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Select Film Festivals and Indie Movies Figure Out Online Access

The coronavirus pandemic scuttled South by Southwest and delayed the Cannes Film Festival. Niche releases never got a chance to play across the country — and the theaters they would have played at face an uncertain future. But several festivals, theaters and art-house distributors have tried to offer online substitutes. This list should be considered a small sampling.

Originally scheduled for April, Tribeca has been postponed until further notice. But since March 17, the festival has posted one short each day on its website under the rubric “A Short Film a Day Keeps the Anxiety Away.” All the shorts are made by Tribeca Film Festival alumni, and they tend to allude to the current state of isolation and uncertainty. “Let’s Not Panic,” from 2015, stars Lyle Friedman as a woman with a crush on her therapist — a crush that he assures her could only come to anything in the event of a complete breakdown of societal norms. Cue an asteroid, hurtling toward Earth.

The email marketing service Mailchimp and the film distributor Oscilloscope have started a web page where viewers can — for free — watch shorts that would have been shown at South by Southwest. Even without an event in Austin this year, the festival handed out awards, and the streaming titles include some of the winners, like “No Crying at the Dinner Table” and “Regret.” Go to

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