Longest running festival of its kind, the Christian Youth Film Festival encourages young people to create excellent movies integrating the Christian faith. The gala screening includes young filmmakers all dressed up, arriving in limos, and walking the red carpet. Exclusive VIP dinner is a highlight for filmmakers from each accepted entry. Industry professionals serve as judges both before and during the screening. Past celebrities have included: Dean Batali (That 70's Show); Jenn Gotzon (Doonby, Alone Yet Not Alone), Bobby Downes (Like Dandelion Dust, Time Changer), Coleman Luck (Equalizer, Burning Zone, Otherworld), Chuck Konzleman and Cary Solomon (God's Not Dead, Do You Believe), and others.

Awards & Prizes

"Best of" Trophies; such as "Best Actor", "Best Screenplay", "Best Application of Scripture"
Giant Checks (cash)
* Best of College Division: about $750
* First place Teen Division: nearly $800
* Second place Teen Division: close to $700
* Third place Teen Division: well over $500
Prizes such as free acting lessons, "on set" intern opportunities, etc...
Each entry receives written critique from judges, a flash drive with movies from 2018, two really cool lanyards, and two awesome VIP passes into the exclusive backstage dinner with judges, directors, and producers. (value over $120)

Rules & Terms

1. The contest is open to youth ages 12-22, with complete disregard to geographical location, race, hair, religion, creed, sex, ancestry, disabilities, DNA, or military service.
2. Two divisions: Teen (Middle school / High school; generally 12-18yrs.); and College; (generally 18-22yrs). Teams that span both age groups should probably enter the division based on age of your director. Please contact us if you need further clarification.
3. All movies must have begun principle production after March 5, 2017. Writing and pre-production may be earlier.
4. Primary positions for talent and crew must be within the specified age range. Only supporting roles may be from outside the age brackets. Writing, crew, and post production must be done by those of age within their division. If any crew or talent are outside the division age bracket, the individual will be inelligible for award consideration, and movie may be disqualified.
5. Minimal adult help is allowed and encouraged. This means adults may advise or demonstrate with the goal of teaching. Adults may drive, help secure equipment and locations, or provide the pizza. Adults should strive to help kids be better filmmakers, learn new skills, and develop hidden talents.
6. Movies must be wholesome and compatible with a Biblical Christian worldview. TEEN division entries must also be age-appropriate and family friendly for screening to younger audiences.
7. All music copyright, talent, and location releases must be provided with each entry. Best Original Score award will only be considered for original musical scores written specifically for this entry.
8. Running time is limited to ten minutes, not including credits. Accurate and complete credits are required on-screen and on file. Credits and outtakes might not be screened at discretion of the CYFF.

4 Reviews

Overall Rating
Quality
Value
Communication
Hospitality
Networking
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    Ethan Hill

    The Christian Youth Film Festival was a great opportunity to get our film out there. With the money we won, we will now be able to work on another project! Highly recommend this festival to young, Christian filmmakers!

    May 2017
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    Ethan Ness

    The Christian Youth Film Festival is a great outlet for young filmmakers to share their films and grow in their love for film... But... While the festival is well run and the people putting it on are outwardly pursuing the spreading of the Gospel through film, the standards for the films they select is, in my opinion, quite low. I have enter the past two years, and I have watched the films that were selected alongside mine, and I am somewhat disappointed in the lack of artistic expression and general story telling quality that was displayed in the films. Now, my film was not a perfect by any means, and that may sound like a lot to expect from a youth film festival, but in the end, films have very bland messages that do little for spreading the good news of Christ, have very little chance of making a real impact on people outside of the festival and the Christian community. Now, the festival as a whole is a safe, positive, and overall good environment for young filmmakers to share their films, but if you are looking for a festival with higher quality films and, while still putting more influence on glorifying Christ, also have higher standards for the films that they let in, enter knowing that it is not that kind of festival at this point. This may seem like an arrogant review, but with a cost of $50 dollars and months of anticipation, to see a film that was very artistically and specifically put together, it was disappointing and a bit discouraging. But ultimately, the film honored God in its message and that is all that matters in the end.

    March 2017
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    Matthias J. Johnson

    Really, about all I can say about this festival is positive, and professional! They give good prizes, know how to treat you like a king, and most of the competition is pretty stiff!
    But if I were to get really picky, and explain my one missing star, the only thing I would say is that the MC of the event got a few names pronounced wrong. But I know that's a very small detail. Over all this is a spectacular event! These guys know what there doing!!

    March 2017
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    Robert Smat

    I really enjoyed this festival overall. Joe and the staff were very welcoming and hospitable, and I felt that I got a great deal for my entry fee. This is a perfect festival for high schoolers with an interest in faith-based content. For college students early in their studies, it's a great way to see people watch your film. The coolest part about this festival is how the whole community rallies to attend it, although I will say that's one of it's minor weaknesses: contestants from the Bakersfield community have a much greater favor with the judging staff. My only other complaint was that the tech staff wasn't prepared to properly show the films in the theater. There was a horribly distracting aliasing effect that prevented motion blur in the films, and poor sound quality was only amplified by blaring speakers at the front of the aging theater.

    March 2017