Seeking FEATURE FILMS (longer than 40 minutes). SHORT FILMS (30 minutes or shorter)
The Chicago Motion Pictures Awards is an international film festival, which will take place in
Chicago, USA, November 10-20-2021. Filmmakers participating in the Festival attend numerous
screenings of their films and other special events designed to allow interaction between
filmmakers and audiences. Filmmakers from around the world are invited to submit films. Student
filmmakers are welcomed in each category as well. The Chicago Motion Pictures Awards selects
and honors films in several categories.
We encourage filmmakers to apply with their films, especially with themes aimed at promoting
peace, education, culture and love. Also we create space for confrontational art and
nontraditional artistic approaches.
COVID-19 Response/Planning: Please note that the festival may be hybrid in 2021 with secure
virtual screenings via ………… in response to COVID-19. Safety is our top priority, and although
plans are in place to hopefully return to theaters in November 2021, the contingency plan will be
a similar hybrid model of virtual screenings.
WAIVER POLICY: Please do not contact us requesting waivers or reduced submission fees. We
strive to keep our fees as reasonable as possible, and encourage all applicants to take
advantage of our early and official deadlines to save on submission fees.
We do not offer Student waivers, but we offer discounted Student pricing for all categories.

Best Feature Film
Best Directing
Best Screenplay
Best Cinematography
Best Documentary Feature
Best Short Film
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Animated Short
Best Documentary Short
Best Student Film
Audience Choice Award

CMPA is currently accepting all film/video submissions. Film and Video submissions are
accepted in all categories and genres.
We encourage local, national and international submissions.
Submissions are reviewed and selected under the following criteria:
-Quality of narrative and production values.
-Strength of story.

We love all genres, and screen a variety of films from documentary to narrative, animation, short
and occasionally music videos. However, we do not screen experimental, non-narrative films. In
terms of length, we do not accept mid-length films (30 - 60 minutes). 
Films must be submitted via online screener ONLY. We do not accept films sent over by DVD.
We do not accept subsequent cuts or more complete versions of submitted films, therefore
changing or updating the originally submitted link is not accepted. Only one version of the film
will be reviewed by programmers.
All submissions for CMPA are to be paid through FilmFreeway platform. FilmFreeway payment is
in USD. Only complete entries (including fee payment and screener) will be considered.
All films must be submitted in English / with English subtitles. Dialogue lists are not accepted.
All films must have been made in or after 2018.
Filmmakers are responsible for sorting out the copyright on their own materials.
By submitting to us, you give us the right to screen your film in front of a live audience/online
Nominations: Films will be nominated for each category. 
Official Selection: The selected films will be notified via email.
We place no restrictions on your work in terms of premiere status or whether your work has been
made available online. 
Any technical issues with the submitted films are 100% the responsibility of the filmmakers. If at
the time of judging, your video file doesn’t work or doesn’t have English subtitles (if in a language
other than English), it will be automatically rejected, without a refund. Please contact the festival
team CMPA if there are any issues with the submission process, and a solution will be found.
We cannot provide refunds.
By submitting to us you agree to our terms and conditions and to receiving marketing newsletters
and discounts about film festivals in the form of emails. We will never sell your information to
third parties.
We reserve the right to update our terms and conditions.

Overall Rating
  • chandramohan Nag

    The Chicago International Film Festival is an exceptional event that showcases a diverse range of films from around the world.
    One of the things that impressed me the most about the festival was the selection of films.

    January 2024
  • Hunter Fenoglio

    I emailed them and DM’d on Instagram after a week of not hearing back about the festival after I was selected. It’s been over a month now, and I never got a response about the festival that was supposed to happen, how my film did, etc.

    January 2022
  • Peter Stein

    A wonderful film festival! I am delighted that you chose "Out of Exile - The Photography of Fred Stein" to be a part of the festival. I look forward to submitting another film in the future!

    January 2022