Tuesday, July 24, 2012

IMDb Has a Moratorium on New Film Festivals

One nice thing about the Internet Move Database (IMDb) is that when you look up a film, TV show, or person, you can see the awards that project or person has won, in what year, and from which arts academy or film festival.

If you've won an award -- or if your organization or film festival presents awards -- you'd naturally like to have your awards listed. Unfortunately, the IMDb's award listings are woefully incomplete.

But why? Why are so many awards not listed?

In 2009, I emailed and asked the IMDb to add my Tabloid Witch Awards to their list of recognized awards. They cryptically replied that they were not adding any new awards "at this time."

Strange. But, okay.

I emailed them every year after that -- in 2010, and again in 2011 -- and got the same replies. It appeared that "at this time" was longer than I had initially anticipated.

Finally, when I once again emailed them in July 2012, the IMDb gave me a more specific reply. Here's their reason for not listing any new awards:

Recently, we suspended updates to our Awards list while we made software improvements; while these improvements were in process, we were not accepting any additions, deletions, corrections, updates, or changes to the awards list.

Our data editors have recently begun accepting updates for some events on our site; if the Award Event you'd like to update is already listed on the Event list on IMDb.com here:


you should see the option to submit your request to our data editors.

However, if the Award event does not yet exist on the site, we regret that you'll be unable to submit the data until our software changes have been completed.

"Recently"? It's been three years since I first contacted them.

Anyway, if you run a relatively new horror film festival, and have been unable to add its award winners to the IMDb, now you know why.


For a behind-the-scenes look at horror film festivals and the festival directors who manage them, see Horror Film Festivals and Awards. This book also includes a directory of over 200 horror film festivals, and a list of festival award winners from dozens of festivals over several decades.

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