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 2023 The Beaufort Film Society will present the Seventeenth Annual Beaufort International Film Festival. Six 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.

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.

Notable perks for selected filmmakers are complimentary hotel rooms on a first come first serve basis. Breakfast and boxed lunches are offered FREE to Filmmakers (2023 BIFF Official Selections) on screening days with festival credentials, EXCLUDES alcohol. FULL ACCESS VIP passes are provided to all credited filmmakers up to 4 in your film which provides access to EVERYTHING offered by the festival. As a bonus, if you are selected, you will then be a BIFF ALUMNI and future entry fees to the festival for future projects are waived FOREVER.

Awards are presented in the categories as follows:

Judged categories:

Feature Film
Documentaries (Feature and Short)
Short Film
Student Film
Screenplays (Feature Film)
Musicall Score
Ensemble Cast
Susan A. K. Shaffer Humanitarian Award
Duty & Honor Film Collection (Military, Law Enforcement, Fire and Rescue)

Audience Voted

Audience Choice

Online screeners are preferred until notification of acceptance, at which time a high definition (1080p) (Maximum Video Resolution 1920 X 1080 and Audio up to 7.1 Surround Sound but for best performance we recommend 5.1) Exhibition version .mp4 digital file will be requested along with a digital backup (USB Drive). The Vimeo Screener may be made available for download for convenience. Otherwise the Official Screener must be sent via digital transfer, i.e. Dropbox, High Tail, WeTransfer, etc. Entries are accepted in .mp4 format. For Disclaimer: We reserve the right to down sample any films submitted to match the projector resolution in order to provide the best showing possible to our audiences.

• All submissions must have been completed after January 1, 2019 unless a waiver is granted.
• 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 unless a waiver is granted.
• 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, 2019 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 15th, 2022. 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 2023 Festival, an exhibition version of the film in proper format Digital File (MP4 ) and USB Flashdrive backup must be received by BIFF no later than October 31, 2022. 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 21-26, 2023. Entries that are not completed or available for screening must pull their entry prior to Jan.5, 2022 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:

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 competing categories listed in the description.

All films submitted that are 5 minutes or longer must include a trailer and a poster to enable the festival to properly market and promote the film prior to the festival.

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
  • Brian Steele

    Wonderful festival. Even though I wasn't able to attend the fest in person with my short film, Ron and the whole Beaufort Int'l Film Fest team made it feel like I was there. They cover the fest so well on social media (photos, interviews, etc), and do recaps after the fest is over. If I ever find myself in Beaufort, I know I'll have friends there with the BIFF team.

    April 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Brian for this wonderful review of the festival. Your comments mean a lot to us and are greatly appreciated. You're a BIFF Alum now and we look forward to staying in touch. Please keep BIFF in mind for your future work too. All the best.

  • Emily Harrold

    As a South Carolina filmmaker making films about the state, I'm so pleased to be able to reach local audiences with BIFF. Thanks so much to Ron and Rebecca for their continued support of my work. And it was such a great day when my short MELTDOWN IN DIXIE won Best Documentary Short at the 2022 Festival!

    April 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Emily for the great review. We appreciate you considering BIFF to showcase your work. We love being supportive and proactive in sharing the groundbreaking work of South Carolina filmmakers and your talent is limitless. Your film was applauded by a very engaged audience at BIFF 2022. We wish you all the best success in the future.

  • Michael Grant and Stephanie Katherine Grant

    The Beaufort International Film Festival is truly the gold standard of film festivals. Ron and Rebecca Tucker put on a week of incredible films and events in the sunny and picturesque town of Beaufort.
    We are so grateful to have been accepted to the 2022 festival and have had an opportunity to screen our short film "Kepley."
    Hands down one of the BEST film festivals we have ever been a part of!

    April 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Michael and Stephanie for the kind remarks in your review of BIFF 2022. You're both very talented filmmakers and I'm sure there are many great things ahead for you. We look forward to seeing you both again soon.

  • GREAT Festival! These are pros here and we were honored to be nominated in 2021 ! Steve Blackwood STUCK

    April 2022
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Steve. Looking forward to whatever you send next. All the best.

  • Beaufort International Film Festival is an amazing film festival for filmmakers and screenwriters. To see my see my screenplay come to life by fellow actors, is a humbling experience and vital for the development process.

    April 2022
    Response from festival:

    Hi Genevieve! Thank you for taking the time to give BIFF 2022 a review. We were delighted you were able to attend and It was great meeting you. I am glad you enjoyed and found the screenwriters workshop helpful. We think it is a special way to engage our screenwriters. Be sure to contact me when you are ready to submit again for the waiver code. Thank you.