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: FESTFINAL.
For those invited to submit by festival programmers, enter code: FESTINVITE.

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
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    Stephanie Bell

    I have been to many festivals over my 20 years in the industry and this is absolutely one of the top festivals I have been to. The quality of the programming, the organization of the festival, the treatment of the filmmakers, the support of the local community, the venue, the special events, ALL were absolutely tremendous.

    This is a smaller festival but it is an absolute GEM and for filmmakers trying to get their movies seen by appreciative audiences, this is a MUST-GO-TO Festival. When you are accepted into the BIFF family, it is a family for life.

    Ron and Rebecca Tucker are wonderful and their board of directors and jurors are people working long and successfully in the industry. We made great connections to other new and established filmmakers.

    I cannot recommend this festival enough.

    February 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you Stephanie, We loved getting to know you and Mischa. Powerful film and it's still resonating with the people who saw the screening. Strong performances. This film will inspire action. Looking forward to seeing you both again soon.

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    KC Allen

    This festival has changed the way I will critique and review festivals. For every film in the festival, whether it started at 9am or 9pm, each of them entertained an audience of over 300 people, and it wasn't just made up of filmmakers wanting to support their films. The audience was made up of film lovers who gave up relaxing on the sunny South Carolina beach to sit inside and watch 13 hours of films, every day for three days.

    The festival did a great job of promoting each film and making its filmmakers feel like they and their films had a home in Beaufort. We were given the star treatment from the first day, when host Ron Tucker called us personally, on the phone, to invite our film to screen.

    The films were curated well, the food available was delicious, and there was never a time I didn't feel like my presence there wasn't valued. From streaming live online to a huge amount of professional photos taken, they're rooting for you and your film. If you get selected for the Beaufort International Film Festival, you should take it for the high honor that it is, and you should attend. There's no other audience, or experience, like it.

    February 2018
    Response from festival:

    Thank you KC. We really enjoyed meeting you and Kelly and hope you will come back soon. We are so very appreciative of your efforts in promoting the festival and our beautiful city. We try so hard to make everyone feel welcome and at home. You are now part of the BIFF extended family as a BIFF Alumni. Melting Pot is a great comedy with strong performances. An audience favorite. Oh, glad you enjoy the great southern food too.

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    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
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    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
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    Juan Paulín

    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.