Accessible film festivals: A pilot study


  • Gabriele Uzzo Università degli Studi di Palermo


This work provides an overview of the state of accessibility at film festivals all over the world, identifies its selected audiences and also encourages innovative solutions in relation to linguistic and technical issues emerged during the processes of subtitling. The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 has resulted in many film festivals all over the world being either cancelled, postponed or moved to online platforms. What has arisen is the question whether and to what extent people with sensorial disabilities, in particular deaf and hard-of-hearing and blind and visually impaired people, have been left behind or have been part of projects of inclusion. The accessibility of forms of art, such as those in the contexts of museums, theatre and opera, has seen unprecedented advances, and research has grown exponentially in recent years. Conversely, the accessibility of film festivals is a relatively new field, still neglected and unexplored. Against the backdrop of accessibility studies and film festivals, this study introduces and discusses accessibility practices within the aesthetic framework of Sole Luna Doc Festival from the perspectives of audiovisual translation norms, conventions and guidelines, and aims to testify to which technical and linguistic strategies of subtitling for the deaf and hard-of-hearing have been adopted within the national (Italian) context applied to the film festival under examination.