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Your Guide to the New York City Drone Film Festival

February 1, 2018 by CJ Schwartz
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If you’re a film enthusiast, technology enthusiast, or just a curious person looking for unique experiences, The New York City Drone Film Festival is coming up March 3 and 4, and you won’t want to miss this drone-tacular experience.

What is the NYCDFF?

The New York City Drone Film Festival is the world’s first event exclusively dedicated to celebrating the art of drone cinematography. You can check out panels of experts, take in a night of screenings and awards, and spend the day geeking out at Day of Drones with demos, classes, and more.

Tell me more about these panels…

All panels take place at BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center (190 Chambers Street).


Drone tech is ever changing. In this panel you’ll hear from some of the leading names in drone and camera tech about their individual solutions and those to come. Panelists include representatives from RED, FreeFly Systems, and Connex HD. Panel leaders: David Shefler, Brian Byrne, Jonah Fine


With an ever-changing drone law landscape you’ve got to keep up to date. These speakers will provide an overview of the laws governing aerial cinematographers, waivers that may be most useful to their operation and various forms of intellectual property available to protect innovations in the field. In addition, the panel will address legal questions surrounding the use of drone photography for news and media and the First Amendment provisions that safeguard use of this technology. Panel leaders: Brian Rothery, Mark Connot and Christopher Beall


Aerial cinematography is an incredibly complex artform requiring expertise in camera motion, cinematography, drone technology and piloting skills. Moderated by festival director Randy Scott Slavin, this panel will explore the art and craft of aerial cinematography with some of the most creative drone filmmakers who are competing in the fourth annual New York City Drone Film Festival.

Got it, now what is Day of Drones, and why should I be psyched?

If you’re a Full Festival Pass holder, you can head to the Liberty Science Center (222 Jersey City Blvd., NJ) starting at 10AM on March 4 for a full day of drone festivities, including:

MICRO DRONE RACING – Watch expert pilots navigate an intricate indoor racecourse using First Person View (FPV) technology. Experience the racing first hand by trying a pair of FPV goggles in one of the viewing areas.

DRONE EXPO – See and touch drones of all sizes and get a first look at some of the most cutting-edge drone technology.

FLIGHT DEMONSTRATION CAGE – Drones of all sizes will be flying throughout. There will also be Q&As with manufacturers as well as opportunities for Day of Drones attendees to fly drones.

FILM SCREENINGS – If you missed the screening of the fourth annual New York City Drone Film Festival on March 3 you’ll have a chance to see the winning films.

EDUCATIONAL SESSIONS – Classes for beginners, intermediate and professional drone users will be available. Learn more about classes as they are announced here.

Haven’t gotten your tickets to The New York City Drone Film Festival yet? Tap here for tix.