Sydney Film Festival wanted to amplify anticipation for its 2019 festival, welcoming first-timer festival goers and festival die-hards alike. Previously, they’d leaned into illustrations of their audience to communicate that the festival was for a wide and varied audience, but they felt like it was time for a change. They needed to make the case for films: but like festivals globally, they faced two challenges: 1) why leave the couch when you have Netflix, Stan, and Amazon Prime at your fingertips? And 2) how to brand a disparate range of content that spanned 350 films and nearly as many genres. What, if anything, united the Sydney Film Festival?
Sydney Film Festival, at its heart, is a gathering of humans in front of a screen. Our creative strategy was simple: visually, we needed to flip the perspective from looking at the audience, to looking at the screen, together. The identity was built around the idea of a city alive with film: every ad surface turned into a screen, with a preview of the festival. This gave us a host of design cues and brand behaviors like movie trailer ratings, production house logos, film credits, and most importantly–amplifying the anticipation all film festival goers experience just prior to the start of a film.