DocsValència is a young documentary film festival that started in 2017. It features documentary films from all over the world and is held in Spanish and Valencian (Catalan). DocsValència is organized by DOCS[MX], along with local bodies and institutions in Valencia.
The festival is offered free to the public and had a Q&A session after every screening.
The Main Challenge
Since all screenings are offered free to the public, it was hard to expect the audience response in numbers, as opposed to a paywall (i.e – selling tickets), which is a barrier that usually allows estimating that number.
The festival organizers estimated a maximum number of 500 viewers per screening, a figure which we can easily handle at any time. However, in one specific screening, that number came quickly to almost 1000 viewers simultaneously.
Our main lesson from the event, which took us all by surprise, was to prepare in advance for peak situations by creating more servers in real-time. Film festivals are a business of short spikes and everyone — both the organizers and us, must be prepared for them.
The organizers also asked us to prepare an interface in Spanish, which we gladly did. So now Movies Everywhere is also available to its clients in Spanish.
DocsValència puts much emphasis on the questions and answers sessions, which were usually a discussion between festival director Pau Montagud and his guests. We provided the festival team a private video stream key, so they didn’t have to pass through any public platform.