"One of our top 3 film festivals. Great venue. We had a blast!"
- Indie Infestation

"We're huge fans of this spectacular film festival. A great time is always had by all."
- Gruesome Magazine

"GenreBlast brought more than just horror and tears. The varied programming offered something for all (and often weird) tastes. I can't wait to go back next year!"
- PopHorror

"Honestly it's one of the better film festivals I've been to."
- In The Mouth of Dorkness

"GenreBlast is the rare festival that brings filmmakers and fans from every corner of the indie world together, and they do it seamlessly. It's a unique experience that you won't find anywhere else."
- HorrorPack

GenreBlast is an international independent genre film festival coming to you from the awesome Alamo Drafthouse Winchester in beautiful Winchester, VA!

GB5 will happen LABOR DAY WEEKEND - 9/3-9/6 2020 and will feature the best of truly independent films from around the world - specializing in action, horror, sci-fi, fantasy, martial arts, grindhouse, exploitation, Korean thrillers, Japanese gangster flicks, Chinese action movies, French horror, midnight movies, shoestring budget weird cinema, and everything under the sun! We really welcome all genres of interesting, original, exciting and daring moviemaking! All countries and walks of life are welcome here!

We also have a fantastic screenplay contest that is growing larger every year!

Our discussion panels at GenreBlast have been a big hit and we're bringing them back for GB5! Raw, uncensored real talk about indie filmmaking, gender bias, distribution, criticism, and much more will come your way from the mouths of some of the best indie talent out there!

After-parties, lively conversation, networking galore, TONS of movies, informative Q&A's and the chance to make new lifelong industry friends - all nestled in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley hamlet of Winchester, VA! Your movie will be shown in front of a lively, enthusiastic crowd of cinephiles and industry peers that don't walk around with their heads up their asses 24/7! What a refreshing way to attend a film fest!

Come Labor Day Weekend, you'll wish you were at GenreBlast!


First prize in the top categories will receive a trophy, sponsor swag, possibly cash prizes and potentially more!

Runners up in each category will receive a certificate and possibly an assortment of cool sponsor prizes.

Attending filmmakers/screenwriters will receive a weekend pass to the festival along with exclusive filmmaker lanyards to identify you as a special snowflake as well as VIP loot bags and the royal treatment you so richly deserve that can be lacking in a lot of festivals. We will treat you right, baby!

There will be a combined awards ceremony for screenwriters and filmmakers on Sunday afternoon followed by an after party to remember - the GenreBlast Aftermath Party!

The weekend will also be filled with other parties and informative and entertaining panels and discussions. You'll be in genre movie heaven.

Some of the categories for awards include:

GenreBlast Forever Award
Jury Award
Audience Choice Award
Best Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Director (Feature)
Best Director (Short)
Best Cinematographer (Feature)
Best Cinematographer (Short)
Best Score (Feature)
Best Score (Short)
Best Screenplay (Feature)
Best Screenplay (Short)
Best FX (Feature)
Best FX (Short)
Best Actress (Feature)
Best Actor (Feature)
Best Actress (Short)
Best Actor (Short)

Best Feature Script
Best Short Script
Best TV/Web Script

Best Local Film
Best Song
Best Trailer
Best Hero
Best Villain
Best On-Screen Duo
Best Ensemble
Best Poster (Feature)
Best Poster (Short)

Honorable Mention Feature Script
Runner-Up Feature Script
Honorable Mention Short Script
Runner-Up Shot Script
Honorable Mention TV/Web Script
Runner-Up TV/Web Script

The Les Femmes Du Genre Award

Email us if you have any questions about anything before you submit.

We want to make it an even playing field for anyone who submits via FilmFreeway. We don't play favorites, we don't pander to anyone and we don't kiss up to the big festivals or follow trends. We program what we think will play well over the weekend. It's that simple.

Feature films and scripts qualify as at least 60 mins/pgs and up. Short films and scripts qualify as 59 mins/pgs and under. Pretty simple.

All screenplays submitted MUST be in standard screenplay format as a PDF from a program such as Celtx, Movie Magic, Final Draft, etc.. Word docs with improper formatting will be disqualified without a refund.

By submitting, you agree that you own all copyrights and intellectual properties to your work. Any violations of that agreement will result in immediate disqualification from the festival and a cheerfully vulgar rejection letter.

GenreBlast reserves the right to use any part of your submission for promotional purposes regarding the festival itself. This includes Facebook, Twitter, local advertising, promo trailers and other related venues. Don't freak out, this stuff is pretty routine. We just might use a clip or still from your work to help promote the festival so we can sell tickets for people to see your awesome flick. That means we like you.

Submitting to GenreBlast Film Festival does not guarantee selection. Neither does liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter. Cash bribes might work, but why risk it? We reserve the right to disqualify anyone based on violation of rules & regulations, objectionable content (although we can handle a lot) rude behavior via email or social media, poor sound and/or video quality (as in unwatchable) or due to a love of Kevin James films.

International films not in English MUST be subtitled or dubbed in English. We Americans are stupid. We need subtitles because we're too lazy and arrogant to learn a second language. Do us a favor and make sure your awesome foreign film has those lovely ENGLISH subtitles. Thanks! Seriously though, dubbing blows. Don't do it.

Pretty much anything is fair game as far as content is concerned. We love violence, raunch, gore and outrageous situations, just make sure it all comes with a plot.

Again, If you're not sure about something, please email us before you submit. We'll answer your queries as quickly as possible.

Happy submitting!

Overall Rating
  • Dan Kiely

    I'm woefully late on this review, but this is one of the best fests for writers and filmmakers. Seriously, don't miss out.

    April 2020
  • Charlie Anderson

    These guys are the best. Nathan and Chad, and all the people who help make this festival happen are clearly in it for the love of movies. Quality venues and projection, fun, well-organized events, great memorabilia. One-stop shopping: everything you need right at your fingertips. Check out their other fest, Grindsploitation, too.

    March 2020
  • This. Festival. Is. Amazing. Are you kidding? Best festival sleepaway camp ever! Alamo drafthouse deluxe seats & giant screen, full houses, enthusiastic audiences, super cool filmmakers and terrific fest director & crew. Table reads of screenplays in their screenplay contest! SO cool, warm, friendly, smart, no BS, all just wow. Congrats. People pilgrimage to this place for a reason.

    February 2020
    Response from festival:

    Thank you, Angela! Lady Hunters 4 Life!

  • Stephen Wolfe

    I was thrilled to have my short Dracula's Coffin premiere at GenreBlast! Even though I wasn't able to attend the festival, I still felt very much apart of it thanks to the communication and networking opportunities set up by Nathan and his team!

    Thanks again!

    November 2019
    Response from festival:

    Dracula's Coffin is such a great short film. Thank you for the privilege of playing it at GB4. It was such a fun screening!

  • Tim Driscoll

    Could not ask for a better experience. Thrilled to be a GenreBlast alum now!

    October 2019
    Response from festival:

    Thanks Tim! We'd love to see more of your work in the future!