How to Score Free Views Before New Movies Come Out

The average cinephile may itch with impatience for the release of a new blockbuster, but unless you have a legitimate critic’s platform, chances are you have little chance of getting the coveted screener. Fortunately, becoming a film critic is probably easier than ever, provided you have the necessary writing skills and a willingness to bicker with publicists. Here’s how to get movie screenings.

Start writing about films

Screeners are not available to everyone – many people are enthusiastic about the film and eagerly awaiting the Academy Awards, but if you don’t write about films regularly it will be difficult to convince a publicist to send you a screening. …

However, your chances are probably better than they were during the heyday of the old media, when professional critics occupied a vaunted niche in major newspapers and magazines. To this end, you can start small, write about films on your own blog, or post film reviews and critiques in the media, including small film blogs where the barriers to entry may be lower.

You can also start by writing audience reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and earn your streaks by eventually becoming a verified reviewer on the site, or promoting any of the more established independent blogs that started out as upstarts built from the ground up.

Either way, there is good advice on how to start your own movie blog, but you should only dive into it if your passion supports you.

Get accreditation

While there is no formal process that works universally, the main way to get that kind of legitimacy is to publish articles and show your work to a publicist who can send you reviewers.

The path to accreditation is different for everyone, but the 2015 Patheos blog explains some ideas that movie publishers and marketing companies might be interested in if you decide to knock on them:

You should be able to provide circulation numbers (or analytics for online publications). How many people read your reviews? How often do you post? (Do you write one 400 word review a month for a local newspaper, or multiple reviews a week for your own blog?)

Join the Film Critics Community

Belonging to professional communities can open big doors to getting reviewers, but of course there are usually some barriers to entry before the community allows you to join (even smaller ones). If you are a freelancer, look for information from local film critics circles and about membership of the Freelance Editorial Union ; if you are fortunate enough to work somewhere in the state, you can insist on a union contract with the Writers Guild of America or another union representing writers. Belonging to such an organization only strengthens the reputation of a professional writer . (Lifehacker and other G / O Media sites are members of the Writers Guild of America, East.)

What’s more, if you’re really serious about watching movies, you’ll have to watch movies as quickly as possible so the gatekeepers know that you’re not just trying to steal free loot. But first of all, you will have to ask – perhaps more than once – from publicists to send you screeners.

When all else fails, seek free views

If you find it difficult to find viewers, you can always continue hunting for views , which are mostly public events where the film in question is shown to the audience. Of course, screening is still unsafe in this era of pandemic, although given that vaccines are in circulation and the number of new cases is declining (for now), it is possible that you could queue for one throughout the year.

There are various websites that cater to potential selection participants. You can link to sites such as Gofobo and STX Screenings , as well as screenings of films from various production companies . For many of these sites, all you have to do is enter your zip code and you will be presented with views near you that are still available. These events are usually for invited media representatives, but non-media people are often invited as well. It can at least get you down to business, especially if you’re trying to get the attention of PR people who might send you reviewers when your integrity becomes more evident.

A word of caution, though, verification tools can seem great, especially when we spend an ungodly amount of time in isolation and at home, but be careful with what you wish for. Once you provide your address and mailbox to certain publicists, you may soon be buried under a huge flood of emails and DVDs.

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