attend educational panels,
hear scripts read by the screenwriters, meet filmmakers and hear from
activists from all over the world about the social movements in which
they are involved.

SURGE is the first international
activist film festival which is not only an annual film, script,
music video and multimedia festival but it is also a film festival
network which enables people worldwide to bring the festival into
their area of the world through the SURGE film festival network! Now
in our sixth year our festival promises to be more amazing than ever!

In 2011, SURGE was scheduled to take
place for only 3 days in Austin, Texas. Yet, because of increased
international interest in SURGE, the SURGE Film Festival took place
for a total of over 10 days nationwide, showing a total of over 40
films in the cities of Austin, Texas; Urbana, Illinois; and Portland,
Oregon! Films from over 15 different countries were shown. These
films included a vast array of independent features and world
premiers by new filmmakers as well as feature films such 'In The
Footsteps of Elie Wiesel' with internationally recognized Emmy and
Golden Globe winning actors such as RICHARD GERE, and feature films
such as 'Love & Valor - The Intimate Civil War Letters' with
Golden Globe winning actors such as BRIAN DENNEHY.

Production still from the film 'In The Footsteps of Elie Wiesel' filmed
in France, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania and the U S A. High
school students travel through Europe as they trace the life path and,
in this photo, sit in front of Nobel laureate, author, humanitarian and
Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel.


Rio Collier of the B Media Collective seen here in 2011 after she
received the SURGE 'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of
equality and social justice burning bright for all the world to see.
She received the award for her inspiring film 'Armed with Art: A New
Revolution is
Necessary - "Armad@s Con Arte. Una Nueva Revolucion es Nescesaria." It
was filmed throughout Mexico and shown at the Historic Academy Theater
en Español with English subtitles.
Video:  To see the video interview in which Director Rio Collier is presented with the Eternal Flame award please click here.

SURGE recognizes that it is extremely difficult for small, independent
films to find a wide audience. That is why in 2011, SURGE started the
S.U.R.G.E. Collection DVD Compilation which circulated over 1,000 DVDs
with two films selected from the 2011 SURGE Film Festival. After
filmmakers are officially selected for SURGE they are given a
questionnaire and filmmakers who choose to have their film included in
the SURGE DVD Collection may receive a wider audience all over the

In Addition, in 2012 at least one filmmaker and/or
screenwriter will receive our annual “Love & Encouragement” Award.
This award is presented to a filmmaker and/or screenwriter who presents
an excellent film that simply strives to create art and media that does
not promote or cater to politicians or multinational corporations. The
filmmaker will receive round-trip airfare from their city to the film
festival, housing during the film festival, a spending stipend and much
more. In 2011, SHAWN JUNE was honored at the SURGE Film festival in
Austin, Texas for his film Asphyxious. He also received round-trip
airfare from his home in Des Moines, Iowa to the Portland, Oregon
screening of his film at the Historic Academy Theater that screened
during the Grand Finale of the Portland, Oregon portion of the 7 day
SURGE Film festival! 

'Asphyxious' director Shawn June, standing in front of the Marquee
showing the Portland, Oregon screening of the films 'Free World' and
'Asphyxious' at the Historic Academy Theater. This screening celebrated
not only the Grand Finale of the Portland, Oregon portion of the 7 day
SURGE Film festival, but it also marked the 2011 Grand Finale of the
Fifth Annual International SURGE Film festival which ran for over 10
days nationwide in 2011! As always, admission was free of charge for
everyone because everything in the world should be free!

films were shown with the directors attending Question & Answer
sessions after their films and receiving the distinguished SURGE
'Eternal Flame' award for keeping the flame of equality and social flame
burning bright for all the world to see. It is notable that the
budget for Asphyxious was estimated at $1,000.00. At SURGE, it is not
the cost of the film that matters, but the courage to encourage other
people to follow their dreams in the quest for a better world.

also offers officially selected filmmakers user accounts on the
SURGE website so they can upload as many trailers for their films as
they like to our website. Trailers for their films will remain on our
website for at least a year to help promote their films. In
addition, when visiting the SURGE website, people will see the “Love
to S.U.R.G.E. - Film Festival Directory.” This directory not only
extensively profiles the officially selected films of the prior year,
but it also features photos and a great deal of press kit material
highlighting the filmmaker and some of their biography and/or cast
and crew..

SURGE is a non-competitive film festival so all
participants are winners. Because we remain a non-competitive film
festival, when a film, script or music video is officially selected
by our film festival, each member of the cast and crew is permitted
to display our official selection SURGE laurels on their website
and materials. The SURGE laurels not only distinguish you as being a
part of an official selection of SURGE, but more importantly the
laurels distinguish you as someone who works for equality and social
justice on behalf of all people. In addition, each member of the
cast and crew are eligible to receive a certificate. SURGE has also
begun interviewing members of the cast and crew who attend SURGE
and placing the video interviews on our website through Vimeo as
well as Youtube channels. This enables the video interviews to
appear not only on the SURGE website, but these video interviews can
also appear on the filmmakers website through links.

Each and every year admission and ticket fees for people to attend
the SURGE film festival has remained free-of-charge! This enables the
largest possible audience, from all different financial, cultural
and ethnic backgrounds, to participate in the film festival.

Registration fees to submit films into the SURGE film festival
remain low. This enables the largest possible audience, from all
different financial, cultural and ethnic backgrounds to submit
films... which anonymous entries are accepted as we encourage whistle-blowers to expose injustice! which some of the entries that are not included in the
festival are still published along with all the other entries in our
International, S.U.R.G.E. Multilingual Film Festival Directory! This
enables all entries to receive exposure and networking with people
from all over the world.

SURGE is so much more than just
another film festival: it is in word and in action the sixth annual
international Social Uprising Resistance and Grassroots
Encouragement (S.U.R.G.E.!) Film Festival!

Mission Statement

Equality and Solidarity. Although political protests give us the
opportunity to unite our thoughts in opposition to the route which
our governments are taking us, many of us all over the world have
come to the realization that the lack of peace in the world and
the problems that we see increasing every day have a foundation
deeper than the Republicans, the Democrats, or a few select
multinational corporations. What we face are institutionalized
problems, problems which can only be confronted at the root,
researched and solved by imaginative and broad based, non-violent
social movements - not ballot boxes.

A Forum of Unparalleled Access and Outreach
Horizontalism and Outreach. The Annual Social Uprising Resistance
and Grassroots Encourage (SURGE) Film Festival begin during the
first Annual International A World Beyond Capitalism (AWBC)
Conference  that began in 2005.  Much like the AWBC, SURGE has
always aimed at contributing to the process of Access,
Horizontalism and outreach by providing a space for activists - to
reflect on the importance of long term vision, strategy,
face-to-face relationship building and the realization that a
worldwide multi-racial struggle for true universal equality must
pro-actively work to include all races and classes of people,
differently abled people, and even those who do not speak English.
We also seek to bring together and give voice to people working for
a better world: a world of equality, a world of peace.

this in mind, SURGE is a film festival that is now moving to the
next level by once again organizing the Annual International SURGE
Film Festival that will take place in several different cities
during several large events.

There has been so much talk
about what kind of ‘charity’ third world countries and immigrants
‘need.’  But there is little talk about the need for
self-empowering justice beyond capitalism and more capitalism. 

again, in 2012 SURGE is being organized with hopes of not
replicating the style and approach of traditional film festivals,
which are often alienating and racially homogenized with little
attempt to create outreach and universal accessibility to
non-English speaking people and to the disabled people of our
society. These segments of our society are often the most
vulnerable populations victimized by the oppressive characteristics
of capitalism. Rather, SURGE is an attempt to use outreach to
create an inclusive gathering.

Our Vision
of us who have collectively worked together to make the ‘SURGE’ a
reality share the vision below, one that we imagine is also
shared by many who have agreed to participate, facilitate,
present, translate, or involve themselves in some active way.

envision a space in which all voices are heard, and see the
concept of "horizontalism" as a goal and a tool. It implies
directly democratic discussions where theory meets non-violent
practice, seeing and hearing one another in our full humanity, and
confronting the power hierarchies that we observe amongst
ourselves. Given that we all still live under the shadow of
capitalism and the consequences of how it affects our behavior and
psyches, we know that it is necessary for us to put great amounts
of energy and thought into structuring egalitarian and provocative
conversations, ones in which all of our voices and ideas can
thrive. This at times may mean putting aside our defensive egos
which often may inadvertently defend our lifestyles of privilege. At
some level, we all have privileges in the United States, and
these privileges of our capitalistic society have been gained by
exploiting millions of the most vulnerable people throughout the

Diverse Perspectives
of us participating in Film Festival have various experiences and
thoughts on all the topics being discussed, from those of us who
have spent most of our adult lives contemplating a particular
subject, to those of us who are now just thinking about certain
things for the first time. There are those of us who are creating
alternative energy in our communities, and those of us who are
still very much in the dreaming and questioning stage.

would greatly like for you to help us work towards the goal of
education and peaceful, universal alliance building. The best event
and intentional community is the one we build in solidarity. Bring
a friend, offer housing or a ride, post flyers in your community,
volunteer or just be imaginative!

people understand the strength of non-violence - the force it
generates, the love it creates, the response it brings from the total
community - they will not easily abandon it."

--Cesar Chavez, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America, Union Activist, Ethical Vegetarian, Philosopher, Activist

have probably attended many meetings and conferences which speak
about building Multi-racial alliances. Here are a few of the many
ways in which film festivals that you have attended in the past
greatly differ from SURGE Film Festival.

  • We
    greatly welcome the help of not only face-to-face volunteers but
    also volunteers who can only help from out-of-state, or out of
    country who work-from-home with or without the internet.
  • We
    intend to give people who attend the conference the option of
    placing contact information into a list which we will later transform
    into a free Alliance building directory.
  • The
    directory will also have a list of the languages that each person
    or organization is able to speak so that even activists or groups
    that do not speak English can form new alliances.
  • We
    acknowledge that lack of transportation is a race, class and
    gender issue. We desire to co-ordinate volunteers to drive to
    Native American reservations, migrant farm and labor camps, and
    other extremely low-income communities, to give a free ride, back
    and forth from the SURGE Film Festival, to people living in those
  • To learn more about lack of
    transportation issues that face Native Americans, please read the
    American Indian Relief Council's resource information on obstacles
    to prenatal care.
  • It is the goal of SURGE that
    the workshops presenters are not members who are part of Corporate
    Front Groups.  This is very important because there has been an
    incredible increase throughout the world of organizations and groups
    which are deceptively posing as social justice groups and they
    have increasingly been able to achieve the goals of their
    government and multinational corporate sponsors.

[To see a list of corporate front groups and corporate-backed groups please go here. Go here to read about the international usage of corporate front groups in an Australian Science
article titled 'ecological double agents.' Or go to your local
library and find a very detailed list of corporate front groups
found in article written by Co-op America titled: 'Unmasking Corporate Front Groups: Will the Real Grassroots Groups Please Stand Up.']

have many more innovative ideas to build real and lasting
multi-racial alliances amongst people who are truly working for world
peace. But we can only do it with your help. Volunteer or just
make sure you come to the SURGE Film Festival!

people understand the strength of non-violence - the force it
generates, the love it creates, the response it brings from the total
community - they will not easily abandon it."

--Cesar Chavez, Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America, Union Activist, Ethical Vegetarian, Philosopher, Activist

Festival Nickname: 
Festival Logo: 
SURGE Film Projector
African Films
American Films
Arabic Films
Art, Dance, Music
Art-house films
Asian Films
Black Culture Films
British Films
European Films
Fantasy/Science Fiction
French Films
German Films
Horror films
Human Rights
Italian Films
Japanese Films
Jewish Films
Latin American Films
Silent films
Spanish Films
Student films
not specified
not specified
Animated Films
Digital / DVD
Fiction Features
Music video
Short films
Student film
Video / TV
Festival Info
Price info: 
Tickets for SURGE are always free because everything in the world should be free!
Next Festival Dates: 
02/21/2012 - 02/22/2012
Is the Festival open to the public ?: 
Does the Festival have a market?: 
Does the Festival have a competition ?: 
Festival Submission
Film submission fee: 
Film submission amount: 
Submission accepted on 
Film call for entry start day: 
Film call for entry deadline: 
Festival Contact
Festival Director Name: 
SURGE Collective
Festival Director E-mail: 
Festival Programmer Name: 
SURGE Collective
Festival Programmer Email: 
Festival Press Contact Name: 
SURGE Collective
Festival Press Contact Email: 
Festival Commercial Contact Name: 
SURGE Collective
Festival Commercial Contact Email: 
E-mail for Webmaster: 
Festival Organization
Zip code: 
United States


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About Surge Film Festival

Social Uprising, Resistance and Grassroots Encouragement (S.U.R.G.E.)Film Festival and Film Festival Network. Great food, great after-parties, great music and a great activist networking film festival experience like no other!


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