DC Web Fest 2018: Official Web Series Selections!

Congratulations to our official web series selections! 

Wow. You all made this year a tough one. We got incredible content from all over the world, we send a hearty congratulations to everyone who participated - keep it up! This year, we are segmenting our selections into American series and international series. Take a look at their loglines below! 


Other People's Children: Margot Antler dreams of becoming a renown novelist with a three-book deal and a summer house in Ghent. Reality check: she's a rookie second-grade teacher about to experience the insanity of parent/teacher conferences for the first time! In each episode, Ms. Antler finds herself across the table from adults behaving like children, and slowly comes to realize it's not her students who have problems, it's their parents. 

#WhoKilledHeather: #WhoKilledHeather is a 36 episode murder/mystery web series following college student Andrew Olson on his personal investigation to uncover the truth behind the recent murder of a classmate. 

Kill Me: "Kill Me" is a comedy series about actors who specialize in playing dead bodies on TV procedurals. | Bernie Wentworth’s passion is playing dead bodies on TV, or as she calls it: corpse acting. Whether it’s crime procedurals or character-driven dramas, Bernie is always enthusiastic about lying down, silent, and motionless. Corpse acting mostly consists of morgue work and crime scenes, but Bernie’s dream role is to be an omniscient dead narrator. Like Desperate Housewives or Gossip Girl, but dead.

Saaba: Made by DC native Lance Kramer, SAABA is a six-part documentary series that traces the personal stories of residents and police fighting insecurity on the region's frontlines. The recent killing of four U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers in Niger and an attack in the summer of 2016 that claimed the lives of 18 people in Burkina Faso highlight the extremist violence and other security threats facing communities in the Sahel region of Africa. From the award-winning filmmakers at Meridian Hill Pictures (CITY OF TREES) and Big Mouth Productions (CAMERAPERSON), Saaba chronicles a USIP initiative to build trust and reduce tensions among citizens, police, local authorities and informal security groups outside Ouagadougou, the capital of the West African country of Burkina Faso.

Beast: After his father mysteriously goes missing at sea, a teenager rallies the help of his small fishing-island town to set out and find him. 

Photographers Without Borders: PWB (Photographers Without Borders) TV takes our viewers all over the world to explore the challenges we face on the planet and the people who are taking them on, all through the lenses of our heroic photographers. This season takes us to Kenya to look at human trafficking, to India to look at how women are affected by the caste system, to Bali to learn about sustainability and poverty reduction, and Bosnia and Herzegovina to learn more about how youth see the world post-conflict. PWB strives to address the UN Sustainable Development Goals through storytelling and PWB TV is one of our main vehicles. 

She's Got Grit: She’s Got Grit is a docu-series about female athletes with disabilities who compete at the highest levels, in an attempt to change the perception of disability in our culture.

DOOMSDAY: This dramatic series follows the daily lives of the dozen millennial commune residents in The Catskills. Dagny, the enigmatic leader of the sect, leads daily group unity exercises, enforces 'green initiatives' (ie: one bath a week, raw food diet and biodegradable uniforms) and preaches of the dangers of over-population (which rapes the precious earth of nutrients.) Abstinence within the sect is obviously mandatory. When Dagny has a prophecy about the end of the world, chaos ensues.

The Pepper Project: Ex-CIA super-sniper Pepper and her boys Friday must solve a series of increasingly dangerous puzzles in order to find her missing sister. We tell a story of personal challenge with intriguing and complex characters, plotlines that intersect and unravel, sans gratuitous violence.

People Who Brunch: Sunday brunch has become a staple for the upwardly mobile millennial. This series satirizes the high maintenance crowd and the requests one might overhear while enjoying a Sunday brunch.

KYNNSTLAH: KYNNSTLAH is a mini-doc series that discovers and portrays emerging artists and explores art as a means of expression, communication, and emotional connection.

Mona Lisa Cowboy: Living abroad can be a curse or a blessing. Playfully reflecting on misunderstandings, surprise encounters and the vagaries of an expat life, MONA LISA COWBOY (a dramatic comedy about two estranged Chinese twins brought together by a Japanese-American cowboy in Paris) tells the universal story of wanderers, living between comedy and drama as they straddle cultures. 



This is Desmondo Ray (Australia): Internationally acclaimed that combines live action with animation, this unique series follows a peculiar man's search for love in a dark and troubling world.

Alice in Paris (France): A short-form, scripted series where we follow an energetic young woman through the streets of Paris to find the best food and places in a city she knows like the back of her hand, but one in which she can still easily get lost.

We All Wanted to Kill The President (Spain): A group of catering workers receive an unexpected visit: the arrival of the president of the government. A corrupt guy, known for his excesses and hated by much of the population. They will start joking with poisoning the food, of course, all in jest. Until, the next morning, Martinez de Ochoa is found dead in a hotel room in a mysterious way.

Restoration (Australia): In a near-future world, where individuals have their memories downloaded for backup, a man awakes in a body that is not his own.

Supa Supa (France): Supa Supa, the story of the unusual superhero guy who goes on a quest full of hope, energy, and first-world hardship before he can call himself a man. As he finds himself struck by The Perfect Girl’s beauty, he discovers his power: to bend and control reality thanks to pixilation. However, this amazing ability won’t necessarily make his hardships any easier. Will he romance The Girl of his dreams? 

Spectrums (Israel): Spectrums is a new Israeli documentary series that follows the social, political and spiritual world of 10 members of the transgender community in Israel.

The Amazing Hoolister Park (Uruguay/ Argentina): Alina is a young girl obsessed with all kind of detective novels, but she has a big problem: she works for the most boring theme park in the world. One night, her luck changes when one of her colleagues appears dead. Its seems that Hoolister is not that boring after all...

Wishlist (Germany): How far would you go to make your greatest wishes come true? This is the central question in "Wishlist", Germany's first mystery drama web series. The story revolves around Wishlist, a smartphone app which makes your wishes come true - in exchange for fulfilling tasks the app is setting. Within the ten-episodes of season one, 17-year-old Mira and her friends discover the app and initially love it wholeheartedly. Soon however, they discover that their actions have unintended and terrible consequences...

PSUSY (New Zealand): PSUSY follows two grotty girls as they suss out their offline lives as low functioning “adults”. On the backdrop of sexploits and getting high we follow their peaks and troughs dealing with various societal woes - albeit with splotches of the absurd.

How to Buy A Baby (Canada): Thirty-something couple, JANE and CHARLIE LEVY, have long given up on having a baby the fun way. Having been diagnosed with infertility, they are resigned to needing costly and invasive assistance if they are ever to become parents. They are determined, though, to keep things fertiliFUN and not lose sight of the reasons why they wanted to have a baby together in the first place. 

Dragon Race (France): Six people kidnapped by a Korean billionaire are forced to take part in a new kind of car race. Using VR simulators at first, they soon enough engage in a real race with no holds barred. Until death. 

Anachronism (Italy): Walter hasn't left home for over 7 years: he's tormented by his past and poetry is the only comfort he has. One day he hears a woman singing on the other side of his apartment's wall. This new potential friendship could be his chance to open up and easing his burden.

Nemausus (France): Ben just turned 30. He's a shy man, and in love with his coworker Diane. He's got two main passions in life: Historical reconstitutions with his figurines club, and his job at the Tourism Office in Nîmes, which consists in taking visitors on board across the city. One sad birthday party, time-traveling mystery folk, and a Roman named Volesus turn Ben's world upside down. 

Avalon Now (Australia): At the heart of Sydney’s northern beaches lies the sunny suburb of Avalon, where attractive, socially-progressive families cruise through life in four-wheel drives. But beneath the sunny veneer the suburb is gripped by crisis, mostly of the mid-life variety. Prosecco or Champagne? How does this Tinder thing work? And what if the year’s biggest social event – The White Party – is a flop? This series shows you the underbelly of Australia’s most glamorous postcode.

DC Web Fest 2018: Official Blog/ Script Selections

Congratulations to our official DC Web Fest 2018 selections! 

We are passionate about writers, of both scripts and blogs and digital art alike. We have a variety of exciting stories to tell, start diving in below! 

By the Close of Business: Burdened with an eviction threat, agnostic Trenton finds his solution an unlikely place, after a long day of unsuccessful last-ditch attempts to raise money.

The Morning After Zine: The Morning After Zine is a publication and workshop series promoting self-care for survivors of sexual violence.

Heartstopper: (UK) HEARTSTOPPER is a webcomic by Alice Oseman. Charlie, a highly-strung, openly gay over-thinker, and Nick, a cheerful, soft-hearted rugby player, meet at a British all-boys grammar school. Friendship blooms quickly, but could there be something more...?

Midnight Especial: (Iran) A middle-aged man, alone in a city of couples, gets ready to pop the big question, with unexpected results. 

Scientia Potentia Tumblr: Look no further than Scientia Potentia for all of your spaced-out, planetary-ogling needs. 

1990zzz Tumblr: A curated board of all your favorite 90s style icons and fades-from-years-past. 

PoPville: PoPville chronicles the happenings in Washington D.C.’s neighborhoods. Like Jackie Lee’s of yesteryear, PoPville has become the pulse of the nation’s capital. Topics covered include quality of life, real estate, restaurants, bars, retail, architecture, gardening, pets, transit, crime and other general observations about daily life in D.C.

DC Web Fest 2018: Official VR/AR Selections

Congratulations to our official DC Web Fest selections! 

We are pleased to announce the VR/AR selections for this year's festival. This form of digital storytelling will only grow in the coming year, and these selections illustrate just how far it can go. Check out these incredible works! 

Lion 360: Watch as Gibson the lion and his mother struggle with their pride’s alpha male in this groundbreaking 360-video, filmed completely in the wild from the heart of a pride of lions for National Geographic.

The Crew: A Filipino cruise ship cleaner finally gets a chance to perform an opera aria in the crew talent show, but when the show is canceled he still finds a way to sing.

I Saw The Future: In a dark expanse that could be the cosmos, we hear the voice of Arthur C. Clarke, whose face – taken from a BBC archive dating back to the 1960s – appears in the distance. His features quickly dematerialize into a multitude of shimmering pixels, creating an enveloping and immersive space out of which the thoughts of the famed author of 2001: A Space Odyssey emerge. At the heart of this spectral environment, A. C. Clarke tells us about the arrival of digital revolution, decades ahead of his time. This film is an invitation to travel, and a crepuscular form of poetry to be experienced immersively.

Alterations: Alexandro volunteers for an experiment carried out to study dreams. He doesn’t even imagine that he’s going to be subjected to the intrusion of Elsa, a form of Artificial Intelligence, who’s going to digitize and dematerialize his subconscious in order to feed off it.

The Killing Pits of Ponar: Done in conjunction with PBS NOVA, this is an immersive VR film that tells the little-known story of the origins of the Nazi genocide during WWII and the daring escape by prisoners who resisted.

The Story Unfolds: Created by the Alexandria firm Illustrate My Design, this Augmented Reality experience commissioned for the American Advertising Awards Gala, the only guidelines were a folded paper origami crane with the tagline “The Story Unfolds.” IMD created an interactive AR game that has the user collect glowing orbs so an origami crane is released into the sky. The crane symbolizes the possibilities of the future through collaboration. 

DC Web Fest 2018: Official Game/ App Selections

Congratulations to these 2018 DC Web Fest Official Selections! 

GAMES. WE LOVE THEM. And this year we are coming in with some serious fan favorites, including Doki Doki Literature Club and Serial Cleaner. All of these games build unsettling, ingenious worlds with excellent new storytelling methods. Take a look at their loglines and trailers below! 

Doki Doki Literature Club: From Team Salvato's powerhouse production team comes Doki Doki Literature Club: "The Literature Club is full of cute girls! Will you write the way into their heart? This game is not suitable for children or those who are easily disturbed." Clearly, this is only an anime dating simulator. Absolutely nothing creepy goes on here, no. This absolutely isn't one of the most unsettling games alive. 

Serial Cleaner: Slip on your flares, grab your shades and hop in your station wagon, it's time to go to work… as a professional cleaner for the mob. A good cleaner never gets caught, so you have to make sure you get in, clean up and get out without leaving a trace of evidence for the police to find in this stylish 70s-themed 2D stealth/action game.

Recontact Instanbul: Eyes of Sky : All the way from Turkey, Eyes of Sky is a cinematographic mind-explosion, since the interactive game's scenes are shot on real locations with real actors. You become a leading actor/actress in an active murder investigation, trying to identify and interrogate suspects, collect evidence for the investigation, and decrypt hundreds of photos, videos, and diary entries alongside superintendent Ersin. 

What Remains of Edith FinchWhat Remains of Edith Finch is a collection of strange tales about a family in Washington state. As Edith, you’ll explore the colossal Finch house, searching for stories as she explores her family history and tries to figure out why she's the last one in her family left alive. The gameplay and tone of the stories are as varied as the Finches themselves. The only constants are that each is played from a first-person perspective and that each story ends with that family member's death.

Emily is Away TooEmily is Away Too is a story featuring new characters and multiple different endings. Message your friends, surf the web and choose your path through this branching narrative. Message both Emily and Evelyn as you determine the outcome of your senior year. Extend the story past the chat window with youtube links, facebook profiles and file transfers. And most importantly, change your text color to lime green so everyone knows you're the coolest kid in school.

DC Web Fest 2018: Official Trailer/ Digital Short Selections

Congratulations to the 2018 DC Web Fest Official Selections!

We are thrilled to share our first batch of films - shorts and digital trailers. These creators come from all over the world, from Afghanistan and Australia to Washington, D.C. and rural Ohio. Check out their loglines and external links below! 

The Luck Bird: (Afghanistan) Adam is a naive young man who fights with everyone. After losing his job, he seeks a solution from a wise man. The sage sends him to the desert and gives him forty days to hunt down the bird that brings good luck. 

The Hollow: (USA, student film) In completion of his senior thesis in Film, Kale Barber took inspiration from Japanese horror, set in his bucolic undergraduate surroundings. When Blair initiates an affair with her professor, she's contacted by a spirit with a score to settle.

Rock Bottom: (Australia) Nick Baker and Tristan Klein – old school friends – formed Seek and Hide Productions in 2012 and have been featured at festivals ever Since. This work features two comedians - Luke Heggie and Cassie Workman - who bring their weird and wacky world to life. Welcome to Rock Bottom - a filthy underground bar, full of filthy underground bugs.

The Hum: (Germany) Strange things are happening in the small village of Tandern, right on the edge of the Swabian Albtrauf. As Sarah, a young vet tech, tries to find the underlying cause of a woman's mysterious death, she is forced to face her dark past, getting caught between mother nature and humanity's exploitation of her. It seems something sinister lies inside the forest dark and deep...

Introverted Girl: (USA, DC Local, student film) An alumna of Howard University and recent MFA graduate in Film and Electronic Media from American University, A’Montay Giddings-Watson shows her personal digital story about exploring life as an introverted girl.

If You Care: (USA, DC Local, student film) Abrar Abulfaraj, a recent MFA graduate from American University in Film and Electronic Media, produced a public awareness website about certain autoimmune diseases, with motion graphics to help illustrate their stories. 

DC Web Fest 2018: Official Podcast Selections

Congratulations to the 2018 DC Web Fest Official Submissions!

We are pleased to announce the official Podcast Selections for this year's DC Web Fest. Thanks to all who submitted their stories, and for making our first year of podcast submissions such a great one! Read below for more information on this year's selections: 

STRIDE AND SAUNTERStride and Saunter is a podcast for thinking differently - specifically about humanity and curiosity. Every week, Kip Clark and a variety of hosts and interviewees bring you honest, thought-provoking discussions about the world we live in and how we perceive it.

MAGICAL HISTORY OF KNOX COUNTYThe Magical History of Knox County is a delightful, whimsical tale. The show follows Mordecai Dogwood as he takes over for the missing host of a popular public radio show in rural Ohio - only to discover a magical ecosystem hiding in plain sight. With the help of a station tech, a park ranger, a pair of biologists, and a giant toad, Mordecai finds himself taking on responsibilities that were definitely not in his job description.

TWO BEER QUEERS: Tom and Josh are two gay men from Washington, D.C.  bonding over libations and conversations in Two Beer Queers. From awkward hookups to the outrageous news cycle, they're talking about all the things that you overhear your drunk friends talking about, with a focus on queer issues and culture. Put on your cutest underwear and grab a drink!

GOOD GRIEFGood Grief is a serialized podcast that tells the everyday stories of grief in a serialized format. In Season 1, host Sam Sabin shares her own story. In the weeks following her father's death, she learned two things: 1) He had a second family, and 2) that second family was her. 

GARBLED TWISTORYGarbled Twistory is a podcast that’s primary objective is to humanize history, through humorizing history. Rafiq Taylor walks us through American elections, with elation in tow. 

TRANSFERT: A podcast of Slate.fr and presented by Charlotte Pudlowski, Transfert (or "Tranfer") tells you true, exciting, and moving stories about the modern world and those who live there. Have you always dreamed of knowing the secret adventures of your noisy neighbors, which has transformed the personality of your cousin, which became the reason why your colleague can no longer trust anyone? Join the journey. 

DC DIARYDC Diary facilitates relationships that go beyond a business card. The podcast aims to bring together a community of DC professionals and provide a platform to share their stories, experiences, and personal narrative in an authentic way. 

ANANSI STORYTIME: Taking it's name from the spider trickster god of Western Africa, Anansi Kweku, locally produced Anansi Storytime dramatizes fairy tales and folklore from cultures all over the world as audio plays, for the enjoyment of young and old alike. 

DEALING WITH MY GRIEF: In April 1978, Dealing With My Grief podcast creator Darwyn M. Dave lost his father when he was 10 years old. Even though many years have passed, Dave realized he was not "over" his death, and uses this audio format to examine grief, in all of its manifestations. 

The Official Hotel for DC Web Fest #6 is...

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The Hyatt Place DC/US Capital (right on New York Ave)! We are super excited to be working with the Hyatt this year :) We spent ample time researching numerous other DC hotels BUT our experience with the Hyatt has been absolute TOP NOTCH- not only with Hyatt Place DC/US Capital but with every Hyatt we contacted. Their attentiveness certainly surpasses that of many other hotels (including some 5 stars).

We initially contacted one Hyatt location to see if they had availability during DC Web Fest 6 dates (April 6-April 7). That location didn't have any availability BUT they passed our request and contact to other Hyatt locations in DC. We immediately received responses from the other Hyatts and Hyatt Place DC/US Capital was the one we chose due to its location and convenience (the others were just as great too). We have been emailing back and forth to secure everything and it's just been awesome working with them thus far! We are certain that they will provide our out-of-town guests with an amazing stay in the nations capital.

It's crazy to know that DC Web Fest 6 will kickoff in just 2 months. We have so much amazing content amongst other cool things planned for you all at the festival this year. Stay tuned!

Web Festivals in 2018


Perhaps it’s time to talk about the elephant tromping all over the new year: net neutrality, and how in the world it will affect digital creatives.

Let’s begin by saying this all might be a wash, or a cautionary thought exercise. A Senate bill to reverse the FCC’s December decision received its 30th co-sponsorwhich ensures net-neutrality will get a vote in the Senate. What happy timing, too, considering net-neutrality will certainly be a hot-button issue for 2018 campaigns which (if you haven’t been hit over the head with this too many times already) could change the balance of power in both legislative houses. And change the way our country functions. Hopefully for the better. (So definitely vote, please.) ((Back to your regularly scheduled post.))

If you have been living under a rock or just returned from an uber chic silent retreat, here is your one second catch up: FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and his cronies fellow Republican FCC chairmen voted to repeal net neutrality. In over-simplified-but-still-true terms, this victory would mean AT&T, Comcast Corp, and Verizon Communications Inc. would have power over consumer’s access to online content. The kind of content that we have made our livelihood. (This is one of the few times I would recommend reading the Wikipedia article.) Even behemoth distribution platforms like YouTube will not (and have not) be impervious to throttling and blocking, which makes the creators job x-times harder. What happens to someone entering the field, intent on creating work, when they discover they have to raise thousands of dollars more just for a better chance of popping up in the search bar, when even that multi-million dollar company can’t control who has access to their site? It’s a bet many creators and investors aren’t willing to take.

The ruling represents nothing good for us. It is now a debate of extent. If you have rose-tinted glasses on, maybe the future means some tougher times and trickier distribution, with the faith that some enterprising young mind will crop up and start the indie distribution company of our dreams. If you are plagued with a consistently pessimistic mindset, this might mean game over. In all of this, we have one truly actionable item: double down on Web Fests.

We’re indie too. We understand production issues as well as policy and IP limitations. We have a unique set of skills and knowledge that relate exclusively to digital positioning, and the DC Web Fest particularly has an understanding of how the needs of big-tech and big-policy converge. Festivals will almost certainly become the new distribution platform/ discovery ground for producers looking for new talent/ topics, and we foster a community of support. It takes a team, and we want you on ours. Almost like a workers union, except a lot more hopeful and (probably) a lot more fun. If you’d like to participate and join this growing conversation, remember the FINAL FINAL DEADLINE for the DC Web Fest is January 31. We would love to celebrate your work, and hope to see you this April 6th and 7th!

-          A.K. Young  

An Excellent New Year

Happy Happy New Year from your DC Web Fest fam!  This is Diana here, and I just want to share a little bit of what has been on my heart lately. EXCELLENCE. It's not just something you do, it's what you are. Each day when we wake up, whether it's cloudy or sunny, snowing or raining, we should fix our minds to be EXCELLENT! Now on our journey to excellence, we will FAIL and make MISTAKES; However, these things are only steps that make you stronger on your path to excellence. How can one build muscles unless there is some resistance?

So, I'm sure you're wondering why the Prince magazine covers above. Simply put, he was one of the best to do it. He realized he was musically inclined at a very young age, mastering numerous instruments by his teenage years. How many other musicians have you seen on the front cover of multiple instrument magazines? Prince took what he had and ran FAR with it all the way up to his last day on earth, paving the path for the following generations.

Everyone was sent to this earth with DOPE talents and gifts- it's just a matter of tapping into them. Don't know what your "thing" is? Well, it's usually something that you don't mind losing sleep over. It's usually something you think about and desire often. It's usually something that just comes natural. Practicing and learning it doesn't really seem like "work", but fun because you enjoy it so much. Once you tap into your gift(s)/passion(s), decide you're going to be the absolute best you possible can and only measure yourself against yourself, aiming to be better each day.

Bottom line- whatever you love to do, BECOME THE BEST AT IT! Practice and study, study and practice. Be relentless. Don't make a New Years Resolution this year. Make a lifetime decision to divorce your hindering bad habits and marry excellence. It'll be one of the greatest relationships you can have in life.

For geniuses who are living out your passion(s) through creating digital media, there's still time to show us what you've got! Who knows, your work just may be featured at the 2018 DC Web Fest.

Take care,

Diana A. Eaton

A Season to be Thankful

The new year is soon approaching us! We have smashed turkey, mac n' cheese, green beans, collard greens, pumpkin pie, apple pie à la mode, fried chicken, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes...OK I'll stop listing food now because it's starting to sound gluttonous (LOL). Then there are also relatives. Aahhhh. Some of them you are genuinely excited to see, then others....you know....you can only tolerate them in doses (mainly during the holidays). Everyone has that one aunt who has absolutely NO FILTER on her mouth. Any and everything can come out at any given time!

Anyhow, the holiday season is a great time to be simply....YOU'VE GUESSED IT...THANKFUL. No one's life is perfect, but we all have SOMETHING to be thankful for. Sometimes we can get so caught up in life's hurdles, we overlook the simple things to rejoice about. Check out the following list of the simplest things we should be grateful for (as they apply to us)::

  • Wellness/health
  • Sanity
  • Laughter
  • Peace
  • Loved ones/support system
  • Food (that we don't have to hunt for or farm. Note- our pets eat better than some of the folks in underdeveloped countries)
  • Clean water
  • A decent roof to reside under
  • Joy
  • Healthy relationships
  • Clothes
  • Employment
  • Transportation
  • Love
  • Prosperity
  • Creativity (got creative content? We want to see it!)

Maybe only one thing on the list applies to you (some of us have some pretty unfortunate lives), BUT if you can just find ONE thing to be thankful for, try to meditate on that. It's not always easy, but you may find a little joy creeping into your heart if you just focus on one thing you can be thankful for.