The 17th Annual Bushwick Film Festival (BFF) is now open for submissions, presenting filmmakers with a remarkable chance to connect with industry professionals, present their work to a broader audience, be a part of a large community of filmmakers, gain significant press exposure, and compete for awards that could open new avenues in their careers.

BFF has long been a platform for over a thousand filmmakers worldwide, dedicated to showcasing a variety of voices and narratives in independent cinema. It's a place for building lasting relationships, where filmmakers from all backgrounds, whether directors, producers, actors, or other roles, can enhance their careers. Our festival is a celebration of the diversity and innovation in independent film. Participants not only gain visibility for their work but also networking opportunities, leading to potential collaborations.

We welcome filmmakers of every role and background to join us. By submitting your film to BFF, you're taking a step towards finding your audience and advancing in the world of filmmaking.

Discount Eligibility:
Discounts are available for students, previous participants of the Bushwick Film Festival (BFF Alumni), productions filmed in Bushwick, and filmmakers residing in Bushwick. If you qualify for a discount, please complete our Discount Form.

For any questions or additional information, please contact us at We are ready to assist you.

About the Bushwick Film Festival (BFF):
For 17 years, the Bushwick Film Festival (BFF) has established itself as an influential hub for independent film and a launchpad for emerging talent. We have provided a stage for over 1,000 filmmakers from more than 60 countries, fostering a diverse and welcoming environment for a wide array of narratives.

Located in the dynamic neighborhood of Bushwick, BFF has evolved into a prestigious five-day event, featuring a rich lineup of film screenings, panel discussions, special events, and networking opportunities, as well as a movie industry conference. Our festival is renowned for cultivating a supportive atmosphere that champions creativity, individuality, and the exchange of ideas.

Our contributions to the cultural, artistic, and economic enrichment of Brooklyn have garnered recognition, including acknowledgments from elected officials. This significant achievement has been made possible through the sustained support of our sponsors and partners over the years, including notable organizations like Spectrum/Charter Communications, Ovation TV, Delta Airlines, Popsugar, Johnny Walker, Caress, B&H Photo, Canon, Master Card, Hello Alice, IFundWomen, and a range of local organizations. Their support has been essential to our success, playing a key role in both expanding our public offerings and establishing impactful youth filmmaking programs for underrepresented storytellers.

The continued growth and success of BFF are a testament to the vision and dedication of its founder, Kweighbaye Kotee. As a passionate filmmaker, producer, and cinema lover, Kotee's commitment to storytelling, collaboration, and inclusivity is integral to the festival's enduring appeal and influence. Additionally, over our 17-year history, the invaluable contributions of nearly 200 volunteers, about 50 interns, and roughly 10 staff members have been essential to our success. Their collective efforts and unwavering dedication have been key in shaping the festival's journey and achievements, highlighting the strength of teamwork and community engagement.

Follow these links to get a full picture of BFF

WATCH—2023 Opening Night at Brooklyn Borough Hall:

READ—Press and News about the BFF:

VIEW—2023 Filmmaker Year Book:

VIEW—Opening Night Photo Booth:

READ—Snapshot of the 16th Annual BFF:

See what the media is saying about BFF!

“BFF gives, directors, cinematographers, and actors from around the world a platform to shine On" – PopSugar

“This year’s festival features more than 135 indie features from 27 countries. While it’s long presented such awards as Best Feature (Narrative & Documentary), Best Short (Narrative & Documentary), and Best Series, it will now also welcome screenplays into the competition.” – Deadline

“The Bushwick Film Festival shines a light on indie filmmakers and diversity in the film industry.”– NBC

“This is the moment that Brooklyn film buffs have been waiting for.” – News 12

"The Bushwick Film Festival is [...] working to shine a light on indie filmmakers and diversity in the film industry." - NBC / Positively Black

“An opportunity to see amazing films that you won’t find in regular U.S. cinemas. They are true gems!” - Indiewire

“A cultural institution in the Bushwick Art Scene.” - Times-News Weekly

“Get to know NYC’s next filmmaking generation at the Bushwick Film Festival.” - Tribeca Film

“In one of the premier arts communities of Brooklyn, the Bushwick Film Festival provides a unique opportunity to explore diverse New York voices alongside those from abroad, to both celebrate the beauty, the absurdity, and even the difficulty of life while pushing to increase our awareness and inclusion of world-views outside our own.” -Bklyner

“No one does it better here in the borough of Brooklyn.” - Eric L. Adams, Mayor of New York City

The Bushwick Film Festival presents awards in the following categories:
Best Narrative Feature
Best Documentary Feature
Best Short Film Narrative
Best Short Film Doc
Best Series
Best Screenplay
Best NFT
Best Actor / Outstanding Performance
Special Jury Prizes in all categories
Honorable Mentions in all categories
Programmers Choice Award in all categories

Bushwick Film Festival Terms of Entry:

I, the undersigned, acknowledge and agree to the following terms and conditions:

The Bushwick Film Festival accepts all forms and genres that would be deemed within a G, PG, PG-13, R, or NC-17 rating by BFF programmers. We do not accept pornographic entertainment. Entry does not guarantee acceptance into The Bushwick Film Festival.

We also accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere and that may have distribution agreements already in place. However, TV, theatrical, online video, other festival, or other distribution outlets that run concurrently or in the same month of the festival may not be eligible for screening. Rough cuts and incomplete projects are not accepted.

Multiple entries are allowed, however, a separate entry form must be submitted for each. The Bushwick Film Festival will not return or refund a submission fee after a film has been submitted.


Screenings are scheduled during the Festival at the discretion of The Bushwick Film Festival. Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule, Bushwick Film Festival reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. Bushwick Film Festival will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a schedule change. If a film is accepted into the festival and subsequently withdrawn after tickets have gone on sale, the film will incur associated costs. This policy applies to any withdrawal occurring within one month of the festival or after the film's tickets have been made available for sale. Additionally, films accepted into the festival are not permitted to be screened outside the festival venue in the Tri-State Area within the 4 weeks leading up to their official presentation at the festival.

If chosen as an official selection, Bushwick Film Festival is granted permission to exhibit the film at the 2024 (17th Annual) Bushwick Film Festival and all associated Bushwick Film Festival screenings. The location and timing of any screenings of the film shall be the sole decision of the organizers of the Film Festival. Bushwick Film Festival has the right to upload the film to the Bushwick Film Festival secure screening panel website to make submission available to Bushwick Film Festival Jury Members and to media.

Filmmakers will be solely responsible for all costs resulting from the submission of the film to the Festival including but not limited to postage or insurance of the film, and expenses of your staff or any representatives of the film.

Although every precaution will be taken to prevent loss or damage to materials while in the possession of the festival, The Bushwick Film Festival is not responsible should any materials be damaged while in transit to or from, or while in the possession of the Bushwick Film Festival.

I hold The Bushwick Film Festival, its management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, etc. harmless from any claims of liability resulting from entry. I certify that I have full rights to the use of the music in the Production.

The producer will indemnify the organizers of the Festival against all claims, demands, costs, damages, expenses (including legal fees), proceedings, and losses resulting from the screening of the film at the Festival or from claims by any third parties.

Producer/Filmmaker must own all copyrights; must be able to provide model/actor release verification if requested; must be able to provide music, product, and other copyright licensing verification if requested. The producer agrees to take on all copyright liability regarding the submitted film.

I have read, understand, and fully comply with all submission eligibility, submission guidelines, Terms and Conditions of Entry, and Entry Eligibility requirements

To the best of my knowledge, all of the statements in my submission application are true. I understand that any failure to follow and adhere to the Rules and Regulations of the 2024 Festival will result in the disqualification of the film.

Overall Rating
  • Leah Claire Borrie

    Thank you to Bushwick for screening my film Babygirl! Bushwick was by far the most diverse festival I have attended. Well organized fest, packed opening night party. Screenings were well attended. Overall a great experience and I hope to be back!

    February 2024
  • Jeffrey Rowe

    We were honoured to have had "All the Songs We Never Sang" chosen for your festival this year and wish we could have been there in person. Congratulations on bringing it all together and all the best!

    December 2023
  • Augustus Oicle

    Thank you for selecting Ember Part 2 for the Bushwick Film Festival! It was an incredible experience with wonderful events and audiences. Beautifully organized, led and executed. We're so glad we had our World Premiere at BFF.

    December 2023
  • Jon Ryan Sugimoto

    Wonderful film fest! Very communicative.

    November 2023
  • Two Hander

    World class festival! Salute to Kweighbaye & the team for a remarkable festival! Great programming, great values, great people and experience! We were honored to be selected for the festival and can't wait to return!

    November 2023