Join Us for the 8th Annual Bright Ideas Film Festival - Live at Contra Costa Cinemas!

We're thrilled to welcome you back in person for an unforgettable evening of cinematic creativity on Wednesday, April 24th, at the iconic Contra Costa Cinema.

This year, we're spotlighting an exceptional lineup of short films, culminating in an engaging Q&A session where filmmakers share insights into their creative journeys.

Submissions Are Now Open!

General Submissions: $15
Student Submissions: $10

Get Your Tickets!
Secure your spot for this not-to-be-missed event. Tickets are available online. Stay tuned for more details!

Celebrate Cinematic Excellence
Recognizing outstanding storytelling and creativity, we will award TROPHIES to the standout film in each category.

The Bright Ideas Film Festival is more than just a competition; it celebrates passion, perseverance, and the powerful stories that connect us all. Whether you're a filmmaker looking to showcase your latest project or a cinephile eager to experience the vibrant local film scene, this festival is for you. Join us to support and celebrate the incredible talent within our filmmaking community.

To celebrate the filmmakers, TROPHIES will be presented to the winner of each category.

* Best in Festival - Student
* Best in Festival - Professional
* Best Comedic Performance
* Best Dramatic Performance
* Best Editing
* Best Cinematography
* Best Directing
* Best Writing
* Best Sound Design
* Best Original Score
* Best Production Design
* Audience Choice Award

Bright Ideas Film Festival Submission Guidelines

* Duration: Films must be 25 minutes or less.

* Genres: We welcome submissions from all genres. Let your creativity shine!

* Selection Process: Submission does not guarantee screening. We will inform all filmmakers of their selection status by April 3rd, 2024.

* Content Guidelines: Films must be appropriate for a general audience. Please avoid extreme gore or explicit sexual content.

* Submission Fees:
Professional: $15
Student: $10

* Student Entries: Films submitted as student projects must have been created during the filmmaker's time in either college or high school. Films do not need to be school assignments. Filmmakers who have since graduated are eligible, provided the film was made during their student years.

* Multiple Submissions: Filmmakers are welcome to submit several projects, but we will select only one film per director for screening. Films can have overlapping producers, cast, or crew members.

* Refund Policy: Please note that we do not offer refunds on submission fees.

* Awards: Our panel of judges determines category winners before the festival, except for the Audience Choice Award, which festival attendees will vote on.

* Should your film be chosen for screening at the festival, we would greatly appreciate a Digital Cinema Package (DCP) for optimal video and sound quality, if feasible. Nonetheless, submission of a DCP is not mandatory.

Overall Rating
  • Bright Ideas is an amazing bay area film festival in a beautiful theater! The communication was great from start to finish, and the hospitality was wonderful. We look forward to submitting again in future years!

    March 2023
  • What a wonderful group of folks, led by the lovely Tony Alfaro. As far as festivals, their communication, and hard work really showed. We were honored to have HERE FOR NOW selected to screen this year, and I look forward to bringing other films to this festival in the future. I really enjoyed all the films and the thoughtful curation of the festival. Thank you!


    December 2022
  • Fantastic festival held at the beautiful Orinda Theater! I am honored to have been a part of it.

    December 2022
  • Devin Reese

    What an excellent local Bay Area Film Festival! What a treat to see all these great films in the Orinda theater this year. I highly recommend to anyone interested in submitting or attending!

    December 2021
  • Jan Gruszka

    Very friendly and open, great opportunity to talk to other filmmakers from all around the world

    January 2021