ArtsBoston is a nonprofit dedicated to supporting the arts.
The Found Footage Festival is a one-of-a-kind event that showcases footage from videos that were found at garage sales and thrift stores and in warehouses and dumpsters across the country.
We began collecting found videotapes in 1991 after stumbling across a training video entitled, “Inside and Outside Custodial Duties” in a McDonald’s break room. Since then, we have compiled an impressive collection of strange, outrageous, and profoundly stupid videos on VHS.
It was finally in 2004, after more than ten years of collecting and sharing, we locked ourselves up in our apartment for three months with more than a thousand hours of found footage, and we watched. We watched one thousand hours of this odd and hilarious, often surprising, found treasure. When we emerged, we had distilled a thousand hours of footage into just the most sublime spectacles, intriguing characters, and beguiling, if not insightful, looks into those who lived during the golden days of the VHS dynasty. We had found 90 minutes of needles in a thousand haystacks. We called it Found Footage Festival.
Two rules govern Found Footage Festival: 1) Footage must be found on physical format. No YouTube! 2) It has to be unintentionally funny. Whatever it’s trying to do, it has to fail miserably at that. And no YouTube.
Since the first tour in 2004, the Found Footage Festival has gone on to sell out hundreds of shows across the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Europe, including the HBO Comedy Festival at Caesars Palace in Las