Curated by ESSENCE Studios, ESSENCE Film Festival (EFF) showcases exceptional work created by storytellers across the African diaspora. Featuring original projects in film, television and new media along with panel discussions and more, EFF is the premiere destination for emerging creators and cultural curators alike to present dynamic content on our international platform.

Festival Overview
Essence Film Festival (EFF) is a 3-day film festival that amplifies the voices of diverse content creators across the African diaspora. Each festival day will feature curated content across formats including narrative and documentary features, short films, series, podcasts and music videos. In addition, EFF will present specialized gatherings including spotlight screenings, invitation-only networking opportunities, behind-the-scenes looks and signature events, along with access to industry experts.

Similar to the ESSENCE Festival of Culture, EFF is dedicated to providing a platform for programming that centers around women and people of color. EFF champions inclusive storytelling and invites viewers to actively engage in Black culture through cinema.

TBA

General Rules:

ALL FILMS MUST BE IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE OR CONTAIN ENGLISH SUBTITLES

WE CANNOT ACCEPT ANY SUBMISSIONS THAT HAVE PREVIOUSLY EXHIBITED VIA BROADCAST, MAJOR STREAMERS, OR THEATRICAL RELEASES.

o All content must be directed, written and/or produced by persons of African descent.
o Content must adhere to the total run times outlined in each category.
o Content must have started principal photography no earlier than January 1, 2020.
o Primary preference will be given to content that is premiering at the Essence Film Festival.
o Secondary preference will be given to content that is premiering in New Orleans.
o Content that has previously played at more than two (2) festivals will not be eligible for competitive categories.