Austin is well known for some of its bigger film festivals, including South by Southwest and Austin Film Festival. But there are many other Austin film festivals that are worth submitting to, whether you’re a local Austin filmmaker or one located anywhere else in the world.
The following are some awesome Austin-based film festivals to submit your work to.
Austin Spotlight Film Festival
The Austin Spotlight Film Festival has been running for six years and takes place at the Southwest Theater Lake Creek in Austin, TX. They accept all types of short films, documentaries, screenplays, features, music videos, and even trailers. Selected films are showcased at the festival, as well as promoted on their website and social media.
Submission dates open in August and the event takes place in September.
Cine Las Americas
Cine Las Americas hosts theatrical screenings of films made by and/or about Latinos or Indigenous peoples of the Americas. The multi-day event showcases contemporary films and videos from North, Central, South America, the Caribbean and the Iberian Peninsula.
They also host a monthly screening series in partnership with Austin’s Violet Crown Cinema, where past winning films are screened.
The main film festival event is held in June.
Austin Under the Stars Film Festival
Austin Under the Stars Film Festival is an outdoor festival held at a retro-inspired boutique hotel called Lone Star Court. Awards are given out in categories that include narrative, comedy, horror, sci-fi, documentary, music videos, and more.
Submission dates open in September and the event takes place in October.
Austin Music Video Festival
Austin Music Video Festival is, of course, a music video festival! The festival has been around for six years and accepts work from any location and any year, regardless of language, budget, or popularity. Rock on. Awards include the “Alright, Alright, Alright” Award (Best of Austin), Best Performance, and the Keepin’ It Weird Award (Best of Weird.)
The event takes place in December.
Austin Indie Fest
Austin Indie Fest is a film festival run by filmmakers for filmmakers. They hold screenings, panels, and mixers, and market themselves as a festival new filmmakers who want to compete in a high-quality film festival, but may not be quite ready for large festivals like: SUNDANCE, CANNES, AFI, SXSW or the Austin Film Festival.
The event takes place in January.
aGLIFF Prism Film Festival
aGliff is an Austin-based LGBTQIA+ film festival. Their yearly film festival, called Prism, is held each August. aGLIFF community programs also include the Queer Youth Media Project, Queer Black Voices Fund and Queer Spectrum Monthly Screenings. aGLIFF members also get access to their virtual festival, which is held after the in-person festival each summer.
The event takes place in August.
Hyperreal Film Club
The Hyperreal Film Club puts on ongoing movie nights in Austin, and from time to time they open up submissions from local filmmakers. The selected projects may screen at places like Hotel Vegas or the Paramount Theater.
Short film submissions must be under 15 minutes, and at least one person from the film must be able to attend and present the short film.
ATX Short Film Showcase
The ATX Short Film Showcase is a monthly event that screens 6-7 local projects, followed by Q&A sessions with the filmmakers. They generally focus on narrative projects but are also open to music videos, documentary short films, and webisodes.
Submissions are open on an ongoing basis and the screenings are held every second Monday of the month at The Ballroom in North Austin.
Austin Liftoff Film Festival
The Austin Liftoff Film Festival is Gold rated on FilmFreeway and has been in existence for 12 years. They have an in-person screening as well as screen content online. The festival accepts short and feature-length live-action narratives, documentaries, music videos, and animation.
Submission dates open in April and the event takes place in May.