Event Planning Checklist

Preliminary planning – at least 6 weeks prior

Book the venue and date for your screening. Recruit local organizational partners to broaden your reach, and help identify roles for each one – such as publicity, panelist coordination, reception planning, etc.

Invite speakers (including filmmakers), panelists, and moderator (if applicable). 

Logistical planning – 3-4 weeks prior

Create a flyer to publicize your screening by downloading the free customizable mini-poster on our website with your screening information [https://thentheycamenational.com/movie-poster/]. 

Confirm that you have the right equipment to screen the DVD. You’ll need a DVD player and a large TV: or a DVD player, a projector, screen and sound system.

Secure food for reception (if applicable).

Draft agenda and vet with partners. 

Research press, bloggers, and radio and television programs likely to be interested.


Logistical planning – 2 weeks prior

Create an email blast to publicize your event electronically. We suggest sending one announcement 2 weeks prior and another several days prior.

Post to community calendars about your event. 


Media outreach – 10 days prior

Send press releases to media outlets (see Getting the Word Out in our Toolkit for ideas).

Call local television and radio programs. 


Final planning – several days prior

Test the DVD to make sure there aren’t any glitches.

Make sure that the screen is high enough so that everyone can see.

Send a second round of email blasts. 

Follow up with press who expressed an interest in covering the story. 

Finalize agenda.

Copy handouts, including literature from your organization, fact sheets, etc. 

At the event:

  • Ask guests to sign up to receive updates from your organization as they arrive.    
  • Keep time so that panelists/speakers remain within their assigned speaking time.
  • Announce a call to action. Ask your co-sponsors for the most important efforts to promote.
  • Encourage participants to spread the word  or host their own screenings. 
  • Invite your audience to join our Facebook group to find out more about new opportunities and materials to increase the film’s impact.
  • Download Tips for Discussion for more ideas about post-screening.