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Film festivals offer filmmakers an opportunity to both showcase their work and network with peers. Many future collaborations were launched in theater lobbies and after parties.
They are also a great way for cinephiles to meet filmmakers, to ask questions and learn more about the craft. Similarly, after parties help loosen up those conversations.
Click through each title to learn more about the festival, how to submit your film and how to get tickets.
Short. Sweet. Film Fest.
Feb. 28 to March 3, 2024
The Short. Sweet. Film Fest. strives to showcase up and coming filmmakers at the local, national and international levels who strive to advance the art of film.
Cleveland International Film Festival
April 3 to April 13, 2024
The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community. (In other words, we present the newest and best films from around the world, and we do everything in our power to make sure that our audience learns something along the way - about other cultures, about the topic at hand, about the experience from the filmmakers themselves.)
Over-The-Rhine International Film Festival
March 6 to 8, 2025
The Over-the-Rhine International Film Festival (OTRFF), organized by Living Arrangements for the Developmentally Disabled (LADD), is the nation’s first diversity film festival led by the disability community. OTRFF's mission is to present stories that celebrate the human spirit by providing a platform for audiences to see through another’s eyes. In addition, OTRFF aims to spotlight the Queen City and its role in reframing how we see disability in the entertainment industry’s ongoing discussion of diversity.
Athens International Film + Video Festival
April 8 to 14, 2024
Founded in 1974, the AIFVF has been presenting the best in international film for 44 years. Known globally as a festival that supports cinema from underground and marginalized populations, the AIFVF represents the values that we share as a community. It is a champion of justice and provides a voice for underrepresented artists and viewpoints on a global level. For four decades, Athens International has embraced experimental, narrative, short-form, feature length, and documentary films from every corner of the globe, offering filmmakers a stellar platform for public exposure and an environment that values artistry above marquee names and industry relationships. - From the website
April 24 to 28, 2024
In celebration of independent film and filmmakers, central Ohio’s premier cinemas and exhibition venues have joined forces, creating the region’s grandest annual film event – a centerpiece of arts and culture in Columbus.
Columbus International Film and Animation Festival
Founded in 1952, the Columbus International Film and Animation Festival is the oldest film festival in the United States. Presented by Columbus College of Art and Design, the festival showcases world-class independent films in central Ohio.
Sylvania Film Festival
Each spring, Sylvania Arts engages with hundreds of its community members during the annual Tree City Film Festival. The festival was founded in 2012 with a 50 Hour Film Challenge. It has since grown to include Shorties U, a filmmaking workshop for youth, and free community screenings of the Oscar short animation and live action films.
The festival's mission is to inspire and encourage independent film makers through a competitive showcase, while presenting a great networking opportunity for anyone involved in the industry.
Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
October 1 to 6, 2024
The Chagrin Documentary Film Festival is produced annually by Fevered Dreams Productions. Fevered Dreams Productions was originally founded by Chagrin Falls High School Alumnus and filmmaker, David Ponce, as his film production company. David was inspired to tell the story of Sparrow Village, an AIDS orphanage in Johannesburg, South Africa in a documentary entitled “The Lost Sparrows of Roodepoort”.
The annual Cleveland Jewish FilmFest is a multi-day festival that often features more than 30 films from around the world. The FilmFest showcases a diverse selection of dramas, documentaries, shorts and television programs that explore, educate, entertain and provoke discussion on the Jewish and Israeli experiences. From dramatic to humorous, the festival presents powerful and award-winning films for all movie lovers.
Have a film festival to submit? Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org.