There are few things that go together better than independent film and the independent spirit of a small Texas town. Which is exactly why we choose to hold the Hill Country Film Festival in Fredericksburg. And, when the film is finished, we couldn’t think of a better town to go out and explore for our filmmakers and patrons. Because here, you’ll find everything from museums to historical sites to shopping, great German food, vineyards and more.

Created to celebrate and showcase filmmakers from Texas and around the world, the festival began in 2010. In 2018, HCFF screened 88 independent films, both short and feature length, as well as hosted filmmaker Q&A/interviews, discussion panels, a filmmaker’s lounge and festival parties.

HCFF welcomes films in the form of features (recommended between 90-120 minutes) and shorts (recommended under 30 minutes), along with documentaries in either form.

Cinema Dulce Award (Best of Fest)*
Best Feature Film
Best Short Film
Best Director
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Student Film
Best Texas Film*
Best Documentary
Audience Choice Award

*Cash prizes will be given to winners of the festival’s Cinema Dulce - Best of Fest ($1,500) and Best Texas Film ($1,000) awards sponsored by Texas’ premier boutique winery Pedernales Cellars.

Pedernales Cellars has a long-standing commitment of supporting the development of regional arts organizations, especially those with a strong educational mission. Through these awards, Pedernales Cellars looks to extend its support to include excellence in independent filmmaking for the benefit of the Texas Hill country community and beyond.

1. We encourage the submission of films in the form of feature-length (recommended 90-120 minutes), short-length films (recommended under 30 minutes). International films are also welcome but must be either be in English or have English subtitles.

2. Films must be available for screening during the festival, April 25 - 28, 2019.

3. By submitting a film to HCFF, you grant the Hill Country Film Festival permission to screen your film, if said film is officially accepted into this year's lineup.

4. By submitting a film to HCFF, you agree to allow highlights or excerpts of your film (e.g. a trailer) to be placed on the HCFF website and used for other marketing and promotional purposes. You also agree to allow HCFF to promote the following year's festival with the above excerpts, highlights and/or trailers. HCFF will never solicit or screen your film outside the promotion of the HCFF.

5. You may submit as many entries as you like. Each entry requires its own entry fee.

6. The only acceptable way to submit your film is via FilmFreeway, as an online screener (vimeo password protected link is recommended).

7. The selected works will be exhibited digitally (shorts only) and on Blu-ray & DCP (features only).

8. In accordance with the HCFF policy, the entry fee is non-refundable. You will not be allowed to enter your work unless you agree to abide by the terms and conditions of the HCFF.

9. Filmmaker must have obtained all clearances for exhibition and must certify that the work is original and no disputes regarding ownership exist on the film.

10. All entries must be submitted through FilmFreeway by February 12, 2019.

11. Notification of selections will be by March 20, 2019. Only then will the film be considered for awards. Please understand that acceptance in the festival will in no way guarantee that you, your actors or crew will be offered paid transportation or lodging for the event. We do promise a good time, however.

Overall Rating
  • James Fite

    An amazing festival in beautiful Fredericksburg, TX! Everyone at the festival were some of the nicest people you will meet. And the quality of the screenings were as good as it gets! We loved being a part of this festival, and will be submitting all future projects to them!

    September 2018
  • Julia Barnett

    Love, love, love this festival!!! Fantastic programing, filmmakers and networking. Chad, Amy, Gary and their colleagues truly care about the filmmaker and their films. They make it an amazing experience for all.

    August 2018
  • Sophie Ellsberg

    Hill Country was an absolute pleasure. The communication and events are top notch. But most importantly, these guys are seriously good programmers. I was honored to see my film in such good company. Thank You!

    June 2018
  • Nolan Goff

    Had an extraordinary time at this festival, screening my short 'Nobody Knows'. The festival attracted filmmakers from as close as Austin and as far as Los Angeles. Great conversation, fun parties, and a wonderful experience for me as a filmmaker. Can't wait to come back.

    May 2018
  • Sarah Kuck

    This is my favorite festival! It is well organized, has great programming and is set in a lovely location. Honored to have played here twice, and hope to be included again in the future.

    May 2018