The 2020 Red Carpet Gala was a lot of fun and a very unique experience. Normally we would have 300-400 people in attendance along with the filmmakers but with COVID the rules have changed. The ESFF management team discussed the pros and cons of having an in-person event as opposed to a strictly digital screening. The food, the live music, the mingling, the after party and a lot of the social interaction were unavailable to us this year.
We were very fortunate in that theatres were still open but at much lower capacity. The team decided on a hybrid approach where the theatre event would be limited to filmmakers and ESFF staff and the films would be available on FAVA TV
We decided to have some fun with the live event and had prizes for best mask and w\ere still able to have filmmaker interviews, champagne for everyone and filmmakers on stage to accept their awards all socially distanced with COVID protocols in place. It was the best we could make it and a celebration of Alberta short film.