The mission of the Beaufort International Film Festival is to enliven our community by fostering and developing a rich appreciation for art of filmmaking.

In 2019 The Beaufort Film Society will present the Thirteenth Annual Beaufort International Film Festival. Six8 days of international and local short films, feature films, animation, filmmakers surprises, educational forums, guest speakers, parties, and the quiet charm of historic Beaufort will all be on display.

Many of the filmmakers will be here at the festival to talk about and answer your questions about their films, and this is possibly your only opportunity to get close to them and see their early works before they get "discovered". The purpose of the festival is to recognize aspiring filmmakers of almost every genre to include independent film, music, animation, short and long features,documentaries, and screenwriting. BIFF 2018 was hugely successful with over 70 filmmakers in attendance; attendees from 31 states and 4 countries. It's a chance to have your film seen and loved by our loyal audiences. They'll remember you forever. It was record breaking in that approximately 14,000 people attended some or all of the festival and the average per screening was 300, another record.

It is also an opportunity to showcase the beautiful "film-friendly" region of Beaufort and the Carolina Sea Islands. For the past quarter of a century Beaufort has served as the backdrop for more than 20 major motion pictures, to include Forrest Gump, The Big Chill, The Prince of Tides,and many more. Through this festival we will reintroduce our sweeping marsh vistas, antebellum homes, and quiet charm of the old south to a new generation of filmmakers.

Awards are presented in the categories as follows:

Judged categories:

Feature Film
Documentaries (Feature and Short)
Short Film
Student Film

Audience Voted

Audience Choice

Online screeners are preferred until notification of acceptance, at which time a BluRay/DVD Exhibition version will be requested along with an HD Digital version. Entries are accepted in .mp4 or .mov format.

• All mailed entries must be postmarked no later than October 31, 2018 for submission.
• All submissions must have been completed after January 1, 2016.
• All films must be in English or have English subtitles. Non-subtitled or dubbed foreign language films will not be considered.
• All clearances must be obtained for exhibition.
• Only the Producer, Director, Screenwriter or someone closely connected to the film may complete the application. Schools may submit films on behalf of student filmmakers in the Student Category.
• Only complete entries will be accepted. This includes the non-refundable entry fee paid to the order of BIFF, a signed and completed entry form and an online screener. Filmmakers may apply electronically via FilmFreeway.
• Films submitted in previous years will not be accepted for submission.
• The programmers at BIFF actively pursue the best in American independent and world cinema for the annual Festival. Films that have been released on video or DVD, have been widely screened on television or cable, or have been released theatrically preclude the Festival from accepting those films for competition. Entries that appear in their entirety on YouTube or Vimeo or other video exhibition program will not be accepted. Exceptions are sometimes made for such films to be programmed at the Festival out of competition but are determined on a case by case basis.

Film Categories for Competition:

• Feature-length films (narrative or documentary) must be 40 minutes or longer.
• Film Shorts (narrative, documentary, experimental, animated) must be 39 minutes or less.
• Student films must have been completed after January 1, 2016 and proof of enrollment is required. Student films may not exceed 30 minutes.
* Animation Category submissions may not exceed 8 minutes.

Although BIFF is a competitive festival, some films may be included in the program in a non-competition section.

Unfortunately, BIFF is unable to provide comments about specific films due to time and resource constraints.

Selected filmmakers may expect the following:

• Filmmakers whose films are accepted for competition will be notified by email by approximately December 15, 2018. All the privileges due filmmakers will be specified in this correspondence.
• All filmmakers with a film in competition will receive a VIP pass, giving free access to all events and screenings (subject to availability) at the Festival. These passes are non-transferable and must be worn at all times in clear view. Passes are not sent by mail, but must be picked up in person at the designated Festival site.
• BIFF promotes the schedule of screenings via media including newspapers, emails, television and radio. BIFF encourages filmmakers to help promote their films by promoting their screening(s) to industry professionals, distributors, the press and the general public.
• For entries selected to the 2019 Festival, an exhibition version of the film in proper format (BluRay/DVD or File (MP4 or MOV (H.264)) must be received by BIFF no later than December 31, 2018. Failure to comply with technical specifications may result in the removal of the film from Festival competition.
• Filmmakers may not install banners or posters at the theaters without the official authorization of BIFF.
• The individual or corporation submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to commit the film for screening, and understands and accepts these requirements and regulations. The individual or corporation submitting this film additionally grants the BEAUFORT International Film Festival the right to one or more public screenings of the entry during the dates of FEBRUARY 19-24, 2019. Entries that are not completed or available for screening must pull their entry prior to December 15, 2018 or the film will be screened as entered.

The management of the BEAUFORT International Film Festival reserves the right to decide all questions regarding rules and regulations. Submission of a film constitutes that the filmmaker accepts the rules and regulations set forth herein.

Questions: Please visit the website at or email:

Entry fees are waived for past BIFF Finalists and Winners. Enter code: PASTFINALIST.
For those invited to submit by festival programmers, enter code: BIFFFESTINVITE..

A synopsis or description alone on one page, (one paragraph, appropriate for quick reading)

A cast and crew list on two pages maximum, (if possible). Include contact information.

There is no limit to the number of entries you may submit. A separate entry and entry fee must accompany each work.

The Beaufort International Film Festival reserves the right not to choose a winner from any of the following categories: Screenplay, Animation, Student, Feature, Documentary and Short.

Good Luck!

By your submission of a program to the Beaufort International Film Festival you authorize us to use your program in all promotions for the festival and for the Beaufort Film Society. This would include encore presentations after the festival to which accepted.

Overall Rating
  • Alec Gutherz

    Ron and the rest of the staff at the Beaufort International Film Festival were tremendous. The communication throughout was great, even getting a personal phone call to say that we had been selected. Everything about the festival was top class. Unfortunately, I had a last minute emergency and couldn't attend as I had planned. Ron was incredibly understanding and thoughtful. This is definitely a festival I will be submitting to again and hopefully I'll have the great opportunity to attend. Thank you to everyone involved.

    April 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Alec for the kind words and great review. God's Country was well attended and much appreciated by our film loving audience. We look forward to your next submission.

  • Christy Westad

    This year was the first time I've been to the Beaufort International Film Festival, but it is now my favorite festival I've ever attended. Based upon the large number of filmmakers that return year after year, I feel confident in saying that I am not alone. The festival oozes hospitality and warmth from the initial notification of acceptance into the festival (a personal phone call from Ron Tucker, the CEO of the festival) through every aspect of the festival experience. I loved that the festival screens all films in a single, large theater so that each film has 300-500 audience members. The town was a gem and I loved exploring in my off-time. I felt that the films were expertly curated to the likes of the audience (again, most of whom make it a point to attend the festival every year) and I really liked almost every film. The panels were great and the filmmakers were treated very well with a lounge stocked with snacks, beverages, and lunch, and complimentary hotel rooms for many filmmakers. I'd highly recommend this festival for anyone and can't wait to attend again.

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Christy for this wonderful review. We loved that you were able to come to the festival to experience first hand what a great audience we have in Beaufort. When a filmmaker experiences an audience with over 300 people, that will very often be the spark for the filmmaker to keep at it, to continue to make films with impact that make in difference in someone's life. Great job. Please come back to see us again.

  • Edina Kishonthy

    This festival is an amazing gem. The organizers, Rebecca and Ron Tucker are very gracious hosts and keep the event running smoothly. Everything is on time, delicious food in the filmmakers lounge and at the parties, gorgeous venues... and the audience! Finally a festival where people watching my film were not other filmmakers, but actual movie-lovers! The auditorium was full and I could tell that the viewers responded very well to my movie. They were engaged, understood it, asked questions... And to add -- the city of Beaufort is a beautiful place worth visiting. It felt like a vacation.

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Edina, we are so glad to hear that you enjoyed your time with us in Beaufort! I think you were able to do almost everything except the kayak excursion??!! You will just have to come back to check that off of your list. I know you would thoroughly enjoy it. I appreciate you attending as many activities possible that we had planned for you filmmakers. We try to keep you guys busy, but still want you to feel as though you are on a mini vacation! I am glad our plan worked with you. I was very happy when you told me immediately following your screening and Q & A that "This audience really got my film, they laughed when they were supposed to and asked great questions!" Thank you for submitting "In a Dream" to BIFF and allowing BIFF to be your South Carolina Premiere. Remember as a past finalist, your submission fee is waived. Contact us before you submit so we can give you the waiver code. It changes from year to year. Thank you so much for the positive review! Hope to see you in Beaufort in the near future!

  • Great festival, comunication was great !!!!

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Juan for the positive review of the festival. We hope next time you will be able to attend. Thank you for submitting "An Idea" to the festival. It was well received. We look forward to future submissions from you! Be sure to contact us if you decide to submit something else because as BIFF alumni the submission fee is waived!! Again, thank you.

  • Nikki Farren

    ONE OF THE BEST FILM FESTIVALS WE HAVE EVER ATTENDED! WE HAD 400 PEOPLE AT OUR SCREENING of "REALITY DISORDER"! Festival has incredible networking opportunities, parties, and events. All their screenings have quality films. Festival is well publicized, has amazing communication and organization. The festival directors and staff are truly wonderful. The city of Beaufort has great food, great sites, and great people. To sum it up, Beaufort International Film Festival is a grand scale festival in one of the most charming places on earth. SUBMIT SUBMIT SUBMIT! -Gerard Bianco Jr., Mike Vezza, Nikki Gold Farren

    March 2018
    Response from festival:

    Yes, yes, yes!! Thank you Nikki, Gerard and Mike for the glorious review of the Beaufort International Film Festival! Ron & I are happy that you all were pleased with the organization of the festival. It takes a whole lot of volunteers and sponsors to help us be successful! It was wonderful to meet y'all and we appreciate being able to screen "Reality Disorder" which was very well received by our Beaufort audience. We wish you all the best with the film and hope to see future works from you. Please come back and we'll roll out the red carpet for you again!!