The 2023 DOC CHICAGO showcase and conference is an annual event for and by Midwest documentary filmmakers. From panels to presentations and film screenings, DOC CHICAGO offers a gathering space for filmmakers to gain new insights, share new films, and strengthen our connections across the region.

DOC CHICAGO will once again take place at the Cultural Center in downtown Chicago. Submitting your film and attending the showcase and conference is FREE!

DOC CHICAGO is a project of the non-profit Percolator Films presented in partnership with the Chicago Film Office/DCASE.

Only Midwest filmmakers are eligible to enter their short documentaries into DOC CHICAGO's Short Docs Showcase without restriction by age, gender, background, professional or student status. The Midwest, as defined by the federal government, comprises the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

Please don't submit your film if you are not located in the Midwest -- it is time consuming for us to check your eligibility and we will unfortunately have to disqualify your entry.

Films can be up to 25 minutes max in length and must have been produced during 2019-22. Filmmakers can only submit ONE film for the showcase. We prefer that filmmakers attend the screening on Nov 5th and participate in the Q+A.

All documentary styles are accepted, including essay films, observational documentaries, activist videos, interview-driven projects, personal documentaries, hybrid works, and more. Pure fiction, animation, or sponsored projects (e.g. documentary-style promo videos) are not eligible.

By submitting your film to DOC CHICAGO, you agree to have your film screen publicly as part of the Short Docs Showcase. You also allow DOC CHICAGO to use short film excerpts for publicity and marketing purposes (e.g. as part of a trailer). The individual or company submitting the film hereby warrants that it is authorized to enter the documentary and accepts these requirements and regulations.

It is the sole responsibility of the filmmakers to obtain rights and permission for use of music, copyrighted materials, and all other creative work related to their films. The DOC CHICAGO conference is not responsible for any infringement of such rights. By submitting, you indemnify and hold harmless the DOC CHICAGO conference and its partnering organizations from any and all claims, liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses.

Curatorial decisions made by the administration of DOC CHICAGO are final.

The 2022 DOC CHICAGO conference is a project of Percolator Films, a Chicago-area 501c3 non-profit media arts organization, and is presented in partnership with the Chicago Film Office/DCASE.