The Colorado Environmental Film Festival (CEFF) is the premier environmental film festival between the two coasts, annually screening the world's best environmental films in beautiful Colorado!

Through our annual festival, CEFF celebrates the power of film to inspire, educate, and motivate audiences to protect and preserve our environment. Founded by a dedicated and passionate core group of environmentally-minded educators, filmmakers, and supporters, CEFF is Colorado’s first and only international film festival that is hyper-focused on environmental themes. The Colorado Environmental Film Festival showcases thought-provoking stories that inspire environmental awareness, conservation, and the urgent need for sustainable change. CEFF sparks essential conversations, empowering individuals and communities to take action, fostering a collective determination to protect our planet and drive meaningful change locally and around the world.

Each year, filmmakers travel to the festival to speak with attendees following their respective films for Q&A chats, and informally throughout the weekend at festival venues. There are many opportunities for filmmakers to connect with industry peers and audiences both in-person and virtually before and during the festival, creating opportunities to amplify the impact of each film and fueling a movement of environmental stewardship that resonates far beyond the screen.

The 18th Annual Festival will feature in-person events February 22-25, 2024 in beautiful downtown Golden, Colorado on the doorstep of the Rocky Mountains and online nationally and internationally for eight days from February 26-March 3.

Please carefully read the following rules and guidelines for submission requirements. If you have specific questions about submitting a film to CEFF, contact films@ceff.net.

Each year CEFF carefully juries and presents compelling films that showcase the beauty of our planet, shed light on the most pressing challenges it faces, and highlight the inspiring efforts of communities dedicated to protecting the environment. By bringing these stories to the forefront, we aim to educate, inspire, and mobilize audiences towards sustainable action and a profound appreciation for the interconnectedness of our planet. The festival especially looks for impact films that offer solutions and serve audiences with a call to action, inviting them to learn about pressing environmental problems and initiatives that anyone can take to improve the natural world.

A panel of filmmakers, educators, media and conservation professionals chooses the films that are selected by CEFF. The quality of storytelling, production value, aesthetics, topic and being solution-oriented are principle factors in the selection of films for CEFF.

If selected to screen at the annual festival your film will be considered for one of six unique festival awards available for the following categories:
o Best of Festival
o Best Short Film (under 40 min)
o Best Feature Film (over 40 min)
o Best Youth Film (by filmmaker under 19 years old)
o Best Vertical Film (3 min or shorter, vertical 9:16 aspect)
o Spirit of Activism

CEFF accepts films from around the world in any genre with themes related to the natural and built environment completed within the last 2 calendar years. While the Festival does not exclude films with prior screenings, World, US, and Colorado Premiere submissions are strongly encouraged.

1. Submission copies must be submitted online through FilmFreeway (no DVDs, Blu-rays, DCPs, thumb drives, or other physical media will be considered). Passwords for private links must not expire before February 2024.
2. All entries selected for our 2024 festival grant Colorado Environmental Film Festival the right to use photographs, film stills, trailers, and film segments up to 3 minutes for non-commercial promotional purposes and for archival material, at no additional cost.
3. If accepted, final screening copies (digital and/or physical) must arrive no later than December 15, 2023, or the entry will not be included in the festival. Filmmakers are responsible for shipping costs to the festival.
4. Non-English entries must be submitted with embedded English subtitles.
5. ​​If available, open captioning for ALL films is encouraged.
6. If accepted, ALL films must submit an English closed caption file in .srt, or .vtt format. If available, Spanish closed caption files are also desired. CEFF offers need-based financial assistance to create captions for accepted films if caption files are not already available (in partnership with VITAC).
7. Entry fees are nonrefundable. CEFF may deny acceptance of any film at its sole discretion.
8. CEFF does not provide screening fees or honorariums for submitted work — or for any film screening as part of the festival’s juried competition.
9. We offer a limited number of submission fee waivers to filmmakers for whom the entry fee presents a barrier to submission. Complete the waiver form here - https://ceff.net/submit/. Please note that Colorado Environmental Film Festival is a non-profit environmental film festival, and we select films that closely match our mission. The availability or number of fee waivers is not guaranteed.
10. Rights and Releases: By submitting your project, you acknowledge that:
*Your film is not subject to any litigation, nor is it threatened by any litigation
*You are duly authorized to have this film be screened at the festival.
*You have secured the rights to any and all music and/or footage used in the film.
*You fully indemnify and hold Colorado Environmental Film Festival and its partners and agents completely harmless from any and all claims whatsoever that may arise as a result of usage of submitted materials and that you will bear the cost of all reasonable legal fees incurred as a result of the defense of any such a claim.
*You grant CEFF a non-exclusive, non-transferable, royalty-free right and license to use, copy, and display the film and any submitted publicity materials (including without limitation, graphics/images, trailers and film segments up to 3 minutes) from the film (collectively the "Content") for the purpose of (i) showing the film one or more times over the course of the Festival, and (ii) promoting CEFF on its website, in marketing and promotional materials, and in its social media, and (iii) helping with outreach activities outside of the Festival; and (iv) for archival purposes. CEFF’s use of your content in this manner does not grant CEFF any ownership of your copyright or intellectual property.

Overall Rating
  • Marlon Denning

    Thank you CEFF for screening my film and taking it on the school tour. What an honour!!

    June 2023
  • Caitlyn Knisely

    Loved screening our pilot Earth Girl here this year. The staff were super friendly and accommodating. And our talkback after the screening was well run and a lot of fun. Connected with a ton of Earth lovers and the other films did not disappoint. Lovely festival in Golden!

    March 2023
  • Zach Steinhauser

    CEFF is a great festival and the staff are very helpful to work with. Highly recommend applying to this.

    March 2023
  • julia blagny

    Thank you for such an interesting festival ! Very happy to be selected !

    March 2023
  • What a stunning festival and an amazing group of people who run it. Patient, friendly, organised. So grateful to have been a part of it! It's well worth any entry fee spent, if you are considering entering, and it's an honour to be chosen!

    March 2023