After a year in cyber captivity, the Unnamed Footage Festival is returning to the theaters of San Francisco for four days of found footage horror, faux documentary, and first-person POV programming from 17-20 March. Opening night will be held at the screening room of the Mission District gallery Artist’s Television Access, followed by a late-night screening at the Roxie Theatre on Friday, and culminating at the historic Balboa Theater for two full days of shorts and features.
Following the success of last year’s virtual event, UFF has brought on Dread Central as the official media sponsor for the 2022 festival. Dread Central has shown an incredible enthusiasm for the found footage horror genre, making their team the perfect partner for exclusive coverage of the fest.
The 5th edition of UFF will kick off on Thursday night with their annual Recalibration Party at Artist’s Television Access. The party will begin with a screening of Ben Ben 7: Haunted Highway, followed by Found Footage Horror Power Horror – 60 nonstop clips of strange and scary moments from our favourite movies – with free beer provided by UFF’s beverage sponsor, Lime Ventures Distribution.
As found footage continues gaining popularity and evolving into a broader genre, the UFF line-up has been diversified to highlight ARG (Alternate Reality Game) content, screenlife, and hybrid found footage. To commemorate this expansion, the Unnamed Footage Festival will be co-presenting Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon as a pre-festival Terror Tuesday screening at the Alamo Drafthouse New Mission. The much-loved cult classic is one of the most notable examples of hybrid found footage horror, with the footage of a documentary crew interviewing a movie monster bleeding into the monster’s real movie.
While the scope of the festival has grown, the Unnamed Footage Festival promises to keep delivering what brought audiences to the event in past years: a chance to watch obscure, bizarre, and ambitious “in-world camera” movies on the big screen. In addition to Behind the Mask, this year’s repertory screenings also include a lost 2011 Italian plague movie titled The Gerber Syndrome, the 2017 intimate base-jumping thriller Base, and 2002 screenlife pioneer The Collingswood Story, with the cast and crew in attendance.
And the main slate titles will certainly not be overshadowed, including up-and-coming and established talent experimenting in this wild genre. UFF’s 2022 selections will include the world premiere of Jacob Aaron Estes’ (Mean Creek) experimental pandemic haunted house movie You Belong To Me, a music video shoot gone wrong in an endless desert in The Outwaters, a young man’s document of his own abductions on a head-mounted camera titled The Alien Report, the world premiere of the first feature film shot entirely on 360-degree cameras, Putrefixion: A Video of Nina Temich, and the meta sequel to UFF2’s late-night serial killer stand-up comedy smash Murder Box, My Inner Demon: A Geraldson Tale.
Short film selections include Kane Pixels’ viral creepypasta short Backrooms, the faux doc that launched an ARG about a lost N64 game, What Happened To Crow 64?, UFF alumni Thomas Burke’s screenlife oddity SHC: Freak Accident, the stop motion animation feed of a night vision camera in the woods Posted No Hunting, and the world premiere of the new short film by Adrian Tofei (Be My Cat: A Film for Anne) titled The Lost Footage.
In 2021, the Unnamed Footage Festival moved into the online space, breaking the mold with their 24-hour long hosted livecast of shorts and features accompanied by an ARG. Returning to theaters, the team still promises plenty of bizarre occurrences for badgeholders throughout the 4-day festival. Saturday and Sunday will include a marketplace of vendors and local artists in the lobby of the Balboa Theater. Be sure to visit with them and ask about any strange symbols you may have seen.
The sense of community that developed during the #UFF24HR livestream was undeniable and has inspired the organizers to continue a virtual component going forward. For those who cannot attend the in-person event and for any attendees who want more, an online festival is set for April featuring a different program of films. Unnamed Footage Festival will announce further details at a later date.
Badges are now on sale for entry to all festival events except the Terror Tuesday screening at Alamo Drafthouse New Mission. Day passes are available for 19-20 March. Individual tickets for all showings will be available at the box office of each theater. More than half of this year’s screenings will have talent in attendance for Q&As and discussion.
For more information on UFF5’s full schedule, please visit unnamedfootagefestival.com