- Submission fee
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The San Francisco International Film Festival, the longest-running film festival in the Americas, recognized throughout the world for its eclectic, intelligent, and adventurous programs and events, is currently accepting submissions to its 61st edition (April 2018). Works in all genres, forms, and lengths are considered.
EARLY DEADLINE– postmarked Monday, October 2, 2017
OFFICIAL DEADLINE – postmarked Monday, November 6, 2017
FINAL DEADLINE – postmarked Monday, December 4, 2017
FINAL DEADLINE (Youth Works only) – postmarked Monday, January 8, 2018
General Information for Entries
- All entries must have been completed on or after January 1, 2017.
- Features previously exhibited in the Bay Area, either theatrically, at another local festival, or via television or Internet broadcast are not eligible to apply.
- Bay Area filmmakers are eligible for additional Bay Area awards given in recognition of the rich variety of work that has established Northern California as a center of independent production. Bay Area awards are presented to a documentary feature film and two short films. To qualify for a Bay Area award, entries must have been made by a filmmaker who is a current resident of the San Francisco Bay Area (the area from Monterey to Mendocino: postal zip codes 93901 to 95457. Producers, crew, and cast members are not eligible for entry fee discounts or Bay Area Golden Gate Awards.
- Narrative, documentary, and animated short films may also be considered for inclusion in our popular Family Films program. Family films should be suitable for ages seven and up. Selections in this category engage and entertain the entire family. All genres welcome. Programs traditionally mix emerging talent with established filmmakers such as Glen Keane, Moonbot Studios, Bill Plympton, Aardman Animations, and Tonko House.
- Rough cuts or works-in-progress are accepted and reviewed. However, filmmakers are urged to submit as close to the final cut as possible. The Festival will not accept new versions of an entry unless requested by the programming staff.
- All entrants will be notified of the Festival’s decision by March 15, 2018.
How To Enter
/ Preview Format /
For review purposes, entries can either be uploaded using the Secure Online Screener option on Withoutabox.com, or sent by mail on DVD (region 0 or 1). Test your consumer-burned DVD on several makes and models of players before sending it. Only one entry on a DVD, please.
/ Subtitled Entries /
All non-English language entries must have English subtitles for preview and for Festival presentation.
/ Entry Fees /
The Festival is unable to waive entry fees or provide discounts beyond those indicated. Entry fees are not refundable. You may submit any number of titles; however, a separate entry form, preview copy, and entry fee are required for each title. If the Festival determines a work is entered in the wrong category and needs to reassign it, any discrepancy in entry fees between the categories must be paid by the entrant. Learn More.
/ Payment /
Payment is accepted only in US dollars, by check (payable to SFFILM), money order, Visa, MasterCard, or American Express. Checks must have a printed address and telephone number. International entries must pay by Visa, MasterCard or money order in US dollars. International entrants who do not wish to pay by credit card must contact SFFILM for instructions on sending a bank wire transfer. (There is an additional $20 fee for wire transfers.) Do not send cash.
/ Discount for Members /
Become a member at the Film Pro level or above and receive a discount on entry fees and numerous filmmaker perks. After purchasing a membership, please allow 24 hours for our system to update and send confirmation before submitting your entry. Become a Member.
/ Shipping Information /
- PACKAGING – Ship your DVD in a bubble-pack envelope in a plastic safe case. A fiberpack envelope can cause damage to discs as well as DVD players.
- COSTS & LABELING – All shipping costs to San Francisco must be borne by the sender. All tapes must indicate title, shipper’s name, and return shipping address.
- INTERNATIONAL ENTRIES – We recommend that entries from outside the US be sent Air Mail Registered or by parcel or express service. We cannot accept entries shipped via air freight if customs and delivery fees have not been prepaid.
- RETURN OF ENTRIES – DVDs will not be returned. Every reasonable effort is made to protect screeners from damage or loss, but the Festival, its management, and its juries cannot assume liability for damage or loss.
Questions? Contact a dedicated staff member at GGA@sffilm.org with any questions or submission concerns.