[Podcast] Michael Steinberg talks Found Footage Films and the On Vous Ment Film Festival

For this special edition of Horror News Radio, Doc Rotten sits down with Michael Steinberg to talk about all things found footage. Michael is the founder of Found Footage Critic and co-host of the Found Footage Files Podcast, quickly becoming the authority in found footage films online. His site now has over 500 found footage film in its database and he offers found footage films to watch onsite – both free and VOD. When it came time for the French found footage film festival (On Vous Ment Film Festival) to research films for potential inclusion in their line-up this Spring, they turned to Found Footage Critic to get the skinny on all the films in their sights. Michael joins Doc to discuss the site, the podcast, the film festival and found footage films in general. If you’re a fan of HNR, you know this is right up Doc Rotten’s alley and thrilled to have Michael on the podcast.


With the Found Footage Critic website, Michael has amassed an amazing resource for found footage film fans with over 500 films in the database. This number climbs every weeks with more than 300 additional films in his personal spreadsheet just waiting to be meticulously added to the listings. The site offers a great way for fans to rate their favorite found footage films and discover new offerings to watch. Speaking about that, if you use the “Watch” link in the site’s navigation, you will find a number of found footage films right there to watch, many are video on demand (at an affordable price) or free! One of the more interesting things the site offers is a clear, concise definition of what a found footage is.


From the site: Found footage films are feature length movies, shorts, or webseries designed to have the look and feel of actual (non-fictional) filmed events that were lost and subsequently discovered and made available to the viewer. For a film to be considered as “found footage,” all of the cameras used to shoot the footage must have known sources within the film itself — i.e. all cameras are effectively props in the film. Based on a detailed analysis of 500 found footage films conducted by Found Footage Critic, it was determined that films within the genre historically employ a combination of one or more of the following cinematic approaches:

  • First person perspective (a.k.a. point of view) style — filmed/recorded from the perspective of the main character who is experiencing the event while holding the camera
  • Mockumentary (a.k.a. pseduo-documentary style) — filmed/recorded in the form of interviews and investigative reporting of the event
  • News Footage style — Footage from a professional news crew investigating the event
  • Surveillance Footage style — Footage from a stationary camera automatically filming/recording the event

Found Footage Files is a terrific podcast about … you guessed it … found footage films with hosts Boss Butcher and Michael Steinberg as they tackle a new found footage film each week. They provide great insight into the film and share their opinions about how successful the film may be. The podcast was also honored by Blumhouse.com recently as one of the Top 10 Horror Podcasts You Should Be Listening To Right Now.


When it came time to locate found footage films for its docket, the French Found Footage Film Festival “On Vous Ment Film Festival” turned to Found Footage Critic as the online resource for found footage films. The festival in Lyon, France is know locally more as a Mockumentary Film Festival and Michael gets into the specifics of the festival on the podcast. The festival is currently running a crowd funding campaign to collect the final funds needed to round out the festival: http://fr.ulule.com/festival-documenteur/.