This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book presents the study of film festivals. The concept of the international film festival circuit has been rightfully criticized for its inaccurate connation of an orchestrated network of festival events. The book discusses festivals' peculiar relation to space and time. There is a young tradition in film festival studies that builds on notions like the public sphere, uses Pierre Bourdieu's cultural sociology. The book addresses issues of globalization, but there is yet a wealth of further theoretical frames waiting to be brought to bear on film festivals. It points out how a lack of resources hinders many festivals in keeping an archive, with the loss of precious material as a result. Many festivals will accomplish the demanding task of programming by going back and forth between films, outreach considerations and practical limitations.