[03/15/13 - 02:00 PM]
Nat Geo WILD, The Sun Valley Film Festival and The African Wildlife Foundation Announce First Annual "Wild to Inspire Short Film Competition"
The competition will give independent documentarians the chance to win an apprenticeship in wildlife filmmaking with an acclaimed National Geographic filmmaker in Africa.

[via press release from Nat Geo WILD]


Winning Filmmaker Will Apprentice With Acclaimed National Geographic Filmmaker in Africa

(SUN VALLEY - March 15, 2012) Nat Geo WILD, in partnership with the Sun Valley Film Festival and the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), announced today at the Sun Valley Film Festival the first annual WILD to INSPIRE Short Film Competition-a short film competition that will give independent documentarians the chance to win an apprenticeship in wildlife filmmaking with an acclaimed National Geographic filmmaker in Africa.

The WILD to INSPIRE Short Film Competition will accept submissions from April 1 through October 1, 2013. To capture the "WILD to INSPIRE" theme, each film should focus on nature, with the goal of inspiring people to let the wild into their lives every day through content that is awe-inspiring, real, unexpected and fearless.

Films should be no more than 5 minutes long, and will be judged on the following criteria:

· Connection to the theme of "WILD to INSPIRE";

· Quality of the storyline and script;

· Creativity and/or content originality;

· Production quality; and

· Editing.

Filmmakers can enter and get official contest rules by visiting the Vimeo contest page at https://vimeo.com/groups/wildtoinspire.

The top three finalists will be flown to the Sun Valley Film Festival in 2014, where they'll screen their short films for festival attendees and a panel of judges, including Geoff Daniels, executive vice president and general manager for Nat Geo WILD; Casey Anderson, wildlife expert and host of Nat Geo WILD's "America the Wild"; acclaimed National Geographic filmmaker Bob Poole, and others, including representatives from Sun Valley and AWF.

The grand prize winner will receive a trip to AWF's Maasai Steppe Heartland in Tanzania, Africa, home to a host of wildlife, including African lions. There, he or she will receive a crash course in wildlife filmmaking through an apprenticeship with a National Geographic filmmaker.

"Sun Valley Film Festival is passionate about supporting established as well as new filmmakers. This competition is a wonderful opportunity to discover and nurture fresh talent," said Ted Grennan, executive director of the Sun Valley Film Festival.

During their stay, the winner will act as documentarian of record for Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara National Park and AWF's Manyara Ranch on behalf of Nat Geo WILD and AWF. Through regular updates, including blog posts, video and photos, the winner will shine a light on African wildlife with a focus on big cat research and conservation efforts. Additionally, the winner will give Nat Geo WILD fans an inside look at what goes on behind the camera and show what it really takes to be a wildlife filmmaker.

"WILD to INSPIRE showcases Nat Geo WILD's commitment to supporting filmmakers who are passionate about capturing the awe-inspiring wonder of the natural world that exists both in our own backyards, and in places many of us only dream of going," said Daniels. "Our goal every day is to take our viewers to new 'wild' places, and we are excited to see where each submission in this competition takes us next."

"Many people love Africa and its wildlife but don't have the opportunity to visit this amazing continent. The WILD to INSPIRE Short Film Competition is a way for the African Wildlife Foundation to bring Africa and its big cats, elephants and other awe-inspiring species to the world while also shining a light on some of the challenges Africans face in living alongside wildlife and conserving their natural heritage," said Craig Sholley, vice president for philanthropy and marketing for AWF.

As an extension of National Geographic's Big Cats Initiative, the WILD to INSPIRE Short Film Competition also provides a real-world, hands-on opportunity for filmmakers to Cause An Uproar with Nat Geo WILD in support of the ongoing effort to halt the decline of lions and cheetahs worldwide.

For more information and complete rules, visit https://vimeo.com/groups/wildtoinspire. Only U.S. residents are eligible to enter this contest.

# # #

About Nat Geo WILD

For more than 30 years, National Geographic has been the leader in wildlife programming. The networks Nat Geo WILD and Nat Geo WILD HD, launched in 2010, offer intimate encounters with nature's ferocious fighters and gentle creatures of land, sea and air that draw upon the cutting-edge work of the many explorers, filmmakers and scientists of the National Geographic Society. Part of the National Geographic Channels US, based in Washington, D.C., the networks are a joint venture between National Geographic and Fox Cable Networks. In 2001, National Geographic Channel (NGC) debuted, and 10 years later, Spanish-language network Nat Geo Mundo was unveiled. The Channels have carriage with all of the nation's major cable, telco and satellite television providers, with Nat Geo WILD currently available in 56 million U.S. homes. Globally, Nat Geo WILD is available in more than 100 million homes in 90 countries and 28 languages. For more information, visit www.natgeowild.com.

About the Sun Valley Film Festival

The second annual Sun Valley Film Festival, March 14-17, will feature a curated slate of more than 60 cutting-edge films and TV premieres, engaging coffee talks with industry insiders like Hollywood legend Jodie Foster, fabulous parties with top entertainment including indie rock legends Built to Spill, a Screenwriter's Lab led by Independent Spirit Award nominee Will McCormack and a spectacular Alaska Airlines Closing Awards Aprés-Ski Ceremony. This spring, filmmakers from around the world will bring their vision to the Sun Valley Film Festival and movie lovers are invited to watch it come into focus. For festival details and tickets, visit http://www.sunvalleyfilmfestival.org. Get festival updates on Facebook and Twitter.

About the African Wildlife Foundation

Founded in 1961, the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) is a leading conservation organization focused solely on the African continent. AWF's programs and conservation strategies are based on sound science and designed to protect both the wild lands and wildlife of Africa and ensure a more sustainable future for Africa's people. Since its inception, AWF has protected endangered species and land, promoted conservation enterprises that benefit local African communities and trained hundreds of African nationals in conservation - all to ensure the survival of Africa's unparalleled wildlife heritage. AWF is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Kenya and registered as a 501(c)(3) in the United States. For more information, www.awf.org.

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